January 20, 2015
REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: In His Keeping (Slow Burn #2)
To Be Published January 27, 2015
Publisher: Harper Collins
Format: ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon * Barnes & Noble
Rating: 4 STARS
(From Goodreads) #1 bestselling author Maya Banks continues her suspenseful and steamy Slow Burn trilogy with this second book-a twisting tale featuring a strong yet vulnerable heroine in danger and the sexy alpha hero who must save her.
Abandoned as a baby to a young wealthy couple and raised in a world of privilege, Arial has no hint of her past or who she belonged to. Her only link lies in the one thing that sets her apart from everyone else—telekinetic powers. Protected by her adoptive parents and hidden from the public to keep her gift secret, Ari is raised in the lap of luxury, and isolation. That is, until someone begins threatening her life.
Beau Devereaux is no stranger to the strange. As the head of Deveraux Security, he’s more than familiar with the realities of physic powers. So when a family friend approaches him about protecting his daughter, he’s more than ready to jump on board. What Beau isn’t prepared for is the extent of his attraction to his beautiful and powerful client. What began as a simple assignment, just another job, quickly turns personal as Beau discovers he’ll do anything at all to protect Ari. Even if it costs him his life.
I love it when book #2 in a series exceed the bar set by book #1. It doesn't happen that often. Does the phrase "sophomore slump" mean anything to you? Well, I actually liked IN HIS KEEPING more than its predecessor, Keep Me Safe. In thinking back, that assessment was created by a few key things.
In In His Keeping, Arial's exposure of her telekinetic powers and the subsequent kidnapping of her parents, brings her to Devereaux Security, and specifically, to Beau Devereaux. It immediately becomes clear that her life is in danger in more ways than one, and Beau makes it his personal mission to see to her safety. As he learns more about her, he learns how special and brave she is, which succeeds in what he thought was impossible - he falls in love with her. But, Arial's tormenters won't give up looking for her, and their resources are seemingly endless.
So, those things I mentioned as to what made In His Keeping a fantastic second book? Well, number one is, nearly no sex.
Okay, let's back up a sec. Yes, I know Maya Banks can bring on the sexy. (Trust me - I'm reading Rush right now, and *fans self*.) It's one thing I've counted on when I read her books. Alpha male - check. Gripping story - check. Tons of hot sex - CHECK. In His Keeping features an intense emotional connection between Ari and Beau. It's clear that they fall for each other pretty quickly. And, Beau's drive to protect her at all costs was completely swoon-worthy (there's that alpha male).
But, the fun times beneath the sheets were nearly completely absent. Now, before you write this book off, hear me out. It didn't even register with me that Arial and Beau had only had one sexual encounter and a teeny bit of dirty talk until I had finished the book. See, if there isn't a ton of sex, it becomes clear that the story has to stand on it's own feet. The sexual tension and connection between the characters has to be there. And, the fact that the distinct lack of sex didn't register with me until I was formulating my thoughts for this review is telling.
And, this brings me to the second reason as to why In His Keeping was a fantastic second book. The paranormal aspect in his one was ratcheted way up.
If I'm going to be honest, the paranormal part of Keep Me Safe was a little dark, depressing and creepy. Arial's ability in In His Keeping is just freaking COOL. And, it's pretty old-school too. No modern twist on an old idea. Arial is a girl who can do things with her mind. She can move stuff (with "stuff" being things like guns, people and cars), cut off people's air, blow things up, all with her thoughts. She's like a naive, pretty Darth Vader. The reader gets lots of opportunities to read about Ari in action. She uses her powers to save herself, to save Beau, and to exact revenge on some really nasty bad guys. This chick is my hero.
And, she really is a hero. She may have been sheltered her whole life by her parents, and she may not have a ton of worldly experience, but she is fiercely loyal and dedicated to the people she loves. She tries to sacrifice herself again and again to save her parents and Beau. And, Beau, being the alpha male protector that he is, is staunchly against any and all of her efforts to do so. I loved reading their exchanges in those moments. Both were so singularly focused on saving loved ones. They really were perfect for one another.
In His Keeping is told in dual POV, and I loved getting inside Beau's head, particularly at the pivotal moments in the story. We see Caleb and Ramie in this story, but almost nothing from Caleb's and Beau's other siblings, Quinn and Tori. There was a lot of focus on a new member of Devereaux Security - Zack. I REALLY liked him. I hope we see more from him in future Slow Burn books.
Maya Banks does a great job with the paranormal, the romance, and the suspense in In His Keeping. It's a triple threat that together makes an exciting book.
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