Dual Review: Her Forbidden Hero by Laura Kaye

Filed in 4 1/2 Stars , Dual Review , featured , Laura Kaye , Review , The Coffee Lover , The Latin Lover Posted on June 26, 2012 @ 11:00 am 4 comments

Format read: ebook provided by publisher 
Release Date: 15 May 2012
Number of pages: 240 pages
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Formats available: ebook
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author’s Website, Amazon, Barnes and NobleRead an excerpt


She’s always been off-limits…

Former Army Special Forces Sgt. Marco Vieri has never thought of Alyssa Scott as more than his best friend’s little sister, but her return home changes that…and challenges him to keep his war-borne demons at bay. Marco’s not the same person he was back when he protected Alyssa from her abusive father, and he’s not about to let her see the mess he’s become.

…but now she’s all grown up.

When Alyssa takes a job at the bar where Marco works, her carefree smiles wreak havoc on his resolve to bury his feelings. How can he protect her when he can’t stop thinking about her in his bed? But Alyssa’s not looking for protection—not anymore. Now that she’s back in his life, she’s determined to heal her forbidden hero, one touch at a time…

Our Thoughts:

Stella: Her Forbidden Hero is I think the 3rd novel I’ve read from Laura Kaye, and I enjoyed all stories very much as they were wonderfully written, so as soon as I saw that she had a new release coming up I was intrigued. Then when I read the blurb and got a glimpse of this delicious cover my curiosity went to “I.Want.It!” territory 😀

Anna: Her Forbidden Herois my first novel by Laura Kaye and I have to admit that I now fully realize why people say such good things about her work! I mean I loved everything about the way she writes!

Stella: I know! She’s a born storyteller, isn’t she?

Anna: I so agree with you Stella! Her writing style, the way she presents her characters, even the secondary ones, just screams natural talent here! I don’t know about you, but for me, the way a writer chooses to present his/her secondary characters shows his/her true talent

Stella: I completely agree. I’m one of those readers who is intrigued by an interesting plot but I need strong, well developed characters to pull me in and carry the exciting storyline. And in Her Forbidden Hero Laura Kaye did that perfectly! With a premise that didn’t sound that unique she still managed to make Her Forbidden Hero utterly memorable and unforgettable thanks to her amazing characterisations, and most notably her hero: Marco. (Now Anna, please tell me I can finally talk about Marco! pretty please ;-p)

Anna: Your wish is my command! And here I thought we’d never get our discussion there! For me Her Forbidden Hero, is all about Marco! I know, the plot was good, the writing style even paced and easily flowing, the secondary characters well built, to sum it up everything was perfect, but what stands out is Marco!

Stella: Oh yes Marco *Stella stares into the distance with a dreamy sigh* I am completely there with you Anna, Marco is the backbone and the flavour of Her Forbidden Hero, in his character Laura Kaye created such a realistic, three dimensional and complex hero that his doubts and struggles leapt off the pages and I was as invested in his emotional suffering as if he was a flesh and blood person I knew. Once again hats off to Laura Kaye, I still can’t get over my amazement and awe at what/who she created in Marco.

Anna: And let me tell you one more thing, and I’m talking as a psychologist here: his profile and his condition were pretty accurately described and that helped me see him as a real person even more.

Stella: Oh yes, that must have been an interesting side of things for you to consider, his psychological and emotional response to his injury and what he was going through.

Anna: It really was. I’ve seen more than enough times inaccuracies but Laura Kaye just did a splendid job with Marco. All of those details are what made him so special for me. He wasn’t perfect, far from it, but he was real, with flaws, as anyone is.

Stella: Oh no, he wasn’t perfect at all, he was the brilliant epitome of a tortured man. His suffering and self-doubt were heartbreaking.

Anna: His nightmares as well. His insecurities. They way he pushed Alyssa away. Everything! (Oh Marco!)

Stella: I think what was even more poignant could have been that we were shown his inner demons and doubts, that men usually try to hide because of their cockiness or simply because they were brought up with the notion that men need to be strong and can’t cry or have emotions. And Marco he was full of insecurities, self-doubt and recrimination and the way he tried to keep everything bottled up inside not sharing his problems and fears with anyone was heartbreaking.

Anna: Exactly my thoughts Stella! Most authors try to present their male characters not emotionless exactly, but tin a way most men regard themselves, as though showing or thinking of their emotions is a sign of weakness. But Marco is far from weak or less than a male.

