Book Review: The Connelly Boys by Lily Velez

THE BLURB

Witches, magic, mystery, and adventure. The Secret Circle meets Shadowhunters in this addictive new dark fantasy you won’t be able to put down! 

The Connelly boys are practically royalty at St. Andrew’s Prep. Popular, wealthy, and devastatingly beautiful, the four brothers have long cast a spell over their classmates and over the sleepy seaport town of Rosalyn Bay, Ireland.

There’s just one problem: they’re also cursed.

…Or so the rumors say.

Seventeen-year-old newcomer Scarlet Monroe has never been one for rumors, but when she inadvertently banishes a demon while trying to help eldest brother Jack Connelly, the most breathtaking of the boys and the one to whom she feels inexplicably drawn, she quickly discovers there may be more to the local superstitions and folklore than she originally thought.

Before long, the Connellys pull her into a dark and mysterious world filled with ancient magic, powerful spells, kidnapped souls, and deadly enemies. But none of it compares to Scarlet discovering the truth of who she really is…or what she’ll have to become to defeat a rising evil older than humankind itself before she loses everyone she loves—that is, of course, if she can survive the world of the Connellys long enough.

Sounded interesting and I was in the mood for some witchcraft.

The Story

There’s nothing better than a ‘brothers’ story (Yes, I’m looking at you Sam and Dean Winchester) and The Connelly Boys didn’t disappoint, with plenty of die-for-you moments the way families should.

“That’s the beauty of family,” I said. “When people make sacrifices like that, it’s not with the expectation of being paid back one day. They just do it out of love.”

On the death of her mother, our heroine, Scarlet, reluctantly arrives in Ireland from the US to live with a father she hardly knows. She is blissfully unaware of the supernatural world she is about to get drawn into, but it doesn’t take long before she’s in a race against time to save, not only her own father, but also the gorgeous, and cursed, Jack Connelly. Amidst a web of intrigue and betrayal, Scarlet will learn her true identity and become a force to be reckoned with.

“Scarlet,,, You were born for this. You are strong enough. You must simply believe that you are.”

Velez did a good job of explaining the folklore in a natural way. And as I don’t read much about witchcraft, I needed this information.

One minor niggle was the all-boys St Andrews School. Yes, I know her father worked there, but it felt a bit contrived to throw her into this environment, and I’m not sure it was really necessary for the plot.

THE COVER

The Connelly Boys

I love everything about this cover and it fits the book perfectly.

THE CHARACTERS

Scarlet:

Scarlet is a strong heroine, ready to take on the host of supernatural villains that the author throws at her. And the author sure does throw a lot at her.

I was meant to take up the mantle and continue the sacred lineage.

It didn’t matter if I was hardly qualified, and it didn’t matter that I hadn’t yet fully come into my magic. All that mattered was whether or not I was prepared to fight the battle ahead.

I was.

The Connelly’s:

There are four brothers in the Connelly family, whose reputation among the small Irish community makes the locals lock their doors when they venture into town. I’m not always a fan of ‘movie star’ looks in my characters and at first I was a unsure I was going to warm to them.

“Its single occupant was movie-star gorgeous. The only problem was he knew it. He knew it all too well. You could spot that kind of arrogance from a mile away.”

Luckily, The Connelly brothers managed to be personable as well as super-hot.

Romance v Action

The Connelly Boys is a fast paced read with plenty of fighting and action. This is balanced with the obvious attraction between Scarlet and Jack.

“Before I knew what I was doing, I took the small step that bridged the gap separating us and slipped my arms around his neck, burying my face into the warm place where his shoulder met his neck. His strong arms instantly closed around me, holding me in place in a protective way that made a heat wave rush through me from head to toe. The hard planes of his body made me think of the marble statues Michelangelo had once carved, and I leaned against him further, as if doing so would take all my worries away.”

According to the blurb, the relationship between Scarlet and the oldest Connelly boy, Jack, kicks off properly in Book 2 in the series so maybe we can expect more romance as the story unfolds.

My favourite line

“Now,” I said, “we fight.”

The Verdict

To conclude, The Connelly Boys is a story full of witches and magic, shapeshifters and demons, ancient curses and family loyalty. I loved the backdrop of wild Irish landscapes and there was more than a fair share of folklore among its pages. If that’s your thing, then this is definitely the book for you.

Happy Reading

Love

suzanna williams get in touch

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