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Editorial Reviews

Chris Williams is looking for the perfect girl, but his choice, Isabella, is anything but what he imagined. In fact, she's walking trouble. New York Times best-selling author R. L. Mathewson brings us this second audiobook of the Pyte/Sentinel series. Listeners are sure to dislike not-so-nice-guy Chris, but they'll love actor Stella Bloom's performance. Through varied pitches and pacing, she gives life to hottie Chris and nerdy Isabella while her narration resounds clear as a bell. Listeners hoping for something a little sexy, a little vampiric, and a lot thrilling will enjoy this wild ride.

Publisher's Summary

Chris Williams is used to making sacrifices. For years he's done his duty by his family and his calling as he awaited the one person that was meant for him. When she finally came into his life, she was nothing like the woman he'd expected. Instead of being the warrior ready to help him protect his family and the humans under his care he got.....

A computer geek named Isabella, who somehow managed to get her name on every Master's hit list. One minute she admits that she'd made a foolish mistake and the next she's kidnapped, held hostage by a crazy cult who steals her chocolate and she's sure is after her program, a program she has no plans on giving up anytime soon. As she tries to keep her wits about her, the sexiest man she's ever seen claims her, only he doesn't seem to happy about it. It's clear that he doesn't want her, but the stubborn man just won't let her go even when it's clear that he may not have a choice.

©2011 R.L. Mathewson (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Story

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  • Yvette
  • GILBERT, AZ, United States
  • 08-20-14

WELL I REGRET THE MALE LEAD!!! WHAT A JERK!

OMG! After reading the 1st book, I was so excited to read/listen to this second installment in the series. What a let down! I know this may sound more like a rant rather than a review, but what the heck was R.L. Mathewson thinking when she created the male lead????

Chris, the adopted son of Madison and Ephraim was a total SOB, jerk, A-hole....you can add any expletive and it would fit. His treatment of the heroine, Isabella was not acceptable! He was so awful to her till about 95% of the book, when his turn-around began. Ugh, so many times this was almost a DNF for me, but it's the stubbornness in me that made me listen till the end.

Chris had been awaiting and dreaming about his Sentinel "mate" for years, which seemed to have been plenty of time for him to build up expectations. Well, when fate unites him with his Sentinel mate, Isabella, although she is a beautiful woman (green eyes, great figure--the whole package), he rejects her. Chris rejected Isabella because she lacked fighting instincts. I had such a hard time with Chris and his mistreatment of his lady, especially because Isabella did not deserve that from him. Isabella did not have an easy upbringing....no one EVER showed her love, and for most of this book, Chris could be added to the list of people who did her wrong in her life.

For most of the book, the relationship always felt 1 step ahead, while 3 steps back. When Chris finally started pursuing Isabella sexually, well, they had smoking hot sex, but you couldn't even enjoy those parts because it was sandwiched in with his cheuvonistic, regretful behavior. Even when you thought Chris was making some progress in his feelings for Isabella....BAM, he responded in a way that was appalling and gut-wrenching.

EVEN THOUGH I LOVE R.L. MATTHEWSON'S WORK, I'M SERIOUSLY PISSED WITH HER FOR THIS BOOK. OMG, and when you consider how Isabella was so powerless in the relationship, and was tossed, pulled around and used by Chris....it made me feel sick. There were a few times I felt like crying for her & I had to remind myself this is just a silly novel.

If the relationship between the leads was better this would have been an incredibly fun, and action-packed book. In this book more of the Pyte/Sentinel world comes to life and you learn more about the dangers caused by demons, minions, vampire and were wolves. You also get a great update with the other characters in the book.

UGH, SUCH A DISAPPOINTMENT!!! I'm not sure if I will take a chance with the next book in the series......I'll have to find a way to calm down after this one!!!!

Narrator: Stella Bloom did a good job in her narration.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Lilian
  • Seattle WA United States
  • 02-16-15

Approach with caution!

This book has ALOT of negative reviews & after listening to it I can see why but I am one of a few that was entertained by the listen!

