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Speak Easy

(Speak Easy #1)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  770 ratings  ·  133 reviews
The 1920s are roaring, and twenty-year-old Tiny O'Mara wants to be a part of it.

By day she works for her father’s small-time bootlegging operation, by night she craves the sexy roll-your-stockings-down lifestyle of a flapper—until her father is kidnapped by a mobster in Detroit's exploding organized crime scene, and it’s Tiny who has to come up with the ten-thousand-dollar
Paperback, 305 pages
Published July 22nd 2013 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
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Average rating 3.85  · 
Rating details
 ·  770 ratings  ·  133 reviews

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Duchess Nicole
I've been looking for unique and new, and Harlow wrote something that hit me at just the perfect time! Set in the 1920's, during the time of the prohibition, Tiny's gangster love triangle is sexy, intense, and just angsty enough to fit into the New Adult mold.

Enzo is the mob boss's son and the clear cut bad boy of the two men vying for Tiny's attention. He doesn't even pretend to be a nice guy, which is honestly the most sexy thing about him. He lusts after Tiny, and has no qualms about letting
Crystal Starr Light
Bullet Review:

About the best thing this book has going for it is that it's "not bad". And when talking about 90% of the schlock being published under the "New Adult" genre, this is practically a glowing recommendation.

If you like your historical fiction light on fiction and heavy on wangsting, second-guessing, and idiotic characters, then this is great for you. If you like your New Adult light on the psychopathic alpha-males, light on the sex, and heavy on the Grrrl Power, then you will also lik
Apr 24, 2014 rated it really liked it

Very fun and original read!

I loved Melanie Harlow's book Frenched which is what inspired me to give this series a try, and I have to say I'm impressed! Historical romances don't usually appeal to me,but I'm glad I read this one. It's 1923, and the heroine is a runner for her Dad's bootlegging business. I have to say, between the bootlegging, gangster wars, and steamy sex, it was very action packed and entertaining! I read this in one day, so that must say something. This is only the first
Could I trust him? I wanted to trust him.

But I also wanted a gun.

Holy crap, this was sooooo good! And woah, it was hot!! (totally wasn't expecting that).

Bootlegging, gangsters, sex, danger, sexy men, good pacing, fun writing style, sexy men -- I liked this book a lot. 4.5 stars!
Mon petit avis en français :

Franchement, je suis tellement déçue. Les années 20 m’intéressent beaucoup à cause de la musique, de la mode, du langage, et de l’époque en général. Par contre, je n’en ai pas du tout reçu. Enzo (un homme principal) était très abusif, impoli et désagréable vers Tiny (la femme principale). Je me fâche parce que Tiny ne s’est souciée pas ! Pourqoui ? Elle était vachement occupée avec la beauté d’Enzo, elle l'a pardonné de nombreuses fois. Elle ne semble pas avoir vingt
Jun 05, 2013 rated it really liked it

Speak Easy is an original spin on a new adult romance, set in the twenties during the Prohibition Era. Tiny O’Mara, who is twenty years old, still living with her father after her mother has passed, and she takes care of her younger sisters. She craves a different life beyond raising her sisters and bootlegging for her father. She has plans to attend nursing school and make a different life for herself. But her plans are put on hold when her father is kidnapped by mobsters for not paying to have
Laurelin Paige
May 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Hot gangsters, illegal nightclubs, a foul-mouthed daughter of a bootlegger, and scorching sex scenes make up this Historical New Adult novel. This book captured me from page one with sharply drawn characters and a plot that simmers with intrigue and sexual tension. It's Boardwalk Empire with a slightly younger cast of characters. A must read for fans of Historical Romance and New Adult Novels and anyone who can't resist a sexy Italian with a big gun.
Alessandra Thomas
May 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
SPEAK EASY is a lush prohibition-era story with so much thrilling extortion, backstabbing, and white-hot sexy romance that I couldn't stop turning the pages.

Tiny O'Mara is exactly the sort of heroine I love -- strong-willed and brave, but smart enough to know how to keep her mouth shut when she needs to get the job done. She's fiercely loyal and determined - when her dad is kidnapped for not paying off a gang for the privilege of running his bootlegging business in their territory, she begs, li
Aug 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013



When I was child, I went through a phase where I wanted to be a mobsters wife when I grew up. This book totally spoke to that inner child!

