Stygian by Nashoda Rose
Series: Scars of the Wraiths #1
Published by Indie
Published on: March 29, 2015
Genres: Paranormal Romance
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I remember nothing of my abduction two years ago. Sounds and scents trigger horrific flashes, but it’s all a blur except for one man with brilliant green eyes. When the tatted six foot two Adonis shows up at my door, my knowledge of the world is shattered.
Bound to the immortal Scar by an ancient spell, we are on the run. Because Balen is the hunted.
And if he dies, so do I.
My code of honor was respected without question … until I consumed the blood of a vampire in exchange for a mortal woman’s freedom.
The Scars want me imprisoned. The Wraiths want me dead.
But the woman I can’t forget needs me. And I’ll risk everything to protect her.
Even if it means killing her.
Because in order for her to live—first she must die.
Black Dagger Brotherhood and Midnight Breed are two favorite series of mine. That being said, I am not going to use the words “If you love BDB or Midnight Breed, you will love Stygian” and that’s because although it has similar elements as those two series, it has its own lore, supernatural characters and abilities. And oh yes, they aren’t vampires. However, just like those two series, Stygian sucked me in and didn’t let go until I had read and enjoyed every word.
Scars are immortal warrior supes that carry an ability born from one of the five senses. They are descendants of witches that were saved from being burned at the stake back during the Spanish Inquisition in 1610. The goddess Azzura saved them to use them for protection of humans. They all have ink that can be called on to help during battle-snakes, tigers, etc, literally leap from the warriors skin and help the warrior. However, they do have a mind of their own at times and are difficult to control.
Danni is living her life after being abducted and injured. It’s been two years, but she still doesn’t remember any details. She has began painting a picture of the same man day after day. She doesn’t know why, just knows he’s important. Her best friend Anstice and her husband, Keir, try to make her stop painting them, and just generally try to take care of her. Once a free spirit, now she is just a shadow of herself. Balen is a Scar that was in a cage next to Danni when she was abducted. He was her salvation, to his own detriment and now he is in big trouble with the other Scars as well as with the Wraiths-immortals that represent the elements-water, fire, wind, earth. If they find him, he will either be killed or put into Rest, where he will be left to relive all the horrible moments of his life for a century. But he can no longer stay away from Danni, and when the two meet again, they realize they have bonded and can not be apart from each other. With Balen’s punishment due to start, this is not good news. Danni has to be let in on the secret.
So many good characters abound in this book. Besides Danni and Balen, Anstice and her husband are not what they seem and you pretty much figure that out early on. There’s other warriors featured, including Waleron, the leader of the group. He’s pretty tortured after loving and losing fellow warrior, Delara. She’s not dead, she’s just got issues with him. Jedrik and Hack are kind of the comic relief warriors. Then there’s Kilter, a dark warrior that hates everyone and has the personality to support it. He’s also the main character of the next book,Tyrant, which of course I have already purchased. The Wraiths are part of the story as the ones that decide and carry out the punishments, most notably, Edan, also known at Fire. Also known as a villain.
As in any good urban fantasy, there’s plenty of life and death moments. The author isn’t afraid to kill off a character if need be either. Down times between battles gives time for plenty of romance, and yes it borders on erotica at times. No bondage so that was a good thing in my mind. I guess since Danni has already been caged, that wouldn’t be good!
I came away from this read knowing I had found a great new series-one that I know I want to read to the end. I had never read this author, but I found her writing to be excellent and the pacing to be pretty perfect. Her characters have flaws and problems, just as in life. I would highly recommend this book to both adult urban fantasy readers, as well as paranormal romance fans because it’s the perfect blend of both.
FYI:This book was published previously under the name Jump, but has been re-written.