Note: this book is not a standalone nor a good starting point in the series, as there is a convoluted, confusing overall story arc that has spanned seNote: this book is not a standalone nor a good starting point in the series, as there is a convoluted, confusing overall story arc that has spanned several books. The opening prologue flashback helped me recall key parts of the ongoing story, but it’s not enough for a newcomer to the series. Jumping into the mix…
Cat was born a human, but was genetically altered into a Breed in an effort to save her from a childhood illness. For years she posed as Claire Martinez, hiding from the Genetic Council and the Breed who swore to kill her. Claire’s Native American spirit and family kept Cat safe until Claire’s father attacked her, revealing he is part of the Council. Now she has exposed herself as Cat, a Bengal Breed.
Many years ago, Gideon aka Graeme Parker, saved a little girl he called his own. Even though he swore to kill Cat for saving him when she transfused some of her blood into him all those years ago, Graeme did it to protect her from the mating heat. Now that Cat is a grown woman, Graeme knows it is time to claim what is his.
CONFUSED? Yes… this story has been confusing from the start. The multiple personas and vague descriptions of transferring spirits and souls into other bodies has always bothered me a bit. However, as crazy as the storyline has been, I feel that the author did a better than usual job detailing what happened to Cat and others all those years ago over the course of Bengal’s Quest. I finally feel like all of the puzzle pieces have been locked into place and the bigger picture makes some sense.
Although the story was a bit more streamlined, I found I just didn’t care about the romance between Graeme/Gideon and Cat. I kept waiting for that moment when I’d feel something and cheer for the couple, but it never really came. I liked that Cat was strong-willed and appreciated her efforts to reach both Gideon the “monster” and Graeme the alpha. However, I was disappointed with Gideon. After watching his character and actions from the periphery for multiple books, I expected more than what was delivered. And as a mated pair, their romance was mediocre, while the infamous Breed sex scenes were missing their typical edginess.
Additionally, I found myself annoyed with the side characters and potential future storylines, especially one involving Cat’s friend, Khi. This side plot, as well as the introduction of additional Breeds, and what I believe happened to Claire’s spirit are each stories I honestly don’t want to read. I feel let down that Ms. Leigh continues to expand her world rather than write stories around long-standing characters. Finally, the story was riddled with repetitive dialogue and inner-monologing, and could have benefitted from additional editing.
In the end, while I appreciated that Bengal’s Quest was less convoluted and easier to follow that many of the preceding novels, I found that I really didn’t care about the characters any more. I compare the Breeds series to creating a pizza crust from dough: each toss in the air (another book) stretches the overall story further and further away from its center, until it stretches too far and just falls apart. The series, and this story in particular, seems to have lost its shiny goodness and that little something that kept me coming back for more in spite of any flaws or issues. It’s sad to say, but I may have finally OD'd on the Breeds “crack” and can move on. *sniffle*
My Rating: C- Originally posted at That's What I'm Talking About Review copy provided by publisher ...more
Rating: B Liked It - Recommend Originally posted at That's What I'm Talking About Review copy provided by publisher
Yes... Rule Breaker is the twenty-ninRating: B Liked It - Recommend Originally posted at That's What I'm Talking About Review copy provided by publisher
Yes... Rule Breaker is the twenty-ninth title in Lora Leigh’s Breed Series (this includes all of the novellas). I know that sometimes I can’t believe I’ve stuck around with this series for this long. But I just can’t quit it. It’s my crack. And while there have been some not as great titles in recent history, I am happy to report that Rule Breaker is an exciting and passionate story - better than the last few.
Nine years ago, Gypsy Rum McQuade was kidnapped by council Coyote Breeds and forced to watch her big brother murdered. If not for Jonas and his Breed enforcers, she would have been raped and killed as well. Since that time, Gypsy has blamed herself for Mark’s death, and has aligned herself with a secretive Navajo group, collecting intel in hopes of redeeming herself.