Michigan 1920's..... Prohibition is in full effect. Tiny is 20 years old. Due to her mothers death, Tiny still lives at home to raise her two younger sisters, and help their father run his garage and bootlegging business.

Unfortunately, Tiny's father is taken hostage by the Difiores.
Tammy Bland
Jun 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Received this book for an honest review.

Whew !!! Not sure where to even start. Lust, passion, bootlegging, mystery, intrigue, gangs. It's all in here and much more.

Tiny, a 20 year old still living with her father and attending nursing school while taking care of her two younger sisters and helping her father in his bootlegging operations. While her father has a legitimate business as an automobile mechanic, his main business is customizing cars with hidden compartments for his bootlegging.

What a treat! This book was so much fun to read.

Set in the 1920s, Tiny O'Mara helps her father run a bootleg operation selling whisky. Everything is going fine until Tiny's father is kidnapped and held for ransom. Other gangs and families want a piece of O'Mara's pie. With the help of Joey Lupo, Tiny's "friend" since childhood, she scrambles to come up with the money in time. But Enzo DiFiore, the man that's blackmailing her, is easy on the eyes and confusing to her lady bits. She should hate hi
May 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I had the pleasure of a preview read on this book, and wow, it's incredible! I'm so excited for Melanie to share this story with the world. The author does an amazing job of making you feel like you're in the time period (all dressed up in flapper clothes? YES, PLEASE!) The characters are rich and very dimensional. And the romance? You'll have to decide: Team Enzo or Team Joey. Amazing book.
H. E. Gryphus
May 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Stunning. My heart literally pounded throughout this book. The main character is real and adorable. The clothes are gorgeous. What more could you want? Flappers, rum running, and a speak easy. Oh yeah...and two incredibly delicious guys. This is what NA should be.
Aug 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is the Cat's meow!! I'm so, so glad this is a series!!

*gimme gimme hands* I need Speak Low NOW!!!!
Gio Listmaker
Mar 30, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Started Slow
Heroine Bootlegger
Hero Gangster
Love Rectangle
Didn't Read Like a Historical
Sorcha O'Dowd
I received a copy of ‘Speak Easy’ in a goodreads first-reads giveaway.

This was such an incredible book! I was a little wary after reading the blurb knowing that there would be some kind of love triangle, as I tend to get so emotionally attached to one couple that I am devastated if they don’t end up together, but this was such a fantastic and thrilling story with the such a brilliant writing style that I fell in love with all the characters and really wanted the best for them.

I loved both Enzo
Jennifer  Ricketts (Donnie Darko Girl)
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review for my stop on the blog tour.*

Wow!! Melanie Harlow has done a spectacular job drawing me into the roaring '20s! I loved this book, every minute, every page, every moment. The action was nonstop, and I was completely riveted. I'll never look at the Prohibition era in quite the same way again.

Tiny and her father are in the bootlegging business. Tiny takes care of her younger sisters after their mother died while giving birth a deca
Tricia  Santos
Jun 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Received copy of ARC. Review to come soon!

7/6/13: Dammit I seriously need to stop reading books that are part of series with unreleased sequels...

7/27/13: See the full review here

I rated Speak Easy four awesome leaves! I have never really read a historical romance before, but I loveddd this one. Maybe because I am kind of obsessed with the 20’s? I mean how could I not be? It’s all parties and superficiality. This book wasn’t at all what I expected, yet i
Nancy Brady
Jul 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Full disclosure: This book is a Goodreads giveaway book. Thanks to the Goodreads and the author for the opportunity to be one of its first readers.

Prohibition is the setting for this romantic suspense novel that features Tiny O'Mara, a daughter of a bootlegger, and Enzo, the mob boss's son, and Joey, an old friend. When her father is kidnapped, it is up to her to find the ransom money and quickly. Dealing with two different men, Enzo and Joey, Tiny must figure out who to trust as both want her a
Kayti McGee
May 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A gorgeously written historical you won't be able to put down.
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was ok
why not:

1. it's a gangster book
2. main character has her brain between her legs
3. male character is a prick
4. other characters make no sense
5. the story is predictable and rather boring
6. sex scenes are sudden and illogical
Jun 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Have you ever wanted to step into a time in history just to experience what and how it felt to be there? I have imagined it many times, so when I come across Melanie Harlow’s novel Speak Easy I was excited to read where it might take me.

