This was another great, enjoyable, well-written urban fantasy book! And this one even had more intensity and emotion than the first.
The characterization was great again. I love that the characters are not perfect (e.g. Patrick’s smoking and drinking and the way he keeps his thoughts and emotions and info close to the vest, Jono’s temper when dealing with people he doesn’t like) but are still so likeable.
Side note: Lucien and Carmen are absolutely terrible, and I want a book about them. Total power couple.
I liked that Patrick and Jono’s relationship clearly had genuine care and devotion (I have such a weakness for those scenes when a character helps their unwell partner wash in the shower while their own fully clothed body gets soaking wet), but it wasn’t perfect either. You don’t often get to see relationship struggles in books once the characters are together. But they were still learning to deal with each other. Patrick especially had a hard time remembering and understanding that he’s not alone anymore, so he doesn’t have to do everything alone, and also that his actions now affect Jono as well as himself.
Actually, I just like how nothing was perfect or too easy. The world in this book is realistically harsh. I wouldn’t call the books dark, but there are murders and fights, and the author doesn’t prettify or romanticize those things, and this one especially had the characters going through some tough stuff that really made me feel for them. Even the little things, like how Marek gets bad headaches every time the gods use his body, add to the harsh realism.
But there are sweet things too, like the relationship between the men, the friendships that are like family, the way Jono is so protective of his pack and those he cares about and even random werecreatures he’s never met. There was also a new character brought into this one, and I loved how protective both Jono and Patrick were of the teen.
Overall, another book with lovable characters and a gripping plot that easily kept my attention throughout and that I seriously enjoyed!
Fans of Book 1 in Hailey Turner's Soulbound series. Anyone who likes m/m urban fantasy, magic and supernatural creatures, lovable characters, and sweet romantic and friends/family-like relationships.
More Books in the Series:
You can’t bargain with death if you’ve already sold your soul.
Special Agent Patrick Collins has been reassigned by the Supernatural Operations Agency to New York City. Navigating his new relationship with Jonothon de Vere, the werewolf he’s now soulbound to, is nothing compared to dealing with territorial disputes between the vampires and werecreatures who call the five boroughs home. But the delicate treaties that have kept the preternatural world in check are fraying at the edges, and the fallout is spilling into the mundane world.
Manhattan’s club scene is overrun with the vampire drug known as shine and the subways have become a dumping ground for bodies. When the dead are revealed as missing werecreatures, Patrick and Jono find themselves entangled in pack politics twisted by vampire machinations.
Learning to trust each other comes with problems for both of them, and the gods with a stake in Patrick’s soul debt aren’t finished with him yet. Bound by promises they can’t break, Patrick and Jono must find a way to survive a threat that takes no prisoners and is stalking them relentlessly through the city streets.
Old and new betrayals are coming home to roost but the truth—buried in blood—is more poisonous than the lies being spun. Trying to outrun death is a nightmare—one Patrick may never wake up from.
All Souls Near & Nigh is a 104k word m/m urban fantasy with a gay romantic subplot and a HFN ending. It is a direct sequel to A Ferry of Bones & Gold, and reading the first book in the series would be helpful in enjoying this one. Please see the disclaimer at the beginning of the book for content some readers may find triggering.