Trope Tuesday: Feuding Families – These Violent Delights Review

Happy Trope Tuesday. This week’s trope is feuding families and I will be reviewing These Violent Delights.

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Feuding Families

Feuding families goes hand in hand with another trope – Star-Crossed Lovers. It is exactly like it sounds two families who just can’t get a long. I find that a lot of times this feud is one that no one actually remembers how it started. Sometimes the feud is simple bickering and sometimes it is more sinister. Romeo and Juliet is the ultimate feuding families story. And it is no surprise that These Violent Delights, which is retelling of sorts of Romeo and Juliet is another great example of feuding families. In These Violent Delights, the families are actually rival gangs which ups the ante a little bit.

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These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong
These Violent Delights

YA Fantasy, Star-Crossed Lovers


Rating: 3 out of 5.


The year is 1926, and Shanghai hums to the tune of debauchery.

A blood feud between two gangs runs the streets red, leaving the city helpless in the grip of chaos. At the heart of it all is eighteen-year-old Juliette Cai, a former flapper who has returned to assume her role as the proud heir of the Scarlet Gang—a network of criminals far above the law. Their only rivals in power are the White Flowers, who have fought the Scarlets for generations. And behind every move is their heir, Roma Montagov, Juliette’s first love…and first betrayal.

But when gangsters on both sides show signs of instability culminating in clawing their own throats out, the people start to whisper. Of a contagion, a madness. Of a monster in the shadows. As the deaths stack up, Juliette and Roma must set their guns—and grudges—aside and work together, for if they can’t stop this mayhem, then there will be no city left for either to rule.

This post contains affiliate links. You can read more on my disclosures page.


These Violent Delights is a new take on Romeo and Juliet, so I went into it with certain expectations.  Namely, some romance.  The romance does eventually come, but not until near the end of the book.  

This book is set in the 1920s in Shanghai.  It deals with a lot of topics, including colonization, which I found very interesting.  The main plot is based on fantasy, trying to find the root of a plague infecting Shanghai’s people.  This part of the plot was not my favorite.  In fact, I found it very slow and honestly would have just preferred a story about rival gangs and the story of colonization. 

The characters were well written.  There is a little more information about Juliett’s background, but I liked both her and Roma.  I also liked that they had a history.  If you are familiar with Romeo and Juliet, you will see a few callbacks to the original.  

I think between my high expectations and the fantasy plot; this book just didn’t do it for me.  I found the epilogue to be the most interesting part of the book. 

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These Violent Delights

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