Love is Fear (Valerie Dearborn #2) – Even better than the first book!
“He was on the ground, unmoving, bloody ropes of intestine surrounding him. He needs those, she thought stupidly and rushed to him, trying to stuff them back into his stomach.”
In the latest Valerie Dearborn novel by Caroline Hanson, Love is Fear, we’re finally delving into the supernatural world that we merely heard about in the first book. The playing field evens out as Lucas, Rachel, Valerie, and Jack are thrust into the land of the Fey where vampires are even more vulnerable. This is actually Lucas’s plan as he desires to bring them back and restore balance because he feels that vampires have become too powerful. Of course, there’s the small issue of him being responsible for their near extinction and current dormancy in the first place, so they likely won’t be chummy with him upon their return. Not to mention the amount of tension that’s bound to flare up among our 4 “heroes” all trying to work together without killing one another. That proves to be a difficult enough task in itself.
Book 2 is even better than the first one. Valerie starts to come into her own a bit more as an empath—the defacto mediator between supernatural creatures—and I must admit that I quite enjoyed the power play between her and Lucas, especially since it is a part of her nature. Their relationship goes from hot to scorching!
There are a lot of huge developments that make this installment a must-not-miss. Everything is turned upside down as character dynamics drastically shift and secrets are revealed. I don’t know whether I should he happy that Hanson didn’t waste a lot of time getting to the good stuff or upset because we didn’t get more settled into the the former way of things.
Shippers, start your engines! Somebody somewhere determined that love triangles and quadrangles and polygons are a must-have for urban fantasy books and Hanson is certainly following suit, much to my personal chagrin. But I am enjoying the series so much that I will muddle through it…somehow…someway… Alls I know is that I’m Team Lucas. 9 times out of 10 I side with the vamps when it’s a viable option (the exceptions being The Hollows and maybe the Cassie Palmer series). Of course, that shouldn’t be very surprising when you see my username. All of her suitors (yes, it is now “all” instead of “both”) have their a-hole ways, so I’ll settle on the one with the most chemistry. It’s only the second book after all and it’s very obvious that the author as a lot more in store for Valerie Dearborn’s world. I am expecting that to include a lot of evolution and character growth.
I was hoping that with a slightly higher price tag of $3.99 the author would fix the spelling, formatting and grammar errors, but they are just as rampant as they were in the first book. I guess they won’t be fixed until the books are printed.
Errors aside, while we only get a taste of the new (though traditional) supernatural beings that will be thrown into the fray, it still makes for a satisfying read. Like the first one, expect plenty of action, plenty of smut (which one could argue is its own kind of action), and—most importantly—plenty of laughs with a good story somewhere in between. Along with the likes of The Hollows and Kate Daniels, this is definitely a quotable series! I have high hopes for Book 3 which I hope will be released later this year. You’ll know when I know!