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Love is a circus

"Every day,” he says lowly, “I hold a person’s life in my hands. The circus is based one-hundred percent off trust. I give it all to someone, and they give it all to me.”

The best aerial technique won’t land 21-year-old Thora James her dream role in Amour—a sexy new acrobatic show on the Vegas strip. Thora knows she’s out of her element the second she meets Amour’s leading performer. Confident, charming and devilishly captivating, 26-year-old Nikolai Kotova lives up to his nickname as the “God of Russia.”

When Thora unknowingly walks into the crosshairs of Nikolai’s after-show, her audition process begins way too soon. Unprofessional. That’s what Nik calls their “non-existent” relationship. It’s not like Thora can avoid him. For one, they may be partners in the future—acrobatic partners, that is. But getting closer to Nik means diving deeper into sin city and into his dizzying world.

Thora wants to perform with him, but when someone like Nikolai attracts the spotlight wherever he goes—Thora fears that she’s destined to be just background to his spellbinding show.

This sexy and exhilarating New Adult Romance can best be described as Cirque du Soleil meets the steamy, athletic romance of Center Stage.

*standalone & no love triangles—recommended for readers 18+ for mature content*

347 pages, ebook

First published December 12, 2014

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About the author

Krista Ritchie

41 books14.2k followers
NYT & USA Today Bestselling Authors Krista & Becca Ritchie are identical twins—one a science nerd, the other a comic book geek—but with their shared passion for writing, they combined their mental powers as kids and have never stopped telling stories. They love superheroes, flawed characters, and soul mate love.

To stay up to date on new releases, bonus content, and more, sign up for Krista & Becca's Newsletter: www.kbritchie.com/newsletter

Quick note: We don't check Goodreads, so we don't respond to messages here. But if you want to connect with Becca or me, you can reach out to us on our social medias or at our website: www.kbritchie.com

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,464 reviews
Profile Image for Lady Vigilante (Feifei).
632 reviews2,701 followers
December 13, 2014
4 stars!


This book was a unique, uplifting, and inspirational NA romance! It’s the kind of story that starts off decently but by the end your heart feels so full of love for ALL the characters in the book. I’ll be honest and say that I had trouble in the beginning because the heroine was too weak and the romance wasn’t the main focus, but I’m glad I continued with it. If I didn’t, I would’ve missed out on the heroine’s extraordinary character growth. I would’ve missed out on one of the very best literary heroes. And most importantly, I would’ve missed out on a few (but profound) heart-in-throat moments that captured the beauty of family bonds, deep friendship, and unconditional love. And in the end, isn’t that what NA is all about? About self-discovery, finding your passions, and pursuing those dreams, growing and maturing through all those experiences. In this aspect, KB Ritchie did a splendid job of portraying that dynamic, and it is this factor along with the 5+ star hero that convinced me that despite some hiccups along the way, this book deserves at least 4 stars.


The heroine Thora James is finally going after her life-long dream: heading out to Vegas to audition and be a part of a prestigious circus. A risky gamble, and despite her friends and family’s warnings, she persists in doing what her heart feels is right.

The hero Nikolai Kotova is one of the circus’s top performers and oozes charm and grace. He becomes Thora’s acrobatic trainer and though there’s no questioning there’s an attraction there, his focus is entirely on helping Thora become the best she can in time for her audition.

There’s been a lot of speculation, but I’d like to wipe the slate clean but saying there is absolutely no cheating. It’s easy to take a scene out of the book and blow it out of proportion, but because it’s out of context, you don’t get the full story…so my advice for those worrying about potential cheating, drama, and what-nots is to just go into the book without reservation because the story has so much to offer and it’s really not worth it to be hung up on miniscule issues that – in my opinion – don’t even exist.

As for the romance part, it starts off a little weak but gradually becomes stronger as the story progresses. Because of how dedicated Nikolai and Thora were, they willingly shelved their true feelings and always put their goals in the circus first, love second. But at the same time, it was obvious that their connection was undeniably soul-deep and though there’s some drama, Thora and Nikolai stay strong.


Another big plus this book has is the wonderful cast of side characters, and I mean each and every one of them were vital to this story. From Nikolai’s siblings to Thora’s parents and new friends made in Vegas, they provided comical relief and heightened the emotional impact in pivotal moments. They gave the book a family gathering feeling and it truly warmed my heart to see how close everyone was.

The only thing that I’d advise to be prepared for is the circus talk/acrobatic jargon. While unique and intriguing, the circus premise quickly wore me down and truthfully, I got a little bored with the ins and outs of the business. Nevertheless, it’s a big part of the book and what grounds both of the main characters so it didn’t get to the point where it was completely bothersome.

Though the book started off a little shaky, it ended with a bang. The overall message the story sends out is inspiring, the romance that finally blossomed was heartfelt and all the characters were 100% loveable.


Amour Amour is a NA romance standalone that’s unrelated to the author’s other books. But if you’re a fan of the Addicted series, you’ll get a nice surprise in this one ;)
Profile Image for Becca Ritchie.
Author 42 books5,954 followers
March 4, 2015
We're big fans of Vegas, acrobatic circus, and Center Stage -- so naturally, this is the culmination of all our loves :) Amour Amour features a 26-yr-old alpha male (a Russian athlete) and a young, courageous heroine who leaves college to follow her dreams in Vegas.

In the realm of our work, it falls more in line with "Kiss the Sky" & "Hothouse Flower" than "Addicted to You." We truly hope you enjoy this book as much as we loved writing it!





Profile Image for Amy | Foxy Blogs.
1,474 reviews975 followers
July 27, 2021
3rd time re-reading.
Listening Length: 13 hours and 22 minutes
Audiobook source: Audible Plus

Re-read: January 2017
I originally read this book in December in 2014 and I loved. I re-read it via audio to get myself back in the aerial world because INFINI is being released in a week.

I love this world because it's where dreams come true. Thora & Nik for the win!!

Now, I'm ready for Luka's book.
"Luka Kotova is introduced in Amour Amour, and Infini takes place in the same acrobatic world. However, it's not necessary to read Amour Amour prior to Infini."

LIVE -> http://amzn.to/13e5ZaP
Giveaway & Character Acrostic -> http://bit.ly/1BLEKlU


The circus is here but it’s not the circus from your childhood with elephants and cotton candy but instead, this one is for adults. Aerial Ethereal has acrobats who defy gravity and make the audience believe in the unbelievable.

Thora is a college gymnast who has bigger dreams than being a gymnast. Her dreams involve the circus arts. When a spot opens up on Amour she boards a plane to Vegas to take a chance at her dreams. The odds are against her but Thora has a determined attitude and when she is knocked down she gets back up and keeps trying.

”My life is just beginning.”

In Vegas there is a Russian family that rules in the circus arts. The name Kotovas is synonymous with Aerial Ethereal. They’re known as demi-gods. No one tells them “no” but instead they turn a blind eye to the underage Kotovas’ who drink and gamble. One Kotovas in particular, Nikolai, literally and figuratively stands above the rest. When the crowd comes to watch him at the Red Death they chant, “God of Russia” at him.

Nikolai needs a new partner for the aerial silks in Amour. Thora has come to Vegas to apply for that position. “Amour is about six different types of love: obsessive, destructive, friendship, gentle, teasing, and passionate.” The chemistry between these two were great. Nik's “harsh” personality and Thora's RBF (resting bitch face) complimented each other. If you don’t know what that syndrome is take a look at this video-> http://youtu.be/3v98CPXNiSk.

Thora may have claimed to be her own cheerleader but Nik was her biggest supporter. The song "I’ll Be" by Edwin McCain played through my head as I read about their relationship: ”I’ll be the greatest fan of your life…”


The circus is a way of life:
•“People attend the circus to see the impossible become possible, and it’s up to us to create that illusion.”

•“You have to leave your heart and soul here. Every night. Every time. It’s your job to make the audience feel something.”

I loved seeing glimpses of some of the characters from the Addicted series make cameos in Amour Amour. It gave me a moment to fangirl while reading this book.

Reading this book brought nostalgic feelings because I spent ten years in the gym. My son had three gymnastic coaches; two from Bulgaria and one from here. Each one had an interesting story about their life as a performer. One was a performer in Cirque du Soleil, another one was a teeter board performer in the Ringling Bros and the last one was the Olympic coach for the Bulgarian men's team. Each time I read about Nik's no-nonsense attitude I could totally picture it because that was the personalities of the Bulgarian coaches. In the beginning of the book it opens with a one handed handstand contest. That scene played out in my living room as my kids challenged each other to see who could last the longest. After awhile my living room turned into a mini Cirque du Soleil.

