Tempting the Beast – Lora Leigh

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Callan Lyons is a genetic experiment, one of six fighting for freedom and the survival of their Pride. Merinus Tyler is the reporter who will tempt him, draw him, until the fury of the “mating frenzy” locks them into a battle of sexual heat they cannot escape.

The evil Genetics Council is hot on their trail. Leaving a trail of their own of deception and blood. Callan will use his strength to try and save them both…and do all in his power to keep his woman in the process.

Merinus is a feisty young woman, she grew up with 7 brothers so she knows how to deal with dominant males, but even her brothers couldn’t prepare her for the raw and animal dominance of Callan but she is not giving into Callan or the frenzy without a fight.
Callan is the dominant alpha-leader of the Breed Pride that escaped the Council’s scientist-labs and the Council now hunts him. He is protective of his fellow-Breed and possessive of Merinus once he acknowledges that she is his mate.

In this first installment of the Breeds I learned a lot about the origin and history of the Breeds. How they were created, bred to kill and how some Breeds have survived the hunt to destroy them after they refused to be killing machines for the Council. Also the “mating frenzy” is explained, how one kiss between pre-destined mates triggers a animal frenzy of lust and arousal that can only be doused by a mate-induced climax and how only a the pregnancy-hormone can ease the frenzy.

The chemistry and tension between Merinus and Callan flares from the first moment. The battle for dominance between them is strong as Merinus doesn’t give Callan an inch and tries to provoke the beast inside him. She defies and taunts him until he loses control and gives her what she wants: the real Callan, both man and animal and not the subdued and controlled person Callan tries so hard to be.

Callan and Merinus both struggle with the powerful pull they have on each other, especially when it’s strengthened by the mating frenzy. It’s more than just a sexual need…it soon develops into an emotional need and connection that proves impossible to sever let alone fight or ignore, no matter how hard they try.

I found this story a well-balanced mix of intense and emotional erotic romance and intriguing and perfect world building wrapped up with an ending that was filled with breathtaking information, revelations and the only right conclusion to this story.

The word that kept coming to mind throughout this book was: intriguing. Concepts, characters, story…they were all very intriguing and I wonder what is in store in the next books in this series. Towards the end there’s a scene with Sherra that has me hungering for her book. Her hero is Merinus’ brother Kane and the hints to their history makes me wonder how their story is going to turn out.

Lora Leigh does a great job of setting up a world within the erotic paranormal scene that has body to it and a lot of potential to become a series that’s a keeper on my bookshelves.
The only thing that nagged me a little bit in this story was the name of the heroine. It sounds too masculine and I kept thinking of the Dutch male name Marinus every time I read her name. But this is really a minor thing, absolutely of no consequence for my overall opinion of this story.

This first book in the Breeds definitely lived up to my expectations! Giving me the dominant animal alpha male I love, the fierce strong heroine I admire and the steamy, hot love scenes I enjoy.

Quotes:
“I love you, Callan” His heart broke. He felt it shatter, the pieces slamming into his soul as she stared up at him, her eyes slumberous, her body filled with need, her life more in danger than she could know, and still she whispered those words to him.

“Do as I want.”
“Make me.”
“Don’t do this, Merinus. I don’t want to hurt you.”
“I want all of you. Man and beast,” she whispered when he jerked back in surprise from her rough caress. “I won’t submit to you any longer.” The beast howled in joy, the man trembled in pleasure.

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