When Empath Cara and her 4 yr old psychic daughter suddenly get kidnapped early one morning little does she realise but she'll be married and mated wi..Show More »thin 24 hours..... to a handsome, sexy, overbearing, dictatorial, arrogant Alpha Vampire called Talen who says he's protecting her and her daughter Janie from imminent and great danger. There's instant chemistry and lust between them but Scientist and single Mom Cara's no pushover and so she tries to fight him and his sexy pull by always planning to run away (which does get a little annoying at times but hey I've never been kidnapped by a Vampire!). So right from the start she's suddenly plunged into a paranormal world where Vampires, Witches, Shapeshifters and Faires exist..... and their lives will never be the same again.
Cara and Janie are 'gifted' and they are very much wanted by more than just Talen as an evil force of Vampires called the Kurjans also wants her and Janie so it's a race against time to escape the threat and then escape him too. Talen's combat skills are lethal but it's going to take patience, understanding and loving care to win over his stubborn soulmate who he has been waiting 300 years for. However, as the villains draw nearer and they devise some frightening life altering drugs and start kidnapping, the emphasis of the story becomes one of survival rather than seduction.
If you can get over the instant attraction, lust and sex (as I so easily did) then there's a really exciting ongoing story of five Royal Vampire brothers who need to claim and protect their gifted mates from the evil Vampires. And, in the process, they have to fight and win over their unwilling mates whilst keeping them from the clutches of their deadly enemy whose Oracle has foretold a Prophecy, a Prophecy that's going to shake and change the world.
There's thrills, chills, sexy times, romance, passion, twists, nail-biting tense situations, snappy dialogue and a love story that has a HEA ending but the War is about to begin. Multiple POV's but mainly from the H/H's and a narrator who did all the many character's voices so well you could easily distinguish who was talking whether it was..... a 4 yr old girl, an Alpha Vampire, a feisty Heroine, an evil sulphur smelling Vampire or all the other interesting secondary characters.
Worth a credit? Yes it was a very enjoyable, addictive and creditworthy start to a new paranormal series where Alpha Vamps want to possess, protect, impregnate and cherish their mates but unfortunately so do the evil Kurjans and it seems it's going to be a bitter fight to the death involving other paranormals. Book 1 in the Dark Protectors series...... the feisty vs. the dominant and good vs. evil makes for an entertaining listen and a good start to a brand new series.
I listened to the first book in this series, Fated, a little over a month ago. While I enjoyed it, I felt that the series had much more potential that..Show More » first book gave us. Claimed really brought that potential out and was much more what I would’ve expected from Rebecca Zanetti. There is much less world-building, so she was able to focus much more on the characters, which is my favorite part of any story. Claimed continued to build on many of the plot points that Fated originally built.
Here, we have Emma, the sister of the heroine of the first book, she has been taken by the evil Kurjans. Dage, the king of the Realm and the vampires knows that Emma is his fated mate and is going after her to get her back from the Kurjans. These two have dreamed about each other for many years, Dage for many more, since he is centuries old. Emma is also a psychic and sees the future in her dreams. She has seen her death and doesn’t want to tie herself to Dage for this exact reason.
Dage is a king and has been since he was very young and the Kurjans killed his parents. He isn’t used to other people not following his orders. Emma has no intentions of following his orders. She has been caring for Cara and then Janie for several years, she isn’t used to taking orders. You can see where this will go in this story.
As per usual for me, it is the side character that really make a story for me. Not only do we continue to the story of the main characters of the first book, but we also have characters like the shifter Katie, the prophet Lily, the witch Moira, all the Kayrs brothers and best of all little Janie and her mysterious friend Zane.
While this is a paranormal romance series, it has the larger overall story arc that means you really need to read the series from the beginning to understand everything that is going on in the story. I tend to enjoy these types of PNR series more. I love that that larger story arc that keeps the reader interested outside of just the romance of the two main characters. This is one of those types of PNR series.
Narration Once again, Karen White knocks this out of the park. I’ve come to always expect an exceptional narration when I see that she is the narrator. She brings great emotion and character voice to the books. Her pace and tone are always where I like to see them. For this book, I would like to call out the accent she uses for the Irish witch Moira. I really enjoyed that Irish/Gaelic accent. She also does a really good job with four-year-old Janie. I really feel her youth when she speaks.
