Title: Strange Addiction
Author: Sandrine Gasq-Dion
Series: The Twelve Olympians book #4 (this is a companion series to the Assassin/Shifter series by the same Author)
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: Novel (185 pages)
Publisher: Skull Blaster Publishing (November 15th 2014)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5 Hearts
Blurb: Brock Holloway has it all — money, friends, a bitchin’ car and a promising football career. At least, that’s what people see. Inside, though, Brock is fighting for something he knows he can never have: Unconditional love. As the child of Aphrodite, he is worshipped, admired, wanted – but never loved.
Zack Duran is a wolverine shifter — and not a nice guy. Zack’s shifter side is always in control, often making him heartless and unfeeling. When Zack is assigned to guard Brock Holloway, his tactless wolverine tendencies become even more prevalent and Zack has to fight his shifter personality AND his genuine feelings for the beautiful football player.
A near tragedy shakes him to his core, and Zack can no longer fight the feelings he has for Brock. But giving in to his emotions may come at too high a price. A startling secret charges Brock with the nearly impossible task of taming Zack’s beast. Is he up to the challenge? Can Zack give him what he needs? And with danger working overtime, can they finally be together as they were intended?
Review: Brock Holloway is great at keeping up appearances. From the outside looking in, you would see a successful football player with money, friends and the ability to get any guy he wants into his bed. The view from the inside is completely different though. Brock is lonely and vulnerable, he is abandoned by his adoptive parents and while he can get any guy he wants, they only want sex, they can’t give him the one thing he craves more than anything else…can Love.
Zack Duran has been tasked with protecting Brock, much to his dismay. Brock is beautiful, smart and funny. But he sleeps with anyone that smiles in his direction, and it infuriates Zack. The wolverine shifter already struggles with keeping his beast at bay, and when he sees Brock lowering himself and allowing men to just use him and then toss him aside, it makes Zack even angrier. He refuses to admit or accept that he is falling in love with the sexy, blonde Olympian.
Forced to work together by the bosses, James and Wayne, Brock and Zack slowly become more comfortable with each other. As they get to know each other, they learn that they aren’t so different after all. Both have lost their parents, both are alone and vulnerable, and soon the mutual attraction takes the lead.
They will have to learn how to express their feelings and not keep things bottled up if they stand a chance at a future together though. One wrong word from Zack could send Brock spiralling back to his old ways. And Zack still doesn’t know how to control the beast that fights him for control every day. What if he lost that control and hurt Brock? Could he live with himself?
I’ve been waiting for what seems like forever for Brock’s story. He has been a secondary character for several books now, starting with his relationship with Nik and his friendship with the shifters. I had no idea just how wounded and fragile he was, which is a testament to Gasq-Dion’s writing.
Brock is portrayed as the man whore, beautiful, confident and oozing sex appeal. When you get a look inside him though, you see a completely different picture. One of loss, hope, and disappointment, to the point of suicide. It added a depth and reality to the story that wouldn’t have been there otherwise.
Then there is Zack, the loner wolverine shifter that was taken and abused because of his genes. His very DNA is so unstable that the team fears Zack won’t be able to control himself. There is one thing that can bring him back from the brink of insanity though, Brock. Their connection is complicated, strange and endearing, and it’s the only thing that will save them.
I have to say that this is some of Sandy’s best work to date. While her books are always amazing and she has this ability to weave multiple characters and storylines and not leave the reader confused, this book was reminiscent of the early days in the Assassin/Shifter series. While all her books are a love story at heart, sometimes you get a glimpse into the raw actuality of what some people have to survive in order to find that love.
My favourite stories from this group of characters are Wyatt and Preston (An Ignited Passion) and Scott and Tristan (Pleading the Fifth). What these three books, stories have in common is the way the characters fight with everything they have and risk it all for the love that they share. So, thank you Sandy for going back to the basics with this story and giving us a gritty love story in the end.
This is a must read for fans of Assassin, Shifter, Paranormal and that hard-earned Happy for now. If you are new to the Skull Blasters world I suggest starting at the beginning, at the very least, start with the first Olympians book.
* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through http://mmgoodbookreviews.wordpress.com *