Stella: Exactly! Laura Kaye’s strength and talent show that in portraying an alpha male hero in such a vulnerable state she still managed to make him seem and sound strong and brave! If only he recognized that sharing his flaws and fears with others and leaning on someone from time to time did not make him weak! *stupid headstrong men* mutters smiling to herself

Anna: Most of them are thinking that way though 😛

Stella: I loved how Alyssa was such a sweet and pure vanilla heroine, in the best sense of the word. She was like a soothing balm to Marco’s bruised heart and soul, and with her innocence and young naiveté and her unjaded outlook on life she was the breath of fresh air Marco didn’t even think he so desperately needed.

Anna: And that was the best for the story I think. Any other heroine wouldn’t have suited him the way I see it. She was just perfect for him, what was missing from his life, kind of like the missing piece to put everything in the right place.

Stella: Exactly. Alyssa was the white to Marco’s black and they complemented each other perfectly.

Anna: But there’s one more thing I’d like to discuss. I don’t know about you, but I loved the way Laura Kaye described Whiskey’s Music Roadhouse as well. I know, most would never give a second thought but I just couldn’t help but be reminded of my own days as a waitress and I loved everyone and everything in there, the good and the bad things. It was another realistic aspect of this story.

Stella: I agree, that the setting, the job and the secondary characters were described in enough detail and had so much “screen time”, that in Her Forbidden Hero they weren’t just mere props. For me what really stood out was what a focal role music played in the story. Besides the many songs that were mentioned to give nuance to scenes, the way we learned about band’s performing and the business also added an unexpected something more to the story. And of course the supporting cast was also brilliant, we got to know so many friendly and interesting characters that I sincerely hope Laura Kaye will take us back and we’ll get the chance to spend a bit more time with them 🙂 (A little birdie told me that Laura will tell us Brady’s (Alyssa’s big brother) story next so hopefully we’ll get our wish answered soon 😉 )

Anna: The music! I just loved how Marco tried to play his guitar even if that hurt him, and the ending scene now we’re talking about it, amazing! And well, I have a soft spot for guys who play the guitar 🙂
(And a little birdie told me the same thing Stella 😛 )


Stella: Her Forbidden Hero was a wonderfully emotional story, the kind that takes you on an emotional roller coaster and leaves you all shaken up. Laura Kaye gifted us with a truly tortured hero whose inner demons and self doubt battles were heartbreaking to read. And a gentle soothing and healing love that makes you believe in hope and ever afters. I gobbled up Her Forbidden Hero in one day, but the story stayed with me far longer. It was a memorable love story with an unforgettable hero.

I give Her Forbidden Hero 4.5 stars!

Anna: Her Forbidden Hero is the kind of story that will stick with you for a number of reasons: great writing style, interesting setting, a sweet romance but more importantly, a hero whose story will just leave you breathless. Marco is simply that good and real a character. And just for him alone everyone should read this novel!

I give Her Forbidden Hero 4.5 stars!

***FTC Disclaimer: Most books reviewed on this site have been provided free of charge by the publisher, author or publicist. Some books we have purchased with our own money and will be noted as such. Any links to places to purchase books are provided as a convenience, and do not serve as an endorsement by this blog. All reviews are the true and honest opinion of the blogger reviewing the book. The method of acquiring the book does not have a bearing on the content of the review.

About Stella

Stella is a proud bookaholic and a self-taught multilinguist in training. Besides reading, her other great passions are travelling and baking. When she is not globetrotting she lives in sunny Budapest, where she loves to spend her free time preparing (and feasting on) delicious cookies or devouring equally yummy books. Her favourite genres are urban fantasy and romance and she couldn't live without her daily dose of sunshine. Besides being the Latin Lover on BLI Stella also blogs about books and a bookish life on Ex Libris.

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  • aurian June 26, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    Wonderful review ladies, thank you. But you do make me wonder, why 4,5 stars instead of 5 if you love the story so much? What makes it not the perfect 5 stars?

    • Stella June 26, 2012 at 3:51 pm

      Hi Aurian! *waves* The ending. Though it was moving and heartfelt Anna find it too cliché and me personally I’m not a fan of public declaration of love. I prefer when the couple doesn’t make the announcement in front of a big public, in my opinion that way the scene is much more intimate and genuine. But that’s my own pet peeve (I hate it even in movies). So it was the ending for both of us 😛

      • aurian June 26, 2012 at 3:53 pm

        Okay, thank you 🙂 I can understand that!

      • Anna June 27, 2012 at 2:11 pm

        Stella covered it perfectly for me! I made the same question to Stella when we wrote the review. What made her give a 4.5 star rating instead of a 5. It was the ending for both of us. I thought it was wrapped up too quickly. You could say I’m not a big fan of marriage either 😛

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