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Our Violent Ends (These Violent Delights #2)
Shanghai is under siege in this captivating and searingly romantic sequel to These Violent Delights, which New York Times bestselling author Natasha Ngan calls “deliciously dark.”
The year is 1927, and Shanghai teeters on the edge of revolution.
After sacrificing her relationship with Roma to protect him from the blood feud, Juliette has been a girl on the warpath. One wrong move, and her cousin will step in to usurp her place as the Scarlet Gang’s heir. The only way to save the boy she loves from the wrath of the Scarlets is to have him want her dead for murdering his best friend in cold blood. If Juliette were actually guilty of the crime Roma believes she committed, his rejection might sting less.
Roma is still reeling from Marshall’s death, and his cousin Benedikt will barely speak to him. Roma knows it’s his fault for letting the ruthless Juliette back into his life, and he’s determined to set things right—even if that means killing the girl he hates and loves with equal measure.
Then a new monstrous danger emerges in the city, and though secrets keep them apart, Juliette must secure Roma’s cooperation if they are to end this threat once and for all. Shanghai is already at a boiling point: The Nationalists are marching in, whispers of civil war brew louder every day, and gangster rule faces complete annihilation. Roma and Juliette must put aside their differences to combat monsters and politics, but they aren’t prepared for the biggest threat of all: protecting their hearts from each other.
-Excerpt taken from Goodreads
Check Goodreads to see the book’s ratings.
(4.5 / 5) “I loved him long before we were told to work together in spite of the hate between our families. I will love him long after you tear us apart merely because you pick and choose when it is convenient to partake in the blood feud.”
This is so well done! This duology is Gong’s debut and I couldn’t be more impressed. I was hooked from page one absorbing every little detail. Roma and Juliette are expertly crafted into the characters we know and love as Romeo and Juliet, but with more; more violence, more love, more hope.
“I wish you could see it, they find hope in your union. They wish not to fight anymore.”
Each POV was well done. I never wondered who it was, I knew each and every character. We hear from both gangs and the battle that rages in secret and on the streets. Both sides perilously strain to maintain the balance of their enemies but also refrain from any feelings. There are cracks in their facade and they’re striving to keep that from being known.
“Sometimes, hatred has no memory to feed off. It has grown strong enough to feed itself, and so long as we do not fight it, it will not bother us. It will not weaken us.”
To take such a well-known story is bold! Gong has done it with poise and passion. Each snippet of Shakespearean lines is cherished, respected and given the reverence it deserves.
I actually didn’t love the monsters. I believe the plague could’ve been done without the monsters. There either needed to be more or less but I didn’t quite feel satisfied with that aspect. The story in between was so well done that I found myself reading over the monster parts quickly, only to get back to the rest of the story.
“The country will fight itself to pieces. It will starve its people, ravage its land, poison its breath. Shanghai will fall and break and cry. But alongside everything, there has to be love—eternal, undying, enduring. Burn through vengeance and terror and warfare. Burn through everything that fuels the human heart and sears it red, burn through everything that covers the outside with hard muscle and tough sinew. Cut down deep and grab what beats beneath, and it is love that will survive after everything else has perished.”
Content Summary: The language is high with no F words but it didn’t feel high while reading. The violence is excessive with multiple killings and gang fighting. Many die and there are some details with blood. Each character wears weapons daily and often uses them. The monsters with the plague may be too much for some sensitive readers. There is an intimate moment once but it remains behind closed doors with very details.
Thank you to Simon and Schuster Children’s Publishing and NetGalley for the gifted copy in exchange for an honest review.
The book releases November 16, 2021.
Detailed Content Review
Derogatory terms etc-
Alcohol, Drugs, Smoking
A young woman is tipsy.
A man smokes a cigarette.
Intimacy, Sex, Immodesty
*Minor LGBTQ+ aspects included*
A young man kisses a young woman.
Two teens enter a “whorehouse.”
A young man admits to loving a young man.
A young man kisses a young woman and trails kisses down her neck. They undress each other and kiss more. (Sex assumed).