First, let me say that I love Stella Bloom. I have said this before but she is one of those narrators you either love or hate.

The story of Chris & Izzy is a hot mess. We met Chris in Book 1 and know that he had a rough childhood up until Ephraim and Madison adopted him. Towards the end of book 1 we learn Chris is a sentinel and really looking forward to find his mate. In this book he has built very high standards of who his mate is. He has become a really good sentinel but he has developed a really warped sense of obligation to his adoptive family. In Chris point of view each and every family member is more important than him or his wants. When he finally finds his mate he will have one other person to protect his family.

Izzy is a tech wiz who has no idea what she is or that there is more than just humans that reside in the world. She is constantly trying to outsmart the pple and corporations that want to get their hands on her programs. She has one particular program that will have vampires, werewolves & deamons after her.

After a close encounter with a vamp, Izzy is rescued by a group of sentinels... As there is only one last pair or unmated sentinels, she sent to Chris to confirm if they are mated and hopefully find out why she is a wanted woman.

Not understanding why Izzy's powers haven't kicked in Chris believes putting her smack in the middle of danger will jump start her powers. Of course this backfired and as Izzy realizes that all she has seen is indeed real, she freezes and curls on the ground ready to accept she is going to die.

This cowardly action sets Chris on a path that makes him come across as cruel & heartless to everyone around him but to him and his once again twisted mind he is trying to protect his mate. As much as he tries (and he really did a good job of being a horrible mate.... I mean at one point he called Izzy a whore!) he cannot fight his attraction to Izzy or how she is his perfect half.

When Izzy finally begins to come to her powers, Chris stubbornly refuses to see her as anything but a burden to his family. Finally, it takes the fact that his own family (esp. His father & brother) has stepped in to protect Izzy, a job he has UTTERLY failed at. He begins to try to repair his damage and hope that he can get one more chance at a life for himself and not one for his family with him as a soldier!

At the end of the book we are left wondering if the villans are truly evil or secretly good! Definately worth my credit but really is one of those books where the hero is not as loveable as one would expect in a romance book! Besides most princes were once frogs at one time right?

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Maria
  • Citrus Heights, CA, United States
  • 03-17-14

Not a Great Female Role Model

I enjoyed the first book in this series. However, Chris and Izzy did not push any buttons for me. Chris was a total jerk to Izzy throughout the entire book. Izzy was a very immature, naive person. Having parents who only tolerated her existence until at age 16 she left home and they didn't bother looking for her. She has lived a very insular existence with her computers as her companions. She is a total genius when it comes to creating programs and hacking into secure systems. Everyone wants her except Chris. She continually has sex with him, he pushes her away, then goes to her for more sex, after all she is his mate.
The book was too long....it dragged in places. Very lil action until the end of the book.

8 of 12 people found this review helpful

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Don't waste your credit!!!

There were no Audible reviews available and so I downloaded this one on the reputation of the authors other books. BIG mistake. The story in this book is slow, the characters are poorly developed and the narration is ordinary. In future if there isn't an Audible review I will check out the reviews for the print editions on Amazon.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Too Little Too Late

What did you like best about Without Regret? What did you like least?

I liked that it kept us updated with the characters from book one - and not just a mention, there were full stories inside each book about people from the previous book. I also liked the various points of view (even the villain's point of view). <br/>I absolutely disliked Chris's character which was a stark contrast from book one. He was just outright mean to the woman he "loved" for 45 chapters and while the book mentions that book one changed him - I didn't feel it needed to be 45 of the 48 chapter of Chris being outright mean to female lead.

Would you recommend Without Regret to your friends? Why or why not?

I would recommend it to complete the series but this is the only RL book that I will never re-read.

What about Stella Bloom’s performance did you like?

I loved Stella's performance - she is an awesome narrator. I felt each and every character like I was watching it unfold. I love that "fly on the wall feeling" and it takes an awesome due (writer and narrator) to bring that to life. Great job.

Do you think Without Regret needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

Book 3 is already out and much better than this one

Any additional comments?

