Book Blast: [Review, Interview & Giveaway] Ruthless People by J.J. McAvoy

Ruthless People

Ruthless People

A Novel by

J.J. McAvoy

Release Date: July 17, 2014

Published by The Writers Coffee Shop

Available from: TWCS PH Web PageAmazonBarnes and NobleKobo

Genre: Romance, Crime, Thrillers & Suspense
Length: 325 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars

“Mr. & Mrs. Smith meets the Sopranos…”

To the outside world, they look like American Royalty, giving to charities, feeding the homeless, rebuilding the city. But behind closed doors is a constant battle for dominance between two Bosses, cultures, and hearts.

Ruthless People is a romantic crime fiction set in modern day Chicago, and follows the life and marriage of Melody Giovanni and Liam Callahan—rivals by blood and leaders through fear. Their marriage, arranged by their fathers in hopes to end years of bloodshed between the Irish and the Italians.

Liam believes he’s getting a simple-minded wife, one he can control, one who bends to his every need . . . the complete opposite of Melody. She knows exactly what type of man he is, and would rather die than give up the power she has spent her life building.

The Mafia of the past has evolved, and with rival bosses gunning for them, Melody and Liam will have to learn to work as one to take down those who stand in their way.

1 Marriage x 2 Bosses = 3x the Chaos

*Warning: Due to bad language, graphic violence and sex this is for over-18’s only* Theses are not mobsters with a heart of gold….

They do VERY bad things and will NOT change.
They are criminals…murders.

If things like that bother you Ruthless People is not for you. You’ve been warned 😉

My Review
Ruth•less: adjective ˈrüth-ləs also ˈru̇th- : having no pity : cruel or merciless.

That word, RUTHLESS, perfectly describes this book and the characters within it.  Expecting love to change two blood thirsty mafia heads?  Think again.  This story is brutally violent – like a Quentin Tarantino/Rob Zombie movie on crack violent – shocking, and on a rare occasion, sad.  Is there sex, you ask?  Yup.  Is it hot?  Yup.

If you read the synopsis above, you get an idea of the story but I truly wasn’t prepared for how RUTHLESS the book would be.  Only one thing matters to these characters – family.

Rule One: You kill for family. You die for family. Because you can’t trust anyone else.

Threaten the family and you get a bullet in your head, if you are lucky. So what happens when two mafia families comes together in the hope of world domination?  Let’s just say one of them limps away with a gunshot wound.

Rule Two: Take no prisoners and have no regrets about it.

Something must be wrong with me, because I loved Melody (Mel) Giovanni.  She is BADASS!  I mean, I’m terrified of her, but man oh man does that woman have some balls!  She puts ever man in line, including her soon to be husband, Liam Callahan.

This book mostly alternates between Melody and Liam’s POVs, but on occasion, we get inside the heads of the secondary characters – Liam’s family.  While there is some love in the story, power is what drives this family, and with Melody’s addition, they gain more power – the “Boogeyman of the East” and the “Wicked Witch of the West”.
As a mafia family, they do A LOT of bad things.  They won’t blink to kill a cop and his family, even the children.  You’ve been warned.

Rule Three: Just because you sell drugs for a living isn’t an excuse not to dress well.

While the morals of these characters was way out of line from mine, I thoroughly enjoyed the story.  The union between Melody and Liam was toxic from the get go, and that toxicity blended with pure lust, brought them closer together, despite their declared hatred for one another.

Rule Four: No bloody divorce.

As ruthless as Liam might be, his union to Melody, is more than power.  Spending most of his life lonely, he has finally met his match and his determination to get her on the same page is fun to watch.

He was a force, and I wouldn’t have minded, if he hadn’t come into my house and tried to make me into his little Stepford wife.

This story is fast paced, from Melody and Liam’s scary pranks on each other, to the lust filled moments, and eminent danger threatening their whole family, I had a hard time putting the story down.  The characters are deeply flawed and one could never agree with the path and direction of their lives, but just like everyone else, bad people need love too.  And it’s fun in the very unconventional sense in how they go about achieving it.

One final warning, this story has a bit of a cliffhanger.  I’m not a fan of cliffhangers, but this one is manageable, and a HUGE plot twist.  I can’t wait for the next book from this messed up family.

*An ARC was received from the publisher for an honest review.


This book seems like is a pretty honest and scary look into the mob world. What inspired you to write this story?
I wanted to read something different and I didn’t want to sugar coat it. Plus I really wanted to write a woman who was so badass it was kind of scary.

What research did you do in preparation for writing this story?
The first I did was watch documentaries, (Cocaine Cowboys, The Union: The Business Behind Getting High and the American Drug War) all of these helped me get the facts of the drug life and how ruthless it really was. Then on top of that I watched more entertainment (the Godfather, American gangster) to get a balance. I just wanted to build on that.

That ending . . . *gives you the stink eye* . . . When is book 2 coming out?
I still have no idea. But the moment I do know, I will tell you all.

Do you speak Italian and/or Irish? If not, how did you make sure the translations were accurate?
I do not speak Italian or Irish. I know a little French and speak English and Igbo but that’s about it. I just asked friends and then spent a few hours also looking through as many translators as possible. My editing was also a HUGE, help they all spent a long time on those.

I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to love or hate the characters (I did like Mel and Liam, I have no idea why). Writing from multiple POVs, who’s head did you most enjoy being inside?
Each person has a different way about them. Melody and Liam are always raging. I think my favorite is Orlando’s because we only hear from him like once before he’s gone. Being in his head and him being so close to the end of his life was touching for me.

What made you decide to become a writer?
I’m not sure if I ever decided I wanted to be a writer. I just felt the need to tell a story. I think it was only after I had finished my first ever book (which I will never publish but still have) did I realize I could do this.

Lightning Round
What are you currently reading?
To Kill a Mockingbird

Who is your favorite author?
Oh man I can’t chose! I just can’t!

Favorite romance novel?
It will forever and always be Pride and Prejudice.

Favorite Batman actor?
Christian Bale

The Vampire Diaries or True Blood?
Vampire Diaries

Biggest vice?
Lol I don’t know. I haven’t done anything Vice worthy…yet.

Favorite mobster movie?

Pepsi or Coca Cola?
Coco Cola

Thanks for having me -JJ.

About the Author

JJJ.J. McAvoy first started working on Ruthless People during a Morality and Ethics lecture her freshman year of college. X number of years later, she is an insomniac who has changed her major three times, and is a master in the art of procrastination. If you ask her why she began writing, she will simply tell you “They wanted to get their story out.” She is currently working on her next novel . . . so please bug her on Twitter @JJMcAvoy

Connect with J.J. McAvoy

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