Series: Grey Zone, Book 2
Author: Adrienne Wilder
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: M/M Fantasy, shifter
Heat level: Very hot!
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
I’ve decided that of all the M/M writers, Adrienne Wilder is my favorite. While the first Grey Zone had some issues (the ending was too abrupt, mainly), this book shows a leap in Adrienne’s skills and a much smoother ending with things tied up nicely.
There are some common themes in Adrienne’s work as well. The downtrodden, outcast, and abused are typically the stars. In this book, that comes in the form of Liam, a young man trying to protect his younger brothers from a ruthless sexual molester, their father. Liam endures everything from sexual abuse to beatings and cuttings from his aggressors and only berates himself for failing to protect the youngest who suffered a brain injury as a child and how has a permanent mental disability.
The Grey Zone is another interesting construct, a zone where normal laws don’t exist and the dregs of society have to fight for themselves. Adrienne’s dragon Kin are not like other shifters; there is nothing human about them, and to cross one is death. But the Lesser Kin, half dragon, half human, still remember at least part of their human ancestry. As in the first Grey Zone book, “Worth” delves into the transformation from man to part beast and how strength can be found through a friend.
In terms of the romance, this book struck a nice balance between the plot of Liam trying to protect his brothers and his developing attraction to a Lesser Kin. The sex was hot (as usual) and there was also some nice backstory and a greater understanding of what it means to transform from one thing to another. I like that Adrienne typically has a few things going on at once in her books. The pace is driven and I have a hard time putting it down!
Yes, there will be more reviews of this writer coming up. But even if you’re not sold on fantasy, just the human element of this book should be a reason to take a peek.