Author: Aria Peyton
Series: Coal Creek Shifters, Book 1
Heat Level: Scorching
HOLY CRAP! I have to say, my senses and emotions haven’t been shocked into instant reaction when reading a book like they were with this book. From the very first page you are thrown into a brutality that leaves you reeling. The author does warn you, but if you have triggers around consent, then this may not be the read for you.
I am not a big paranormal reader, but I have read more shifter romances this year than I have ever done. I am drawn to the appeal of insta-love, off the charts sexual chemistry and of course the possessiveness of the males in these stories. And man, does Aria deliver these in spades – even if there is a slight twist on it.
For as long as they remember, Vanessa & Rebel have known that they are fated mates. All that was holding them back from sealing the deal was that Vanessa was not yet 18, so they couldn’t mate. But their bond was so strong that they knew nothing could stop them from their destiny. That is until one day, one brutal act lead to the unraveling of everything that they knew to be true. They were betrayed by just about everyone around them and forced, unwillingly, apart.
These two lovers are then lead on a path that they didn’t expect. It is this exact path that leads to Malik entering their life. He is not expected, but sometimes it is the surprises that sets everything in it’s rightful place. Vanessa and Rebel didn’t know their destiny was missing one important piece until circumstances put it directly in their lives. Can these 3 shifters find a middle ground or will everything crumble around them?
I totally enjoyed and fell in love with all 3 of these characters. For a great portion at the beginning of this book, I couldn’t help by feel empathy for Vanessa. She believed that she was alone and that she was nothing special to anyone. I just wanted for her to be able to break out and be her true self. Aria did an awesome job in drawing the reader into her plight. I love how her struggles were not sugar coated, but raw and real. When she was finally set free of her invisible bounds, the minx that emerged was awesome. Her true self was someone to be reckoned with.
And poor Rebel, the torture that he had to live with knowing that his mate was close but he couldn’t be with her. The way that Aria captured his turmoil, heartache and longing was amazing. She made me feel the emotions so that I couldn’t help but feel distressed on Rebel’s behalf. But when things started to work it self out, the level of acceptance Rebel demonstrated made me fall in love with his character even more.
Malik, like Rebel, is also bound by his traditions and not able to do what he feels is right and yearning to do. For as long as possible he denies himself what he craves in Vanessa. His willingness to accept the hand that he has been dealt, on every occasion, made his character endearing. His sense of loyalty, love and acceptance brings out the best in those around him. I also loved his quick wit and ability to easy situations. He provided some great relief throughout the book.
Now, I read a lot and have read so many sex scenes that I was sure that I had read every possible scenario that involves and revolves around sex. Let me tell you, that several times in this book I read something that I had not before. One of them, the author does warn you about before the book begins. I was a bit dubious about it, but it wasn’t so full on that you were turned off. The other used an instrument that I would never have associated with sexual gratification.
Now that is out of the way, man was the sex in this book panty melting, scorching. The sexual attraction between these characters was off the chart, that when they came together it was explosive, raw and passionate. There is no fade to black or use your imagination in this book, it is in your face and dirty. Just what this little lover of smut scenes loves.
Aria has a canny ability to write a book that flows seamlessly from one page to another. She was successful in managing multiple point of views and to capture the individualism of each character when she changed voices. The one thing that I do have to point out is that Aria is an Australia writer and as such uses Aussie slang a fair bit in this book. As an Aussie this didn’t bother me, but she has provided a link to a glossary for those that are not familar.
Overall, this paranormal, shifter romance captured my from the first page to the last. It had all the elements that I enjoy in a book from steaming sexual attractions, to explosive sex, a strong storyline and moments of pure angst. If you are a fan of this genre, you will throughly enjoy this book. I can’t wait to see what comes next from this author. This was a solid debut.
***Warning: This book is intended for readers over the age of 18. It contains scenes of explicit sexual acts and violence***
One day of perfection.
Five minutes to change it all.
All it took was the cruelty of one man, and the actions of their clan, to tear them apart. Fated Mates; destined for each other. Forced into a solitary existence until another enters their lives.
Will his presence reunite them? Or will the past destroy their future?