The Kiss Thief by LJ Shen Review + Playlist


They say your first kiss should be earned.

Mine was stolen by a devil in a masquerade mask under the black Chicago sky.

They say the vows you take on your wedding day are sacred.

Mine were broken before we left church.

They say your heart only beats for one man.

Mine split and bled for two rivals who fought for it until the bitter end.

I was promised to Angelo Bandini, the heir to one of the most powerful families in the Chicago Outfit.

Then taken by Senator Wolfe Keaton, who held my father’s sins over his head to force me into marriage. 

They say that all great love stories have a happy ending.

I, Francesca Rossi, found myself erasing and rewriting mine until the very last chapter.

One kiss.

Two men.

Three lives.

Entwined together.

And somewhere between these two men, I had to find my forever.


4.5 Stars

If you like: 

  • NA/Adult Romance
  • Arranged Marriage
  • Age Gap (11 years)
  • Modern Mob/Gangs

Then this is the book for you!

OMG! I had seen this book all over instagram a couple of months back and with the cover alone, I wanted to read this book! Now, I didn’t actually read any reviews that anyone had posted, so I really went inside of this book blind other than the synopsis thatI didn’t even read fully. I had spend the past couple of nights staying up late into the night to keep reading about Francesca and Wolfe. 

When I went into the book, I thought it was going to be set in a fictional world with royal families, instead it’s set in modern day Chicago with the Italian mob and the senator for the state looking for revenge. 

Francesca comes from money, dirty money but money nonetheless, and has been sent off to boarding school over seas. she has essentially been raised to be the perfect wife to have children and be by her husband’s side. She has always dreamed of marrying her childhood friend Angelo who’s the son of a man working with her father. It seems to be a match made in heaven with two of the most power Italian families coming together except when one of the tests of fate being that her first kiss was stolen by a rude man who happens to be the senator and thinks she’s a spoiled child. 

When Senator Wolfe sees Francesca, he sees her as a way to get what he wants and that’s to see her father’s empire go down burning to nothing. He wants to have his own justice for everything that her father has taken away from him over the years, and Wolfe doesn’t care what he has to do or who he has to hurt. 

Wolfe is an arrogant man who gets everything he wants. He came from nothing and has became a senator at a young age. He been hardened by the things that he has seen from a young age. He’s a womanizer who yields to no one.

At first I wasn’t sure how to feel about Wolfe because yes he may be attractive, arrogant, and have the “I don’t care about anything” attitude which is something I like in my book boyfriends, but at the same time he was very hot/cold and for a while it seemed like we were never going to get close to his character because his walls were so thick. Over the course of the book, we get a glimpse into his past and all of the secrets that has hardened his heart.

Francesca may look like the girl who has had everything handed to her and sure she hasn’t had to work a day in her life, but has more morales and values that some people who have been to hell and back. She has a caring heart even for those who have hurt her, yet she’s able to fight the man who has so many bending to his will because of his personality. She fights the arranged marriage to Wolfe tooth and nail.

Somewhere along the way and even through his tough exterior mind games, Francesca sees something in Wolfe that calls to her and makes her fight this persona that he puts up. The only thing is that Wolfe still isn’t sure what his feelings for Francesca truly are and how she fits into his life considering that he thought she wouldn’t be as feisty as she is. 

As far as I’m, concerned Angelo was never really a love interest despite Francesca prior feelings for him. I think Angelo had trouble accepting the fact this his perfect plan of marring someone who convenient (not that he made Francesca to be a trophy wife or anything because he did care about her as a person), but she was someone who was always just there for him, and when his plan was destroyed by Wolfe’s engagement; he didn’t talk the news well.

Th Kiss Thief is a dark and heavy contemporary that isn’t for the faint of heart. There’s a lot of cussing and steamy scenes that isn’t for everyone, but it really is a gritty, beautiful book that had me captivated and reading late into the night. 

The writing of this book is pretty great because it’s told from Francesca and Wolf’s POV, and they have very distinctive voices where it’s obvious who’s talking. In books in the past with alternating POV some of the character’s voices sounded so much a like, but not in this book. You can feel the difference in their mindset and the thing that drives them throughout the entire book!


  • Teeth by 5SOS
  • Love Me Like You by Little Mix
  • You Haven’t Sen the Last of Me by Cher
  • Misery by Maroon 5
  • High by 5SOS
  • Apologize by OneRepublic
  • Sit Still, Look Pretty by Daya
  • Talk Fast by 5SOS

Happy reading until next time,

7 thoughts on “The Kiss Thief by LJ Shen Review + Playlist

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