I'll just come out and say it: I love this series and I loved this book. You all know how I feel about sexy tortured heroes. Kendra Leigh Castle has created an entire race
of them in her maligned and enslaved Cait Sith. They are lowblood vampires, who are also cat-shifters. The highblood Ptolemy vamps kept them as slaves and tortured them for centuries. But in Dark Awakening
, they were finally freed. And now they have a chance to pursue the happiness they've been denied all these years.
Jaden isn't sure what he wants to do with his life now that he is no longer a slave. He's been offered a job as the Captain of the Guard for Lily, the head of a new highblood clan. With Lily and her husband Ty, Jaden has finally found people he cares about and who care for him. But he's restless. And he can't stop thinking about Lyra, the sexy werewolf who heats his blood like no one ever has. After he stops an attack on her and finds a family heirloom she left behind, he journeys to her home to return it. From there, he is drafted to help her train to become Alpha of her pack.
No one believes Lyra can win the Alpha competition. But she is smart and determined. She wants to make her pack stronger... to help them evolve into the modern world. They've got some very old ideas, not the least of which is a rule against interspecies coupling. That makes the passion and attraction she has for Jaden completely off limits... which makes it all the more delectable when they finally give in.
There was nothing I didn't like about this book. It had amazing sexual tension, thanks to the forbidden nature of Jaden and Lyra's relationship. And the payoff was outstanding. Jaden is a great hero. He had a miserable past, but it didn't break him. He's strong and honorable and so very sexy. Lyra is just right for him. She's young and maintains her idealism without ever coming off as childish or annoying. She's also feisty and bold and brave. Together, they make a couple so easy to root for. While much of the book focused on the development of their relationship, there was also a real sense of danger from the Ptolemy vampires who are targeting Jaden and the werewolves who could turn on Jaden or Lyra at any time.
The book builds well on the events of Dark Awakening
, but I think it would still work easily as a standalone. It's got a fantastic love story, great sex and plenty of action. I can't wait to see where Castle takes the series next. Almost 5 stars.*ARC Provided by Grand Central Publishing