Amour Amour is a standalone. I've been asked if the twins plan to write spinoffs with the secondary characters... I personally don't know but I would like to get to know some of the stories behind these characters. I'm currently NOT a fan of Shay because of his lack of support for Thora and her dream. So, I could do without his story but I know if anyone could change my mind about a character it would be the twins. If you haven't read anything by the twins here's your chance to try their writing style.



descriptive text here
Profile Image for Maria✦❋Steamy Reads Blog❋✦.
662 reviews2,458 followers
March 17, 2017

➦This book was everything I'd expect from a NA novel. I really enjoyed the characters - they are young and full of aspirations, hopes and dreams. I'll make this short:

➦The book follows a life of a young woman who dreams of performing in a circus show as an acrobat. She goes to New York to audition and, while out at the club, meets a Russian guy who is part of said show. He's known as God of Russia.

➦So he challenges her to a hand stand competition. She accepts. She looses. He pierces her nipple. No biggie. And then when she comes in for an audition he's there as one of the people judging her. So thus begins their very unprofessional relationship.

➦I loved the sports aspect of this novel, it is intriguing and intense. The main characters are well-developed and the supporting characters are all likable and interesting. It was not an easy task for the mcs to keep their romantic relationship separate from their professional one and it was fascinating being a part of their journey.

➦This one one of those gripping books that make you want to read it in one sitting. I couldn't do that, unfortunately, but I kept wishing I could. :) Recommended!

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Profile Image for Natalie.
567 reviews3,196 followers
August 1, 2018
“I no longer want to live in fantasy.
I want the images in my mind to be real.
It’s why I’m in Vegas after all. Following my dreams.”

This was another phase of I-can't-fall-asleep-and-it's-3am-so-let's-just-read, and thankfully I was so swept up into Thora's journey that I barely noticed the hours fly by. It was magical. I didn't even feel a hinge of regret upon finally waking up with minimal sleep.

And since this book started off so promising, here's a list of things that I loved (and later on hated) in Amour Amour:

• I knew this book was a keeper when Thora mentioned One Three Hill in the first chapter:

“He’s not the Clyde to my Bonnie or the Damon to my Elena. Shay is and will always be the Lucas to my Haley. A great, protective friend. Like that of One Tree Hill. Who will point out the storm ahead for me while I choose to relish in the sunshine.”

A girl after my own heart.
• However, I quickly realized that I hated her “friend” with a fiery passion. Shay was the definition of an awfully unsupportive friend. And I despised how he repeatedly teared down all of Thora's hopes and dreams. So I was more than glad to see him gone.
• But on a positive note, the first two chapters of Amour Amour are completely stellar. They had me so hooked that I couldn't let go until my eyes literally hurt from reading. Aka one of the best feelings.
• I also loved how Thora believed in herself. Like she said, “I am my biggest cheerleader. Always have been. Probably always will be.” It was inspiring having a main character saving herself in this one (at least, in the first half).
• Thora's meet-cute with Nikolai was anything but cute. It did, however, leave me on the edge of my seat, screaming, “Did she just do that?” “Did he just say that?” “HELP.” To say that it was unlike anything I'd read before would be a severe understatement. (Piercing her fucking nipple!!!) But it did its job in leaving a lasting impression on me with the addition of an intoxicating adrenaline rush.

“Guess what, myshka?” The glow necklace and strobe lights swath him in deep red.
“What…?” I hesitate.
He stands. Towers, really. And he tilts my chin up. With grays like gunmetal skies, bearing down from up above, he says, “I choose you.”

This was literally my facial expression upon meeting Nikolai Kotova:

I was daring myself to dislike this six-foot-five Russian athlete, but in my heart of hearts, I knew I was a goner for his tricks.

• Side note: the number of times this book mentioned Nikolai's height is kind of funny. You could low-key make a drinking game out of it…
• I also found it both comical and cute how Thora liked reading paranormal romances. Especially when she recommend her favorite one to Nikolai's sixteen-year-old sister, Katya. Which she ended up loving so much she almost missed practice:

“If you want to try out for Noctis, you need a full-in, full-out or a triple sault, and you’re not going to get there by sitting on your ass, reading…” He scrutinizes the paperback’s title and cover (legs intertwined on a blue silk sheet) with confusion and then gives me a weird look.
“It’s a good book,” I assure him. Though I start to wonder whether it’s age appropriate. I mean, I was reading explicit adult books at twelve—but I didn’t really understand some of the graphic sex scenes. Sixteen can’t be that bad.”

This had me cackling.
• And since we're on the topic of his siblings, I have to say that I fucking loved the Kotovas. They are what made this book so much better. Especially in the end when Thora and Nikolai's romance left me extremely underwhelmed. Real talk, those two failed at making me feel or experience any kind of emotions when they got together. There wasn't anything special or exciting about them after that initial meeting at the club. So Nik and Thora just ended up being your average hetero romance between two white people. And all the fun I experienced when they'd just met and were circling around each other kind of disappeared.
• Thankfully, I still had the rest of the Kotova family for my entertainment: from gambling issues to competitiveness and alpha glaring contests to kleptomania, this book has it all. If I had to sum up this family in one word, I'd say they're kind of a mess... the kind that reminded me of the Gallaghers in Shameless.

Nikolai even had a similar scene as Fiona Gallagher about raising his brothers and sister:

“You raised your siblings. You realize that, right?”
He lets out a short laugh. “Not well enough.”
I frown and shake my head. The waiter comes around and takes our orders. A salmon dish for me, and chicken for him.
“You’re wrong,” I tell him, the flames creating shadows over his strong features in the dark. He looks like a devil dressed in black at first sight, but coming to know him, he’s the god that everyone describes. “Katya is sweet and friendly.” I think about his brother, the one who offered me mints and stole Skittles for his little sister. “Luka is generous and kind.” And Timo—magnetic. There are no just words to define him. I smile, staring off. “And Timo is…captivating, more full of life than anyone I’ve ever met.”

I love siblings that take care of each other, so this made me as emotional as Fiona's speech.
• And continuing about the tv show, I kept thinking of Debbie Gallagher when Katya was around. Since both were raised by older siblings, wanted to grow up faster and earn their independence. Oh, and just throwing this idea out there: I'd be over the moon excited if Katya got her own point of view in a later sequel.
• One last positive was that Amour Amour included LGBTQIA+ aspects: Thora's friend, John Ruiz, gets together with one of the Kotova brothers, Timo. They're one of the reasons why I want to continue on with the sequel.

“Don’t stare into his eyes!” John shouts to me. “Little parts of you will die inside!”
He almost lifts my spirits.
A smile stretches Timo’s beautiful features. “So you’re admitting to feeling something from me, John?!”
John glares. “Death. I feel death!”
Timo whistles, but I can’t hear the sound from the pop song. “That’s a strong feeling.”

And it's also why I loved this tweet.
• But quickly circling back to the main Kotova brother: Nikolai. I mentioned before how I was a goner for him... but that was before he fully showed his overly protective, possessive and controlling side. It just left me with a sour taste in my mouth. Like, I physically cringe when I think back on his behavior.

• And since I'm on a roll about the negatives, Amour Amour was also so damn unnecessary looooong. As a result, my thoughts kept shifting when I wasn't captivated by what was happening. Which ended up occurring quite often when the Kotova siblings weren't in the picture.
• I started skimming around towards the last 100 or so pages. I just didn't see what it had going on other than Nikolai's obsession with Thora. So I ended up high-key despising that convenient ending for those two to be together.
For now, I'm hesitant on whether I should move on to Luka's story in Infini, since I'm interested to see what surprises that one will hold (hopefully less of Nik and Thora). But I still can't ignore how utterly disappointed I am with this book, especially after loving it so damn much for the first half... I guess only time will tell.

Note: I'm an Amazon Affiliate. If you're interested in buying Amour Amour, just click on the image below to go through my link. I'll make a small commission!

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Profile Image for Beverly.
1,005 reviews796 followers
May 23, 2015
4.5 Love is a circus Stars

It is so hard to judge this book as a stand alone, because I am a huge fan of the Addicted Series. That being said, I absolutely love how there were small references to the Addicted world: Fizz Life, Raisy and the Princess of Philly. Now onto the book at hand since this a standalone book, and while fans will enjoy these little glimpses they in no way distract from the story.

