ARC Review: Deadly Is the Kiss by Rhyannon Byrd

Format: E-bookdeadlyisthekiss
Read with: iBooks for iPad
Length: Novel
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Spin-off from The Primal Instinct Series
Publisher: HQN Books
Hero: Ashe Granger
Heroine: Juliana Sabin
Sensuality: 4
Date of Publication: March 20, 2012
Started On: March 19, 2012
Finished On: March 22, 2012

First of all, if you have never read The Primal Instinct Series by Rhyannon Byrd, you might not like Deadly is the Kiss. I say this because the hero and heroine in this novel are characters that you come across and become intrigued with as you read the aforementioned series. Ashe Granger, the vampire hero in this novel has always intrigued me and I have always wanted to know what makes him tick. When Rhyannon announced that Rush of Pleasure would be the last in the series, I wanted to cry out because Rhyannon is an author who brings scorching heat to her books with a shitload of emotion that I just love to indulge myself in. And so you can imagine my reaction when I learnt that not only Rhyannon was sort of continuing in a different line of the series and it was going to be the much awaited book of Ashe Granger!

Ashe Granger is a 2 century old Deschanel vampire and a member of the Förmyndares, an elite, highly skilled group of soldiers whose job was the protection of the Deschanel vampires. Ashe might have made it his life mission to screw through any woman that takes his fancy but ever since he meets the prickly 27 year old Juliana Sabin, Ashe has a feeling that his days of carousing and sleeping through a long line of women were about to be over.

Juliana is still paying for the fatal mistake she made in her youth; falling in love with the wrong kind of vampire. The guilt that plagues her for subjecting her whole family to live in the desolate compound of Wasteland is one that haunts her continuously. And when she receives the news that she and her family are once again in danger, this time the kind that would wipe them from the face of the Earth, she takes the lifeline that is thrown her way and embarks on a journey to seek out the one vampire whom she can’t forget, the one vampire whom she knows would help her out if she manages to convince him of her plight. 

The last vampire that Ashe expects to run into is the one vampire whom he would like nothing better than to get horizontal with and never get up. And through that haze of lust and resentment that Ashe feels, he manages to identify that although Juliana might not be telling him the whole version of her side of things, she is really in danger and Ashe knows that as long as he lives, he would protect HIS woman with every breathe he takes.

Thus begins the game of hide and seek where Juliana and Ashe barely manage to get rid of one group of assassins to run into another, all tasked with the mission of taking Juliana with them. Their grudge is not with Ashe and when he stands in their way to the ultimate prize, all bets are off and Rhyannon gives readers enough fist fights, blood and gore to keep the action alive throughout. With his senses heightened by the danger that surrounds them both, Ashe finds that it is an impossibility for him to keep his hands off of Juliana and he embarks on a mission to quench his thirst for his little convict, all the while thinking that he would be able to walk away, when all is said and done.

I don’t understand the reason why so many readers have taken a dislike towards Ashe’s character. For me, he was real, he was exactly how I envisioned him to be. Ashe is a vampire who has been cheated on by the one woman he trusted and as they say, once bitten twice shy. And for someone like Ashe who works tirelessly in enforcing the law amongst vampires, falling for someone who is nothing more than a convict in his eyes sends him into a whirlpool of conflicting emotions. Ashe fights it all, and oh does he fight, but the fiercest battle of all is one which he wages with himself, torn between the Burning he feels for Juliana and his need to walk away with his emotions intact.

I loved Ashe from his delicious and mouthwatering physical form to what he was deep inside. He might not like the deck of cards fate has dealt him with but above everything else he is a man who believes in justice and fairness and that is how he finds himself agreeing to help Juliana even when he knows that Juliana doesn’t trust him enough to divulge the entire truth. His desire and need for Juliana is a wondrous thing, it is an all encompassing one that refuses to back down, especially with Juliana within arms reach. Ashe’s insecurities are there for all to see, his fear of being cuckolded that plays into his possessive instincts bringing out the jealousy that gives him the extra edge which I just loved. I don’t know about anyone else, but I just flat-out loved Ashe and everything he stood for.

Juliana Sabin is a heroine who I fell in love with right from the very start. She doesn’t want Ashe knowing the truth of how her family’s banishment came about and her reasons are many. And in her own way, Juliana does what she does with the noble intention of protecting the man who means far too much to her than anyone else has in her life. Juliana knows that by giving up her body to a man who plays her like a master would be akin to disaster when she has to walk away from him when the danger is finally no more. Though the thought of leaving Ashe leaves her reeling, I loved Juliana because she takes her chance to indulge with Ashe wholeheartedly and gives herself up to him with everything she has to give.

The one thing you can always count on in novels by Rhyannon is that thread of scorching sensuality and heat that is abundantly woven throughout the story. There were times when my e-reader practically singed my fingertips for the amount of heat that Ashe and Juliana generates, their desire for one another the stuff that happily ever afters are made of.

Loved the sappy ending, giving that much needed happily ever after to two people who most definitely deserve it and I can’t wait to find out whose story Rhyannon comes up with next. Kudos to another book that kept me entertained, made me hum in all the right places and gave me a reason to smile when all was said and done! And as a reader, there is nothing more you can ask for!

Favorite Quotes

With a hoarse curse on his lips, Ashe shuddered against her. The night felt warmer, the air heavier…richer, as it pressed in on them. Lust spilled through his veins in a thick, decadent slide, more potent than any narcotic as it poured through his system. His tongue flicked against the velvety softness of her lower lip, coaxing her to accept him…to kiss him back. She shivered, blinking, then relented, her lips parting with a sigh…inviting him in, and he couldn’t resist, sliding his tongue against hers in an explicit kiss that was wet and deep and hungry.

She cried out as he quickly shoved a hand into the front of her panties, the sharp sound becoming a breathless moan when he cupped her warm sex in his palm and gave a predatory growl. Her delicate hands were on the sides of his neck, clutching him to her, her tongue sliding against his in a way that made his blood boil. Heat poured off him in blistering, sweltering waves as he shoved two thick fingers inside the slick, narrow opening of her body, stretching tender tissues, surprised by how perfect and small she felt. By how tightly she gripped him.
“I knew,” he groaned, nipping her mouth with his teeth as he pushed his fingers deeper into that hot, melting honey. “I fucking knew you were going to feel like this.”

Keeping his fingers locked around her arms, he stared her right in the eye, his chest rising and falling from the jagged force of his breaths. “I want you in a bed, Juliana. I want hours on top of you, under you, beside you. Hell, I want it all. And I want to be able to drift off, knowing that I can roll back over at any time and sink right back into you.” His voice dropped even lower. “So stop arguing and get back on the damn bed.”

The next thing Juliana knew, he had her braced against the back wall of the shower, one hand under her bottom, the other tangled in the back of her wet hair, holding her in place as he took her mouth with what seemed to be an urgent, desperate craving, and claimed her body in the same way. His c#ck found her soft notch, his first thick thrust so hard and deep it shoved the air up out of her lungs, her thoughts fracturing beneath the violent surge of sensation.

He rubbed his thumb over the smoothness of her cheek, thinking she was the most beautiful woman he’d ever known. “You don’t think you’re worth killing for?”
Her laugh was brittle. “Hardly.”
For a moment, there was only the sound of their breathing and the wind gusting through the trees. And then he said, “I disagree.”
She stared up at him, trembling, her eyes filled with the questions she couldn’t put into words.
“I mean it,” he rasped. “I would kill for you. Easily. Without remorse. Again and again.”

Purchase Links: Amazon | B&N | Harlequin | Book Depository


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