Reviewed by JustJen
Title: Once Bitten
Authors: Shannon West and T.S. McKinney
Series: A Darker Hollow #2
Genre: MMM Paranormal
Length: 189 Pages
Publisher: Painted Hearts Publishing
Release Date: September 5, 2017
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: When Mason comes back to Dark Hollows, he doesn’t quite get the homecoming he’d hoped for.
Mason, who has become something not quite wolf and not quite vampire, has new powers of his own that he’s still trying to figure out, not to mention a complicated relationship with his new mates. He knows his brother Jax will be shocked to find out he’s still alive, and he’d expected some resistance to his new mates, Finn and Valerian, but not the open hostility he meets when they arrive.
The Dark Hollow alphas, Marco and Cade, are not at all pleased to have another alpha like Finn in their territory. And as for the beautiful vampire, Valerian, only Mason’s sudden display of his startling new powers forces an uneasy and tentative truce among them. Meanwhile Mason is still struggling to forgive Finn and Valerian for what they did to him in the past, and his mates are growing impatient for him to make a decision about their lives together.
The sudden reappearance of an ancient, evil vampire named Cassius makes the entire pack hyper-vigilant and uneasy. When Mason and Finn discover the creature is Valerian’s sire, they fear Cassius’s influence over him.
Betrayal, infighting, and even some romance. The next rousing adventure in Dark Hollows is here.
Review: The story continues as the trio makes their way back to Mason’s brother to let him know that Mason is ok. Their relationship is definitely evolving as Valerian and Finn grow closer while Mason keeps them on hold after the events from the previous book.
The reunion doesn’t go quite as well as they had hoped since there are still quite a lot of hostilities where the vampires are concerned, and the wolves are not easy to win over. Mason doesn’t take too kindly to the treatment his “family” gives to his mates, and Finn is dealing with quite a bit of alpha posturing as well. So there is a lot going on at this reunion.
Aside from those issues, there is a strange vampire lurking (a blast from Valerian’s past) and causing problems with warnings for Valerian that his time is up. There are self-sacrificing attempts from different members of the trio, causing some minor betrayal issues. But, in the end, feelings are realized and come to grips with which leave this interesting trio more sure of their relationship than ever before.
I love the three personalities of these guys and how their differences give them a unique dynamic. A vampire, a werewolf, and what they now know is a hybrid, are mates, and it makes for some adjusting from all parties. Finn and Valerian are steamier than ever in this installment as their bond grows, and although there are some insecurities here and there, they are most definitely not complete without all three of them.
This is a unique and interesting world that is really enjoyable and keeps the pages turning. It seems there are going to be some more bumps in the road for these guys, but hopefully, they are all on the same page and can conquer them together. I’m looking forward to seeing this story continue in the next installment.
Overall Impression: I really liked it!
*I received a copy of this book from the authors in return for a fair and honest review.*