In the city of Solantha, mages rule absolute, with shifters considered second-class citizens and humans something in between. No one outside the mage families are allowed to have magic, and anyone born with it must agree to have it stripped from them to avoid execution.
Sunaya Baine, a shifter-mage hybrid, has managed to keep her unruly magic under wraps for the last twenty-four years. But while chasing down a shifter-hunting serial killer, she loses control of her magic in front of witnesses, drawing the attention of the dangerous and enigmatic Chief Mage.
Locked up in the Chief Mage’s castle and reduced to little more than a lab rat, Sunaya resists his attempts to analyze and control her at every turn. But she soon realizes that to regain her freedom and catch the killer, she must overcome her hatred of mages and win the most powerful mage in the city to her side.
Let me start of this review by saying how difficult I can find it to write a review when I've really enjoyed a book and just want to jump into the next one in the series and forget everything else. This is one of those books and as soon as I've finished writing this I am diving straight into the next and everything else will have to go do one until I've finished that!
I really enjoyed this book. It contains all my favourite things, shifters, magic, a steampunk feel to the setting, a spunky, kick ass female lead and a hot, mystery male where you can just feel the sexual tension between the two characters sparking off the page.
This book was recommended to me on Amazon as it's similar to other books I've read. The great news is that it's also available on Kindle Unlimited, which I think is a great lending service that Amazon runs (and also helps to curb my terrible buying habit when it comes to books)
The main character in this book is a shifter called Sunaya, or Naya which is the nickname she goes by. She is a hybrid, not a full blooded shifter and her form is a Jaguar, or a Panther as she prefers to be called. She's working as an enforcer in a world where humans, shifters & mages coexist, albeit not necessarily happily. The action and the mystery, which is the main theme running through the series, kicks of straight away and dragged me straight into the story that I didn't want to put it down. The side characters in the book, be they friend or for, also have substance to them and help to drive this story in a direction which keeps you engaged throughout.
The enter the hot, powerful but brooding male lead, and possible love interest, Iannis. What I loved about the book is that love is not the main theme of the story, but we are getting a slow build up of sexual tension between the two characters. It contains those kind of scenes between the two where you feel your own cheeks staring to warm up with the intense attraction between them but just when you think something might happen they get interrupted. I actually love that kind of romance where theyre not immediately jumping on each other and are both fighting the attraction between them, but it's so strong that they keep finding themselves in situations where they're drawn to each other. So far nothing has happened between the two, but for me that makes the anticipation of something you feel for sure will happen so much sweeter, I just hope it's not drawn out too long over the series as that can start to get boring.
For me this first book in the series contained just the right amount of intrigue, mystery and romance. The female lead epitomises my favourite type of heroine in a book in that she is capable of defending herself and has a sometimes too snarky tongue (this is my favourite kind of character as I can't stand a simpering female who doesn't stand up for herself).
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and it gets the full five stars from me. If you also love these types of books then I recommend picking it up. If you've never read a book like this before then I recommend this as the first one for you to pick up and try as I can guarantee you'll love it. Now I'm off to read the next book in the series be sure to look out for my review on that next.