Warning: nonconsensual sex and more
In this exciting debut, author Keri Arthur explodes onto the supernatural scene with a sexy, sensuous tale of intrigue and suspense set in a world where legends walk and the shady paths of the underworld are far more sinister than anyone envisioned.
A rare hybrid of vampire and werewolf, Riley Jenson and her twin brother, Rhoan, work for Melbourne’s Directorate of Other Races, an organization created to police the supernatural races–and protect humans from their depredations. While Rhoan is an exalted guardian, a.k.a. assassin, Riley is merely an office worker–until her brother goes missing on one of his missions. The timing couldn’t be worse. More werewolf than vampire, Riley is vulnerable to the moon heat, the weeklong period before the full moon, when her need to mate becomes all-consuming.…
Luckily Riley has two willing partners to satisfy her every need. But she will have to control her urges if she’ s going to find her brother….Easier said than done as the city pulses with frenzied desire, and Riley is confronted with a very powerful–and delectably naked–vamp who raises her temperature like never before.
In matters carnal, Riley has met her match. But in matters criminal, she must follow her instincts not only to find her brother but to stop an unholy harvest. For someone is doing some shifty cloning in an attempt to produce the ultimate warrior–by tapping into the genome of nonhumans like Rhoan. Now Riley knows just how dangerous the world is for her kind–and just how much it needs her.
“If I had a talent I could claim, it would be as a finder of trouble. Which is undoubtedly what I’d find by sticking my nose where it had no right to be.”
This is one of those series that I have been reading for longer than I can exactly remember when I started reading it. I suspect around late 2009, because I remember having to wait for at least the last book. It is actually one of the first urban fantasy series I ever read. I’ve been worried about rereading this, because I’m afraid it won’t live up to my memories. I have fond memories of this. I remember liking it. I remember being heartbroken at certain events in the series.
I’m glad that so far, it has lived up to my memories!
The plot is a combination of things I expect out of urban fantasy and weird shit I don’t expect. There are a lot of things about the plot that is just quintessentially urban fantasy. We have the main character who goes off investigating something, in this case her missing brother and without her actually having the credentials to do what she is doing. It is also very seat of your pants, going from fire to fire. Then there are the things I don’t expect, like the weird science and the clones. The science isn’t really based in reality, and it is really weird. There are all these clones running around and we have no idea what is really going on yet but we know there are some really bad guys trying to do some really bad things. It is all very interesting.
Riley is a main character that is going to go through hell throughout the series for your own enjoyment. You can tell this by the pure hell she had to go through in just this first book, and it isn’t over yet. I love characters who go through hell for my enjoyment. Her dream for life is to find her soulmate and to have babies, even though as a dhampire she’ll have trouble conceiving. Otherwise, Riley is extremely loyal and absolutely determined to get her way. She is also the very typical urban fantasy “special” main character. The one who is unique because whatever they are are rare or impossible. In this case, dhampires are rare enough they’re thought impossible by most, and the twins were conceived under even more rare circumstances. Sidenote: it bugged me the book spelled it dhampire instead of dhampir.
We learn a lot about the werewolves in Full Moon Rising, mostly because Riley identifies as more werewolf than vampire. Also, this book takes place in the week prior to the full moon. The big thing about this series and werewolves is that they are super horny creatures, especially around the full moon. They need sex to the point that if they don’t get it during this phase, they will become bloodthirsty instead. Almost everything we learn about the werewolves in this book revolves around sex.
Which leads us into Riley’s love interests. There are a lot of them. There is a lot of sex this book. There are three lovers for a total of 7 full sex scenes. I honestly did not remember there being this much sex!! The rough thing about it is, is that pretty much everyone is just using Riley. We learn very little about them, other than they are rich (Riley really likes rich guys), and sexy, and really good at sex. And one of them is not only an asshole, but also crazy. Quinn is the most interesting of them all because we actually learn a little about him, and he is less of an asshole than the crazy one. The third guy is kind of sweet but there is something off about him, too.
That leads me into my warning at the beginning of the review for the book. I’ll blanket this in a spoiler warning, just highlight to read. The crazy asshole? Well he does a lot of really illegal things to our main character. Including trying to force her to become pregnant with him against her will. Oh, and also kidnapping. And having sex with an unconscious woman. Don’t forget actually drugging her while they were having sex in order to inject her with experimental drugs. Really, this is a kind of fucked up book.
I’m looking forward to learning more about the world. Right now, it is kind of confusing. There is this weird police force, the Directorate, who kind of acts more like the FBI and is made up almost entirely by vampires for vampires? Only, there is also a lot more to them, because now they’re going after this genetic research firm with Riley and Rhoan? The werepacks are kind of really loners who stick mostly to themselves, except when they don’t? There is a lot that needs to be explained about this world coming forward, because it is just plain confusing.
I’m so glad this is living up to my memories, though. I enjoyed this reread and I’m really looking forward to the rest. Except one of them, I could do without that one – good thing I don’t remember which one it is so I get to be annoyed all over again when I get to read it again!
To read more reviews for this series, check out the Riley Jenson, Guardian series page!