I was such a fan of the Dark Protectors series that when I learned about this spinoff, it was the squee heard ’round the world. This book features characters from the same world and cameo appearances from some old favorites. It felt familiar in a lot of ways and I enjoyed it. But it was missing the fantastic series arc that knocked the Dark Protectors out of the park –and I felt the lack.
The hero is Kellach, one of the Enforcers who protect the Coven Nine witches. He and his brothers are undercover with a biker gang in Seattle, working to help uncover a deadly threat to the witches. You may remember from the earlier books that there is a special substance which is lethal to witches. Now someone has manipulated it into a drug and is siphoning it into the human population. Kell knows that the Titans of Fire crew is pushing the product. He joins the gang to uncover who the supplier is.
Alexandra is a cop, bound and determined to get drugs off the street, especially the new Apollo drug that seems to incinerate people from the inside out. It’s during her investigation that her path crosses with Kell. She knows in her head that he’s a bad choice, but her body has other ideas. She gives in and the attraction only grows stronger, until she is in so deep, she can’t walk away.
One of my few gripes about the Dark Protectors was that the heroes always had to dominate the heroines. Kell is actually a little more evolved than some of his peers. Yes, he is alpha and can be commanding, but it’s clear he respects Lexi and her strengths as a cop. Lexi, meanwhile, is a tough cookie, though at times, she tried to be too tough. Even when faced with the otherworldly strength of her enemies and her fragility as a human, she would go in with guns blazing. Heroic yes, but also… not entirely smart. And while to some extent, her bravado was a tool she used to protect herself, it got a little annoying at times.
The romance was sexy and steamy, but not deeply emotional. There is plenty of action, though, that keeps the story moving –and interesting secondary characters that I’m sure will get books of their own.
The Apollo issue isn’t entirely solved here, though the book does have resolution. It’s just that a bad guy with a grudge and a weapon doesn’t have the same epic feel as the Kurjans and demons building towards war with the good guys of the Realm. And it’s missing the Janie factor; an element that progresses book to book, until it culminates in its own story of awesomeness. I know I am asking for a lot, but Rebecca Zanetti has spoiled me with what I know she can do.
Bottom line, though: did I like it? Yes. Will I keep reading? Of course, I will.
*ARC provided by publisher
Click to purchase: Amazon
by Rebecca Zanetti
Release Date: June 23, 2015
Publisher: Lyrical Press