It begins in the O’Mara family store 1923, the age of prohibition, gangsters, and nightclubs. Frances O’Mara (aka Tiny) helps her father run the store along with his bootlegging operation. A mysterious guy drops off an envelope for Tiny’s father leaving her smitt
Jul 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013
5 stars--- Original, fun, refreshing, and entertaining as heck! Speak Easy has everything I could ever ask for in a book and so much more. It has its swoon-worthy moments, which I am a sucker for. Also, it has adventure, comedy, drama, action, and ACTION. ;) *wink wink*

What I especially love about this book is that the plot is set in the Prohibition Era. Very original if I must say. Ms. Harlow does an exceptional job of recreating the people, lifestyle, and culture during the Twenties. I wouldn'
Aug 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Well THAT was a lot of fun!

Things I loved about this book:
- The lead character. Tiny just gets stuff done, freaks out when she can, and is totally realistic. Loved her and enjoyed reading how she handled herself in this situation.

- The steam. It's gratuitous and yet totes appropriate. I dug it.

- The setting. I love this time period and this was full of everything I love ABOUT it!

- The danger. This was not some insipid love story nor was it a safe and easy novel; there was danger and strife aro
Kirsty Bicknell
How excited am I that Speak Easy is part of a series and not just a standalone???! Melanie Harlow's characters are so animated and if you are looking for a story with intensity and passion than Speak Easy has it in (illegal!) crate loads!!
Melanie Harlow's detailed descriptions and historical knowledge carry her reader back to 1920s America and a time of prohibition, illegal drinking clubs and gangsters. The biggest irony in the book is Tiny, who is nicknamed because of her height, and initially
Jun 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: na
Amazing prohibition-era thrill ride. I loved this debut from promising author Melanie Harlow. Her literary style fits perfectly with the gauzy romance of the prohibition era -- only its clear from the start that this is no Gatsby-esque dreamscape we're in. Tiny and her father are engaged in some small time bootlegging to support the family, and they cross their efforts with those of two bigger fish in the run running pond. Unfortunately for Tiny, one of those fish is the dark, handsome and fiery ...more
Tamara Mataya
May 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I HATE historical fiction. Or should I say, I HATED historical fiction. This book changed my mind about a whole genre. It's true to the era without resorting to cliches and stereotypes, but it still manages to feel relevant and NOW.

Well-written and vivid, I was right there with Tiny, breathing in the smoke, rooting for her every whisky-burned step of the way.

Speak Easy is a MUST read, not only for lovers of standard New Adult, but for those looking for something different.

Bootlegging has neve
Jun 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I truly enjoyed this story and will be counting down the days until the sequel is released. Joey or Enzo? I need to know NOW! I'm so happy that I took a tiny chance on this one, considering it isn't the genre I usually go for; it really was fantastic. I highly recommend Speak Easy to anyone looking to take a little break from the angst, and try something different. Historical Fiction and New Adult fans alike will love this one!

You can find my full review on our blog, when the SPEAK EASY Blog Tou
An enjoyable NA based on the roaring 20s. Jazz, prohibition, and violence all revolve around a young lady, Tiny, whose small time bootlegging father is kidnapped by a gangster. Tiny lies, scams, and works all angles as she tries to save her father and resist falling in love with the son of the man who kidnapped her dad. A fast paced with plenty of action and steam. Looking forward to book 2-Speak Low.
Laura McGee
Jun 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
This was my first attempt at this "new adult fiction"... Personally I would rather just call it fiction. That being said, I could not put this one down. Reads quickly and keeps you on the edge of your seat. Myself, I am hoping for a sequel!
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USA Today bestselling author of sweet and sexy romance. Lover of cocktails, high heels, and history with the naughty bits left in. Michigan girl. INTJ. Always seeking ginspiration...

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Other books in the series

Speak Easy (2 books)
  • Speak Low (Speak Easy #2)

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