Off the Record by Kristen Proby

Published: May 11, 2021

The final book in the With Me in Seattle Mafia series is live and was everything I wanted it to be. I appreciated the restraint that the author took with Annika’s backstory. Considering what we know about the photographs and her abusive husband my imagination was enough to know what was in the pictures and what she had been through. That restraint made this a mafia story that wasn’t as dark like others within the genre. Because this was the last one we also got to see the previous couples throughout the book and though Annika was probably the least assuming character she was also the first one who would put her family’s well being first. Which meant that she kept trying to keep everyone else out of what was going on with her. This story with Rocco/Rafe was just kind of the epitome of a second chance story as well. These two were lovers in college and were told that they could not be together due to their families not being on the friendliest terms. However 10 years later Annika is married to a monster and her cousin marries Rafe’s brother and it chafes both of them. Now though there is nothing in their way and that is what makes this book such a great second chance. They take the time to learn each other again but it isn’t a from point zero learning curve. They know their essential selves and while that hasn’t changed life has molded them into new types of themselves. It was just so entertaining reading how they learned to get along all the time again and seeing Annika open up was great character development.

Finally, the book came full circle back to Elena’s parents’ murders and the mystery surrounding her mother’s death. There is also the mystery of mob families across the country being killed off in sometimes clichéd fashion. I won’t give away who is behind it but I was surprised by it. Which was great because it made for a gripping storyline. I am sad that this series has come to an end but it has made me want to read the With Me in Seattle series. There are just SO MANY books in that one that it is kind of daunting. Anyway, if you have read the others of this series you cannot miss the end and if you haven’t read any of them I highly suggest all 4 of them for a different mafia story that will keeping you interested beginning to end.

—“I’m a man of depth.” He chuckles. ” Mobsters have lives, too, you know.” -Rafe to Annika—

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