Monday, November 18, 2013

Review: Vengeance Borne

Vengeance Borne
Vengeance Borne by Amanda Bonilla

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Wow – this was one really fabulous read! It isn’t often that a book blows me away, but this one really hit on all the things I love about the paranormal genre. There was action (lots of action), there was romance (not smutty romance, but still romance!), and there was a richly developed paranormal world (complete with a shadowy government-like organization pulling the strings).

Using my favorite storytelling device, we jump right into this world with no training wheels. Jax is a barista by day and a monster hunter by night (a Waerd in this world). Juggling those two completely separate lives is a challenge, but she isn’t alone in her night job. All Waerds are coupled to a Bearer, or a person who can manipulate and detect the emotions of others. These matches are made by the shadowy organization that raises and trains all Waerds from birth until they deploy. Unfortunately, in Jax’s case, she and her Bearer, Finn, have just broken up, resulting in an awkward and tense working environment. Throw in the fact that there is a rapid increase in paranormal activity in her small town, and Jax has her work cut out for her.

Micah is a man who is just desperate to get away from everyone else. He’s always had the ability to feel other people’s emotions, and even has prophetic visions, but has no idea why or how to control these abilities. Through a twist of fate, he ends up running into Jax. The sparks fly almost immediately and they find themselves struggling to find a way to work together (all the while trying not to get caught in a very messy and jealousy filled love triangle). With very little instruction, Micah is forced to learn on the job because there are Furies loose in Jax’s little town and someone in town is directing them.

The mystery in the book really had me guessing and second guessing myself all the way through. Yes, it seems obvious looking back, but the author did a really great job throwing some doubt into the mix. I also loved the growing relationship with Micah and Jax. They are both such strong characters in their different ways that it was great to watch them find a good balance. Whereas Finn was trying very hard to take the lead, Micah was happy to work with Jax (but not let her walk all over him). This duo will be wonderful to watch in the future installments of the series. The writing style was gritty and real, completed with pop culture references and messy breakups. It was a good balance of paranormal and “real world” issues.

To summarize, paranormal fans shouldn’t miss this intro to a new series! It takes a lot to get a 5 star rating from me, and this book really did it.

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