Published 2011 384 pages
Summary (from the book jacket)
As a snowstorm locks down the city, more than the roads are getting iced. Someone's beheaded the wrong girl, and vampire-on-the-lam Talia Rostova thinks it was meant to be her. Now she's the prime suspect in her own botched murder – and the prisoner of her smoking-hot neighbour.
Lore is a hellhound, bred to serve and protect, so he's not freeing Talia until he's sure that she's the prey and not the hunter. You'd think a beautiful woman in his bedroom would be a good thing, but trouble-prone Talia has run afoul of someone more sinister than your average lunatic killer. An ancient Undead is wreaking vengeance on the city – and on her – and Lore will have to go far beyond a stake to put him back in his grave…
Frostbound is the fourth book in Sharon Ashwood’s The Dark Forgotten paranormal romance series. All Dark Forgotten stories are set in the fictional city of Fairview. Located in the Pacific Northwest, Fairview has a large supernatural community who aren’t afraid to stand-up for their rights to be treated equally with humans. In Frostbound there is a continuation of characters from previous series instalments but each book is a romance featuring different protagonists and can be read as either a stand alone story or as part of the series.
All the Dark Forgotten books are a great mixture of romance and urban fantasy with the romance delivered against a backdrop of kick-ass fantasy action. Frostbound is no different from previous series offering in this respect and wastes no time dropping readers straight into the action on the opening pages. Lore, the hellhound Alpha has been left in charge of dispensing justice to the supernatural community while the regular (vampire) sheriff is on holiday. His gift of premonition tells him that there is a creeping evil on the icy streets of Fairview and as the snow begins to fall he is called to a murder scene in his own apartment building. One of his neighbours has been ritually killed and her vampire roommate (murder suspect number one) is missing.
Hellhounds are natural guard-dogs and it isn’t long before Lore has tracked down Talia, his vampire neighbour and the murder suspect, and has her under lock and key… in his bedroom. Lore has his own reasons for wanting to keep Talia safe and while the pairing of a hellhound Alpha with a vampire is against pack law it’s soon pretty much item number one on his “to do” list. Right up with finding out who really committed the murder and keeping the visiting vampire queen safe from the Hunter assassins that appear to be lurking on every street corner.
From a romance point of view there is plenty of relationship development and romantic tension to keep readers engaged with the story. Talia is a newly turned vampire, now wanted for murder, but hiding some terrible secrets from her past that could seriously affect her current undead life expectancy if they got out. Talia’s secrets are slowly revealed during the course of the book and combined with Lore’s duty to take a hellhound mate for the sake of his pack make some interesting obstacles to their relationship.
Lore and Talia’s burgeoning relationship is tried and tested against an action-packed backdrop of evil vampire sorcerers, deadly (yet hot) Roman vampire assassins, plots to kill the vampire queen and plans ruin the first political elections with a vampire candidate. There is certainly no shortage of danger and excitement anywhere in the story. To my personal taste the fantasy action seemed more compelling than the romance in places but the occasions where my attention flagged were few, so it’s not a major gripe. I think it may have been that whilst Lore and Talia had no shortage of obstacles to their happy-ever-after I never once doubted that the HEA would occur – leaving me lacking the heart-wrench that comes with a seemingly truly impossible romance.
All-in-all there is plenty to like about Frostbound and the book shouldn’t fail to please both new readers and existing fans. Vampire fantasy fans are especially well served by Frostbound which has an abundance of diverse vampire characters for readers to enjoy.
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