Forbidden: Part One by Emilia Emerson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I received an ARC copy of Forbidden: Part One from the author, in exchange for an honest review.
OK, where do I even begin… Forbidden by Emilia Emerson was my first Omegaverse read, and in my opinion, was a fantastic introduction to the genre. The story is set in a dystrophia world, where Alpha’s pretty much run everything and the government is becoming more and more corrupt, and trying to take away what little freedoms Omegas have.
Alphas are controlling, manipulative, and the top of society, Omegas are seen as weak, overly emotional, and only exist to serve Alphas, and Beta’s are considered the lowest class of society.
Josie, our FMC, has been through so much in her life. Her parents despise her, she struggles with constantly being told she’s overweight, and a failure, the “boarding school” they sent her to was absuive, and she experienced unthinkable things during her time there. When she finally made it out, and away from her parents, her main goal was to keep her head down and survive.
Unfortuanetley, as the Government continues to take control of the world she lives in, Josie is forced to choose a pack. Something she has taken black market measures to ensure she avoided for years.
When faced with an option of choosing a pack her parents selected, or choosing one that an unlikely ally has recommended, Josie chooses the lesser of two evils in Pack Ashwood.
Josie is basically fighting for her life while also dealing with serious body image and self love issues ingrained in her by her parents, while trying to adjust to being a part of a pack and trusting her alphas and the way that she feels being around them.
Around the 40-50% range, I started feeling like “what now?” Kind of like the plot sort of disappeared. Things were going well, Josie was getting comfortable with the guys, and that was about it. It felt like I was waiting on the other shoe to fall.
The focus on Josie’s pack adjustment phase, although it was only a week or two (I think) seemed a bit drawn out. I know she needed to adjust and omegas are seen as “needy” and “emotional” but there were moments where Josie frustrated me with her neediness and needing reassurance constantly. The guys were obviously head over heels obsessed with her, but because of her past, she struggled believing almost anything they said. Like I said, this was my first Omegaverse, so I’m not sure if that is typical of all Omegas, are just Josie and the Omegas in the Forbidden world.
As the story progressed, that looming feeling of something disastrous coming kept popping up in my head, and there were several times where I felt like Pack Ashwood were walking into a trap, and everything would fall apart, and I was wrong every single time, until the cliff hanger of an ending! I knew something was coming, but I definitely did not expect the turn that the story took as the book came to an end. And now I’m left sitting on pins and needles, waiting for Part Two to release, so that I can know that everything hopefully turns out ok.
For a debut novel, and as my introduction to Omegaverses, I think the author did a great job. The characters were well developed, the world and the government were explained well, and the spice was descriptive and steamy without being cringey or predictable. There were some moments that felt a little slow, pace wise, but I resonated so much with some of Josie’s self love and body image struggles, and seeing the way her pack loved and cared for her, even in a world where she was considered “defective” and not good enough, to me, made up for the occasional lull in pace.
I can’t wait to start Part Two in the coming weeks!
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Have you read any Omegaverse books? Let me know in the comments below! I’d love to add some more to my TBR!