Rule Breaker is one of Jonas’s top enforcers and is set to take over as Investigative Commander of the Bureau of Breed Affairs and head the offices in New Mexico. Jonas needs Rule to find an informant (for the Unknown, a group of six Navajo of legend), while Gypsy, along with her sister Kandy, are suspects. Rule wants Gypsy with a fierceness nearing obsession, but he is convinced she is not his mate because he is not experiencing the signs. Meanwhile, Jonas is convinced the Unknown exist and are protecting the people and answers he needs to save his daughter, Amber.
Rule Breaker is a MUST read for fans of the Breeds series; however it is a climatic story and one really needs to be up-to-date with the current over-arcing storyline before picking up this book. The story picks up with Jonas trying to find a way to save his adopted daughter, Amber. He believes the answers are with a group of individuals who escaped Breed Labs long ago. The search for these individuals has been the focus of the storyline since Jonas’ book. Finally, the pieces all fall into place, and readers are rewarded with some answers and long-awaited action.
Rule and Gypsy have a passionate and heart-felt romance. While their courtship shares similarities and repeating-themes from earlier couples, Ms. Leigh created enough differences that I was never bored with the pair. I felt that their problems were uniquely their own, and the heartache was poignantly real. While Rule doesn’t believe Gypsy is his mate, it is obscenely obvious to everyone else. The way he handles the moment when he begins to realize Gypsy is his mate was utterly fantastic for the fact that it was so heartbreaking. And while other stories have left me wondering why a Breed doesn’t immediately experience the mating hormone, Rule Breaker, gives readers a unique and interesting explanation for his situation. Overall, the pair’s interactions, dialogue, and actions were refreshingly straight forward, making for an engrossing read.
This is a longish story, and while much of the second half is filled with hot smex scenes, there is a LOT going on. The story puts to rest (I think) the Amber storyline, but I believe there is still much that can/may occur at the Navajo Nation. However, that could all change with the next story. Unfortunately, there were parts of the story where I was completely confused as to who knew what and who did what. I felt that during these moments, the writing was a bit too vague for my liking. However, unlike with previous books, I was able to get past the confusion because the overall story was exciting.
In the end, Rule Breaker is a pretty good story filled with intense emotional interactions. Whether between Rule and Gypsy, their own self-reflection, or Gypsy and her family, the conflict felt tight and sincere. I am pleased that the story made significant headway in one of the extended story arcs, but it was a bit long and at times cryptic and vague. The sex scenes were on par with those in the past books, but honestly, they seemed to get a bit lengthy and repetitive for me. However, the overall romance and storyline were entertaining and satisfying for this longtime fan....more
The Devil's Due by Lora Leigh (Breeds series) Although the opening prologue was confusing, these early events do not have a big impact on the entire novella (although for readers of the series, it will probably come into play down the road). The entire story flows smoothly after the group move to the US and settle in.
Katie and Devil are SO HOT together! This is the Breeds I’ve been missing in the last few titles. The pair are overcome by the Breed’s mating hormone - and since both are Breeds, they both exhibit the signs, including insatiable lust and desire. What makes the story fun is that Devil realizes immediately that the mating hormone is being produced, even though he had thought it was just rumor prior to his own experiences. And poor Katie--she has no clue.
Overall, The Devil’s Due is a hot and sweet story of two breeds coming together. They both enjoy their mating heat and don't fight the coupling--in fact they want it, which is a refreshing change from most Breed books. There is little conflict within this story, but hints of a war brewing in the larger story arc. Things were left open ended with respect to the bigger picture.
The Curse of the Black Swan by Alyssa Day (League of the Black Swan prequel) The story is sweet and fun. I adore both Sean and Brynn - two lonely people who come to realize that they can be themselves and be accepted. The story follows their courtship while Sean attempts to solve the mystery as to who is starting magically enhanced fires.
Without spoiling the story, my only negative is that I wish we'd been told how “things” transpired at the end to come to the conclusion it did. The Curse of the Black Swan is a wonderful little story, happy and sweet. I adored both the romance and mystery. Although it ties into the overall mythology of Ms. Day’s new series, it can be enjoyed as a stand alone.
