It’s suspected a hate gang is beheading vampires and stirring trouble amongst the vampire and human population. War could be on the horizon, but Riley and co are on the case and it’s up to the Directorate now to calm the rising tension and save the potential victims, but something else is dealing death, this time to women in their own beds. Two cases and not a whole lot of time for Riley, as if dealing with her soulmate wasn’t bad enough.
(WARNING: This review contains MAJOR spoilers.)
The second to last book and Riley’s stupidity unfortunately hit a cosmic all-time low. After all she’d went through, from multiple men using her and treating her like trash, you’d think she’d have learned something, but her sexual selfishness surpassed all, more-so than I ever imagined it would. Book eight and I failed to see the character development I wanted – sure, she admitted finally accepting being a Guardian and the enjoyment she gained from it, but what else? At this point, her love for Quinn could almost be considered a joke, and even though I haven’t been previously fond of Quinn, I still think she should treat her so-called “heart” better. I once was very sympathetic toward Riley and her werewolf romping and I had no issue with her polygamy, as I thought it interesting to introduce such raw sexuality and make it vital to the species, but it’s now took a step too far. Riley isn’t a strong woman, she’s unbelievably weak and it cost the life of another character.
Kye Murphy was a horrible character and indeed books should have horrible characters, but what they shouldn’t have is an idiot of a heroine bending to his every whim and putting everyone she cares for at risk, no matter how “sexy” he might be. I get that he was her soulmate and that bond is powerful, but HE SHOT HER TWIN, even outright threatened her vampire lover and she did nothing but have reoccurring sex with him. The oncoming pain was her own fault and perhaps she should’ve perished in the end, it certainly would’ve been quite an end to the series, but instead there’s one more instalment to get through, probably full of the same sort of whining. I know I sound very bitter, but that’s because I am. I hoped the series would go in a different direction entirely.
The plot itself didn’t interest me either, as if felt purely forced for the benefit of the messed up relationship. Riley allowed her decisions to be swayed by Kye’s presence more than once and the mystery elements I’d come to expect were just plain dull. It was also extremely obvious that both cases were connected as it’s been that way in previous books, so it’s really not a shock anymore. The rape was also not a surprise, as it’s been, I daresay, overdone and glossed over like it’s a normal thing. I don’t care how much sex is celebrated by the race, rape should have an emotional impact and be taken seriously, but apparently everyone, Riley herself included, just immediately forgets about it.
What little I actually enjoyed was enough for me to rate it an additional star, otherwise it would’ve been a one, no question. Dia and Risa turned out to be the shining duo amongst all the rubbish and I’m very much looking forward to getting around to Arthur’s Dark Angels series, with Risa as the leading lady. Other characters I favoured; Sal, Cole and Jack (yes, I once didn’t like him all that much, but he grew on me). I’ve never been fond of any of Riley’s bed partners, but Kade was strictly in the grey area for me, but that didn’t mean I wanted him to die either. He had several wives and children at home; a family ruined because of a stupid girl.
In conclusion: I really need to finish this series already and move on to what I hope will be better urban fantasy. Riley’s horrifically bad decisions just astound me – definitely one of the weaker additions in this series.
© Red Lace 2015