When I read the first book in this series, I thought it was just an okay read because of how I felt about the heroine and a small issue with the epilogue. That being said, I wanted to continue on because I saw potential for it to be better as it went. I am so glad that I did continue with the series. I found this book much better than the first for several reasons. The main characters and their situation grabbed me from the get-go and the building story arc of the internal civil war and the importance of the strange prophecy just made this one have a much stronger plot with characters I who had my sympathy and respect.
Declan Collins or ‘Saint’ as he is nicknamed by fellow vampires is a tortured hero. Something happened in his past that caused him to be judged and then exiled by his fellow vamps for many years after which he was never the same. Declan chooses to only drink from and be with human females and remains aloof for the most part from his own kind. But because Saint is the next Son of Navarus- select group chosen by the elders of the race to protect them in particular and the race as a whole- to be targeted for the Archons- the judicial sect of vampires meant to police things, but now on a huge power trip- he is forced to accept the help of the last person he wants to see. Saint has been secreted into the protective care of Solenne a female vampire who once betrayed him.
Solenne knows that offering to hide him and care for Saint’s needs will be one of the hardest things she has ever done because she knows that she had a part in making him the way he is. And it goes the way she imagined, he doesn’t make it easy with actions and words that cause her much pain. Solenne also has the arduous task of continuing her efforts to work directly with an Archon’s office and make herself available to him all in an effort to keep abreast with the Archon’s plans. She learns enough to know that the Archon is actively seeking ways to destroy Saint. Solenne walks a fine line to gain the knowledge needed by the Sons without getting caught all the while trying hard to earn Saint’s trust and regard again.
As I noted before, this was a much stronger plot that was tighter, more passionate and more suspenseful. It gives you the situation in the present and also dips back into the past for the explanation. It was a well-written story of love and betrayal. The truth in the past isn’t revealed until near the end and I was vested to discover what exactly did happen to cause such misery and trouble.
The characters were very well written and had depth and many layers to them. The tortured hero and hurting heroine were done just right. Solenne is no wilting flower just waiting for Saint to snap out of his pain. She’s proactive and strong. Saint is hurting and he is spiteful, but he is not without honor. He hits rock bottom in this story when he is confronted with who he has become- not even the vampires he has sired appear to want anything to do with him and the other Sons question why he is even included in their group, but he is tenacious and gets his feet under him eventually. Because of the hatred and misunderstanding, naturally the romance line was slow to build, but when it got there- wow, what passion! It all felt natural and authentic between Saint and Solenne.
There are scenes with the other Sons and Sasa to help continue the over all story arc and set things up for the next story in the series. I’m eager to see which Son’s story is next.
Overall, this was a powerful reading experience that I can recommend for the PNR lovers out there.