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Book Review · The Lesbian Review

Forbidden Girl by Kristen Zimmer

Forbidden Girl by Kristen Zimmer is a gripping mafia romance filled with intense passion, desire, and suspense.

She is your father’s deadliest rival. You’ve been taught to hate her. But what if you can’t resist her?


As soon as I learned my father was head of the biggest crime family in Boston, I vowed to have nothing to do with the family business. That is, until I met Rowan.

From the moment our eyes locked across a crowded room, a raging fire bloomed in my chest. A fire that continued to rage as she showed me a warm heart she’s kept hidden from the world. I knew I couldn’t live without her.

There’s a war between our families and her father is taking out those close to me for what seems like fun. So instead of running the opposite way, I’m going to stand and fight for her because now I finally understand what could drive a person to kill.


At first, I wanted to see if I could tempt the self-righteous daughter of my mortal enemy. You know, like a forbidden fruit. However, I came to find she’s nothing like I’d thought. She’s nothing like the others, she actually made me work for it.

Being my father’s second in command, I’ve done some pretty bad things. Things I’m not proud of, but she’s stripped that all away. With Jules, I never have to watch my back. With her I’m safe and I can’t get enough. It’s like I’m addicted to her, to the way she makes me feel.

But as the tension between our families amps up and more people get hurt, I know that our time is running out. I also know that I’ll betray my own father to keep her safe…

But will it be enough?


Kristen Zimmer’s latest release, Forbidden Girl, has certainly been worth the wait! This riveting Romeo and Juliet-inspired sapphic adaptation transports readers into the world of the Boston mafia, where morals, loyalty, and trust are scarce. Against this tumultuous backdrop, two women from opposing sides of a bitter feud forge a connection that defies all odds, blossoming into a profound and life-changing love.

Zimmer excels in her narrative technique, skillfully alternating between the first-person perspectives of the two main characters, Juliet and Rowan. This dual viewpoint enriches the storytelling and provides deep insights into the characters’ inner worlds, making their voices distinct and their experiences relatable. Both Juliet and Rowan are portrayed with great depth and complexity, ensuring that readers are always clear about whose perspective they are engaging with at any given moment.

Pros And My Favourite Parts

I love everything about this book from the captivating cover to the messy and violent Boston underworld to Juliet and Rowan’s heartbreakingly beautiful romance.

The contrast between Juliet and Rowan’s upbringings adds a compelling layer to their characters and their relationship. Juliet despite her role as a mafia princess, was raised in a loving and supportive environment by both her parents. They catered to her every whim, nurturing her with love. Beneath her polished exterior, she possesses a spine of steel and a heart of gold.

On the other hand, Rowan’s childhood was marked by loss and emotional neglect. After losing her mother at a young age, she was raised by a father who prioritized wealth and power over her emotional well-being. Groomed to be as tough and ruthless as her father, Rowan was prepared to take over his criminal empire. However, meeting Juliet changes her perspective. Through Juliet, Rowan discovers a different way of life, one where she can embrace vulnerability and softness. With Juliet, Rowan finds a safe space to be her true self, exploring emotions she had long suppressed.

The complexity of Rowan’s character is captivating. She is portrayed as fierce and powerful, yet compassionate and vulnerable. This multifaceted nature makes the relationship between Rowan and Juliet engaging. Their bond allows both of the characters to grow and find a balance between each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Plus their chemistry is off the charts!

In Forbidden Girl, the rivalry between the Calloway and Monaghan families is a central and dynamic force driving the story. The intense feud provides a backdrop of violence and drama, which keeps the story engaging and the plot moving forward. However, this conflict doesn’t overshadow the romance between Juliet and Rowan. Instead, it enhances the tension and stakes of their relationship, making their love story all the more compelling.

Zimmer conveys the deep-seated immorality and complex motivations of both Partick Calloway and Callum Monaghan. These patriarchs embody the darker aspects of the feud, highlighting the destructive nature of their animosity. Yet, the most crucial element of the story is how their daughters come to terms with who their fathers truly are. This personal journey of revelation and acceptance adds depth to Juliet and Rowan’s characters and highlights their growth and development.

Heads Up

Some violence

The Conclusion

Book Review · The Lesbian Review Jennas Favourite BooksForbidden Girl is a fast-paced sapphic romance that will leave you on the edge of your seat.  Zimmer has once again demonstrated her prowess in crafting compelling narratives that resonate with authenticity and emotional intensity. The familial rivalry provides the perfect balance of intrigue and romance, ensuring that the drama feud’s drama complements rather than detracts from the central love story. It’s a page-turner I couldn’t put down, needing to find out how it would all shake out. I highly recommend Forbidden Girl if you’re looking to be thoroughly captivated by an intense and passionate tale.

Excerpt from Forbidden Girl by Kristen Zimmer

She grabs a bunch of inflated balloons, moves to the arch, bends down, and starts fastening them to the bottom of the wire frame. My eyes are drawn to her backside, perfectly accentuated by her black slim-fit pants. I am Patrick Calloway’s daughter; I shouldn’t be thinking what I’m thinking about Callum Monaghan’s daughter. And yet… She’s hot. I choose to digest that as a fact, not a feeling: She is conventionally attractive, and her ass looks amazing in those pants. Fact.

“Juliet, what are you—” Rose says from behind me. She follows the trail of my eyes. “Oh no. No, no, no. Get that idea out of your silly horny brain right now.”

“Come on, there’s no harm in looking.”

“Except if you get caught looking by the wrong people, they’d gouge your eyes out. You know who that is, right? And who you are?”

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Bits and Bobs

AISN number: B0D35LJFCZ

Publisher: Bookouture

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Note: I received a free review copy of Forbidden Girl by Kristen Zimmer. No money was exchanged for this review. When you use our links to buy we get a small commission which supports the running of this site

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