Read: 24th– 29th December 2015
My Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars
…So what’s this book about?
This is a paranormal romance with more than one storyline running throughout but with a HEA (Happily Ever After) conclusion for our romantic couple. It is the fourth book in Ms Sjoberg’s Grave series but I read it without reading the previous books, confirming that it also works as a standalone novel too.
The official blurb says:
He’s a reaper who works by the book. But a sexy shifter will have him changing the course of fate just to be with her—if a killer doesn’t get to her first…
After four years as a reaper, helping souls cross into the afterlife is a job Adam Javorski has finally gotten used to. But when he arrives at the site of a serial killer’s latest victim, finding a living—not to mention gorgeous—hostage is the last thing he expects. The young woman captivates him in a way no one ever has—so much so, he breaks rule number one by helping her escape…
Marlena Walther doesn’t remember the man who rescued her. But when she sees Adam again, she recognizes him instantly as her soul mate. While the two work together to track down a killer determined to finish what he started, their undeniable attraction draws them even closer. Now Adam is the only one who can protect Marlena from a vengeful murderer—if he’s willing to sacrifice everything for her.
Although this book is not being published until 5th January 2016, I was lucky enough to be given a digital version early from the publisher (Kensington Books) via Netgally.com for free in exchange for a fair review.
…So, what did I like about it?
I haven’t read any of Ms Sjoberg’s books before but found her writing style very easy to read, I appreciated the way the story was told from both Adam and Marlena’s perspectives and I enjoyed the way her tale unfolded. Her world is set here in our time (so it was easy to picture the places where her scenes took place) and is sprinkled with various characters/species with paranormal abilities; reapers, witches, demons, shifters who secretly live among us humans.
I liked the fact that our main male character, Adam, wasn’t a typical alpha male. It was a breath of fresh air; yes he’s had his fair share of romantic liaisons *wink*wink* but he is a decent, good guy; he cares, he’s loyal to his friends, he keeps his head down and just gets on with his job of collecting the souls of the recently departed to move them on to the next phase.
I really enjoy it (begrudgingly) when an author can add depth of character to a story’s bad guy, making me feel sympathy for them and, for me, Ms Sjoberg did it twice in this book, Jeremiah and Adam’s boss, Samuel (ok so Samuel isn’t one of the bad guys per se but it’s made clear in this book that he isn’t liked – by anybody).
My intellect relished the triple storyline running throughout this book; Adam & Marlena’s romance, the threat of a serial killer on the loose, targeting Marlena and Samuel’s predicament. I love puzzles that add pace and depth to a tale and these separate but interwoven threads all added together to keep me absorbed, eagerly turning the pages, keen to find out what would happen next.
…So, ummm, was there anything I disliked about it?
Ok, so it didn’t get 5 stars from me, my regular followers will know that it’s the little niggles that take the edge off for me, so what were they here?
As I said above, when an author adds mysteries to their tales of romance, I feel that it adds a further depth and pace. I liked that this book had two such storylines running through it; the serial killer and Samuel’s predicament.
I felt that the serial killer story arc is billed as the main threat to our romantic couple when reading the blurb but, unfortunately, it didn’t live up to all of my expectations. I loved the build up, his relationship with his accomplice and the fact that our killer was so careful, meticulous and patient, I just felt let down with was how it was concluded. I felt it was rushed to make sure that it was finished by the end of the book and I think that it was due to the development/escalation of the “Samuel’s predicament” storyline that the serial killer thread ran out of time.
I understand from a number of authors that word counts and page numbers is a very high priority and tightly restrictive when publishing a book so I accept (begrudgingly) the compromise made here i.e. no romantic or serial killer cliffhanger ending. 😉
…So, basically what I’m saying is…
I really enjoyed this paranormal romance novel. It has action, romance, twists & turns and some *blushing* smexy scenes, so if that’s the sort of story you like to get lost in then give this one a try – it’s quite a ride.
Just click on any of the links below and read about the book yourself.