If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know that I like the dark side of the pool. Put some noncon in there, and I’m going to jump in with both feet and not worry as to whether or not the pool is too deep for me. So far, it hasn’t been. So, when I heard about Kay Elle Parker’s newest book, Monsters & Guardians, and that it was dark and noncon-y, I said sign me up. I like her Hangman’s Haunt books, so I knew that I liked her reading. M&G is a shifter, reverse harem, dark, noncon, omegaverse-esque romance, with a fucking kickass heroine. That sounds like it could be a whole lot, and it is, but it totally works out well. You can’t take a bit of it out and have the rest of it stand. Now, as a warning, when I say noncon, I mean NONCON. There are a couple of places where it’s damn near brutal, and I will say that the title fits. You have been warned.
So, here’s how this works. Dubhlainn, Finn, Quinn, Malachi, and Cabhan are 5 brothers whose father kicked them out of their pack. Their father was the Alpha of the Galway, Ireland pack. Their family has been ruling that pack for years and years and years, but Fergus doesn’t think that the next generation is up to snuff when it comes to who will be the next Alpha. He thinks his sons are just busy fucking and knotting every female they can and that they do nothing at all. Or at least, that’s what he says. So, he kicks them out and tells them that the first one of them to come back with a bred and bonded mate will be the heir. He doesn’t care if they go out singly or as a bachelor pack, he just wants them to go and go right now.
Two years later, they are in the Western US. Raine is a hunter. She’s in high demand to help with large nuisance animals, to either get them somewhere safe or to get rid of them. But that’s just her day job. Her night job is somewhat similar, but not quite. By night, she hunts down shifters and such. It’s not common knowledge that shifters, vampires, and other things that go bump in the night exist, but she has more experience with them than she would like. So, she’s been chasing down what she’s pretty sure is a pack of wolf shifters because they’ve been killing animals all over the west. Raine also feels like she’s being watched and tracked. It isn’t until she realizes that she’s being herded that she’s being chased by the people she’s chasing. While she’s being chased down, she’s not going to go lightly. She’s going to do what she can to make sure she makes taking her expensive, especially after she hears that they are planning on mating her, and hopefully, she’ll survive it. You see, mortal women and shifters aren’t really necessary all that compatible, especially after wolf shifters try to put their knots all up in there.
Raine does a pretty damn good job at making it really hard on the guys too. I mean, of the 5, she damn near incapacitates 3 of them, and none of them get away without any injury, including nearly gutting Dubhlainn and cutting two of his brothers all the way down to the bone. Quinn carries her away and then she manages to get away from him, mostly by banging him with a stick in the knee. I love the fact that she apologizes to him after she hits him in the knee but before she runs. Finally, they get her back to their house, and to the room that they had prepared for her. Basically the upper floor of a building with a huge bed, a huge wardrobe, a bathtub, and a door that locked her in. And then they tell her that they will wait for her to into heat, because it’s so close, and then they will all get busy.
Raine is definitely in my top 3 heroines. She’s a fucking battle goddess. I mean, she doesn’t make any damn thing easy on the guys, and good for her for that. Frankly, for a lot of it, they really don’t fucking deserve any damn thing to be easy on them. She is dangerous with an axe, a baton, razor blades, knives, guns, and as if that wasn’t enough, she has nails and teeth and she’s never afraid to use them. To top it off, she’s really freaking smart and cunning. She’s also very stubborn, very independent, and will build every single way that she possibly can, and then some. She is bound and determined to fight everything and everyone. I’m pretty sure that she can do it too.
I started off hating Dubh, but, that may have changed a bit. Finn and Quinn seemed like they were the nicest of all the brothers, and I think they kind of were, but I think things happened very badly with those two so it made it really hard for them to relate to Raine in any way. They both felt bad, and they damn well should’ve. I never really liked Malachi or Cabhan.
OK, what Raine does to Fergus is evil and awesome. Totally evil and extremely fucking awesome. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. No, really.
Too bad the guys didn’t listen to Dubh. Things would’ve been easier, but the story would’ve been much shorter.
OK, that’s all I have to say about this one. Really, go read it. Happy reading!