27 September 2012

Review: Laura Wright - Eternal Beast

Mass Market Paperback, 355 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by Signet Eclipse
ISBN 0451237722 (ISBN13: 9780451237729)
Language: English
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Title: Eternal Beast Series: Mark of the Vampire #4
Characters: Gray Donohue, Dillon
Received ARC from publisher via NetGalley.

Summary (Goodreads)
A Taste of Blood 
Ever since his abduction by the Eternal Order of Vampires, Gray Donohue has finally found his true calling: vengeance. He will stop at nothing to bring his fellow Impure vampires the freedom they deserve. Now if he could just release his primal need for the beautiful vampire who saved his life—and rules his thoughts and desires…

After nearly killing the senator she was assigned to protect, Dillon is now in mortal danger. The jaguar within her has been unleashed, and she can no longer control it. Sex is the only thing that can tame her shift. And Gray is the only man who can make her surrender to a passion strong enough to overpower her inner beast. But she doesn’t want to surrender—she wants her life back. Because she is determined never to belong to anyone, especially not Gray—the male whom destiny claims is her mate…

Ever since the first novel in the Mark Of The Vampire series, Laura Wright has been able to draw me in to an exciting world populated with a multidimensional cast of characters. From the first moment Dillon and Gray made their entry in to this series they pulled at my heartstrings. Their turmoil, their life force, their attitude, it all appealed to me. Gray and Dillon have their premise told during the first four books and it contained a promise for their own story. While Eternal Beast can be read on its own, as always, I feel the story will be that much richer if you’ve read the previous entries in this series. Not only for the romance but also for the ongoing plot.

Every time, Laura Wright puts two strong minded characters together the developing feelings go with challenges, fierceness, sharp-edged dialogues and full-blown passion. Gray and Dillon gave all that and more! The source of Dillon’s emotional damage is evil to the core and instantly triggers the desire for revenge. I wanted lots of pain for the villains to match their heinous acts! While Dillon was a victim she got out of it stronger, a warrior woman and I liked her barbed personality. She doesn’t allow people to get close to her but some of them eventually just do. Gray is gruff and has a single-minded focus on leading the Impures to freedom. His attraction to Dillon has been palpable from the moment they met. Even though it seems impossible for them to fall in love it is in each encounter the attraction is like a live wire of fierce emotions connecting them together.

The romance development is spectacular. So are the erotic scenes! The whirlwind of feelings, the slowly earning of trust, the chemistry ablaze with sexual energy, it drew me in and kept me anchored in the story. In Eternal Beast they put it all out there for the reader. Layer by layer got peeled away for me to see inside their hearts and I loved the connection it forged with me. Dillon and Gray have some of the hottest dialogues to draw each other out and to acknowledge what is between them. They both have their journey which made me flip the pages as fast as I could, wondering where it would lead to. Difficult characters such as them don’t “do” instant love. Through all the difficulties in both romance as well as the plot a love is forged so strong, so deep, that when they finally get to that high-stake moment of surrender, it becomes a toe-curling and utterly satisfying moment for the reader. Just the way I like it!

The plot was gradual, but this is something I came to expect from Laura Wright. She builds the tension to a height with explosive action scenes, obstacles to overcome and mystery. Sometimes the suspension subsides in favor of the romance but by the last third of the novel I was riveted. As the reader I knew much, how key characters were involved and what their plans were. However, it was a puzzle to solve how things were to play out, keeping me on the edge of my seat. Again, just the way I like it!

By now, in the fifth story, there is a rich cast of characters with the Roman brothers and their beloved wives, the Mutores, the vampire race and its Order. I’m especially liking the Mutores, shapeshifters whom never meant to be but with larger than life personalities. The taunting banter between them and the Roman brothers made me smile. Egos can clash but at the end of the day, they got each other’s back.

In Eternal Beast there is a riveting plot, steeped with a scorching sexual tension between star-crossed lovers who are guaranteed to capture the heart from the start. Another winner in this series!

4.5 stars

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