Top critical review
Didn't live up to the awesome of the first two
Reviewed in the United States on May 21, 2021
Sadly this one didn't measure up to its predecessors. The MC's were tolerable, Royal more so than Blaise, but lacked convincing chemistry. I did quite enjoy the inclusion of Simon and Dalton, they're always a high point in any reading of RELIC's stories because they're amusing, sweet, and a whole lot of awesome.
And I hate to say it, but B was selfish. Sure, there was a moment or two when he was concerned for Royal's physical well-being, but every other moment was about him. How was B coping, what about B's career, B was scared, B needed space, B couldn't try for a relationship with Royal who only ever proved interested and loyal... On and on, Royal and B were both concerned about B. Only when Montana questioned Blaise's commitment at the end did he say anything remotely convincing regarding his own regard for Royal. And that wouldn't even have come about if it weren't for Henry.
The danger from the Giganotosaurus and an unknown plot in the shadows was truly interesting, but it was largely left alone with no satisfying conclusion. His goal or intentions weren't made clear or even known, neither were their hints that this particular issue wasn't going to come up again. The thread wasn't dangled at all, we can just kind of guess that it might be another threat to RELIC's objective. Though maybe not, because there haven't really been any recurring issues as of yet beyond RELIC's goals and the same generic threat they get sent out to thwart.
Royal and Blaise's chase to track the rogue shifters felt incidental rather than an active motive to their travels and it seemed more like Blaise's career aspirations became the focus of each stop rather than evidence finding and seeking out the Albertosaurus shifter. And though the drag inclusion was predictable, it turned out amusing and all due to Dalton who has a magically ridiculous way of making things work out.
Henry, he was truly interesting and I'm really, really eager to see him as he learns and adapts to RELIC's way. The basement scene with him was probably the highlight of the story for me, though the courting scene was adorably wonderful...until B found a way to make that about him too, more than just being humbled or grateful or enchanted by Royal's obvious feelings and intentions. So yeah. I'm still a fan of the series and will absolutely be back for more, this particular story just didn't work for me despite all my hopes for the sassy duo.