Thora James is within one year of completing her college degree and living the life her parents want for her. Now this life isn’t a horrible one, but it doesn’t allow her to follow her dreams. Despite everyone telling her she can’t make it, she decides to leave school and fly to Vegas to audition to be in the circus.

"You’re one in a million, Thora. It’s a pipe dream, you realize this?"

"Yeah, I know. But if I don’t believe in myself, then who will?”

Now this isn’t just any circus, Thora wants to be an aerialist in a Cirque De Soleil type show. Despite Thora having no formal training, what she does have is a lot of heart. On her first night there she meets The God of Russia, and ladies I would have to agree - loved Nikolai Kotova.

Nikolai and his family grew up in the circus, they are like royalty in Vegas and everyone knows them. Everyone accept the girl from Ohio, Thora. After falling victim to Nikolai’s game, Thora thinks they will never see each other again until he shows up at her auditions.

Thora is auditioning in Amour a show that goes through the different stages of love. It is a beautiful concept and written so clearly you can imagine what the show would be like. Despite her best efforts Thora doesn’t make it and here is the best part - she decides to stay and fight it out, follow her dream. I loved this because it takes a strong character to stay in a strange city, broke and alone, but she does it. Things start looking up when Nikolai and Thora’s paths cross and he offers to train her.

Things begin to progress, but the two decide to always choose the circus, to not allow any distractions - even each other. As things unfold we meet the rest of the Kotova’s who become a surrogate family for Thora. I loved the aspect of family and how they all rallied around each other. Seeing Nikolai’s love for his family and protectiveness just made me love him more.

This is a beautiful story about following your dreams, the love of family, finding the someone who loves you and your dreams. It is vary rare to find someone who will love you and support you even if it will hurt them, I loved that this story portrayed that type of love.

"But I’ve found the truest form of love. It’s two loves that can live in harmony."

This is a unique story, beautifully written - I highly recommend!

Is there any cheating?
Profile Image for TheCrazyWorldOfABookLover.
362 reviews880 followers
February 7, 2017
Re-reading before the release of Infini! And it's currently on sale for .99$! http://amzn.to/2klCqfz


"But I've found the truest form of love. It's two loves that can live in perfect harmony. The circus and you," he whispers, "amour amour."
Two loves. Two passions. At perfect balance.

Amour Amour was such a wonderful and unique story! It's a story about following your dreams no matter what, finding love, and discovering yourself.

Thora James is a gymnast and has left everything behind. Her family, her friends, her scholarship. All to pursue her dreams of joining an aerial circus act. This leads her to Vegas to audition for a hit show called Amour and is where she meets the show's star Nikolai Kotova. And what an interesting first meeting that was.

"If his eyes are hell, his tongue is heaven, and I would gladly return."

Nikolai and Thora train together, and eventually fall for one another. As someone who has been insecure for a lot of her life, being with Nikolai and his brothers and sister who are also in the circus shows Thora what it's like to gain confidence and become part of a family where passion and love are front and center.

I LOVED Nikolai and his relationship with Thora. Talk about the PERFECT MAN.

When his humor fades, what remains is longing. In deep Russian, he whispers a phrase I've only heard once before.
"What does that mean?" I ask, my pulse beginning to race again as I catch certain words.
"Here is my heart." His thumb skims my neck. "It is full of love."

The other characters, especially Timo and John (!!!), stole the show for me. I was salivating for more scenes from them and when I got them, I didn't want them to end. I cannot wait for Luka's book Infini. His rebel ways were so intriguing and no doubt will make for a crazy entertaining book.

If you've yet to read a book from these authors (and you should read their books like NOW), this is a great addition to the wonderful worlds they have created. No one writes family and friend dynamics quite like Krista and Becca. Their characters always feel so REAL. It's something that is hard to describe unless you have experienced the magic that is their books. And if you have, you most definitely know what I mean. If you are already a fan of them (because how could you not be?!) then I know you will just love Amour Amour, Nikolai and Thora, and the rest of the incredible characters.

"It's a dream that I'm living. Every day. With him."

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Profile Image for Brandi.
634 reviews1,275 followers
December 15, 2014
"Love is a circus."


Thora James is a small town girl with big dreams. When the gymnasts lands an audition with a renowned Vegas circus act, she hops on a plane. Her first night in Sin City leads to a chance meeting with one of the stars of Armour, Nikolai Kotova, when she becomes a part of his Saturday night dare. Unfortunately for Thora, when it comes down to landing the role, she doesn't really have what it takes, but she is determined to improve and with the help of Nikolai she may get to live her dream.

“Every day, I hold a person’s life in my hands. The circus is based one-hundred percent off trust. I give it all to someone, and they give it all to me. I’m asking you, right now, to trust me.”

I enjoyed this swoon worthy romance, full of wonderful characters, about a young girl striving to achieve her dreams, and figuring out what is truly important.

"The circus and you," he whispers, "amour amour." Two loves. Two passions. At perfect balance."
Profile Image for Aestas Book Blog.
1,059 reviews74.9k followers
Want to read
December 15, 2014
OMG. New standalone from Krista & Becca Ritchie!!!!!

"Every day,” he says lowly, “I hold a person’s life in my hands. The circus is based one-hundred percent off of trust. I give it all to someone, and they give it all to me.”

Sounds good!!
Profile Image for Jasmine.
269 reviews668 followers
December 15, 2014

“The things greater than us, Thora, they’re not impossible. It’s just fear talking, telling you that you can’t when you can. I know you can.”

Being a huge fan of the Ritchie sisters, I was equally excited and nervous when they announced another story that branches out from my all time-fav Addicted series. A story that portrayed the circus life, I can't help but to envision the extravagance of it and left me very eager to dive into this one.

Amour Amour falls along the lines of a story of a small town girl who takes a leap of faith and enters into a whole new unknown city with a big dream. In this case Thora James, a gymnast with dreams of being in the circus hopped on a plane to Sin City in hopes of landing a role in Amour, the latest acrobatic act. All it took was an eventful first night to cross paths with the Russian star act of Amour, Nikolai Kotova and be a part of his weekly dare act that landed them both in a very interesting first-encounter meeting.

“Every day, I hold a person’s life in my hands. The circus is based one-hundred percent off trust. I give it all to someone, and they give it all to me. I’m asking you, right now, to trust me.”

The Ritchie sisters continue to showcase their amazing storytelling skills that captivates their readers from the very beginning, let me say what an unique first-encounter meeting we were surprised with! Just like Thora, I couldn't help but be enamored by Nikolai and basked in all of his Russian glory whenever we get glimpses of him.

“He is power. Man. And strength. He is charm and desire and indestructible things.”

The story touched me in many ways, seeing how determined Thora is in achieving her dreams even when it seemed so far from her reach. Or how Nikolai cared for his siblings by taking over the role of a parent. Although I did struggle with the initial connection between both MCs, I later enjoyed how their relationship progressed, especially the amount of patience Nik had with Thora and how it strengthens overtime as they dealt with the struggles between their love for the circus and each other.

“Your energy, your idealism and optimism—I missed those things, the places inside of me that made me feel more alive.”

What I love most about the Ritchie sisters writings is always how well written the secondary characters are in their stories. Without completely taking off the focus on both MCs, having characters like John and the Kotova siblings along for the ride made this story very well-rounded. Filled with humor and heartwarming moments, it's not only romance that the authors are aiming to deliver but it goes beyond that. It left me with a sense of belonging with these lovable characters.

“We all traverse in and out of people’s worlds, leaving footprints. Some larger, some smaller, but there is always a mark. We can’t sweep it away.”

Overall Amour Amour is proof that in spite of a whole new setting, the Ritchie sisters can still deliver the goods. Although I struggled with Thora initially with her constant self-beating, her character slowly grew and later found myself tearing at such an uplifting read. Added on with surprise cameos by the Calloways sprinkled across the read, I was more than happy to reminisce the good times!

No doubt delivering yet another heartfelt read laced with romance and wonderful characters all around, get ready to be bedazzled and be swept off your feet by yet another splendid story from these sisters.

“But I’ve found the truest form of love. It’s two loves that can live in harmony.” He looks down at me.

