So when I saw that she had BEYOND SHADOWS releasing this past Wednesday I had to buy it that very morning. I knew that I would have to wait to read it, since I had the dreaded day job to get to, but just knowing it sat at home on my hard drive was a comfort. Of course I had to read some before I left for work and then I had to sneak some at work, because well I just had to.
When I finally got home that night I was anxious to read it, yet again I had to face obstacle after obstacle before I could read it. Feed the kids, help with homework, fold laundry, wash dishes, the damn list goes on and on. You see my dilemma, clearly.
Well once I managed to tuck my kids into bed, as well as my husband, I sat down to finish BEYOND SHADOWS and let me say I was not disappointed.
So before we hit the part where I tell you what I liked etc. Let’s take a peek at the blurb for the latest novel from N. J. Walters.
Sequel to “Shadows Stir” from Dreams of the Oasis IV anthology.
An immortal warrior of the Shadow Realm, Blade’s self-control has been honed to a razor’s edge by centuries of fighting, but it vanishes the moment he lays eyes on Jacqueline Harris. The mere sight of her stirs his blood and he craves physical pleasures long forgotten.
Jac is an accountant, not a risk taker, preferring to live her life quietly. That all changes when she is sent to see a client by mistake and stumbles onto a crime ring. Now she’s on the run for her life.
The sexy stranger appears at her beach house, swearing to protect her at all costs. Dark and dangerous, he resembles the assassin she first fears he is. The last thing she expects is that he can morph into the deadly panther tattooed on his chest. The undeniable passion between them flares to life, but it is more than attraction. It is a soul-deep knowing that he will change her life forever. Blade becomes both protector and lover, but it’s up to her to save him from the shadows that haunt him.
First let me say that BEYOND SHADOWS is a stand-alone novel, however reading the novella SHADOWS STIR is strongly advised since its heroine is the sister of Jacqueline Harris in this novel and their stories are definitely intertwined. Ok so enough dialogue from me, on to the review.
The first thing that strikes me about this new series from N J is that its different then most paranormal shifter stories out there. It’s not vampires or wolves, not that I have anything against those types, I actually love them, but sometimes you crave something new.
Easily imaginable N.J. descriptively weaves a world that is easily imaginable, a world of utter darkness with only the smallest existence of light. Where these proud warriors dwell, suffering from extreme apathy and with little regard to the world that is literally passing them by.
In Jacqueline Harris I found a heroine I can really like, she made mistakes and got herself tangled up in a bad situation, but she held tough and fought back. She didn’t suffer from any of those TSTL moments that can turn a reader against a heroine and soil the story with inconsistent behavior. She didn’t cower or wait for someone to ride to her rescue. She’s strong and smart as well as beautiful and is intelligent enough to know when to use these traits to her advantage. She doesn’t necessary need Blade to survive but she is smart enough to know she stands a better chance of living to see another day with him on her side.
Blade on the other hand is truly dangerous, to everyone and anything that gets in his path, with one exception, Jac. He is the embodiment of a true ALPHA male and his fighting skills are as finely honed as the blades of the knives he wields. He’s utterly sexy and ranks easily in the top five of my all time favorite heroes from N.J.’s books. Forget broody and moody, he is just dark and deadly. He makes no excuses for his actions, and act he does, he makes the only choices he can without thought of the consequences to anyone. He’ll protect Jac or die trying.
When they meet the sparks fly and their passionate response to one another is completely palatable. Together they face danger and work to save Jac’s life while giving in to the attraction neither of them can deny. In a mere 123 pages N.J. lays the groundwork for a new and incredible series, introduces two characters that I won’t soon forget and has me wanting more from this series as soon as possible.
While BEYOND SHADOWS does leave some questions unanswered about the Shadow Ryders and their mysterious leader, I can’t help but think that the secrets hidden in the Shadow Realm will be wickedly delicious to uncover, one sexy warrior at a time for years to come.
9.5 out of 10