Title: Deeper than Midnight
Author: Lara Adrian
Publisher: Robinson (UK Edition)
Release Date: August 2011
Series: Midnight Breed Series, Book 9
Source: My own personal copy
From Lara Adrian's website:
Delivered from the darkness, a woman finds herself plunged into a passion that is DEEPER THAN MIDNIGHT . . .
At eighteen, Corinne Bishop was a beautiful, spirited young woman living a life of privilege as the adopted daughter of a wealthy family. Her world was changed in an instant when she was stolen away and held prisoner by the malevolent vampire Dragos. After many years of captivity and torment, Corinne is rescued by the Order, a cadre of vampire warriors embroiled in a war against Dragos and his followers. Her innocence taken, Corinne has lost a piece of her heart as well--the one thing that gave her hope during her imprisonment, and the only thing that matters to her now that she is free.
Assigned to safeguard Corinne on her trip home is a formidable golden-eyed Breed male called Hunter. Once Dragos's most deadly assassin, Hunter now works for the Order, and he's hell-bent on making Dragos pay for his manifold sins. Bonded to Corinne by their mutual desire, Hunter will have to decide how far he'll go to end Dragos's reign of evil--even if carrying out his mission means shattering Corinne's tender heart.
Ok, well first off, you could try to read this as a stand alone story, however I wouldn't recommend it. I've read a couple of the previous Midnight Breed books but was still a little confused to start with as I had not read the one before this..or the one before that for that matter. But I did manage to get my bearings about a quarter of the way through. Lara Adrian does, in a round about way, do a bit of a recap for those of us who haven't read the previous books...which I think is great. The series contains great things - Vampire Warriors (the Order), who have an inasne arch-enemy vampire who is tampering with genetics and killing off people in his own race (aka. Dragos), as well as a healthy dose of romance.
Anyway from what I gathered, Corinne (female lead) had been rescued by the Order in a raid on one of Dragos' lairs. She'd been held captive along with many other women for 75 years for being what the vampire society (Breed) value most. A Breedmate - a human born woman who can become the blood-bound mate of one of the Breed. Each Breedmate possesses a unique ability which is passed down to her children. Corinne's skill is sonokinesis- basically the ability to blast people with sound waves, a sonic boom type thing..which I must say is pretty cool. Anyway, getting sidetracked, she's placed under Hunter's protection (people who've read from book 3 onwards will have heard of Hunter) as he escorts her back home. And lets just say Corinne's welcome home wasn't what she expected and included nearly getting shot, discovering her beloved brother's death and finding out that someone close betrayed her to the man who had held her captive for 75 years.
When Corinne decides to leave her home she accompanies Hunter on his mission for the order - only she has a secret and ulterior motive to following him...one that she can't trust the stone cold assassin with.
Hunter is the stone-cold assassin who was born in one of Dragos' labs and raised to kill without empathy. The assassin now works for the order through a stroke of fate and is one of their most level-headed warriors.However when he meets damaged Corinne and recognises her from a vision he saw in a child seers eyes, he finds himself intrigued. And for a man who has never known affection, let alone love, Hunter finds himself compromising the principles he has always lived his life by and following his heart instead of his head. This leads to an intense but complicated relationship with Corinne and like her he carries a secret. But will the couple ever trust enough to share their burdens and will their relationship survive what they reveal?
I enjoyed the story, however I did feel the relationship between Corinne and Hunter progressed quickly considering their pasts. I mean Corinne was raped and tortured by madmen for 75 years, and Hunter doesn't even understand the concept of intimacy, let alone love. And yet, their relationship very quickly moves through all the stages and suddenly they're declaring their love for each other. I understand that being mates probably quickens the pace but still I just found it unbelievably quick and that they didn't really have to come up against any barrier more than once. Don't get me wrong I still enjoyed their story but it was a tad unbelievable.
However I was fascinated by the other warriors continuances slotted in between the main plot-line. Tess had her baby :) and Lucan has several decisions to make as leader concerning the future of the order and Chase's involvement in it in particular since he seems to be going off the deep end (Chase that is.. not Lucan). Also the glimpses into Dragos' mind always had me holding my breath because I knew something bad was just around the corner for the Order.
All in all an enjoyable book, and a pretty good addition to the Midnight Breed series.
My Rating 3.5/5