Shadow's Claim by Kresley Cole
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
After the last one, I thought we'd keep heading down that road of not caring about the consent of the mates here. Luckily, it seems like this one was way more interested in the mate in question going along with the relationship, but still a little iffy. If that's not your scene, you should probably skip this one.
Bettina is the future ruler of a demon monarchy. She is, however, a half-breed and was stripped of her powers not long ago. Having always been a bit of a freak, and under the tyrannical rule of her godparents, she ends up agreeing to a tournament of champions, where the winner is her husband. There's some questionable reasoning to get us here, but here we are with another big tournament. Trehan is a Dacian who we met in the previous book. He's the assassin who devotes his whole life to his work and his kingdom... until he finds his mate. Said mate doesn't understand much going on that night, so there's a bit of a hiccup in a HEA here.
Trehan is also at a bit of disadvantage because he was originally sent to this kingdom to kill Bettina best friend/crush. The high points in this story were more around the battles, the smutty bits, and the side relationship Bettina has with her phantom servant. Since we've already seen a bit of this from the other side in the previous book, there's not some really huge surprises, but it was still an entertaining read. I'm hoping we eventually get to see the rest of the fallout from the Order's kidnapped victims in the coming books, too!
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