A young man “fiercely” kisses a young woman.
A young man and young woman kiss.
A young man kisses a young man.
A young woman kisses a young man.
Violence, Weapons, Crime, Blood
A young woman shoots a man that is aiming at someone in a crowd. It hits him in the shoulder. A young man sees and starts shooting at her, grazing her cheek. Another whizzes by her arm. He later points her own gun closely at her face then slams her into the wall and chokes her. She cuts his arm with a knife. She knocks him out with the end of her knife.
A young woman remembers back to when a virus was released and many clawed out their own throats and wrists to die. A man had also been killed with a slit throat.
A young man is hit on the head then held against the ground with a gun to his head. Many surround him but someone shoots all those around him, spraying blood across his face.
“These photos did not only show torn throats. Of the faces that Juliette could catch, they no longer resembled faces at all. They were eyes and mouths torn until they were no longer circular in shape, foreheads with golf-ball-sized holes, ears dangling from the thinnest inch of a lobe.”
Police threaten decapitation for civil unrest. Many heads have already been seen.
A young man shoots two young men running. He hits them in the head, blood spraying.
A young woman pushes a man against the wall, his head making a cracking sound.
A young man shoots a young man in the chest, killing him.
A young woman throws a knife at an intruder. She held him down with an elbow to the neck but he bucked her off and she hit her head. As he ran, the young woman shoots at him multiple times.
A young man holds a knife to a young man. The young man bites him.
A gang fight has many dead. A young man is dodging knives and bullets. A bullet grazes a young man then he is knocked unconscious.
Someone is strangling a young man, a young woman throws a knife into his neck, killing him. Someone grabs her from behind but she pulls at his shoulder until she hears a pop and a scream, and slams him into the ground. A young man shoots at a young woman. He throws a knife into her shoulder. Many have died in this fight among both gangs.
A man’s throat is cut, the blood seeping into others shoes.
A group shoots many.
A young man holds a cloth to a young man’s face, knocking him out. Then holds a gun to a young woman.
A young woman is whipped as a punishment. She is being held up as she screams in pain. A young woman punches a man in the face.
A young woman is taken captive.
**SPOILER** Two young men aim their guns at each other. A young woman shoots one and all that are around him. She watches him drop to his knees and fall over. She holds her hands to his wound to staunch bleeding. She was covered in blood up to her wrists. The young man dies.
A woman walks onto her balcony. A man shoots her and watches as she tumbles over the railing and splatters to the ground.
Many die in a feud with a large amount of people.
A monster swipes at a soldier, leaving their cheek hanging off. Two bodies are seen nearby. The monster claws at a person sending an arc of blood through the air.
Young men knock out a young woman and take her captive. They tie her to a chair and gag her.
A young woman takes a garrote wire around a young man’s neck and pulls it tight until he slumps, unconscious.
A young man holds a gun to his own head.
A young man knocks a man unconscious.
A man shoots a man in the head, red spraying. The man attacks a young woman from behind. She throws her head back, hearing the break of his nose.
“A legion of lead fired onto the workers, the students, the ordinary people. One after the other, they collapsed atop each other as if someone were snipping at the strings that held them up, struck in the chest, in the stomach, in the legs. Massacre.” Many more are shot in another crowd. Blood splashed, as wounds covered their chests.
Three teens are tied to stakes to be publicly executed.
Insects are released into a crowd by monsters. Many people start clawing their skin, killing themselves. A man shoots a woman.
A large explosion of fire.
Potentially Intense Themes
A man’s body changes into a monster and insects stream out and invade people’s bodies causing a plague and causing them the physically harm and kill themselves.
A man turns into a monster.
A man turns into a monster and insects stream out. They attack people and then the people begin clawing at themselves, causing their own deaths.
A building is on fire with children stuck inside. It eventually hits a gas pile and explodes.
Insects cover the ground and many soldiers, infecting them.
**Any quotes from the book may be taken from the advance copy and therefore may not be fully accurate or correctly compare to the final copy of the book.
**As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.