“What if you find your soul mate… at the wrong time?” ― Lauren Kate
Author: Elizabeth Noble
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages/Word Count: 200 Pages
Rating: 4 Stars
Blurb: Flint, Ohio Homicide Detective Jonas Forge has been a vampire for nearly two hundred years. He’s fought wars, seen life go from the simple but hard colonial days to the modern high tech world. He’s evolved with the times, adapting with each new era, blending into each new life. The one constant is his best friend and lover, Declan.
Until Forge’s soul mate tumbles, literally, into his life.
Even though they’re not fated to be together forever, Forge and Declan are perfectly happy. Despite the pheromone attracting him to his soul mate, Forge isn’t thrilled with the guy, and the feeling seems mutual. While trying to adjust to his clumsy soul mate and equally awkward feelings, Forge is on the hunt for the serial killer who’s leaving a trail of bodies, and who witnesses can’t identify. But Forge better watch out. When his work collides with his love life, things really heat up.
Review: I have been anticipating the release of this book from right around the time I read the final word of Shades of Sepia. I will admit that I was slightly leery when I learned that the author of this book wasn’t the author of the first of the series, but I was happily surprised with the continuity. Elizabeth Noble did a great job with Forge’s story, and it was well worth the wait.
The story begins with another murder happening in a series of crimes that have the police and the coroner stymied. With witness statements not matching up and no forensic evidence to speak of, Forge is just about at the end of his rope. At the latest crime scene, he notices a strange character lurking around and when he tries to confront him, he finds himself facing a vampire that missed out on “how to be a vampire 1-0-1”. The true shock comes with the knowledge that after hundreds of years, Forge has met his mate.
For centuries Forge and Declan have not only been companions but lovers. Forge is torn between his lover and the pull he feels toward his mate. His reluctance to commit, one way or another, leaves his mate doubting their bond, and essentially, wanting to leave Forge altogether.
When Forge’s mate finds himself in the sights of the killer Forge is tracking, he nearly doesn’t make it out alive. Watching his mate fight for every breath makes Forge realize that he is going to have to make a choice because no matter how much he cares for Declan, his mate is perfect for him, and he is already falling in love with him.
Once the mystery is solved, Forge and his companions realized that they have only chipped away at a small piece of the mystery, and the future is completely uncertain for them. They are slowly putting the pieced together, but will they solve the case before they suffer a significant loss?
The dynamic between Forge and his mate was complex and frankly, a little sad. I found myself wanting to punch Forge more than once because of his insensitive behind. It seemed that every time he would take a step toward bonding with his mate, his feelings for Declan would interfere, and there were only so many times his mate would accept playing second fiddle to Forge’s past.
I appreciated the fact that the author made these two work so hard for their HEA. Forge has to come to terms with the fact that gaining a mate wouldn’t cost him a century long friendship, he just wouldn’t have the friends with benefits arrangement any longer. His mate had to find a way to come to terms with not only his own betrayal-ridden past, but accept that Forge will not be able to leave Declan behind as a friend.
I believe Elizabeth Noble has done a wonderful job of whetting our appetite for the next book and gave us just enough information about the crimes being committed to keep our interest piqued. I am ready for book three, and I know that I won’t be disappointed.
Highly recommend this book and the series.