I like to thank Audible Studios for providing me with a copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
AudioBook Review: Stars: Overall 4 Narration 5 Story 4
Oh I think I love Max! Russian by birth, he is completely sure that his heart does..Show More » not exist. That is until Dage assigns him to watch over and protect Janie. In seconds, the little girl shared a secret, asked to be his friend, and made the singularly BEST Reveal EVER. While all of the vampires in this story have eyes that glow with a metallic shine, only Max has shiny and sparkly PINK eyes. It’s a wonderful juxtaposition for the big, bad, roughhewn vampire, and only adds to the little boy who wants to be loved beneath the shell.
When he has to hunt down another innocent caught in the conflict between Kurjans and the Realm, we meet Sarah. Sarah has been confined in a mental institution and drugged to keep her ‘revelations’ at bay. Sarah is touch sensitive: a touch of an object gives her visions and history of that object. Her brother (a disgusting POS) has committed her, and will go to great lengths and pair with anyone to keep her under his control.
Glimpses of Max have appeared throughout the story, he’s really become a favorite character, and this gives us more of his own story, full of background and insecurities from his rough childhood and his loyalty to Dage and the Realm. Sarah, as an ‘enhanced’ human, is right at the center of the Kurjan “to get” list, and they soon find they have to go through Max to get there.
As the story line is all about fated mates, and Max, whether or not he wants it, has found his in Sarah. A kick ass, smart mouthed heroine who isn’t afraid of this oversized killer. Fast paced dialogue, plenty of action and the heat that fairly sizzles the speakers, Zanetti packed every element of a full-length story into this novella without missing a trick. I would have loved more, but that is common with stories I enjoy.
Narration is again provided by Karen White and again she captures the emotional tones and distinctive elements that gives each character a unique sound that is wholly theirs. It is difficult to NOT enjoy this couple, and their rapid fire dialogue is perfectly presented, never missing a beat. Emotion, humor, sarcasm and even fear clearly present in tone and delivery: you just KNOW what the characters feel, and the narration just brings those elements to the forefront.
A wonderful installment in the series, perfect for fans of paranormal romance with a bit of oomph.
I received an AudioBook copy of the title from Audible Communications for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
AudioBook Review: Overall Stars 5 Narration 5 Story 5
With Dage and Talen finding their mates in Emma and Cara, the one brother who has bee..Show More »n mated (but separated) for a century from his lady love is Connlan. A one-night stand that went horribly pear shaped has separated Conn from Moira, and the witch is not interested in a mating of ‘obligation’. She doesn’t realize how Conn actually admires and wants her beyond the mating bond. So, after all this time, they face off in a bar. It sounds like a bad joke, but these two face off with sparks, words and a surprising rescue attempt.
Part of Conn’s determination to reunite with Moira is his over-the-top protectiveness, but he really does enjoy her, and wants to shore up the alliance. Moira has the gold medal AND the world cup championship in the ‘dig your heels in” medley. With the alliance fracturing and every sect taking sides, the Kurjans are more of a threat than ever, to the Realm and to the mates.
The action and battles in this story are non-stop, with little bits of information and intention being revealed, new threats emerging and very telling scenes with Kalin and his anger, bitterness and sociopathic tendencies. Zanetti brings several elements to the table: the witches utilize the laws of physics to perform their magic, the rush to cure the virus that is so damaging to shifters and others, the backstories on the shifter’s defection, the fear for Katie, Cara’s pregnancy and Janey’s continued relationship with her dream friend and her efforts to ‘make nice’ with Kalin…it never ends!
Moira and Conn are wonderful together: he’s so very patient with her acting out, and she’s very used to being able to handle herself, and fight FOR what she believes in: will she be able to deal? In the meantime, she’s worried about Conn’s true feelings, unwilling to allow herself to feel for him. Newsflash darlin’! You already are head over heels for him, you just don’t want to admit it until he does. They are wonderful together, even if she is a bit harder to get to know and enjoy than the other mates. She’s that new friend you don’t quite know yet.
