Nova Wilding doesn’t have time for Romance. She doesn’t have much time for anything. After her father’s assassination, she’s now the head of her family’s game development company and also in high demand as a mate. Alpha after alpha has attempted to woo her, to no avail. And her disinterest hasn’t stopped a pushy beta from trying to weasel his way into power and into her bed. What she needs is a protector.
Enter Owen Harding, former Army now turned bodyguard. During his years of service, he was captured and experimented on… his inner beast mutated. Now he’s home again and trying to get a new start. A new start that doesn’t include a sexy gaming heiress.
But when a bomb explodes and tensions rise, Owen and Nova can’t seem to stop the heat… nor do they really want to.
I went into this book with zero expectations and in fact was somewhat prepared to disappointed. I’ve read a lot of shifter romances that are thinly veiled non-con fantasies. But this isn’t one of them. And fairly good chunk of the plot is related to the main female character's agency and her choices. Yay! I liked that her wants were considered and that those who weren’t listening to her were very clearly portrayed in a negative light.
I also liked the main male character’s personality. He’s damaged, but in a way that makes sense. He’s got PTSD, but it’s mostly under control… and like a lot of guys doesn’t really want to get the help he needs, but he has people who he can rely on. But I do admit, I would have liked it better had he gone to therapy.
The romance worked for me and I believed the attraction between the two main leads. The sex is okay. Not totally memorable, but not memorable in a bad way either LOL.
The best thing about this book is the secondary plot going on there. I found it super interesting and I don’t want to spoil too much, because I really did enjoy it.
I didn’t love that I felt like I was missing some things. I suspect that this is a sequel series to another of the author’s series and that’s where my confusion came from. I’m not the biggest fan of that, TBH, but it seems to be a thing now in Romance.
I do need to give some content warnings for those people looking for them. The first is there is some internalized ableism from the main male character. The second is that there is an attempt at coercion and non-con by a not good character. The third is there is medical trauma in the main male character's past and some pretty graphic descriptions of torture both in the story itself as well as in the main male character's past. Finally there is stalking. So for those of you who can’t handle that be aware that these triggers are present in this story. Ultimately I enjoyed the story and will be checking out more from this author. Four Stars
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