It took way too long for the male character Chris to turn around. He was mean for 45 chapters before he got better and the book is only 48 chapters long. I know that every character goes through internal struggles but 45 chapters of treating the woman you "love" like piece of crap for her "own good" was a bit much.Chris & Isabelle were Sentinels ...soul mates destined by God to protect earth but don't know they are Sentimental until they are found by other Sentinels or vampires. Since the lifestyle was so bad and Chris had been living the fight for years before the defenseless Isabelle came on board... he thought it would be better if she went away so she could keep her safe leaving him unmated for life. To listen to 45 chapters of a man treat a woman like that was extremely hard for me. What made it even worse was that Isabella seemed to just take it. She knew nothing about this world and so she got dragged into it at 3 a.m. in the morning. Going through life without the skills to fight was perfectly fine... not knowing he's still she would need later in life. When the two of them got together he completely took the choice out of her hand by not explaining their lifestyle or existence...just decided that she needs to go and treats her like crap all in the name of protection. needed to read it so that I can complete the series, and there were some really exciting parts. The chase and action were pretty good...but his personality towards her was front and center and took so much from the enjoyment...even the happy ending. The happy came too little...too late.

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Love :)

What made the experience of listening to Without Regret the most enjoyable?

I read all of R.L. Books but I also really like to listen to them it's an enjoyable time.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Kale and Joshua even tho they aren't the main characters I can't wait for their books :)

What about Stella Bloom’s performance did you like?

She does a great job in all these books

Any additional comments?

I can't wait for the other books to come out in audible

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Alright story but horrible hero :(

2-2.5 stars

**Fair warning...this review is likely to be spoilerish so don't read this if you don't want to know**

Isabella is a computer geek that is a genius at writing code. She writes all kinds of code and sometimes the programs she invents aren't exactly on the legal side which has put her in trouble with the authorities in the past. Isabella grew up with parents that didn't give a damn about her and her life hasn't been great. Isabella is very short and petite so when confronted with danger, she tends to be someone that runs and hides rather than try to fight.

Chris is a Sentinel, which is a sort of supernatural creature that is strong, fast and heals quickly. Sentinels are put on Earth to protect the human from bad supernatural creatures like Vampire, Shifters and such. Chris was born into a horrible home life and things didn't improve until he was adopted by Ephraim (the hero from Tall, Dark & Lonely). Because of Ephraim helping him have a better life, Chris feels he owes everything to his adopted family...sometimes to his own detriment.

So in this mythos, Sentinels are born in pairs and the other half of their pair is their soul mate. Chris learned about this when he was 16 and from then on he was anxiously awaiting the time when he'd finally meet his other half. Chris waiting to meet her for 10+ years meant he had a lot of time to dream of what his mate would be like which wasn't such a good thing when it came time to actually meet his mate. Since Sentinels usually have something push their abilities to spark early, Isabella is extremely unusual to have reached the age of 27 without having done so. When she writes a program that is of interest to the vampire community, Isabella finds herself attacked by vampires for her program and then kidnapped by the Sentinels that saved her from the vampires. The Sentinels quickly realize that Isabella is also a Sentinel and that she's Chris' missing mate so they take her to Chris' house (where he lives with his family). This is where Chris' preconceived notions about his future mate cause some major issues.

Chris pretty much ruined this story for me. If he had been a halfway decent hero I would have easily given this story 3 or maybe even 4 stars. Sadly, I was so disappointed with Chris that I was sorely tempted to DNF the book and I've never DNFed a book. Chris basically decided that because Isabella hadn't sparked her abilities that there was something wrong with her. Isabella on the other hand is just trying not to freak out because she thinks Chris is a kidnapper that's trying to get her to join a cult. He decides to take her into the woods to fight a group of werewolves, thinking it'll spark her abilities but doesn't bother to warn her about his plans or even tell her what a Sentinel is. When she doesn't fight back like he expected, Chris then decided she was a disappointment as a mate and wrote her off without another chance. He then proceeded to treat Isabella like total crap. He verbally abused her, telling her to her face that she's a weak, pathetic coward. He even called her easy when he found out she wasn't a virgin! Yeah, I definitely wanted to reach through my Kindle to kick Chris numerous times!!!

