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Book Review: MADE by J.M. Darhower

Corrado Moretti.

The world knows the notorious Kevlar Killer, but few have ever seen what lies beneath his armor. The abused child. The neglected teenager. The broken man. He always did whatever he had to do in order to survive.

It’s kill or be killed.

Throughout his life, he has been there in the shadows, a witness to everything from beginning to end. Bound by loyalty and honor, there’s only one thing he would sacrifice it all for: family.

Never get close. Never get attached. It’s a lesson that has been brutally pounded into him since childhood, but they’re words the DeMarcos make it difficult for him to follow. Through them he finds love and grieves loss, realizing the world isn’t quite as black and white as it’s made out to be.


This book is a prequel to Sempre. Sempre does not have to be read first, but this book contains spoilers from Sempre

My Review

I just finished this book and I’m sitting here trying to find the words to write this review. This is one of those books that is just so good, I don’t know where to start…..

The question “What made you this way?” was asked many times of Corrado in this story. And do you ever get some answers……MADE is broken up into five sections and  takes you on this crazy journey. You start with Corrado’s horrible childhood. A time in his life where he should be love and nurtured by his parents, but instead, his mother despises him and is cruel to him. He learns at a very young age, that you should not get attached to people and that in order to survive, you must kill or be killed…..Fast-forward to his teenage years where he’s working with his father and to him finally seeing Celia again after many, many years…and falling in love to even becoming a made man.

Celia and Corrado’s relationship is not your typical sunshine and flowers type of romance. Celia is the boss’ daughter, but she is strong and her own woman. Even when forbidden by her father to be with Corrado, she wouldn’t give up……. Corrado is the strong silent type. Always having to prove himself to everyone.

“Your light is the only thing in this world not tainted by my darkness”

He seems completely heartless to everyone except for Celia

“I’m a lot of things, Celia DeMarco, but I’m not this. I’ll cheat the law, I’ll cheat on my taxes, I’ll try my damnedest to cheat death,  but never…never…will I cheat on you”

Even though things were not always easy for Celia and Corrado, once could never question the love and devotion they had for one another. 

Mafia life is not at all easy. Even when you become a made man, there are still many challenges that have to be faced, sacrifices that must me made and loyalties that will be tested…..

What else can I say about MADE?? This book completely captivated me. I was hooked from the very first page and did not want to put it down. This book was intense and had me gasping. It gave such a realistic outlook on the life of a hit-man. I was completely fascinated by this story and was on the edge of my seat waiting to see what was going to happen next. And how could I not be, especially with quotes like these???

“The canary sang,” Corrado told the guys. “Take it to the roof and see if it can fly”

“What you see is what you get. It was the one thing about being a made man that unnerved him. There was no moving on from the Mafia. Nothing came next. This was it”

“No matter how hard they fought it, fate snuck up on all of them”

MADE is the prequel spin-off to the Sempre/The Forever series. I haven’t read Sempre yet, but after reading this book, I am totally moving it up on my TBR.

MADE was a great story of love, sacrifice, family, and above all else, loyalty. 

So, to answer that question that was asked of Corrado in the beginning-“What made you this way?” I will leave you with this quote:

“The world made me this way. And maybe they all hate me, but still, they need me. Because without villains, there wouldn’t be superheros” “Even in the story of your life, you still think you’re the villain?” “Of course,” Corrado said. “We are who we are.” 


*An ARC copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review*

*Teaser Credit: Via author’s FB page

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