“The circus and you,” he whispers, “amour amour.”
Profile Image for Jennifer Kyle.
2,413 reviews4,662 followers
December 13, 2014
4.25 AMOUR Stars

"The circus and you," he whispers, "amour amour." Two loves. Two passions. At perfect balance."

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This is a well done follow your dreams story. It's set amongst the dazzle of a Las Vegas circus show. Thora James wants to be an aerialist in a Cirque De Soleil type circus in the show called Amour. Thora has been her one and only cheerleader regardless of how her friends and family put down her dreams. Thora was a strong willed determined likable main character. She leaves her college and scholarship and heads to Vegas to take a chance at her one in a million dream.

Thora meets Nikolai Kotova, the star of Amour at a club during a crazy after show stunt. Nikolai sees something in Thora even when her dreams don’t go how she wished.

”Thora James: a series of fails but she’ll stand up again.”

Along the way, Thora makes great friends and stumbles striving for her dream while totally falling for The God of Russia. Nikolai and Thora’s slow building relationship was not only well written but swoon worthy.

”Am I a mistake –“

“No, myshka. You’re just the unexpected, beautiful thing in my life.”

Thora’s bff wasn’t a fav of mine at all. He was never supportive and a total hypocrite in the end. However, Nickolai’s family who play very large parts in this story were wonderful characters that could easily have spin offs of their own.

Nickolai was extremely well written lead who was layered and totally stole Thora and my heart.

” “Don’t love me more than your dreams, myshka. Because I love you too much to let you give them up for me.”

This story was not only entertaining and quirky but it was written in a way that lets a reader experience the magic of the stage and the wonder of falling in love.


"I'm flying today. In all ways."
Profile Image for *J* Too Many Books Too Little Time.
1,921 reviews3,458 followers
December 14, 2014
4.5--Love is a Circus--Stars!!


That's how I feel having finished this. Proud for the small town girl who was brave enough to follow her dreams. Who never gave up.

"Thora James: a series of fails but she’ll stand up again."

Proud for the man that set his wants and needs aside for a family that needed him.

Thora James left Cincinnati, Ohio with big dreams. Dreams of joining the circus. A dream she's had since she was 14.

While I struggled a bit with Thora in the beginning by the end I admired her drive. Her love of the circus. Her desire to make her dreams come true.

Nikolai Kotova grew up in the circus. It's in his blood. It's in his family. It's all he's ever known.

Nikolai takes Thora under his wings. He trains her. He encourages her. He makes her better and in the process they fall in love. A love that comes second to the circus.

"Don’t love me more than your dreams, myshka. Because I love you too much to let you give them up for me.”

Thora has one chance to make her dreams a reality. A dream that could mean leaving one love behind in order to have another.

This story was so uplifting. Even my cold black heart teared up a few times. You couldn't help but root for Thora. To want her to realize her dreams and find love in the process.

Once again, the secondary characters added so much to this story. Other than Shay, Thora's best friend, who I did not really care for. I loved the whole Kotova clan. Camila. And especially broody John Ruiz.

This story was so different. But it made me smile. It made me nervous. It made me swoon. I cheered for Thora. I was in awe of Nikolai. I was sad. I was happy. A truly inspiring story of a girl who never gave up on her dreams.

"I’m average. I’ve been average most of my life, but there are moments where I feel extraordinary. Invincible.
It’s a dream that I’m living."
Profile Image for Corina.
768 reviews2,184 followers
May 16, 2020
Amour Amour was all about following a dream, and not sacrificing it for anyone else.

If you’ve ever watched a Cirque Du Soleil show you must have seen the incredibly talented performer on stage. And maybe you also wondered, like me, how these athletes got there, and what live behind the curtain must be like.

Amour Amour is the ONLY book I ever read about a show like Cirque Du Soleil and its addictive and enthralling dream like atmosphere.

From the very first sentence to the jaw dropping first meet between Thora and Nikolai I was fascinated by the world of high flying entertainment in Vegas.

It helped that both main characters were strong, authentic and enchanting, and the supporting cast outstanding.

Nikolai Kotova the “God of Russia” was charming, mysterious and immensely fascinating. He RULED the show on and off stage – and I’m a sucker for a personality that owns his talent, and rules with charisma and has the spirit and audacity to do what he wants.

Thora James was gritty, strong willed, hard working and not afraid to put her neck out – even if it meant to go head to head with the star of the show. She fit into the Kotova family like a missing link. And the way she started blooming under Nik’s tutelage and the challenges she took heads on really worked for me.

Nik and Thora were fabulous characters. Strong, resilient, mature and genuine. They had fabulous chemistry from the very start. Believable attraction based on a real friendship.

And OMG I’ll never forget their first meet – WOWZER!!!

The Kotova clan was incredibly entertaining, boisterous, loud, and always up to no good. They were loving, and above all else there for each other. Nik was the leader of the younger Kotova generation, and took over the parental guidance and had more responsibilities on his brought shoulders than many others his age. For him, Thora was a bright moment in his life. And she gave his existence a new direction, an infusion of light and joy.

And Thora was finally flying. She loved the Circus and couldn’t see herself anywhere else. She went after her dream and lived it to the fullest. Not giving up when it would have been easier. Not taking no for an answer. She persevered and and found her family.

The entire idea of a family working for a company like “Cirque Du Soleil” was fascinating, exotic and just captivating. It made this book stand out in an ocean of romance novels.

Profile Image for Pavlina Read more sleep less blog  .
2,434 reviews4,593 followers
February 3, 2015

"When I was fourteen, my mom took me to the circus…
I fell in love with it."

What an amazing book! Everything wass just perfect! I can tell you that I found the story very intriguing as it has to do with life in the circus. Krista and Becca are two amazing writers and I honestly love whatever they write! In this book I was captivated by the way Thora and Nikolai developed their relationship, to the story and to the secondary characters!!! The Kotovas stole my heart!!I hope the authors will consider to writing about Nikolai's family!!!


Thora leaves her family, her best friend and college to follow her dreams in Vegas.She hopes to get a role in Amour, a famous Russian Acrobatic Show. On her first night in Vegas, she encounters the lead performer of Amour Nikolai Kotova. From the very first moment they meet, there is attraction. The next day is her audition and unfortunately she ends up failing. Nikolai will be there and after this he will ask Thora if she's willing to let him train her for the next seven months so she can be ready for the next auditions. While they spend time together...they develop feelings for each other...

But what is more important for Thora?
To follow her dreams or to love and give herself in him?


I wanted to know more and more about them!! Nikolai is hot, loyal,determined and responsible. I loved Thora for her passion and her determination to achive her dream!! The chemistry between Thora and Nikolai was passionate and electric. What I loved about these two is that we see them grow throughout the book and become better people right till the end of the book!

"I trust this man.With my life.My heart. My soul."

The secondary characters are amazing and they match very well in the book. When I said I loved the Kotovas I mean it!!!Timo and Luca are amazing and funny!

This is a wonderful and unique story!It's a story about following your dreams and discovering yourself! If you haven't read a book of these authors yet now it's your opportunity to enter in the Ritchie sisters world!! If you are already a fan of them then I'm sure you will love it!!!
Profile Image for SueBee★bring me an alpha!★.
2,417 reviews14.2k followers
Want to read
April 4, 2017

THIS LOOKS SO GOOD! Love athletic heroes!

Stand-alone book 1.
Purchase: | AMZ US | AMZ UK |
Love is a circus
"Every day,” he says lowly, “I hold a person’s life in my hands. The circus is based one-hundred percent off trust. I give it all to someone, and they give it all to me.”
The best aerial technique won’t land 21-year-old Thora James her dream role in Amour—a sexy new acrobatic show on the Vegas strip. Thora knows she’s out of her element the second she meets Amour’s leading performer. Confident, charming and devilishly captivating, 26-year-old Nikolai Kotova lives up to his nickname as the “God of Russia.”

When Thora unknowingly walks into the crosshairs of Nikolai’s after-show, her audition process begins way too soon. Unprofessional. That’s what Nik calls their “non-existent” relationship. It’s not like Thora can avoid him. For one, they may be partners in the future—acrobatic partners, that is. But getting closer to Nik means diving deeper into sin city and into his dizzying world.

Thora wants to perform with him, but when someone like Nikolai attracts the spotlight wherever he goes—Thora fears that she’s destined to be just background to his spellbinding show.

