TOP 20 OF 2021: The Brit by Jodi Ellen Malpas

As 2021 comes to a close, I’m revisiting my 20 favorite romance novels of the year, and that definitely includes Jodi Ellen Malpas’ dark and steamy mafia romance, The Brit. When The Brit was released earlier this year, I’d been meaning to try Malpas’ work for awhile but hadn’t taken the leap yet. Mafia romances are frequently intense, bingeable reads for me, so I took a chance on this one. And, oh boy, was it quite the unexpected treat! This book is darker and more suspenseful than my usual, containing several things that I typically hate in a romance, but I was so HOOKED on it. The characters are complex and their interactions are tense and layered. This antihero is a bad, bad man, but watching him slowly peel back the layers and fall in love was absolutely captivating. I’ve since read the followup, The Enigma, and it was another outstanding love story that has me yearning for the next installment.


Read on for my original review, details on the series, and plenty of quotes to give you a feel for the vibe!

Oh. My. God. This book is just… wow. You’re either going to really love it or really hate it; there is ZERO in between with this one. And while there are things in here that should’ve tanked this romance for me, there was no stopping my love of this book. It’s just twist after dark and delicious twist; a completely, unquestionably unpredictable ride from start to finish. This is the kind of book where every page is important, because there is just SO MUCH going on, and it’s an intricate dance from loathe to love for this couple. The cat and mouse game got to me at times, and this antihero would truly terrify me if I ever met him in person, but… that doesn’t mean I didn’t love this messy, addictive, and DARK mafia romance.

Normally I’d give some storyline details here, but you don’t really want me to do that. Go into this one blind; I did, and I do not regret it. Just know that this is dark and steamy, twisted and messy, with characters who are flawed and broken to their cores. This is not an easy or average kind of love; it’s poisonous and often toxic. There are acts of extreme violence punctuated by soft, tender moments of intense intimacy, and the contradictions throughout will keep you on your toes. I never, ever knew what to expect, and that is seriously all part of the fun. If you’d told me the plot and some of the conflicts ahead of time, I would NOT have read this. No question. On paper, there are elements to this story that are a complete turnoff to me, but they somehow didn’t do anything to decrease my love for this couple – even if they had me wanting to throw my Kindle sometimes. But fair warning: this is not a love story for everyone. And I think it goes without saying that the storyline is just riddled with TRIGGERS of all kinds.

Are you still with me? Good, because this is well worth a read.



Pleasure has never been so deadly.

Rose Cassidy doesn’t truly live; she just exists. Numbing herself to fear and pain is the only way she can survive in this cruel world. So when she’s taken as collateral by the notorious Danny Black in a deadly game of power, she’s thrown by the deep fear she feels rising within her. And, worse than fear, a profound desire. She’s heard tales of The Brit. He’s callous. Coldblooded. But no one ever said he was wickedly beautiful and darkly captivating. He sees past her mask, giving her a cruel sense of hope. But she must fight their twisted attraction or risk losing the one thing she survives for.

When Danny Black took an enemy’s beautiful lover as security, he never anticipated the repercussions. Or the warped attraction they would share. Rose Cassidy pushes Danny to the brink of madness with her impenetrable façade and savage allure. He has to remind himself that she’s bait. A solution to a problem. Yet she evokes powerful feelings in Danny, and feelings are risky when you’re wanted dead by endless enemies. 

The most dangerous game is about to be played. 

But can either of them win?

*This story is gritty, dark, edgy, and contains scenes that some people may find uncomfortable to read. It is NOT for the fainthearted. 


The series continues with The Enigma!

One of the most suspenseful and volatile books I’ve read this year, The Brit contains so many things that I hate – but I loved it. And the same held true for The Enigma, which pushed even more boundaries. Now I’m ready to see where The Resurrection takes us next year – I honestly have no idea! These are standalones, but definitely best read in order or you will spoil the series for yourself.

The Brit
Read the review here

The Enigma
Read the review here

The Resurrection
Preorder on Amazon:

About the Author:

#1 New York Times Bestselling Author Jodi Ellen Malpas was born and raised in the Midlands town of Northampton, England, where she lives with her real-life man, her boys, and a beagle. She is a self-professed daydreamer and has a terrible weak spot for alpha males. 

After writing in secret for too long, Jodi exploded onto the scene in 2012 with her debut novel This Man, starring the prolific Jesse Ward. Writing powerful love stories with fierce, memorable characters is her passion – a passion that has taken her on an amazing journey into the limelight of romantic fiction. Her work is now published in more than twenty-five languages across the world.

Find out more about Jodi at

More of the Best of 2021!

Top 20 of 2021: The Complete List – here

Best of 2021: Top Picks by Trope can be found here!

Best of 2021: My 10 Favorite Romance Series can be found here!

Best of 2021: My Favorite Covers can be found here!

Every 5-Star Romance Novel I Read in 2021 can be found here!

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases


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