Salvage by Meljean Brook (Iron Seas) I just love Ms. Brook’s world. Salvage is yet another marvelous stand alone story in her amazing Iron Seas series. Thom and Georgiana are wonderful characters, both strong as individuals, but not so much as a married pair. The reader learns so much of their situation through their individual POVs. Thom's POV is so sad. He loves and craves Georgiana; he just never figured out how to give her what she needed. And Georgiana thought she was so clear in her coversations with Thom, but it’s not until the pair are held in captivity do they really talk it all out.
Salvage reads with the details and descriptions usually found only in a full-length novel. The action is fairly intense and exciting; the plot is engrossing. All of the characters are well-developed and fun. It is a wonderful story about second chances. Being kidnapped and threatened with death allows Thom and Georgiana to share their feelings and passion uninhibited.
Ecstasy Under the Moon by Lucy Monroe (Children of the Moon) Ecstasy Under the Moon is the only title in the anthology that is a new-to-me author and series. Thankfully, Ms. Monroe includes a detailed prologue; however, even with the details, I was lost for a while.
Ecstasy Under the Moon has a traditional fantasy feel, more so than a paranormal romance. The world-building is extremely complex and intense. I enjoy fantasies, so this did not bother me; however, if you are looking for more of a light-hearted PNR, this one may not be for you. The highland/Scottish clan setting also gave it a historical feel.
I liked the easy-going nature and flow of the story after I became grounded in the world. Bryant is a noble man/wolf, and I admire what he is trying to accomplish with his Faol brethren. I enjoyed the stories of his history, which piqued my interest and left me wanting to know more. The story had a strong message of good over bad and “never judge a book by its cover.” It never got deep, but had a solid message.
There was also a bit of humor - subtle, but fun.
Overall, Ecstasy Under the Moon was enjoyable. It was my first introduction to Ms. Monroe's series. Even though it is obvious that there is much to Ms. Monroe's world, and possibly several other books, I was able to enjoy this as a stand alone.
In conclusion, Enthralled is an extremely enjoyable anthology, especially for those that read some or all of the series represented. ...more
My Rating: 3 stars: Liked it, but I had some issues - recommend(B)
“Hmmm... What are my thoughts on this book?” That is what I wondered as I finished tMy Rating: 3 stars: Liked it, but I had some issues - recommend (B)
“Hmmm... What are my thoughts on this book?” That is what I wondered as I finished the 27th Breed story. I have mixed feelings, but that is probably more a reflection of the direction of the series and a combination of reading so many of these books, rather than Stygian’s Honor as a stand alone body of work. As I've said countless times before, Breeds is my guilty pleasure. But lately the books have left me a bit unsatisfied, and Stygian’s Honor is no exception. My biggest complaint is that the books feel very formulaic. Although the set up and situations are unique to each story, there are common denominators that are frankly becoming tiresome for me: the alpha breed male determined to "break" his female, the human female mate who feels mating a breed will ruin her life, Jonas being an ass (and he reaches a whole new level in this book!). In addition, the once erotic sex scenes have become a series of words and phrases repeated time and time again. And at times, the point-of-view changes from one character to another without any clear indicators, which can make the story difficult to follow.
With that said, there are some things I liked in this book. First, I really enjoyed several of the conversations between Stygian and Liza. Many were open and direct, which was a refreshing change from other pairings. She is much more knowledgable about the Breeds and their secrets than other heroines in past stories, and she was willing to let Stygian know where he stands. In addition, Stygian knows from the start that Liza is his mate and embraces this fact. He doesn't want to lie to his mate and while he doesn't, he is still careful to not reveal too much.
Second, I was very happy to see Cassie back in action. Although her role is small, it was exciting. We saw more of her special "abilities" front and center. In addition, we witnessed a few more clues as to what may be coming. I'm still trying to figure out who she will mate with one day... I have my suspicions.