This sexy and exhilarating New Adult Romance can best be described as Cirque du Soleil meets the steamy, athletic romance of Center Stage.
Profile Image for Catarina.
896 reviews1,975 followers
December 15, 2014
4 Acrobatic Stars.

”Love is a circus.”


Thora leaves everything and goes to Vegas, trying out for the cirque, more specifically Amour Amour, a very famous Vegas show. She doesn’t get it, but Nikolai, the show male leader tells her she may have a shot next year and that we will train her privately. And so she decides to stay in Vegas fighting for her dream. But eventually she and Nikolai fall in love and everything starts to get more serious. And when it comes to choosing between love or your passion, what will you be more willing to lose?


I’m not very familiar with these author’s books, however, the blurb seemed very promising and I decided to give it a try. And I’ve got to say that despite the slow start it eventually picked up and turned into a pretty good reading. This book wasn’t just a book, it was an experience that left me with a strange desire to go watching the next Cirque Du Soleil show near me.
It was a sweet and heartwarming romance and I’ll definitely keep following these authors work.


Rating: 4 Stars.
Characters Development: I liked Thora and her perseverance. When the easiest way would be returning to college, near her family and do the safe path, she chose the hardest way and didn’t give up on her dream. And that strength has to be admirable. Nikolai was also pretty good and I liked how he pushed Thora to her best. There was one specific attitude from him I really didn’t like, but I eventually forgave him. I liked them as a couple although it took too long for them to finally get together. I really liked his brothers, and I’m still hoping for a book about them!
Steam: Some hot moments.
Sensible Subjects:
Love Triangle:
Profile Image for Christy.
3,917 reviews33k followers
July 27, 2021
4.5 stars
Love is a circus

I've read almost all the twins books and I have no clue why I waited so long to read this one!

I adored the circus/performing aspect of the story and the meeting of the hero/heroine was fantastic. I love a good meet cute. Thora is in Las Vegas for the biggest audition of her life. I have to mention she's from Cincinnati, so she's a long way from home perusing her dreams. Her audition doesn't go as planned, but she does something brave and stays anyway.

Thora and Nikolai have an interesting relationship at first. Eventually they become friends and he decides he's going to help her and train her. Nik is a Kotova and a big deal in the circus world. I loved watching these two fall in love. One of my favorite things about this was the family dynamic between Nik, Thora, and Nik's siblings. Becca and Krista write families so so well!

This was a wonderful friends to lovers new adult romance and I'm so glad one of the brothers has a book also. I hope the twins will come back to this series and write more because I had so much fun listening to this one!

Audio book source: Audible
Story Rating: 4.5 stars
Narrator: Ava Erickson
Narration Rating: 4.5 stars
Genre: NA Romance
Length: 13h 22m
Profile Image for Lainey.
261 reviews1,577 followers
March 14, 2018
SECOND REVIEW: So I rated it a 5 the first time I read it and I just reread it and the rating still stands. I loved this book and I loved it x1000 more the second time around. Thora is my favorite NA heroine, Nik is my favorite NA hero, this is my favorite NA book hands down.


FIRST REVIEW: I've now read by favorite New Adult book. So thanks to my girl Jillian from bookishandnerdy to introducing me to Krista and Becca Ritchie. (I have a video book review coming soon and will link it once I finish it.)

I really loved this book. This book is a love story set at a circus show in Las Vegas. Goddamn, I was sold when I read the synopsis.

Our main character Thora James, decides to drop out of her last year of college to chase her dreams to join the circus. So she goes to Vegas for an audition. Listen. I freaking LOVED Thora. I related so so so much to this character, moreso than I ever had with another NA character. I had so much endearment for her and wanted her to succeed and achieve her dreams because essentially, this chick is doing what I've been to scared to do since I graduated college a year ago. So I just admired her, and loved being in her head.

Nikolai is our male lead who is Russian and hot and tall and the star of one of the Vegas shows. In short, I loved him. He also had so much responsibility that I loved seeing his relationship with his brothers and sister and the side characters were so on point, I fell in love with all of them. I want books on top of books following the Kotova siblings. The cousins. The brothers we don't see who are traveling across Europe in a traveling show. Give me everything, pls. And I am excited for the companion novel, INFINI, that the Ritchies announced recently. All up on that.

The story went fast, in a good way, and I was so engrossed with everything that I couldn't read it fast enough. The pacing went really well as did the development of the relationship which is something I always pay attention to when I am reading NA. And I loved the development of Thora and Nikolai's relationship.

I recommend this book for sure!
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,867 reviews2,240 followers
January 3, 2015
4 Circus is Family stars

 photo amouramourphoto.png

So it's no secret that I have a giant literary girl crush on the Ritchie twins. In a world of generic NA, these two writers are the diamonds in the rough of their genre. As a reader, I know going into every single one of their books that I will be transfixed by the lives of their characters as if I knew them myself. Their books are unique, evoking, and beautiful. Amour Amour is all of these things as well.

Thora is a college student who decides to drop her entire life in Ohio to go and audition for a Vegas stage show Amour, which is kind of like the Cirque de Solei shows. Thora has risked her entire future on this audition, her scholarship, degree, friendships and her relationship with her family to pursue her dream.

On her first night in Vegas, she meets Nikolai, an alluring Russian. After quite the memorable meeting, Thora shows up to her audition and one of the judges is of course Nikolai. Without spoiling much, Thora's audition doesn't go according to plan, but she remains in Vegas anyway. That's when Nikolai offers to train Thora.

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I found this book to be very refreshing and remarkable. The strongest themes were self-discovery and to follow your dreams, and as cheesy as that sounds, it really wasn't. Thora worked her ass off to be where she was, and she loved every second of it, the good and the bad.

One of my favorite parts of this book, and honestly my favorite aspects of all of these authors' books, is the side characters. Many books and authors have side characters in the background for the majority of the book, someone waiting in the wings until their cue to help guide the main characters toward their climax (book climax, stop thinking dirty things y'all). The Ritchie twins do the opposite of this and give the reader incredibly well developed side characters, like anyone else you would be around in real life. Their side characters are a huge part of why their books are so relatable, because you can actually feel surrounded by them as well.

My favorite side character was John. In a way, he kind of reminded me of Ryke from the Addicted series. A much bitchier and snarkier Ryke. I also loved Nikolai's brothers and sister; their presence almost always bringing a smile to my face.

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The romance between Thora and Nikolai was really well done, I spent most of the book sighing (inwardly) at Nikolai and his sweet actions toward Nora. But he was still an awesome alpha male, so don't go thinking he's a softy just yet.

The romance was emotional, sweet and a little angsty which is exactly what I love.
 photo amouramourphoto2.png

If you haven't yet given the Ritchie twins' books a try yet, this one would be a great place to start. I would still recommend reading the Addicted series first as there are references in this book to that series (and those little tidbits were amazeballs).
Profile Image for a.
1,199 reviews
December 5, 2021
4.5 stars!

Oh my god, I can't believe I was actually scared that I wouldn't like this book! I seriously need to stop doubting authors that I love and have never steered me wrong.

This book was beautiful. The characters, the setting, the plot, everything about it made me fall in love and feel as if I were a part of the Las Vegas scene even though I've never been there before in my life. I know a lot of people said the beginning was slow to them but for me, I was hooked from the very first page.

I honestly feel like I can't even put my emotions into words right now but I just feel so lighthearted and happy it's all I can focus on. I want to give a detailed review and rant about all my favorite parts but then I'd be spoiling it for everyone else ;)

I will admit at one point (probably around the half way mark I think a little bit after), things got a little slow for me and I was getting so worried and being a bit dramatic, moaning and bitching to anyone who would listen. My main problem (and the reason for the half star deduction) was that at times, things felt a bit repetitive. Also at one time, I was a bit unsure about Nik and Thora's relationship and the connection that they had. I believed without a doubt that they cared for each other, but love? I wasn't sure. I needed to see more, feel more and at one point I didn't feel like I was getting that. I wanted to see Nikolai vulnerable the way Thora seemed to always be to him. At this point, I felt like maybe this book was a 4 star book for me and I felt really sad at the thought even though 4 stars is still a really good book in my eyes. I've loved every single book KB Ritchie has published and I didn't want this book to be the one to change that. But luckily, I slept on all the stress and worry and after a long day at work, I finally sat back down with the book with a clear head and an open mind. And that's when things got back to being amazing for me. As I kept reading, I saw Nikolai open up more and got to see the characters develop and grow before my eyes. The two things that bothered and worried me, disappeared and I was left wondering why I was worried to begin with.