Karen White has gone above and beyond in this story: Moira’s Irish lilt and Conn’s decidedly alpha-warrior male, struggling to not appear smug in his “I Told You So”s are both spot on and never miss. This series and her performance are what each listener should demand of their audio: clear, concise, decidedly unique to the characters AND their personalities, with subtle inflection changes, pauses and insets, including one that I can only describe as a ‘verbal eyeroll” (parents of teens will know this one) that enhance and present the emotional elements, add to tension and provide readers with an “I’m there” feeling.
Hands down, one of the best combinations of action-packed engaging story and narrative performance that I have encountered, this is a series that is solidly setting itself into my favorites list.
I received an AudioBook copy of the title via Audible Communications for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
OMG!!!! This book took me on an emotional roller coaster!! SO GOOD
This series is so hot!!!! I can't wait for the next book. I laugh and cried and could not wait to hear the next chapter. So much action and the plot..Show More » is great. Katie is all that and a bag of beans. She gave a new meaning to STANDING BY HER MAN!!
This is the fourth book I read/listened to in a row that had a hero who was a geek or scientist. It wasn’t planned that way. I was just going through ..Show More »series and that is where they all landed. Kane Karys is known as the “smart” brother. He is the scientist. He spends most of his time in the lab working on the cure for the virus that is affecting vampire mates, shifters and most recently witches. He doesn’t believe in love. He looks at it like a scientist.
“What about love?” He sighed “Love is a chemical reaction induced in our brain to encourage propagating the species. The sensation is merely a scientific phenomenon, like the northern lights.”
Kane isn’t as much of a fighter, but that doesn’t mean he can’t kick some ass. He just isn’t as good at it as his brothers. He also isn’t as good at fitting in with humans as his brothers. But he is the only one available to seek out the only demon destroyer they have found in years. So he is sent out to bring in Amber Freebird to help them free their youngest brother, Jase, from the demons.
Amber grew up in a commune where they grow all their own organic vegetables. They don’t eat any animals products all. She is a complete vegan. She lives completely off the grid and is quite the eco-nut. Kane approachers she has no idea what he is talking about with demons and such. She thinks he is referring to inner demons or something. She has no idea about her powers. Oh, Amber is also a pacifist, which isn’t a great way to battle demons.
Needless to say, Kane tried to convince Amber to mate with him, so that he will share her powers and he can fight the demons for her. Like I said, he doesn’t understand love. He doesn’t get how much asking her for something like mating for a purpose instead of for something like love would hurt her.
There is quite a bit of the story told from Jase’s POV. The demons are not kind to him. One of the female demons try to get him to mate her so that he could save her from her evil brother. Jase has quite the decision to make. I won’t spoil it by telling you what choice he makes.
There is also more between Zane, Kalin, and Janie. Don’t worry. This isn’t a love triangle in the making (I don’t think). Kalin is a bad guy. He keeps trying to get in between Zane and Janie. He also wants Janie because she is the key to winning the war. Janie wants nothing to do with him. Zane continues to push Janie away because he says he isn’t the good guy either. I don’t know. We did learn more about what Zane is.
There’s only two more full length stories in this series, Jase and Janie’s stories. I’m really interested in learning more about both of these two characters, and Zane as part of Janie’s story. I also really want to see what happens with the overall story. While I haven’t loved the romance in this series, I’ve continued to enjoy the story of the overall series and learning more about each character as each of their stories is told.
Narration Karen White continues to do a great job with this series. I don’t know what else I can say about her that I haven’t already said. Her voice choices are perfect for each character. I never question which character is talking. I do listen at an increased speed, but I do that with all my audiobooks.
**I like to thank the publisher for providing me with a copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
AudioBook Review: Stars: Overall 4 Narration 5 Story 4
The story continues with a novella installment that focuses on Maggie’s story. Mag..Show More »gie has been given sanctuary and safety with the Realm. See, years ago she was kidnapped by the Kurjans, and experimented on, and she’s lost huge swathes of her memory. Even more dangerous for her, she’s wanted by the Bane Council, as she has been infected by the virus, and their rules say she should be destroyed.
