Spin-off Saturdays: On Saturdays, I will review a series that is a spin-off series. It is recommended that you read the original series first in order to get the most out of the spin-off series. Here is this week’s offering:
The Forbidden Series is a spin-off of the Broken Series
SERIESous’ Top Picks: To Watch Author
Series: Forbidden, The Bellantis
This is a spinoff of the Broken Series.
Author: Stella Gray
# of Books: 3 (Full Reading Order Here)
Book Order: Chronological
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Drama, Dark
Heat Rating: Hot
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Dates: May 2022 – August 2022
Source & Format: Author–eARC
WARNING: If you have not finished the original series, this review may have spoilers!
There were still a few lingering plotlines from the Broken Series that I wanted to see resolved so I was really excited to spend more time with the Bellanti family. While I really thought Armani’s story would be next, I was excited to see what was in store for Marco, the brother who kinda took a backseat in the first series but was still a captivating character to read about.
Can you Read the Forbidden Trilogy Without Reading the Broken Trilogy?:
Yes, you could but I really think you get more out of it by reading the Broken Series first. There are a lot of overarching dramatic plotlines from that first series that become the main focus of this series so it helps to know what is going on and why. Plus: I feel like you really need that context (why the families hate each other) to amplify the forbidden romance as well.
How Does It Compare To The Original?
–Great Character Growth–
I’m uber impressed with the character depth Stella Gray packs into her stories! I really enjoyed watching both Marco and Karina grow and evolve as characters. Marco was one heck of a playboy in the previous series and seemed a little one-dimensional as a result. So I loved getting deeper into his character.
When I first started this series, I really worried that Karina would fall into the stereotypical sheltered virgin trope; but she also has a fantastic character story! To me, she is the star of this series. Her character development was one of my favourite aspects of this series.
–Romeo & Juliet Inspiration–
I’m a Shakespeare nerd so anything to do with the Bard gets bonus points. I loved all the allusions to the classic play but with a modern flare. It highlighted the forbidden element perfectly and pumped up the family drama perfectly!
Anything I Didn’t Like?
Not really. I always found myself compelled to read more. I can’t really pinpoint what is missing for me to make it a 5 star read. Maybe the pacing could have been a little better at the start of each novel? But I never struggled to finish these books.
My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:
While this trilogy is somewhat self-contained, I am really excited for Marco’s brother, Armani’s story!
Series Rating: 4/5
Forbidden Bride 4/5 | Forbidden War 4/5 | Forbidden Love 4/5
These star-crossed lovers have me rooting for them all the way! Who doesn’t love a suspenseful family saga filled with love and danger?
Read if You Like: Romeo & Juliet inspired; forbidden love
Avoid if You: darker romances
- The Reluctant Bride by Monica Murphy (Arranged Marriage Series #1)
- Bad Romance by Jen McLaughlin
- Indebted by Pepper Winters (Indebted Series #1)
- Furious Rush by S C Stephens (Furious Rush Series #1)
Synopsis for Forbidden Bride (from Goodreads):
I was promised to a man my uncle chose… but I ran away with the enemy.
In this valley, my family name means something.
To some, protection. To others, destruction.
When a Bellanti stole my heart, he started a war.
A ring on my finger put a target on his back.
I hardly know the man I threw my life away for.
He looked like I imagined Mr. Darcy would.
He wrote me poetry.
But he’s locked me away exactly the way my uncle had.
Choosing him was my last taste of freedom.
Out of the frying pan and into the fire…
He will burn me alive either way.