The book wraps up nicely but my greedy ass wants more. I don't want to leave their world! I would love to get more Nikolai and Thora but I doubt that will happen since this is a standalone. But my greed doesn't stop there. I would die to read a book on the supporting characters like Ruiz, Dimitri, Katya...basically all of Nikolai's family and Thora's friends. (Are you listening Krsita and Becca? Please here my pleas)

Overall, this book made me feel a lot of emotions and while I did have a few minor problems with it, in the end I fell in love hardcore.

***Thank you Amy (Foxy) for talking to me while we were both reading this book! Your advice and just chatting in general really helped me de-stress and just rant about certain scenes in the book. You rock! :)

Profile Image for Hulya Kara Yuksel.
933 reviews1,095 followers
August 26, 2021
“I’m in love with you,” I whisper.
He tries to smile but his eyes flood instead. “Don’t love me more than your dreams, myshka. Because I love you too much to let you give them up for me.”

OMG why the hell I wait so long for this book? Ahhhh I'm in love every freaking thing about this story and I'm so excited for the book2!. (^_^)

Nikolai Kotova is my new book boyfriend. <3
Profile Image for Mikee (ReadWithMikee).
203 reviews1,312 followers
August 2, 2016
Find me on Instagram & Twitter!

❝'Everyday,' he says lowly, 'I hold a person's life in my hands. The circus is based one-hundred percent off trust. I give it all to someone, and they give it all to me. I'm asking you, right now, to trust me.'❞

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Amour Amour was okay. It was an interesting concept but it didn't blow me away. I think I was expecting something a little different from what actually happened in the book. I picked this up mainly because I love everything circus-themed and I thought we'd see a lot of the circus but we only saw glimpses of it, more towards the end. In truth, I think the story I was expecting happened in the end of the book.

I thought we'd see the main character actually BE in the circus for the whole book. That we'd see Thora and Nikolai's chemistry on the stage evolve off the stage. I guess it did but in reverse order since we don't actually see them perform together until the end.

The characters, themselves, were ordinary. They didn't really stand out to me, especially Thora. I thought she was a little flat and boring. I don't have much to say about her because she was a pretty dull main character. Relatable but boring compared to other females I've read about. Nikolai was slightly better but not by much. I think I liked him more as the God of Russia in the nightclub than in the circus or I'm normal everyday life. Their chemistry was... Existent. They had their cute moments once or twice throughout the whole book. But in all honesty, the background characters interested me more than the actual main characters.

Overall, I just had a whole different expectation of where I thought the story was going to go which was probably why I'm a little disappointed. It was a quick, little read but it's definitely not something I would read again. I've read better, more memorable new adult stories.
Profile Image for Samantha.
440 reviews16.7k followers
May 5, 2016
I'm typically not a huge fan of New Adult, but Amour Amour had been recommended to me over and over by friends that enjoy new adult, so I decided to finally give it a go. The circus setting is always a buzzword for me, and I'd heard that the Ritchies avoid common NA tropes that I hate.

I went in with low expectations, and this book proved that NA can be good. I loved the setting of Las Vegas, with the Cirque du Soleil type show. Like most New Adult, this was a quick read. The Ritchies don't dwell on any one event just for the sake of angst (something I see frequently in NA) and I appreciated that.

I found myself really enjoying the side characters. The love interest is part of a Russian circus family, and they are all individuals. His younger brother is a character I'm particularly fond of (and we're supposed to get another book set around him! Yay!). With that being said, I found I didn't really connect to either of the main characters. I felt very neutral on both of them. They didn't annoy me, but their romance didn't leave me on the edge of my seat either.

Future books in this companion series are supposed to follow different circus shows and different characters, so I am looking forward to those. I appreciate that this book avoided common NA tropes, like slut shaming, and I plan to continue reading the Ritchie's NA offerings.This review was originally posted on Thoughts on Tomes
Profile Image for ✰ Liz ✰ .
1,353 reviews1,283 followers
December 22, 2019
“What black eyes you have…”
“All the better to devour you with.”

Amour Amour is a beautifully crafted contemporary romance full of entertainment, art, and passion. Thora has always dreamed of becoming a professional Ariel Ethereal Performer in the famous Vegas Cirque Amour Amour. After Thora has finally landed an audition, she gives up her life in Ohio to venture to the big city. One of the first people Thora meets is the illustrious Nikolai. Nikolai is a star of the circus and is somehow drawn to Thora. Although she doesn't make it through the first audition, Nikolai offers to train her so that she will be ready for the next round of tryouts. As the training begins, Thora and Nikolai are drawn together physically and emotionally in every way! Thora knows that if she is cast in the circus she might have to leave Vegas and Nikolai to be on tour. If she is successfully cast in the troupe, will be she be able to stay with her love Nikolai or will she give in to her first love.... the circus?

“We’re not going to fit together.”
“We are,” he says lowly. “In all ways.”
Told in Thora's POV, Amour Amour is a truly magical blend of romance and passion. The writing style flows seamlessly as the intensity unfolds. As always, the Ritchie sisters have crafted complex characters who care deeply and love passionately. Nikolai is smoking hot and the passion he feels for his family, the circus, and Thora kept me glued to the page from the first moment until the very last.
“I’ve found that life is a series of crossroads, dead-ends, and U-turns. There is no real destination. There is no goal to end all goals. As long as we’re living, we’ll always keep driving.”
Overall, I have always been a huge Ritchie fan and Amour Amour is simply magical! I adore the main characters and together they have earned a place on my best couples shelf. My only regret is that I didn't read this sooner!

🎧I listened to this on Audible.com! 🎧

For more reviews/reveals/giveaways visit:
Profile Image for Sue.
781 reviews1,590 followers
June 26, 2018
old review

What if you are not good enough for your dreams?

For me Amour Amour circle around this question.

Amour Amour follows the story of Thora, a gymnast who is planning to audition for Vegas’s acrobatic show. There he met, the “God of Russia”, Nikolai Kotova. They quickly developed a different kind of relationship, one that might come between her dreams.

My cheeks hurt from smiling. Strangely enough, I haven’t felt this kind of feeling in a while. This book is simply wonderful, hilarious and light. This is what New Adult genre honestly lacks and even though that is the case, Amour Amour still managed to tackle a few necessary topics.

For others, Amour Amour will definitely come off as a fluffy slash addicting romance between two circus performers. As for me, this story introduces me to an unknown world, one where everything is possible as long as I persevere.

There is heaps emphasis on self-discovery, family, friendship, love, and circus. It’s basically a Krista & Becca Ritchie trademark book. Especially with the flair for the dramatics, secondhand embarrassing scenarios and that uncanny hilarious tone of the book.

The first time I’ve read this book, I was so sold with its gay ship. I still am and I have every reason to be. They have so much chemistry, they deserve their own book.

“You want me to be single, John?” This took a turn. I stare between them, my eyes pinging back and forth with intrigue.

John puts the beer to his lips. “I’m out of your league, Timo.”

And if a book wants a safe spot in my favorite shelf. All the author has to do is give me all the family drama, love, filled with complication.

Overall, Amour Amour is your got to go book. It has a fleshed out characters, with perfect pacing. Perfect for one sitting down read!

And if you need any convincing. Here’s one of my favorite quotes from the book.

“You have some demonic-looking eyes, myshka.” He stares right into them, and I barely graze over the foreign word myshka. “They’re nearly black.” They are. Add that to RBF and I can’t really denounce my demon-like qualities. My eyes flit to the red glow necklace that he wears.

“If I’m a demon, then you must be the devil.” It may be the corniest thing I’ve ever said.

 “Maybe I am,” he replies, very deeply. “And yet, here you are.” His gaze remains on me and only me.

“And myshka…” His voice turns to liquid sex. “You can’t possess me, even if you tried.”

Review also posted at Young Adult Hollywood.
Profile Image for Kelli C .
1,044 reviews352 followers
December 23, 2014
I took my time reading this book...taking it all in...reveling in the words-the bigger picture. There are things about Amour Amour that made me a bit crazy...things that in another book, I would despise, but here in this story...I found a love, a courage, a risk to live bigger than expectations.

“We all traverse in and out of people’s worlds, leaving footprints. Some larger, some smaller, but there is always a mark. We can’t sweep it away.”

