*I received an ecopy of this book from the author. This has not influenced my review.*
At the time of writing this review, I’ve already read the first two books in this series, and I felt the second was a lot better and fixed pretty much all the problems I had with this one. That being said, this review is for this book, and I still have to be honest, so…
Things I Liked:
– The story/plot was good.
– The violent/darkish aspects were definitely to my liking. I mean, the sex scene was basically half sex, half beating the crap out of each other. Sex and violence all in one scene, what more can you ask for? ;-) (But just to clarify, the sex was consensual. And the violence was practically consensual too since they seemed to be quite enjoying themselves.)
– The rocky nature of Reylan’s and Jorgas’s relationship (I use that term loosely as it wasn’t romance but rather more of a fascination/one-time sexual thing) gave them an interesting dynamic.
– The turmoil in Reylan (the protag) over always wanting to be alone and being an asexual creature (the vampires in this book are impotent) but then suddenly having some sort of interest in Jorgas and being filled with lust and passion by him was also an interesting aspect of the story.
Things I Disliked:
– All of the above things I mentioned had a lot of great potential, but I felt like it wasn’t fully explored to the extent it could’ve been.
– The dialogue often felt unnatural. It was kind of choppy sometimes to the point that I was left feeling confused as to what the characters were talking about. At other times it seemed like Reylan was having a sarcastic battle of wits with every character he came across.
– Reylan was too judgmental and condescending. I like surly, disgruntled, snarky characters, but he came off more mean than funny to me.
– I didn’t like the breaking of the fourth wall. I’m not a huge fan of first person to begin with, and characters talking directly to the reader always takes me out of the story.
Things Neither Good nor Bad but Still Worth Mentioning:
– I’ve noticed a lot of other reviewers mention how unique this portrayal of vampires was, but, as someone who reads a lot of vampire books, I found this to be a fairly typical, classic, sexy version. I don’t mean that as an insult though; every version doesn’t have to be “different.” I enjoy this version just as much, and I definitely like the pleasurable blood-drinking!
Overall, I felt the positives and the negatives were fairly even, but, as I said, there was a lot of potential in the relationship dynamics and inner turmoil, enough that I decided to continue with the next book, which I did enjoy significantly more. So not a bad read, and I’d recommend the series if it sounds like your kinda thing, but this first book didn’t blow me away.
I actually enjoyed this more the second time. I wasn’t quite as confused by the story and dialogue. I think I also appreciated Reylan’s characterization more. He was a judgmental jerk with some very questionable morals, so I can’t say I liked him as a person, but he was well-written and interesting as a character. I’m leaving my original review as is, but I’ve decided to adjust my rating from 3 stars to 3.5 stars.
Anyone who likes m/m paranormal, a fairly classic and sexy version of vampires, complex relationship dynamics, and some darkness.
More Books in the Series:
Book Review: The Beast Without (Arcadia Trust Book 1) by Christian Baines
Book Review: The Orchard of Flesh (Arcadia Trust Book 2) by Christian Baines
Book Review: Sins of the Son (Arcadia Trust Book 3) by Christian Baines
Reylan is everything a Sydney vampire aspires to be: wealthy, handsome and independent, carefully feeding off companions plucked from the gay bars of Oxford Street.
When one of those companions is killed by Jorgas, a hot-headed young werewolf prowling his streets, Reylan reluctantly puts his cherished lifestyle of blood and boys on hold to help a mysterious alliance of supernatural beings track down the beast. It can’t be that hard… not when Jorgas keeps coming after him.
But there’s more to this werewolf than a body count and a bad attitude. As their relationship grows deeper and more twisted, Reylan tastes Jorgas’ blood, reawakening desires the vampire had thought long dead. And what evolves between them may be far more dangerous than some rival predator in the dark…