King of the Damned (League of Guardians, #2)King of the Damned by Juliana Stone
My rating: 4.5 of 5 flames

I love this author’s PNR because it’s always a little bit dark and a lot sexy. Her characters never take the easy way, and they have to earn their HEA. I tore through the Jaguar Warriors series last year and I was super excited for the spin-off series.

We first meet Azaiel in His Darkest Embrace book 2 in the Jaguar Warriors series and we learn in book 3 His Darkest Salvation why no one in the League of Guardians trusts him, I say this mainly because the series may stand on its own, but some details will be lost in not having read the Jaguar Warriors series.

Azaiel is sent to find out what happened to one of the League’s
members. When he gets there, he sees Rowan. She’s a witch who has just found out her grandmother, the woman who raised her, was killed. Rowan and Azaiel have to kill some demons right off the bat, and we find out that Rowan is no ordinary witch, she’s a very powerful witch, and she’s been killing demons since she was very young.

Rowan comes from a line of witches who, a long time ago made a very bad deal with a very powerful demon. To survive the Salem witch trials, an ancestor agreed to a bargain: Each generation, this demon takes the eldest and most powerful James witch, and he drains her dry.

It was supposed to have been Rowan’s mother, but she turned to drugs, booze and men to deal with the knowledge that she would be taken by this demon. The demon didn’t want her, returned her, and marked Rowan as his instead.
Rowan’s mother is another issue altogether. I didn’t like how we knew so little about what happened. I’m assuming it will be brought to light in another book, but I really would like to know more.

Azaiel and Rowan make an awesome fighting team, and I really like Azaiel. I loved the quirky coven and extended family members, the donkey included. I loved how strong Rowan was, even when her own family turned against her, and I love that Rowan decided that the days of James witches becoming demon fodder were over.

The ending was tense, and I really can’t wait to see what Azaiel’s decision will mean for both him and the world. He’s still a Guardian, but. . .

I really liked this book, it was so intense, and it kept me turning pages as fast as I could.

***ARC courtesy of AVON and edelweiss

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