Yep, this book is one of those stories that has left footprints in my heart. Perhaps I felt a deep connection with Thora as the ordinary girl who worked hard her whole life to be just average. Her risk to drop the expected and go risk it all in the circus was NUTS! Who is this girl? How can she think she is good enough? This journey will NOT be easy. Who knew her love of the unknown would lead her to the biggest adventure and the biggest reward!

“The things greater than us, Thora, they’re not impossible. It’s just fear talking, telling you that you can’t when you can. I know you can.”

Nikolai Kotova..."God of Russia"...A man among men and a lifelong-performer. For 26 years, his love...his family...his life has been the circus. He has breathed everything into his performances. His Passion, Lust, and Love are found 80 feet in the air wrapped in silk.

While this book could have been an ordinary tale with the stereotypical rich, bad boy and a naïve small town girl, the Ritchie sisters showed their genius with creating beautiful love story out of the box. In this tale they brought intimacy thru trust and emotion thru support.

I’m in love with you,” I whisper. He tries to smile but his eyes flood instead. “Don’t love me more than your dreams, myshka. Because I love you too much to let you give them up for me.”

I could have highlighted the majority of this book as they developed a love story in Thora's journey to find her dreams.

Also, they made a big strong man who for once was open, kind, and compassionate. While I like it hot...and I don't like my females whiny/weak...I found myself not caring too much. I was loving the sexual tension, the flirty innuendo the fun familial banter, and the constant push and support to be better and never give up. For me this is prob one of my fave reads of 2014!
Profile Image for Sara ➽ Ink Is My Sword.
569 reviews438 followers
December 9, 2019
4.5 “Nikolai Kotova” Stars
“When someone reaches out and gives you a hand—for no other reason than to see your success—it’s powerful. And rare.”


Circus setting + ambitious characters + swoon-worthy Nikolai + big family + female character you want to protect at all costs + caring romance = GREAT FUCKING READ.

I was wonderfully surprised although I knew I was going to love this. I kept seeing my friends reading this, and of course, my weird brain wires made me stay away because I tend to go for rather unknown books until finally, my mood obligated me to pick it up. And I, of course, ended up screaming at myself: WHY DIDN’T YOU PICK THIS SOONER? Feels, sweet moments, great character arcs, addictive writing, awesome side characters were what this book offered me and it made me stay until 2:30 am finishing it. I love this book, is not perfect but is something that will resonate with me and I will probably pick up to re-read multiple times.

I was in love to see a girl who represented how I often feel in life, not enough. Thora has passion and love for her sport/ art but is still not enough, she lacks innate talent. But she keeps trying after every failure, is truly heartbreaking and inspiring to read her journey. I wanted to protect her and made her be the best in the world, but then that would have been unrealistic and I appreciated how the authors went in other direction. And then we have Nik, my number one book boyfriend at the moment, so fucking attractive. He literally has all the qualities I could be drawn to in real life, caring, passionate, not-selfish, has his priorities sorted out, family man, tall so fucking tall, and hot. He also gives me so many Dimitri from the vampire academy vibes. This two awesome characters made their interactions, unique, funny and sweet warm my heart, break it and spin it around. I was rooting for them and literally swooned every time the line “you are the devil then you must be a demon” line appeared. I really loved how their relationship grew and how the family was a great part of this story too.

Which leads me to the side characters, they were precious and they caught my interest completely. Especially Timo and John, can they have their own book, please? I was so fucking invested in their story, they were so cute and had my heart beating like crazy.

There were some small things I would have changed and that refrained me from giving this book 5 stars. One of them being how sometimes the sex felt really uncomfortable like I guess it was real but it was weird how everytime we mentioned how huge Nik's cock was and how it was painful for Thora I felt like WHY ARE THEY EVEN DOING IT. The foreplay was hot and all but the actual penetration part was something I could have been better without. And then it comes towards the ending, so spoiler . And I also wanted a bit more of circus time, I love Circus Du Solei so this was like crack to me but I just wanted MORE.

I completely recommend this book to everyone, especially if you love romance, this is a most. And if you also had a crush for Dimitri in the vampire academy then trust me YOU NEED NIKOLAI KOTOVA in your life. He is precious.
Profile Image for Jeannine Allison.
Author 13 books512 followers
October 21, 2018
6 stars (Second Read 10/21/2018)

5 stars (First Read 3/26/2016)



It's official. These two authors have easily become two of my absolute favorites (like top 5 for sure). I already want to reread this... in fact after I finished it I went and reread some of my favorite parts. I just love everything about their novels: the beautiful writing, the awesome characters, and the low-key yet still enticing plots.

I loved Thora's determination and I found myself reading on for her success story as much as for her relationship with Nik. She was such an unbelievably strong character and she refused to back down despite all the odds against her.
I’m more satisfied with who I am. Thora James: a series of fails but she’ll stand up again.
I was extremely impressed with her and her journey. And so, so happy with how the authors went about her journey. They certainly didn't make it easy for her.

And Nik... I want one.


I LOVED how he supported Thora. He didn't feed her bullshit, he told her when she did well and when she needed to improve. He was able to stay professional while also showing us (and her) how much he loved her. I never doubted it because he never wavered.

And the world they've created here? AMAZING. I want to know what will happen to ALL the characters we've met. Timo and John were some of my absolute favorite and I supremely hope they get their own novel, that would be so much fun. But I was equally sucked in by Katya, I was as attached as Nik and Thora were... I hated the thought of her leaving and I'd really enjoy watching her grow up.

But what I love most is that these sisters can take worlds that I will never be apart of and made them real for me. They take situations that actually happen (but not too many) and make them relatable, fun, and heartbreaking. They have most definitely become auto-buy authors, I can't imagine anything that they wouldn't be able to write and I'm so excited to see what's next!

Every novel of theirs pretty much ends like this for me


I don't know if you'll consider this a good thing or not lol but personally I have no problem looking like this, I actually prefer it :)
Profile Image for Siiri (Little Pieces of Imagination).
538 reviews108 followers
April 26, 2016
Reread (Nov-Dec 2015): still as good as the first time if not better! This book is so inspirational and I can see Krista and Becca's own passionate hearts on every page. So freakin' excited for Infini next year and explore of my fav Luka Kotova & see a lot more of the Kotovas, Thora, Camila and John! Attachment to these characters is a real thing, I tell youuu (ɔ◔‿◔)ɔ ♥ If you love the Calloway sisters, you will love the bond, dynamics and love between the Kotova siblings 10/10 too!


“When I was fourteen, my mom took me to the circus…I fell in love with it.” I pause to form a better explanation, of how I sat in that velvet-lined seat and longed to share the performer’s experience. To be the girl flying in the air, to captivate an audience and enchant them. To be superhumanly strong.
To be something more. Awe. And power. And grace.


view these graphics in HQ on my tumblr


Oh, the two wizards that are Krista and Becca Ritchie! Their books have moved and touched the deepest parts of my soul and I will forever hold them dear and close to my heart. After finishing their first stand-alone novel, I can tell you that I found Amour Amour to be exciting, and the circus setting most definitely added to the otherwise fun, humorous and sensuous story.

"Some days I still wonder if I’ve found me. Maybe we never stop searching. Maybe we evolve the way seasons change, seamlessly without really knowing, not until all the leaves have fallen."

Thora is a great heroine to follow, because she’s so passionate about what she does. Yes, she has her doubts: people constantly tell her that she isn’t good enough, she will never make it yada yada yada, but she always proves them wrong; her determination not foolish, but admirable. Of course, she has her fair share of little [or not so little *cough* pun *cough*] helpers and I believe that this is a very crucial part of being successful. Eventually you do need someone to root for you; to give you a helping hand every now and then. Here’s where John, Camila and the Kotovas come into play.

The secondary characters are what made this book for me. I love sibling relationship so much—especially the complicated, yet loving ones and the Kotovas could give everyone and anyone a run for their money in this aspect. These kids made me cry and laugh out loud more than once. Their friendship with Thora was so endearing that I wanted to squish them together, put them in my pocket and keep them forever. Thank goodness for re-reading, yeah? I loved their personality quirks and there’s so much to explore with each individual that I sincerely hope we do get some companion novels one day.