Understandably, Isabella keeps trying to escape Chris and when she does, he keeps acting like her attempts to escape him are a betrayal...like she should automatically want to do anything he wants her to with no questions. Well, until he decides to get pissed off because she wasn't trying to escape more...Chris really couldn't seem to make up his mind. Chris also seemed to think that Isabella was wrong not to automatically trust him but when he'd done nothing at all to engender her trust who could blame her (well, except for Chris)! In fact, he treated her like a peice of crap he wants to scrape off the bottom of his shoe pretty much all the time and does everything in his power to make her hate him so he was being totally unreasonable to blame her for his actions. What's worse is that because of their "bond" Isabella has such a strong attraction to Chris that she's turned on any time he touches her. This really sucked because I hated seeing Chris treat Isabella like crap to the point where she starts yelling at him for being a complete jerk but then he starts touching her and the argument is suddenly over. It drove me nuts because I liked Isabella and seeing her backbone melt constantly like that was just lame. This bullcrap basically went on until almost the 90% mark of the book and then things blow up so there's no apologies or grovelling needed by Chris and the story ends with their HEA.

TBH, this story was rather disappointing. The story itself wasn't too bad but Chris disgusted me as a hero. His actions towards Isabella are despicable....I think he's one of worst heroes I've ever had the misfortune of reading. The fact that this behavior went on until almost the complete end of the story just made it worse and Chris getting away with it all without having to beg for forgiveness or at least do some good grovelling was just sad. After all that crap, when Chris did finally change his behavior, it just wasn't believable at all and I found myself rolling my eyes at the new "nice" Chris and still didn't like him. I'll probably go ahead and read the next book in the series since I've already bought it but I wouldn't recommend this story unless you REALLY like butt-head heroes. :(

* note - I listened to the audio version of this book and the narrator did a very good job.

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Love it!

R.L. Mathewson knows how to tell a great story and keep you entertained. It's got a combination of sex, intrigue, comedy, and suspense.

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Didn't Want It to End!

OK, so Chris was a over the top JERK! He made me angry over his behavior through the whole book right up to almost the end. I'm so glad he turned it around. It was about time. Now, that type of emotion comes from an author and narrator who knows how to tell a story.

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Great book!

What did you like best about this story?

I just love the whole series! Each book gets better and I cant wait for more.

What about Stella Bloom’s performance did you like?

The narrator is the reason that I have purchased every audio book in this series. The story is good but the narrator Stella Bloom makes this book a thousand times better!!! A narrator can totally kill a book and this is an example where the narrator just makes this book AMAZING!!! Great Job

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  • Pamella
  • 04-01-16

Good But.......

From all the comments I read I am 50/50 when it comes to purchasing this book.
So in the end, I actually bought it.

We all love Chris in book 1 and thought book 2 was going to be even better. In a way, the whole story is actually even better, because we get to see the whole families progress. On the other hand, why we think this book is bad because of Chris's attitude towards his mate.

I won't lie saying I am not pissed listening to the story because I truly am MAD at Chris and his treatment on Isabella. One thing we can learn from this story is we can have expectations but having "too high of an expectation" on either someone or some situation isn't good. Because in the end it never happens the way you expects it and it will hurt your feelings.

I also realise instead of explaining one by one, they just jump through hoops with Isabella and to me personally it is a really horrible way to explain things. Besides that, I get it that he is worried for his family cos he loves them so much but COME ON!!! If I was in Isabella situation I would have the exact same reaction - confuse & mad as hell. But maybe not coward down to a point of losing my dignity.

Also keep in mind that everyone is different. Some people pick things up quickly and some slow. And some people are good in one thing and suck at the other or multiple things, its just the way it is. It can be frustrating but slowly (not at a snails pace) with patients, sooner then you know they get there. - this is me defending Isabelle, as part of my personal experience.