Kissed Off

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 03 Sep 2018

Member Reviews

Reiko Mori is your not-so-average 16 year old. She’s been trained and groomed since birth to help her family recover an infamous ruby known as The Lover’s Kiss, a stone known for being at the center of a deadly feud between the Mori and Markow families. When Reiko discovers that Levi Green, the boy on whom she has an intense crush, is actually Levi Markow, things start to get interesting. The two reluctantly form a tenuous alliance in order to find the stone.

I can’t, in all honesty, say this was an intense page-turner that kept me up late into the night, but it WAS well written and very entertaining. If I’d read this when I was a teenager, it definitely would have been one of my top books, for sure!

This book was filled with plenty of action and laugh-out-loud moments (that sounds cliche, but I actually did laugh out loud several times while reading this book - not super common for me). Couple that with romance, revenge, betrayal, unexpected twists - this is absolutely a fun and enjoyable book! There were moments that felt kind of cliche or over-the-top, but that’s part of what makes it so much fun.

I would highly recommend this to the teenage/20-something audience. Older audiences will still enjoy it, but maybe not be as deeply moved by it.

Also - I LOVE the cover. Just beautiful. It’s what first drew me in to this book.

*Thank you to NetGalley, Tellulah Darling, and Te Da Media for providing me with a free eARC in exchange for a fair and honest review. This review is posted to GoodReads, my personal Facebook page, and will be posted to online retailers when published.*
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I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review of this book. 

I think the cover of this book is great! It really draws your attention and is a good depiction of the two main characters. 

I also did enjoy the story line. The story of family betrayal and trying to find out the truth. Traveling around and trying to avoid danger and the love story playing between all these pieces in between. It was so creative to take a story of star crossed lovers and to morph it into what this storyline becomes. I thought I was getting something similar to Romeo & Juliet but this story was something much greater than that with the betrayal, danger and action. It was also great to show just how wrong individuals can be in their convictions, and how every story gets distorted the more it is told throughout the years. 


I just did not love the main character that much and that is why I gave this book a three star. I feel that her attraction to the love interest in the story is an obsession and was borderline stalking before she ever talked to him. The way she acts around the love interest is just not the way that people in love act, it is a level beyond that. I get that if you love someone you might be a little awkward, but it's like she completely shuts down around him and is incapable of thoughts or actions. It was taking young love and making a hyperbole out of it. The strong main character who has plotted and is strong and capable is reduced to staring and not being able to think what to do because she is around her crush. It just took away from her. I think because of this a book that I should have been able to devour I took too long to get through as I kept putting it down, feeling a little secondhand embarrassment for the main character.

It is also a little odd that they have a common ancestor, they are not directly related so it is not weird in that sense, but it is a little weird that they came together in the first place over a shared family interest.

 Overall, I wanted to love their love story, but it did not feel like an equal love story until the last few chapters, and because of that.I can only give this book a 3/5.
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I received a copy of this book for a fair and honest review. I was not always sure if the feud in this book was really with all the laugh out loud moments there were. There were searching for this ruby to help settle an ancient feud. Then only to find out the person you are falling for and who is trying to help you is the from the other feuding family. Wanting this settled she decides that she has no other choice but to team up with him and settle something that was started long before they were ever part of the family. I loved it and it was fun and easy read.
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I found this book to have a few cliches but it was for the most part interesting otherwise this story was a cute and fun read.
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It’s all very outlandish. Precocious Reiko Mori is sixteen, and also a cat burglar. She has been trained from birth, in order to be ready to reclaim the precious, priceless Lover’s Kiss, a ruby stolen from the family more than a century earlier. Also on the hunt is her fellow teen, equally precocious Levi Markov, who happens to be – say it with me – a scion of her family’s Ancient Enemy. Teaming up, the two must battle sinister international forces as well as their own rambunctious hormones in order to bring off the heist of a lifetime. Not to mention, travel the world! Good, silly YA fun, with a light touch on the prose and a dark undertone that takes some truly surprising turns. – Rachel Hyland

3 1/2 stars

This review appears in Romantic Intentions Quarterly #2, out July 3.
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