|A fast-paced and captivating debut—the first in the dark and sexy Imnada Brotherhood series about shape shifters in Regency-era England.|
A rising star on the Covent Garden stage, Bianca Parrino believes she has everything she wants. Independence. Wealth. And a life finally free of her violent, abusive husband. But when her close friend, Adam, is murdered, and Bianca is suspected in his death, she is unwittingly drawn into the search for his killer, and soon must question everything she believes—about her friend, about herself, and about a world she never knew existed.
A member of the mysterious race of shape-shifting Imnada and part of an elite military unit, Captain Mac Flannery gathered intelligence during the Napoleonic wars. As a result of a savage massacre, Mac and the men he served with are cursed. Now one of them has been found murdered, and Mac suspects the existence of the Imnada has been discovered at last. His only link to unearthing the truth is the beautiful actress who turns up unexpectedly at Adam’s funeral.
Before long, Mac has more to contend with than Bianca’s overt mistrust, his ill-fated attraction to the haughty and beautiful actress, and his ongoing search for an end to the curse. Because Adam’s killer is back, and Mac is next on his list.
Mac is one of a group of four shifters, or Imnada, who have been cast out of their clan after one of the men, Adam, killed a group of people who knew about their existence. But one of those people cast a spell on them right before he died, cursing them to live their lives in their shifter form every night. Their shift is forced on them and it’s because of the curse that they were cast out and have been on their own ever since. Adam has found a cure for the curse, but he’s killed before he can share that information. Mac now wants to find Adam’s killer and figure out what the cure is so he can try to go back to his old life with the clan and to a piece of his life that’s been missing for well over a year. Along the way he meets Bianca an actress and friend to Adam, his rumored mistress, who’s been accused of being the murderer. She’s innocent and she starts to work with Mac to figure out what happened and she attempts to decode Adam’s journal, the only piece of information they have that has details about how he broke the curse. They’re also fighting for their lives because the real killer who took out Adam is out for revenge and that includes killing Mac and the other two men who were there the night they were all cursed.
This book was, in a word, confusing. The history of the Imnada and the wars between different supernatural groups throughout history was so detailed and descriptive it was hard to keep track of everything. Unfortunately, all the page time given to their history, the fighting and folklore dragged down the story and stopped the flow of the current day action. I found this to be a very boring aspect to the book.
The romance between the hero, Mac, and heroine, Bianca, just sort of happened. There was no buildup, there really didn’t feel like much in the way of sparks between them on page. One second they’re together in a room trying to figure clues out, or trying to escape being captured, the next thing you know, they’re kissing. It came out of left field and I never felt any connection between these two people.
The dynamic between the cursed men, Mac, Gray and David was an interesting aspect and I’d have loved more time between these three men on page. We get a sense about Gray and David’s characters in bits and pieces, enough to build them up prior to them leading their own books, I just wonder about them all separating after the curse. I am curious how their current friendship (using that term lightly since they’re not very close now) develops throughout the series.
This was overall a disappointment. I was bored for much of the story, confused for the rest of it and it wasn’t a book that kept my attention. While I am curious about the cursed men and what the future holds for them all, it won’t be enough to have me picking up the next book in the series.
Release Date: December 26, 2012
Publisher: Pocket Books
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*Book provided by publisher for review*