Another plus is Coyote Breed, Dog. I enjoy his sarcasm and wit. His character is tough to read, and I like trying to figure him out. There is one short scene near the end of the book that has me reeling and wondering what Dog is up to.
As for the overall story arc, we last left off with Jonas et. al. searching for two human females and two Breed males that were part of the Genetic Council's testing of the Breed Mating hormone program. Jonas believes these four carry the answers to cure his young daughter from the effect of the drugs former Council member Brandenmore used on her. The team is set up on Navajo land and are bullying their way to find answers. In Stygian’s Honor we do get some of these answers, but not many. I don't feel like the Breeds are any closer to solving the mysteries of the Brandenmore drug.
I liked Liza for the most part. She is strong and fiercely independent. I also appreciate that Stygian makes a huge and successful effort to allow her to remain that way. However I felt that her character was too "wishy-washy,” with radical emotional shifts and apparent changes in beliefs when it comes to her family and the Breeds. One minute she wants out from the Breeds, the next she's happy. She goes on about how she loves and trusts her father, but then rails on him. It was inconsistent behavior that frustrated me.
Another thing I'm not happy about is that Liza is tied into a covert group known as the Navajo Underground ... This team of friends plays a large roll in her life, and we see a lot of them in the beginning of the book. However, once Liza falls under Breed protection, we hear nothing of this group again. It felt off and gave no closure.
Even though the scale seems to weigh heavy on the negative side in my review, the book was still enjoyable. There is a reason these books are addictive and I am not ready to give up the habit just yet. ...more
My Rating: 3 stars: Liked it, but I had some issues - recommend(B) Full Review at http://twimom227.com
The story was a bit tough to follow at first - alMy Rating: 3 stars: Liked it, but I had some issues - recommend (B) Full Review at http://twimom227.com
The story was a bit tough to follow at first - all these names tossed at the reader without much detail to back up the action. All I could figure out for the first few chapters is that the rouge Breed, Gideon, was chasing after the same people Diane was looking for. I’d say it wasn’t until I was about a third of the way through the book until I started piecing together who Gideon and Diane were searching for and how they all fit into the larger picture.
What blew me away with this book was the intense an emotionally raw dialogue between Lawe and Diane. She poured our her heart and soul to him over and over. Diane is a strong woman who refuses to be treated with kid gloves. She wants Lawe to stop protecting her and fight along side of her. She is full of fervor and refuses to give up her fight. Her internal struggles were passionate as she acknowledged her physical and emotional desire to be Lawe’s mate, which felt in direct contrast to her drive to fight and be free. Diane’s heartfelt pain drew me in and had me hoping for Lawe to change as well. However, at around the 70% mark (I read on Kindle), I noted that Diane’s honest and heart-wrenching dialogue was getting to be a bit repetitive. And then she started coming off as whiny. I became disinterested in her feelings and just wanted the story to progress.
And the ending... I was not happy. For a book that started out so strong, the ending was pretty weak. There was no conclusion in the story for the hunt for the missing lab victims - not even a satisfying lead. I understand the need to have a strong story arc in a multi-book series, however in this case, the entire book was about the hunt and it lead nowhere.
Lawe’s Justice was probably a 4.5 star story for about two-thirds of the book, and then it went downhill for me. Diane was a breath of fresh air, and I adored the conflicts she and Lawe dealt with. However, their friction grew tiresome and the story just wasn’t that strong in the end. ...more
RATING AND REVIEW FOR "Primal Kiss" BY LORA LEIGH ONLY:
The pace of this story is quick. There are few bumps in the road and both Kita and Creed readilRATING AND REVIEW FOR "Primal Kiss" BY LORA LEIGH ONLY:
The pace of this story is quick. There are few bumps in the road and both Kita and Creed readily accept their lot as mates including all of the complications that come with the Breed mating hormone. The primary focus of the story is the romance between Kita and Creed, which is erotic and sensual. The story climaxes with a showdown between the Breeds and Brandenmore, which was a bit sketchy with details and lacked emotional tension - but you can’t expect everything to be perfect in a novella-length story.
