Top critical review
Good story, perhaps getting a bit.... tired
Reviewed in the United States on December 30, 2018
I really enjoyed the first series of these books. It was such an interesting concept, and I really enjoyed the way that story played out. I particularly enjoyed Beck & Seth's parts in those stories, as well. (And not *just* because of Seth's self-purported oral skills).
I was excited for this book because I did enjoy Heavenly's character when she was briefly introduced in the previous series. And, for the most part, I did like this. And I'm sure I'll buy the second, third, and fourth or however many come out because I will want to see how the story ends.
That being said, as I was reading this one fresh off the heels of reading the previous series, it started to feel a bit formulaic, which is interesting because that's quite what I liked about the original series - that it didn't feel formulaic. But, this one seemed to have the same scenarios of sub lying to Dom and being reprimanded, Dom wanting trust but not telling the whole truth. It was a constant in the previous series, and I can see the way it's setting up to be a constant in this series, too.
Is it a problem with a solution? I don't know. Because there isn't much of a story without conflict, but my problem is that it seems to be the same type of conflict, every time. As though Seth & Beck weren't tirelessly lecturing Liam and Hammer in the previous series about being *honest* with their sub. Which, I guess, is the difference.
Sure, Seth and Beck hate each other but they spent a good deal of time together lecturing Hammer and Liam individually and collectively nearly ad nauseum that to see them be so hypocritical about it is perhaps the crux of my issue and impatience with this story.
And clearly we are being set up for a River & Pike story somewhere down the line, and I don't know if my tolerance for the same type of story will extend that far.
Additionally, I fear that I see a troubling pattern emerging in these stories: they paint nearly everyone with an (obvious [Beck/Seth/Hammer/Raine] or latent [Heavenly]) interest in hardcore BDSM as someone with a dark, troubled childhood/past (with the exception of Liam, I suppose), and I gotta say - that's problematic for me. Yes, troubled childhoods breed interesting conflict, but it's a bit too convenient to give every member of Shadows except Liam a tragic backstory.
Anyway - I'll keep reading, but the storyline of this one began to feel a bit played out for me.