I loved the setting! There were parts that took my breath away—a prime example being the first time Thora visits the Amour show. It’s described beautifully and makes you feel like you’re not just reading the scene, but rather watching it there alongside her. Also, the romances were pretty darn hot. I liked Thora and Nik together, but there was another couple who brought my obsessive shipper side out and OH. MY. CONNOR. COBALT. SERIOUSLY THIS OTP YOU GUYS!!!!! I WAS ROLLING ON THE FLOOR GASPING FOR AIR BECAUSE THIS COUPLE! I AM SO HEART EYES YOU DON’T KNOW HOW HEART EYES. THEY NEED THEIR OWN BOOK. PRETTY PLEASE. I am willing to bring out the tears and puppy eyes if necessary.


Even though it wasn't my favorite book by the twins, I liked this story a lot and thoroughly recommend it! While some parts of the novel were predictable, there were A LOT of parts that made me gasp and say “GET OUT OF HERE! NO WAY! DID THIS JUST HAPPEN?? *wipes back a few pages and reads again* OMG THIS DID JUST HAPPEN!” out loud, so you can say that there are quite a few coup de théâtre’s here and there. Amour Amour is a chemistry filled story with a lot of passion, heart and character growth. You can see, feel and almost touch the passion Krista and Becca have put into this novel: there are so many pieces of them in Amour Amour for the rest of the world to see, if only you know where to look. It’s inspiring, enthralling, brave and admirable! I hope we do get to meet the Kotovas again in the future and get a front row seat from different povs to all the acts bound to happen in their crazy lives.

Overall rating: 4.5 out of 5.0


Original thoughts:

one can pretty much always count on minions to describe their feels


More of my reviews can be found on my blog.
December 22, 2017
She’s trying to find herself. Some days I still wonder if I’ve found me. Maybe we never stop searching. Maybe we evolve the way seasons change, seamlessly without really knowing, not until all the leaves have fallen.
This is who I am today.
Tomorrow I may be the same.
But in years, I’ll be someone else. Someone I may like more. Someone I may like less. And that’s okay. Because I’m still living.

It’s no secret that I loved Connor Cobalt with all my heart when I read the Calloway Sisters spin-off series in 2015. He and Rose made me happier than I could have imagined possible. And while I adored those two books that centered on the controlling and over-achieving duo, I just couldn’t fathom liking another book out of that series. They were always a bit long and always….heavy-ish, so I just couldn’t reconcile liking a book by these authors that relatively none of my friends have talked about.

I wish I could tap into his mind, even for a moment. To see how he sees me. For as much as Nikolai conveys, he’s still a mystery.
And I’m the curious girl who’ll step into it. Time and time again.

Then one day I just decided to give it a try….and I met one of the sweetest, most dedicated, most loyal men ever. I swear, why did all these books I adore have to come near the end of the year? What I needed was a book that wasn’t your typical romance, that wasn’t NA smut, something with some substance. And, ya know, normally I don’t love books that are a bit slower build, longer than they really need to be (which is a Ritchie trait, if you ask me) without much action, but it seems that some of my absolute favorites this year are just that: Punk 57, An Enchantment of Ravens, and now Amour Amour. There must be something in the water, because I am DYING of thirst when it comes to these books.

It became something more without noticing. Without realizing. “Am I a mistake—”
“No, myshka. You’re just the unexpected, beautiful thing in my life.”

Thora is selected to go try out for an Aerial company that has circus shows all around the world-her dream show? Amour. I kind of just pictured Cirque-du-Soleil (which I think was the point?) as I read, and it seemed to resonate and help me picture things I might have skimmed over before (I’ve never been that imaginative…which is why I use all the same stock actors and actresses with each book I read lol). Anyway, she gets called in for an audition, but she just isn’t up to par-not yet. And that’s where Nikolai comes in.

And he assumed right. Again. Probably based on Shay’s height, frame, build—like he did me that first night in Vegas. “Can you at least pretend to be full of remorse and regret?” This would be so much easier.
“No. A devil protects his demon.”

Nikolai lives and breathes the circus, grew up participating in shows with his family from the beginning. He’s a show stopper, and the spot for his partner just opened up...which is why Thora is in Vegas trying out for the coveted position. While doing his after-hours show on a Saturday night at a club, he challenges a cute girl to oppose him-and he instantly feels something towards her. A need to shield, to protect her perhaps. When they part ways that night, he warns her to not let the city eat her alive…and then the day of try-outs arrives, and he’s shocked to see that she wasn’t just a visitor in his town, but a tiny girl with more passion than she knows what to do with.

The slight prick of fear heightens my adrenaline, setting a fire beneath me.
Who can explain the drum of their heart or the burst of their lungs? Give me that person. I need them because words fail my senses.

So the story goes. Alas, I will say that, while I knew what the end would produce, the rest of the story was surprising the whole way through, a mystery until the end-and I respected that. I loved that I kept guessing and was never really right, and that, even though the story was a little predictable all in all, the writers kept it out of the cliché zone. Did I love that the motto of the story basically implies love comes second? Hmm no. When I read, I look to escape reality, not drench myself in it. But I did love that they weren’t pushovers for their attraction to one another. Did I love that it took so long for what I wanted to be said and for it to be admitted? Actually…yes. I did. I LOVE a slow burn, and I love how the authors didn’t just give me all the cookies in the cookie jar right away, but also didn’t keep them from being together. I won’t spoil, I’m just saying that it worked for me, and I didn’t think I’d be happy about it…but I was. I SO was, because it just gave me millions of butterflies and melted my crusty self into a puddle of goop when all the little things happened, leading up to a crescendo of feels.

He said, “All you need is luck. The rest, you’ll do great at.”
I smiled. “Is that my trainer speaking?”
“Yes,” he said, “but you’d probably think it’s a problem.”
I hesitated, “Why’s that?”
He stood up, towering above me with those intense grays. “Your trainer is in love with you.”

I’ve gotten even more dramatic in my old age, haven’t I? I’m a sap, a puddle of goo…but I just love that I can still be surprised by books when I thought I was starting to lose all my fangirl feels. Nikolai…I don’t know. He’s Russian, which was hard for me to picture? I know that makes me sound like a snob, but obviously I’m not a total snob because he won my heart over in, like, two pages. He stole my breath at the oddest of times, when I least expected it, and he would do ANYTHING for Thora.

“I’d help you every day so that you could see a better tomorrow. I will never give you less than that.”


“Why help me?” I ask softly. I expect him to say, I don’t have an answer.
“I admire your courage. I know what you’ve given up to be here. I know the kind of artist it takes to land a role. I know that you won’t receive one on your own. And I imagine you, myshka, two years from now, working at Phantom with the same aspirations, the same dreams, in the same place where you are now. It’s wasted courage. And wasted love. You shouldn’t have to waste those things.”

Which, okay, let’s talk about that name real quick-it’s like a couple name smash that went wrong-Thor and Nora for the win? Ha BUT ANYWAY, he had rules. He was strict with his ‘Circus before love’ bit. But Thora wiggled into his heart, made him feel whole…and she made him question what was more important. And, when faced with the fact that he may lose her if she didn’t make the Aerial team in January, it broke his heart-but not once did he let it show that he would die if she left, because her dreams were more important to him than his own happiness. I mean…I can’t even. He was just…I can’t. Not once had he been distracted from the true love of his (and Thora’s) life, the circus, but Thora made him break the rules, made him do things he’d never done before. And one scene breaks my heart in the best possible way, and I can’t say but….I think you guys would know if you read it. It’s EVERYTHING.

He stares down at me, waiting. I always pause. And he rarely fills the silence with his own voice. He just looks so deeply into me and gives me time to find the right thing…
“I’m in love with you,” I whisper.
He tries to smile but his eyes flood instead. “Don’t love me more than your dreams, myshka. Because I love you too much to let you give them up for me.”

So yeah, it wasn’t a perfect book-it didn’t have non-stop action, it might have dragged JUST a teensy bit, and I wanted to punch her best friend. But Nikolai’s adorable jealousness, the family bonding that only these sisters can write/produce, the friendships, the palpable love between Nikolai and Thora, the tenderness with which he treats her, takes care of her, the story line that makes you feel like you’re a part of Vegas…yeah, I’d say this is one of my absolute favorites. Hands down. And I’d say you’d be silly to not give this one a try.

I never even dreamed of finding love. It’s been low on my list of pursuits. I thought I’d tackle that later. Maybe in ten years. I’d fall in love for the first time then.
I wish someone would’ve told me that you can’t search for love. That one day, it will find you.
An unexpected thing.

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