Sunday, April 14, 2019

Book Review: NoX by Adrienne Wilder

One is a dying man.
The other is a man who died to live.
A nude man invades Luca Suarez's home and protects him from creatures who cannot exist. 
Creatures hunting him. 
The stranger can't tell Luca why. He can't even tell Luca his name. 
He remembers nothing until the moment he sees Luca. 
The only hint Luca has to the stranger's identity is a tattoo on his wrist: N o X
Nox doesn't know who he is, but he's sure of three things, his memory loss is temporary, the monsters chasing Luca are called Anubis, and his Alpha, Koda, sent Nox to protect him. 
There's just one problem… Koda is Luca's brother who was murdered five years ago.
With each passing hour, Nox fills in the pieces painting an impossible truth. And with each passing hour, both men find themselves unexplainably attracted to each other. 
Something Luca is willing to embrace because he has nothing left to lose.
And one Nox can't let happen because it could get Luca killed.

Todd's rating:

 Holy crap, that was some exciting action and intrigue!

When the story began, Luca was sitting in his house waiting for leukemia to claim his young life, only to have a very large, very naked man enter his home and kidnap him.

Well, more like save him from gigantic wolf-like creatures hell-bent on murdering him. But potato po-tah-toe, right?

Over the course of the story, we found out how a group of scientists had found a bizarre substance capable of resurrecting the dead, bestowing on them the gift (and curse) of changing into terrifying, blood-thirsty creatures.

And scientists being scientists, took their experiments too far, unleashing their creations out into the world due to an unhealthy mixture of greed and stupidity.

The sudden death of Luca's older brother, Koda, who'd been resurrected by the scientists 5 years ago, set off a chain of events that placed Luca at the top of the evildoers "Must Have Item for Christmas" list, hence Big Naked showing up to rescue Luca from the Big, Evil Anubis Monsters.

The majority of the story was Luca and his would-be savior, Nox, fleeing from the monsters, and the military, while trying to get answers and find somewhere safe to stop running and settle down.

The book was told not only from Luca and Nox's points of view, but also by a kind, conscienced, retired scientist from the Anubis project, Dr. Reese Dante, and it was through his accounting that we learned most the history of "What The Hell Is Going On?" and why.

Nox had lost a lot of his memory, but as it returned in fits and starts, we found out even more, especially details concerning Luca's brother, Koda, the previous Alpha of Nox's Anubis pack.

While this story was built on the bones of previous werewolf shifter-themed books, it was distinct enough, with brand new magic and Egyptian lore, to read as something sufficiently new and enthralling that I was drawn in from page one, and my interest never waned.

Sometimes the specifics of how certain things happened left me slightly confused, but not enough to really complain very much.

What actually worked my last queer nerve was the frequency of the sex. Once it finally started, Sweet Baby Jesus, best keep the lube bottle refilled!
Eat... fuck.

Sleep... fuck.

Shower... fuck.

Almost die... fuck.

Steam is fine in my books, but at a certain point, I truly get pushed over a line and want to scream, "OMMFG, GET OFF OF HIM ALL DAMN READY, YOU AGGRESSIVE, DICK-CENTRIC MAN-BEAST!!!"

This story did approach that screaming point for me.

The book ended with the guys 'maybe' settling down and 'maybe' having (telepathically?) said "I love you", so I'd say it was an HFN, with the potential for more danger around the corner.

The last few paragraphs of the story did divulge "more" unresolved story line, so if the book does well, I do anticipate it becoming a series.

However, if the story were to end here, I felt that it did end at a good stopping point -- even if I'm praying pretty damn hard that there will be more books in this series.

4.5 stars.

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