rating: 4 of 5 stars
Brandon is a one of a kind hero. His story is heartbreaking. At one point, I almost put the book down, thinking why? How could someone be cruel to their own grandson like this? If you like tortured heroes, you must read this book. I like that Ms. Reinke threw out the rule book when she wrote this book. She was not afraid to make Brandon vulnerable and the opposite of what a lot of romance novel heroes are. That doesn't make him any less appealing. Brandon has been abused and mistreated by his family after he was horribly wounded and almost died during a botched robbery. The scene where we see this happen just broke something inside of me. The aftermath is that he is a deaf-mute. His family is intolerant of his imperfection, yet they won't let him escape to find a better life. They hate that he is different, and want to crush his individuality in every way. Like I said, heartbreaking. Despite this, Brandon shows an inner strength, kind of in a Zen way. He is the tree that doesn't break because it bends. He refuses to give into the bloodthirsty ways of his people. He refuses to let go of the love in his heart for Jackson, the man who taught him how to read and to sign. And for Angelina, and he puts himself in jeopardy to save them, when he family set it up for them to be murdered. Brandon is very young when this book starts, only twenty-one. He's actually several years younger than Angelina, the woman of his dreams. I thought it might be weird that he was so young, and it was certainly different. But again, I like that Reinke wasn't afraid to do this. I also liked that in some ways he is more vulnerable than Angelina. But at the same time, he has an inner strength. Now I did have an issue with Angelina's character. I don't think I truly got to know her. I wish more time had been spent on her backstory, but realizing the shortness of this book, and how compelling Brandon was, I can see why the author chose to focus more on Brandon. I loved the connection between Brandon and Angelina. I do think they were soulmates, complementing each other. Although Angelina was the more experienced, and harder character, Brandon had an inner strength that brought a calm and peace to Angelina. Another pet peeve I had was how beat up Brandon kept getting in this book. He was a really good fighter, but his evil, awful brother was always just that little bit stronger than him. This wasn't really bad in itself, just different. I liked the mythology of this series, although it's a bit different from a lot of the vamp paranormals out right now. That's a good thing. I do feel that there is much more to learn about the Brethren. Right now, they are not really nice vamps in my mind, except for Brandon, Tessa, and Remy. I'm eager to read Remy and Tessa's book, and to find outwhere things unfold after this book was over. Although this wasn't a perfect book, I do love it because of the wonderful character that Reinke has created in Brandon. I just sigh thinking about him.
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