Review: Shadow Rising (Dark Dynasties #3) by Kendra Leigh Castle

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Book: Shadow Rising (Dark Dynasties #3)
Author: Kendra Leigh Castle
Date Published: July 31st, 2012
ISBN: 1455511641
Author & Book Info:
***Review Copy provided by NetGalley***
5 out of 5 Stars
Blurb: Ancient Secrets, Dark Passions...
   As one of the Grigori, a noble vampire dynasty shrouded in mystery, Ariane has spent her life hidden away in the desert. Like all of her kind, she is a watcher, fated to observe, forbidden to act. Yet when her best friend, Sammael, vanishes, she defies all rules and flees her safe haven to bring him home.
   A shape-shifting assassin for the House of Shadows, Damien Tremaine is hired to locate Sammael. His hunt for the wayward Grigori leads him to Ariane, the rogue vamp who stands between him and his bounty. Damien never lets emotion interfere with his work, but a single touch from the sexy, beguiling vampire shatters his self-control. Drawn together by their common goal, what begins as an alliance of necessity soon becomes one of desire. But when the secret at the dark heart of the Grigori comes to light, Damien and Ariane must make a choice that could bind them eternally...or tear them—and everything they care about—apart.
  Wow! I Love this book, definitely a very good read! Kendra Leigh Castle did absolutely everything right in this book. I think I've found another favorite series to read, and the only thing I don't like is having to wait for more to come out! Amazing world building, memorable & likable characters, fantastic romance, and hot bedroom (or should I say graveyard?) scenes! Fantastic read! Before I go completely fan-girl here, I'll try to explain exactly why I loved it (or at least some of the things I loved).
  The main characters in this book are Ariane & Damien. Ariane has spent the last several centuries, basically secluded from other vampires and the outside world, in the Grigori compound. Grigori vampires are seen as royalty, and the way she was turned has made her an outsider among them. She has no memory of her life before her change, and the depth of her loneliness is heartbreaking. She has worked harder than her fellow Grigori to train and learn, and is still considered an outcast. I immediately liked her.
  Damien is a Cait-Sith, basically vampires that shape-shift into a cat, and he is also a Shade (assassin). The Cait-Sith are certainly not royalty and their race has been looked down upon for some time. His job as a Shade gives him an even worse reputation. I loved that even as broken as Damien is Ariane still sees the good in him, where others just see what they expect from him she sees through it all. The romance throughout the story was great, I really enjoyed seeing their relationship unfold. 
 The world that Castle has created is so in-depth, but she explains it so well, and does a very good job of adding things in as you go and not dumping too many new things on you at once. The book was so interesting that I powered straight through it in about a day, and was disappointed that it was over. There was even a teaser at the end for the fourth book, and now I'm dying to know what happens in the next book!
  Even though it is the third book in the series, I still think you could read it as a stand-alone (I did, but I'll be reading the others ASAP). I love finding a new series to read, one for me is never enough, and I think I've found one I can safely say is my new favorite!

SAHM to four rowdy kids. Avid reader and blogger.


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