Terrent is one of the Bane Council, and not particularly happy with the recent history he and Maggie have. He’s wanted her returned to the wolves for his own purposes, but she has other ideas, and no memory of her early life.
These two are far more than what they appear on the surface. When the secret to their connection (always sparking, not always smooth) is revealed, you have to admire (or pity) Terrent. His patience and determination is admirable, if a bit heart wrenching, and Maggie’s slow progress in regaining some of her memories is perfectly played- as the action comes fast and furiously through the story, the interplay between Maggie and Terrent intensifies to scorching. And Maggie, with or without her memory is tired of the limbo she’s been living in. She’ll take her newly developed skills, and her confidence in them (often misplaced – she’s an eager puppy, near fearless at times without the solid ability to back up her intentions) and plot her own course. She just hasn’t yet realized how many twists Terrent will toss into that plan.
Narration for this series is provided by Karen White, and I don’t think there are words to convey the joy that listening to her present this story brings. Voices are unique and distinct, and as we’ve met almost all the characters previously, their voices are consistent and instantly tell the listener who is speaking even before a name is provided. Pauses for emotion, pacing for tension and action, and even those subtle ‘hiccups’ in character delivery that indicates hesitation or uncertainty are presented to perfection.
As I said before, I keep losing myself in this world and forget to listen with a reviewer’s ear: but they are so damn Fun. Engaging, action packed and steam enough to require an icy cold drink, each book moves the plot toward the final confrontation even as we side note to present one of the secondary character’s stories. I’d have loved a longer time with Maggie, Zanetti’s characters are built with such care and attention to details that calling her a secondary or lesser character just feels wrong, as every character blossoms in this series with their own moments of import.
I received an AudioBook copy of this title from Audible Communications Team for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
AudioBook Review: Stars: Overall 5 Narration 5 Story 5 Time to find out all about Jase: captured and tortured during the Realm War, he’s ..Show More »only been dropping in with small moments that show his ordeal, his struggles in maintaining his sanity and defiance. His capture is not forgotten by his brothers, and they are getting increasingly frustrated and worried for his sanity, wondering just how much the time in captivity will have changed him.
Returned, he is changed: darker, violent and convinced that the demons that held him captive have left him with a time bomb, one that will cause him to destroy his family and win them the world. His anger and thirst for vengeance are coloring his every move, and he’s particularly invested in revenge against the demons, particularly Willa, Malco and Suri.
Brenna Dunne, sister of Moira, wife of Connlan has a problem: years ago when she joined in the battle, she was poisoned, has lost her powers and is becoming weaker as time goes on, despite every attempt to find a cure. Dage believes that Brenna and Jase are perfectly matched, and pushes the two together.
Oh I loved these two, Brenna is much like Moira, only she’s got a wicked sense of humor and a long held crush on Jase. With a great emotional push-pull between what Jase wants, and his worry that he will somehow taint the light and goodness that is Brenna with his anger and vengeful feelings, it is she who has to step up and make miracles… and does she ever! With all of the mates taking a moment in the spotlight, including Garret (Talyn & Cara’s son) as well as another check in with Janie in her long-standing story. Decisions for Janie are coming soon, and those have me anxious to discover, even as I am regretting this series coming to an end.
Narration for this series is more than capably handled by Karen White. She’s taken this series from beginning to end, each character has a unique voice and delivery which instantly brings the character to mind. With the story taking place over several years, characters have grown and aged, and White deftly navigates the maturation without losing touch with the earliest introductions. Honestly, her work in this series is unforgettable, and perfectly suited to the story. She embodies the tension, the weariness with the long-term war and even the joy that every character tries to find in much needed moments away from the worries. Emotions are rapid fire in this series, and moments of tension ebb and flow, while White deftly handles these changes in intensity, pacing the delivery in a way that brings the emotion to the listener.
I received an AudioBook copy of the title from Audible Communications Team for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
AudioBook Review Stars: Overall 5 Narration 5 Story 5
Coming to the end of this series is a touch bittersweet, I’ve enjoyed the journey and..Show More » the characters, and while Zanetti does highlight a character with more time in the pages per book, plenty of information, cameo appearances and the ongoing battle with the Realm keeps readers able to ‘check in” with favored and more familiar characters, even as the story continues forward.
