My Rating: 3.5 stars: Liked it - recommend (B+)
Full Review: http://www.twimom227.com/2012/05/review-embrace-of-damned-by-anya-bast.html
Anya Bast’s newest world opens with a history lesson about our hero. One thousand years ago, Viking Broder slaughtered a lot of people - men, women and children, and as punishment for his crimes, he was involuntarily recruited to be an immortal warrior for the trickerster god, Loki.
Forward to present day and we meet Jessa. After the recent death of her aunt, Jessa notices she can do some odd things - like get people to do what she wants just by thinking about it. And after finding photos of her parents that were taken over 100 years ago, Jessa is determined to find out more about her mysterious history.
The book opens beautifully - the history and story grabbed my full attention. The mood is exciting and the story easy to follow. It is action packed right from the get go, and well, it is funny. One of my favorite scenes occurs near the beginning when Jessa wakes to find herself in a strange place full of good looking warrior men. As she looks to make her escape, she is discovered:
“I’m leaving. You have a whole house filled with beefcake and no explanation for it.”
He narrowed his eyes and tilted his head to the side a little. “So you’re fleeing because of beefcake?”
I enjoyed the play between Jessa and Broder, but it was a tough dynamic at times. He continually demands personal information from Jessa, but he refuses to return the favor. At times he is downright rude, especially about sharing anything from his own past. Mostly Jessa takes it, and that frustrated me. But there were times when she stands up for herself and that had me cheering.
Embrace of the Damned is an interesting story and enjoyable read. It kicks off a new series with a promising start. There are a few parallels with Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark Hunter series; however, Brotherhood of the Damned series is uniquely different. I did find some sections of the story repetitious, and I was middle-of-the-road about Jessa due to her fluctuation between a strong and weaker character, but overall I enjoyed this story. The ending left me wanting to know what will happen next, and I have several unanswered questions. I certainly hope that Jessa and Broder's story will continue in the next book--and I am already looking forward to what is next.