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Monday, March 21, 2016

REVIEW: "The Hunter" by Kerrigan Byrne


The Hunter (Victorian Rebels, #2)
(Victorian Rebels #1)

For Ages 18+ (Language, Sensuality, Violence)
Historical Romance -- Victorian England

St. Martin's Press -- February 2, 2016
eARC, 432 pages
Read in March 2016
Received from Netgalley

Goodreads -- Author Website -- Publisher Website

RATING: 4.5 STARS

SUMMARY
A scandalous proposal...
As one of London't most elite hunters, Christopher Argent never misses his mark and always gets his man. But when his latest target turns out to be a woman—the popular, and stunningly beautiful, actress Millie LeCour—it turns his whole world upside-down. Overwhelmed by the heat that simmers between them, Christopher can't complete his mission. On the contrary, he'll do anything to save Millie's life—even if it means risking his own...

A dangerous passion...
When she learns what Christopher was hired to do, Millie is torn between the fear in her heart and the fire in her soul. Putting herself in this dangerous man's arms may be her only path to safety—but giving in to her desire may be the deadliest mistake she's ever made. With both of their lives in jeopardy, Millie and Christopher must learn to trust the real feelings they're hiding—to find the true love they're looking for... 


THEMES AND TROPES
Alpha Hero, Actress Heroine, Tearjerker

READING CHALLENGES
2016 Pick Your Genre Reading Challenge

MY THOUGHTS 
I received a free eARC of this book from St. Martin's Press via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

The Hunter is the second book in the Victorian Rebels series and focuses on Christopher Argent, an assassin who was first shown as an acquaintance of Dorian Blackwell, the hero of The Highwayman.  I thoroughly enjoyed the first book so I had high expectations for this one.  And, thankfully, I found The Hunter to be just as engrossing as its prequel.

Readers are introduced to Christopher in a prologue that really sets the tone for his character.  The devastating events of that early chapter help shape who Christopher is as a person and how he relates to others.  After escaping that scenario, he sets himself up as an assassin and becomes known for his unemotional approach to his job.  Things get complicated when he is asked to kill a well-known actress, Millie, and, through his interactions with her, begins to realize that there might still be some emotion buried deep inside his soul.  The rest of the book consists of Christopher and Millie trying to figure out who really wants her dead and why.

Christopher is the titular character and true star of The Hunter.  He is intelligent, dangerous, and prides himself on being unfeeling, no matter what.  But, something strikes him when he meets Millie and, before he knows it, finds himself offering her protection in exchange for one night in her bed.  This starts a series of events that forces Christopher to re-evaluate his approach to life and whether there is more that he could be experiencing if he just took the chance.

Millie has lived a life of secrets for many years and her ultimate devotion is the well-being of her young son, Jakub.  So, she is willing to lay down with the terrifying assassin if it means he will help keep her and her son safe.  What makes Millie a fascinating character is her genuine nature and bravery.  She knows what Christopher is and doesn't mind sacrificing a part of herself in order to protect her little family.  Millie does, at times, get overshadowed by Christopher, but I still felt like she was developed enough to make her a worthy heroine.

Like The Highwayman, the plot of this book is full of twists, turns, and danger.  There is violence and dark tones that give it a classic romance type of feel.  Millie and Christopher have a lot to get through in order to figure out whether they would make a good match or not.  I did like that, even with all the external drama, the author made sure to have these two (and Jakub) spend time together that showed what a happy ending between them could look like.  I always get mushy when a big, burly hero finds a connection with a small boy so the scenes between Jakub and Christopher were some of my favorites.  The mystery element was intriguing and, while I was able to figure out the culprit before the big reveal, I still thought it provided a nice background for the romance.

I am definitely excited to see what else Kerrigan Byrne has in store for readers in this series.  The little snippets of the Demon Highlander and Philomena in this book have me eagerly anticipating The Highlander's release later on this year.  I find this series to be a great escape from everyday life with its bigger than life characters and complicated plotlines.  It continues to take the best elements of classic historicals and turn them into something more modern.

BOOKS IN THE SERIES


The Highwayman (Victorian Rebels #1) The Hunter (Victorian Rebels, #2) The Highlander (Victorian Rebels, #3)

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you loved this! I have heard such good things about The Highwayman and I'm glad you liked the next book in the series so much. I'm not 100% sure I would enjoy this one, though. I'm a bit uncomfortable with the hero being an assassin, and then the whole "I'll protect you if you have sex with me" makes me very uncomfortable.

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