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Monday, January 7, 2013
Book Review: Raphael/Parish by Alexandra Ivy and Laura Wright
Authors: Alexandra Ivy and Laura Wright
Series: Bayou Heat, books 1 and 2
Buy it here: Amazon
For more information visit Alexandra Ivy and Laura Wright's websites
Reviewed by: Stephanie
A diplomat for the Pantera race (puma shifters) Raphael and the network of spies placed strategically in the human world try and find out why there hasn't been a birth among his kind in decades. While away from his homeland, Raphael is unable to resist the overwhelming need to take the beautiful Ashe to bed. After a night of passion, both are shocked to learn she's now pregnant and it becomes a race to get Ashe to the safety of the Wildlands before a group of mysterious men kill her.
I'm a fan of Alexandra Ivy but I admit that I was a little concerned that Raphael and Ashe's story would be just sex and making sure she's safe for the good of his kind. I wanted some emotions behind it and thankfully Alexandra delivered. Ashe not only holds the key to the survival of his race but also his heart. Raphael's animal instincts kick in and demand that he claim Ashe as his mate. He recognizes her bravery and stubbornness and he'd have her no other way. With an alcoholic mother and no father in sight, Ashe finds the love and safety she's never had with Raphael. Their relationship is hot and sweet and like the rest of the story, moves quickly. The ending has some action that leads into the second story.
Leader of the Pantera hunters, Parish seldom leaves his caves in the Wildlands. He hates humans but when he's tasked with bringing back a human doctor for his clan's first pregnancy in decades, Parish finds a woman both cat and man want to claim. Dr. Julia Cabot has a hard time believing in puma shifters and magic but she can't deny her body wants Parish. Recently separated from her cheating ex, Julia tries to hold back with Parish but his determination to show he's worthy of her trust and love is enough to make her want to lower her guard and accept his sensual touch.
These stories are the same length but I thought the characters had time to be better developed in this one since most of the history is given during Raphael. Having a cloud of sadness and heart break hanging of their heads, these two come together and help one another heal and look to the future. I love these characters. They're strong, smart, caring (Parish just has a different way of showing it), and perfect for each other. It worked in their favor that they knew how to spice things up in the bedroom.
There's not as much action in Parish but the Wildlands are explored and it's sounds like a beautiful place. Something that I hope expands in the future. There will be two more installments, each with two stories like this one. I really like that they're all connected and continue the plot. One that revolves around Ashe, why/how she's able to get pregnant, and the magical and mysterious force behind a group that's looking to destroy both.
Raphael/Parish starts this series off with a bang. Once I began, I didn't put my ereader down until I was done and let me tell you, the ending will have you scrambling for the next book. Unfortunately, it's not out until April 15th.