Tempt the Dragon: An Afrofuturist Paranormal Romance by A.C. Arthur
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I have to admit that I did not closely read the description of this book before starting and it took me a little while before I realized this was part of the Legion series and that I had read 1 of those before. I guess this also reinforces that you can start the series at any point, since I didn't have trouble understanding the world, the characters, or the big bad here.
This story belongs to Aiken and Mel. They are both dragon shifters, but they have tremendously different backgrounds. Aiken has always been a fighter - whether in the realm he was born in, acting on behalf of the evil ruler, or in this human world trying to protect innocents. He has also always known that he is a dragon shifter. Mel, on the other hand, has not been so fortunate. Her parents got her to this realm but then left her, unaware of her heritage and her powers. She spent some time in the foster system until she found her chosen guardian. It wasn't until she met and trained with Aiken to be a version of bounty hunter that she was forced to face the facts.
Mel, however, did not accept this easily. In a typical tantrum, she refused and still refuses to accept her dragon half, never shifting or using most of those powers. This baggage is ultimately what broke Mel and Aiken up 80 years ago, and when we meet them again Mel is still holding that same belief somehow. That doesn't stop the big bad from coming out and bringing them back into each others lives, though. The attraction is still there because they are the equivalent of fated mates.
The big bad in this story? Well, there's a lot of evil doers trying to raise an undead army to take over the world. No big deal! Luckily there is a whole gang of folks equipped with special abilities who are ready to dive in, now including Mel. Things aren't very easy, but we do get to a happy ending here for some if not most of the characters. While Mel was completely irrational at times and frustrating the rest, she really stepped up by the end to give Aiken the mate he deserves.
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