All-in-all another pleasurable read in The Breed Series. LOVE IT!! A must read for fans and a fun introduction for those that have missed out on this amazingly fun series....more
**spoiler alert** Chronologically, this story takes place after Styx’s Storm and the recent novella “Primal Kiss.” The story focuses on Breed Enforcer**spoiler alert** Chronologically, this story takes place after Styx’s Storm and the recent novella “Primal Kiss.” The story focuses on Breed Enforcer, Navarro Blaine and human Mica Toler. Mica grew up among the Breeds and is best friends with one of the Breed protected children, Cassie Sinclair. Mica is now an adult, but has dreamed of and loved Navarro since she was 16. She guarded her emotions from him for years, but when the evil Phillip Brandenmore threatens her life, Mica and Navarro are thrown together in a dangerous fight for survival.
NOTE: due to some technical issues with the book, I have described a scene that may be slightly spoilerish. In addition, I have mentioned some things about the conclusion of the book that are spoilers.
I’m going to say right up front that this book was a bit of a let down for me. It still had the erotic sex scenes and the fast-paced action, but for me, it lacked the “punch” of many of her other Breed stories. Not only that, but the book is actually missing an pivotal scene that lead to some confusion while I was reading it! ... right about page 299, at a critical moment in the book, we have Mica and Navarro leaving the labs all mad at each other and jump to the bed, post sex, spilling out the emotions we’ve been waiting for the entire story. Oh, and the bad guy happens to be there as well. It was a total WTF?! moment. After doing some research on both the author’s and publisher’s websites, the only thing I could find out about this “error” is that it was a mistake, the author plans to put the scene up on her website, and the books will be reprinted soon. (The information HERE http://pub4.bravenet.com/forum/static... is located on Ms. Leigh’s FORUM) I called my local Barnes & Noble store, which knew nothing about the problem, but said that they would exchange my book for me when the new ones are available.
Anyhow, back to the review... The overall story was okay, and I doubt that the missing scenes will solve the things I didn’t care for in the book. What I did like: the mating heat and signs have taken an interesting twist and I like how it was directly tied to emotions - in the past we were lead to believe the heat happens, but will only match up “perfect pairs,” and the emotions of either partner didn’t seem to have an impact. Not so with Navarro and Mica. It was a nice adjustment to this little-known phenomenon. I also enjoyed seeing more of the mysterious Cassie and getting a better idea of how Eli (the feline doctor) is doing after being near death and betrayed by those close to her.
What I didn’t really care for: first of all... the story seemed very repetitive to me. I got tired of reading about Mica’s juices flooding her pussy, that Navarro was not experiencing the mating heat, that the Breeds have to hide the mating phenomenon, and that although Merinus was over 40 years old, she still looked so young, etc. etc. Also, I felt that Mica’s reactions to events surround the mating heat were overly conflicted and hyper-emotional. She admitted that she’d been in love with Navarro since she was 16, yet she was so freaked out for a while, even bordering on hateful feelings. I understand that she was afraid of getting her heart broken, but it just seemed over the top to me.
Finally, the ending of the story was a disappointment. Unless the missing scene can pull together several plot line developments, I feel that the conclusion of the story was lackluster. There was build up of a spy in Sanctuary (yes, another spy... go figure!), but it was never more than a passing mention in the end. Mica was the focus of Brandenmore’s evil plans, yet we never really found out what he was up to, and he was just brushed under the rug in the end.
I am giving this book a 3 for its rating. I love the Breeds, and this book did have some wonderful scenes that held an emotional impact. I felt it fell short in the end, but is still a must read for fans of the series. If you are new to the series - definitely do NOT start here. It’s not the best example of how wonderful this series truly is.