In this book, we have moved forward again – Janie is now 25 and has decided, with the agreement of her friend Hilde have made it their mission on this girl’s night out to get Lily laid. Lily has been widowed for some 300 years – and in that time, has been without male companionship. With the threat from her infection with the virus, she is now no longer marked, and is able to consider a new man. A difficult proposition for one who is a Prophet, and is regarded with equal mixes of awe and fear. She learns that Caleb (her first love and would-be fated mate) is returning in from the wars, to take up the mantle of Prophet: a mantle he was not seeking, did not want, and couldn’t refuse.
Oh Lily! So wonderfully demure in public and a kick-ass, take no prisoners woman in private, particularly with Caleb. Their feelings run deep, but the war, intervening years and lots of issues piled up between them. He is intrigued by the assertive Lily, one that comes out rarely, until his influence (and that of the others) pushes her to claim the personality she wants, not the one she feels is proper. More action, threats and a questionable peace talk with the Kurjans fuels the action, as Janie’s time in the spotlight grows nearer, and the story comes to an end. One more….*sigh*.
Naration in this story is provided by Karen White, and this series was recorded in order: allowing for the constancy in voices for each distinct and specific character. Each character is unique in their delivery, sound and accent: I don’t know how she kept them straight, but this allows listeners familiar with the story to know who is speaking even before they are told. Emotions, pauses, breathy moments all add to the story, and the delivery, dialogue and moments of background information flow seamlessly, allowing a listener to get lost in the words and imaging the scenes before them.
Clearly this novella could have been longer, plenty of action and many characters are packed into these pages, and while I have no great problems with the ‘check in’ novella, I wanted more. I always do. Perfect to move the story forward to the last book, you are best served taking these stories in order to fully appreciate the characters and understand the action.
I received an AudioBook copy of the title from Audible Communications Team for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
AudioBook Review: Stars: Overall 5 Narration 5 Story 5 Spanning the time since we first met Janie, it’s been 20+ years, and she’s always been at t..Show More »he center of the action. The “Chosen One”, her psychic abilities and her dream walking have been a constant winding thread through all of the stories. Years ago Janie made a friend, her BEST friend, Zane. She’d talk to him, tell him things that she shared with no one else, and somewhere in her mind, had determined she loved him. But Zane is not the innocent and protective boy we first met, and he did,in fact, try to warn her off repeatedly.
But Zane is not the only person that Janie spent time with during her dream walking. Kalin is a Kurjan, purported heir. A bit of a psychopath, more than a little unhinged and spoilt, he’s got ‘plans’ for Janie. But, the one outstanding feature in this story is Janie’s belief that she can (and will) keep everyone she loves safe and end the war.
HUGE twists, turns and surprises here with plenty of action and several on the edge of my seat moments where everyone’s happiness, let alone life and love, is in danger. Secrets all come out of the closet in this – some I didn’t even know were secrets! Every faction has their own version of how things will end, most conflict although those that do come “true” have some serious kinks in the works that no one expected. A wonderful wrap up to an epically engaging series.
Karen White has provided the narration for this series, and the continuity did help this series as a listener. Her ability to maintain character voices, delivery, accent and tone, as well as appropriately age Janie from young girl to young woman, gives listeners an instant reference that brings each character to mind. Throughout the series, White has nailed each emotional moment, taking her time to deliver the punch without overdramatizing or adding elements that would be too much. Dialogue, action and even silence are delivered to put the words on the page front and center, allowing listeners to disappear into the world where they can visualize and feel every moment. You’d be hard pressed to find a better narrative performance for a series than White. Having experienced her work in other genres, I know that she is certainly a must listen for me. In what had to be a formidable project, there were no moments that distracted, the listen was easy and the performance felt effortless, a great trick. This is a favorite series of mine, and one that will get lots of “relistens” when I want to escape and just enjoy.
I received an AudioBook copy of the title from Audible Communications Team. I was not compensated for this review all conclusions are my own responsibility.