After a series of murders is discovered along the trail of the Shifter Underground, wolf soldier Jensen Tate is assigned to find and protect a missing stray. But Lia Crawford doesn’t seem to want his protection. When she eludes his watch and returns with mysterious injuries, Tate knows she’s hiding something. To discover her secrets, Tate will have to win her trust…and get closer to the woman he thinks may be his mate.
Lia has reasons to keep her distance. The killer is haunting her steps, determined to claim her. He will come after them both if he sees how drawn she is to Tate, though it becomes increasingly difficult to deny her attraction to him. Protecting Tate is vital—but will her deception cost her his love?
Title: DECEIVING THE PROTECTOR
Author: Dee Tenorio
Series: Resurrection, book 2
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Carina Press
Year of release: 2011, August 15
Source: Received an e-ARC for review from author
The sound of her own breath—ragged, desperate gasps—echoed in the girl’s ears.
-the scene in the orchard where Tate and Lia meet for the first time > loved how Lia does not take crap from Tate
– the “mine” scene after Tate and Lia flee from an attacked safehouse in a car > this was a different Tate than I’d seen before, all masks are gone, and I loved it
– the shower scene > as hot as the one in TEMPTING THE ENEMY!
Aurelia ‘Lia’ Crawford is a Wolf shifter with a load of guilt on her shoulders. She has also been lied to, abused and manipulated by the shifters’ enemy. Lia is smart, cerebral, bold and used to taking care of herself. She’s a survivor and fighter, tough, stubborn, courageous and strong. And what I loved about this book is that Dee Tenorio showed me this all about Lia, in her actions, her interactions and her POV. This author has the mastered the show-don’t-tell craft.
Jensen Tate is Wolf shifter and lawyer. Tate is a hunter and tracker and has a protective streak a mile long (and wide). In a Twitter convo with the author she described Tate as Mr. Complicated and that was a quite accurate (well duh, she wrote him) way to describe him. He’s not a hero you can just put into a box and complications follow him around as he’ll never take the easy way. He is also persistent and unapologetic about who and how he is. He’s a layered character and I enjoyed peeling away those different layers to get to the real Tate.
I most adored the verbal sparring between Tate and Lia but as they are both shifters the tension between them is different from Pale and Jade’s in TEMPTING THE ENEMY. I would have liked more romance but the suspense was so good I didn’t mind so much. Besides, all lovey-dovey wouldn’t have fitted Tate and Lia’s characters.
As the story concentrates purely on Lia, Tate and the intriguing and well set up suspense there are very little secondary characters. Some new one are introduced, one of them being Betha, a stray mountain lion shifter and Tate’s ward and I loved her. Loved her! Some secondary characters I met in the first book did not make an appearance, to my slight disappointment but I have been promised they will be getting prime time in their own books.
As I said before the suspense was more prominent than the romance in this book (at least it was for me). And let me tell you: The suspense, OMG the suspense! I thought the plot in TEMPTING THE ENEMY was scary as hell but the one in this was easily just as scary and mind blowing, if not more. The descriptions of the killer put images in my head I’d rather not have there, especially while reading before bed. And yet once stuff started to be revealed I couldn’t be anything but fascinated and glued to the pages to find out what was going to happen and why. Very soon in the story you know who the killer is. The suspense turns out to be in finding out why and if Lia is able to keep Tate and herself alive and what the connection between her and the killer is.
With the first book in this series I got a first taste of Dee Tenorio’s paranormal voice and it tasted like more. DECEIVING THE PROTECTOR fulfilled my expectations in that aspect fully. The interactions/dialogues are awesome! They form the base for the humor that seeps through the nail-biting suspense and the intriguing world building. Speaking of world building, shifters aren’t a fresh trope in paranormal romance, it’s been done numerous times. Yet with this Resurrection series I dare to honestly say that Dee Tenorio does bring a fresh and unique world to the table. With these two first books we have only scratched the surface and I’m utterly convinced there’s so much more awesomeness to come.
As with the first book in this series the prologue was breathtaking, I was literally holding my breath, and suspenseful. Dee Tenorio knows how to write openings that reel you in and keep you hooked. One minor thing that took me out of the flow of the stories was the flashbacks. At first they threw me but once I figured out they were flashbacks the story flowed smoothly again for me.
I’ve mentioned the slower and more intense pace of her writing before in reviews and while reading this book I was once again struck by a realization. Even though I utterly enjoy the book it’s hard for me to read them in one sitting because they are intense and I need time to absorb everything that goes on to the fullest. This is a good thing!
DECEIVING THE PROTECTOR is another awesome installment in a series that’s speeding to the top of my favorite paranormal romance reads. Though lighter on the romance and more focused on suspense, it was another excellent combination of suspense and raw emotions that held me in its grip from start to finish! I can’t wait for Resurrection, book 3!
Shit, this wasn’t going well at all. He raised his hands, letting her see that his claws were sheathed. “You don’t have to worry, okay? My name is Jensen Tate. I’m from the Underground and I’ve been looking for you. I’m here to help.”
“I don’t need help.” She might smell like spring, and all that golden skin and hair might look like summer, but the cold hiss of her voice was pure winter. Deep winter.
(Lia to Tate) “You deaf or you just like people yelling at you?”
Oh yeah, this one was a ray of f#cking light. “You could stand to work on your manners there, Sunshine.”
“That’s not my name.” She kept walking.
He glared at the back of her pack. “How about sweetheart then?”
“How about you kiss my ass?”
It had been so long since she’d viewed males as anything other than something to avoid. In some cases, to hate. Or pity. But this one…this one she had a feeling she could look at for hours on end. At least until he spoke.
“How long have you been on the road, then?”
Lia swallowed a sigh. If she sighed, it would only encourage him, and this was not a man who needed encouragement. So far, he’d asked about her family, her history, her health, her future plans, the age and durability of her shoes, and whether she had a particular affection for the letter X. She hadn’t said a word in response, but that hadn’t stopped him from filling in the answers for her, each one of them more ridiculous than the last. If it kept up much longer, she was going to find a rock large enough and stuff his pretty mouth with it.
“Don’t you ever shut up?”
“Of course not. I’m a lawyer, I’m trained to talk for days.”
A strange thing had happened while he’d coaxed her into letting him past her guard. She’d gotten past his. Under his skin. With every shy smile, she’d made him feel a hundred feet tall, and every time he’d managed to draw the woman behind the controlled surface out, she’d only burrowed deeper. She’d sacrificed herself for him, facing her greatest nightmare for him.
His mouth was on hers, swallowing her words and scrambling what few of her synapses were still connecting. His tongue found hers, taking advantage of her open mouth, stroking over it even as he pulled her flush against him. Hot. Skin like heated marble slid against hers, the water sluicing between them, over them. She melted. From the inside out, she simply softened into a puddle for him to hold.
His teeth snapped in response. “You don’t protect me. I protect you.”
“Nature. I’m stronger. I’m faster.”
The utter bullshit of that response made her lip curl over a surprisingly descended fang. “If you say you’re smarter, I’m throwing the lamp at you.”
(Lia and Betha) “Ooookay. Well, the way it was explained to me, when a boy bee-shifter meets a girl bee-shifter—”
“If you say anything about stingers, I swear, I’ll kill you with your own gun.”
Betha’s eyes widened, then, slowly, a sly smile replaced her surprise. “Oh, you’re going to do nicely.”