3 stars: Liked it, but I had some issues - recommend (B) (recommend for fans of the series, but not for new comers to the series) ...more
**spoiler alert** Lora Leigh’s Breeds Series is my guilty pleasure. I admit it. I really enjoy the books. Yes, they tend to follow the same basic stor**spoiler alert** Lora Leigh’s Breeds Series is my guilty pleasure. I admit it. I really enjoy the books. Yes, they tend to follow the same basic storyline. Yes, the males are bit hard-headed and dominate/possessive. Yes... I love it! And this story is no different.
Spoiler Alert (this contains information learned in previous Breed books and may be a spoiler if you haven’t read them)
Picking up about 6 weeks after the end of Lion’s Heat, we find out there there may be information out there to help Breed Director, Jonas Wyatt, figure out what was done to his infant daughter. That information is hidden by Storme Montague, who’s father and brother were Council scientists that helped create the Breed race. She was raised in a Breed laboratory setting and witnessed a rouge Breed murder her brother and father. Storme has been on the run for ten years and doesn’t trust ANYONE. The Breeds have followed Storme from afar, always protecting her without her knowledge, hoping she would come to them one day and share the secrets that her father and brother left with her. Unfortunately, time has run out and the Breeds send out Wolf Breed Styx to bring in Storme.
What I did enjoy (besides the passionate and very hot romance) was that Storme got the chance to fall in love with Styx before the mating took hold. We didn’t learn much about the overall story arc and conflict of Breed verses Council, and there were more unanswered or open questions. However, I enjoyed the focus on Storme and Styx. The romance was extremely hot and I felt more of a connection with this couple than I did in the previous couple of stories.
This is a must read for Breed fans. However, if you haven’t been following the series, I don’t know if this book would be well received. As I wrote in my review of Lion’s Heat, you can start with Megan’s Mark and get enough background and story to make the series worthwhile. But if you haven’t followed the series, you really should!
My Rating: 4 stars: Really enjoyed - strongly recommend (A-)
I’ve been waiting for this book for a long time now. I started reading this series with the first book published by Berkley - Megan’s Mark. I don’t knI’ve been waiting for this book for a long time now. I started reading this series with the first book published by Berkley - Megan’s Mark. I don’t know about the books prior to that one, but since that point, Jonas has been a manipulating leader of the Breeds. It was great to see him buckle and just plain “lose it” in this book.
Jonas has always controlled his own life and the lives of countless Breeds around him. He continues to try and stay in control even though he is forced to hire his own mate as a personal assistant. She is just the woman to work for Jonas - she can stand up to him and put him in his place. But she is not aware that she is Jonas’s destined mate. I enjoyed reading how Jonas had to continually fight the urge to take his mate. It warmed my heart that Jonas put Rachel and her child above his own health and needs so that Rachel would be comfortable and find love in her own way. This is VERY different than the prior Breeds’ books.
As always with Ms. Leigh’s books, the sex is hot and passionate. The sex scenes go on for pages and can be graphic at times. But either I am getting used to them or these sex scenes were a bit tame compared to ones in the earlier books.
The overall Breeds story arc took some interesting twists. I think my favorite parts in this book were those that carried on the mythology of the Breeds and their battle for peace and safety. In addition, Ms. Leigh tossed in some new curveballs and unanswered questions. These unresolved issues will bring me back to the next story - regardless of who the main couple will be. On the negative side: I did notice that there were several repetitive phases and terms used throughout the book. I don’t know if it’s lazy writing or bad editing, but it was a bit annoying to me. I found that I started skimming longer sections that just kind of repeated an earlier section of the book.
Overall, Lion’s Heat is a must read for Breeds fans. If you are new to the series I highly recommend NOT starting with this book. You will lose a lot of important background story. If you can find the earliest books, then start at the beginning. If not, you can start at Megan’s Mark like I did. (See note at beginning of post regarding reading order.)
The stories were mostly good. I really enjoyed Lora Leigh's Breed story and Meljean Brook's Guardian story... I would give both of them 4 stars. The oThe stories were mostly good. I really enjoyed Lora Leigh's Breed story and Meljean Brook's Guardian story... I would give both of them 4 stars. The other two stories were 2-1/2 to 3 stars....more