Reviewed by Nikyta
Author: Rory Ni Coileain
Series: SoulShares #4
Heroes: Rian Sheridan/Cuinn an Dearmad
Genre: M/M Fantasy
Length: 248 Pages
Publisher: Ravenous Romance
Release Date: February 27, 2014
Available at: Ravenous Romance, Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Rian Sheridan is a foundling, a Northern Irish Catholic corner boy whose world was destroyed in fire, and reborn the same way, beside an Orangemen’s bonfire last July the Twelfth. A consuming, dimly-remembered pain in his past calls to him, taunting him, daring him to find it and lose himself to it in the S&M underground of Belfast.
Cuinn an Dearmad is the last surviving Fae Loremaster, and he’s just seen the beginning of the death of the Realm, the haven of the Fae race. The only hope of stopping it starts with him finding the Prince Royal of Fire he stole from the cradle, and lost in the human world, many years ago. He has a few guesses about where that hope ends, and he doesn’t like any of them.
Rian and Cuinn are an impossible pairing, two SoulShared Fae. Any two Fae will strike sparks, but these two Fae are a conflagration. Unable to stand one another, yet drawn into an escalating series of sexual collisions, their passion will either save a world or destroy it.
When Cuinn, the last of the Loremasters, is tasked with finding the Prince Royal of Fire, he comes face to face with not only the baby he stole two decades before but also his SoulShare. Unable to believe he could have a fae as a SoulShare, he can’t resist the strong connection between them. But with finding Rian comes more problems like trying to save a whole Realm from death, oh and figuring out why Rian rejects their SoulShare. With the threat of the ancient evil still out there, can Cuinn and Rian push past their own issues and bond and, with the help of the rest of the SoulShared fae, will they be able to save the Realm they once lived in?
Okay, for anyone with this aversion, I feel like they should be warned that this book starts off with a fisting. It is not between Cuinn and Rian, instead it is with Rian trying to reach the point of pain he needs to satisfy his craving. If you don’t like heavy kink, this book won’t be for you because while I wouldn’t necessarily call this book brutal, Cuinn will do whatever it takes to give Rian pleasure even if it’s only by pain.
Now, with that out of the way, I really loved these characters. We’ve known Cuinn for most of this series as the sarcastic, arrogant, uncaring fae who is just doing his job. The only time he’s ever really showed emotion is when Lochlann came back and brought old memories with him. As it stands, Cuinn is almost nothing like he once was. In fact, he’s the exact opposite. Now he knows what having a SoulShare is like, he understands the feelings behind it – the intensity, possessiveness, jealousy and desire to make his partner happy. I loved that the tables were turned on Cuinn and that he got a taste of what he’s been mocking the other fae for doing.
Rian is a complicated character. He has a depth of pain and anger in him that he doesn’t understand. He has a power he can’t control and has a hard time believing Cuinn that he’s a Prince and a fae. I really enjoyed the fact that Cuinn was frustrated with Rian and his inability to listen to what Cuinn was trying to tell him. I also liked that they both fought the bonding at first and the explosion when they finally relented. It was even more extraordinary when they used their connection with trying to fix the fae Realm. It made things interesting and complex and had a LOT of surprises, IMO.
This one was intense but I did have a few issues with it. Mainly, there were three or four times when I was just extremely confused on what was going on. I felt like the characters were jumping from one thing to the next without any transition or explanation between them. Normally, this would be part of a mundane character trait and I would let it go but seeing as these moments took place while Cuinn or one of the other fae were describing/thinking of how to solve a problem, that wasn’t exactly the case. I also felt like this one had a lot of unanswered questions such as why did Rian’s Pattern tattoo come through as stars when everyone else’s came through as Celtic knots or how was it that the Marfach didn’t remember Bryce at all or how did Bryce get through Conall’s ward without Conall noticing it? Lastly, this one did have a tad too much sex for my liking but as the series goes, it’s definitely less smutty than the other books.
Overall, this was still a great addition to the series. I love that the fae are becoming more integrated and working together. I also loved that Rian was so emotionally damaged and Cuinn was so broken up about it. I feared that the explanation behind Rian’s masochism (although it can’t really be called that, IMO) wouldn’t make sense but, in the end, I totally got why Rian was Rian. As things ended, I’m really looking forward to what happens next and seeing how everything changes now that the SoulShared fae have ‘resolved’ a major problem.
Overall Impression: I really liked it!
*I received a copy of this book from the author in return for a fair and honest review.*