9065265Retribution is the 20th book in Sherrilyn Kenyon‘s Dark Hunter series, which also features Were and Dream Hunters, and it is unfortunately one of those few books that I must give less than a five star rating.  More like three.

Normally, I devour Kenyon’s books.  They’re sexy, fast paced, action packed, and generally speaking everything you would want a romance book to be.  Normally she delivers.

Now don’t get me wrong, she delivers here too, but it takes a while to get the ball rolling on this one.  I didn’t really start liking it till almost the end, and by the end I was like “OMG that was fantastic!’

Retribution features the cowboy (literally, he was born, raised, and reborn in the Wild West) Jess ‘Sundown’ Brady, squaring off against Abigail, the descendent of his long lost love Matilda who just so happens to want his death because she saw him kill her parents.

Or at least she thinks she did…

Abigail winds up being raised by Apollites after her parents were murdered, and lo and behold, they twist her pretty little mind into thinking that Dark Hunters kill humans, blame the deaths on the Apollites, Daimons don’t exist, and Dark Hunters in general are mean, nasty, viscious blood thirty crazy murdering bastards who deserve everything they get.

So Abigail goes on her own crusade, killing every Dark Hunter she can, hoping to run across Brady one day and take his life too.  Along the way she manages to kill one of four Guardians; you know, the kind destined to guard something really, really nasty from being released unto the world and destroying all mankind.

So she essentially kick starts the apocalypse, and winds up a ‘prisoner’ of Brady’s, and off they go together to try and save the world and fall in love as they were destined to do.

And I do mean destined.  Those two have a pair of really old souls…

So that’s the gist of Retribution.  End of the world apocalypse, according to the beliefs of the Native American mythology this time round.  So far Kenyon has touched on Celtic, Sumerian, Greek, Atlantean, and now Native American mythos in her books, along with a fair amount of demonology to boot, so needless to say her books are never boring.  You learn a little something new every time.

But something just seemed off to me about this one.  I think it was because Abigail caved so easily in her feelings for Brady.  I mean, one second she’s hating his guts, wanting to spread sed innards all over the walls, and the next she’s mounting him in a car wash.  The physical connection, the ‘OMG I actually love this guy’ revelation…came on too quickly for me.  She just rolled too easily into it.

It might have been better if she was more like ‘Ok, I still hate you but I can’t deny I’m attracted to you’ when she bedded him the first time.  That would have been a bit more understandable and believable.  You can be physically attracted to someone and still hate them before that hate melts into something more.

I dunno, their whole relationship up until the end of the book just seemed off.  By the end I guess it all makes sense, but you tend to focus on the past and future of their souls rather than the present.

Good beginning, squishy middle, but a fab ending.  Plus by the end of Retribution you realize why book 21 is called Time Untime.

Enjoy folks.

Next up: The Kingless Land by Ed Greenwood

49386Aglirta is known as the Kingless Land–once prosperous and peaceful, it has now fallen into lawlessness, studded with feuding baronies engaged in a constant state of war. The only hope for peace lies in the legend of the Sleeping King: destined to rise and restore peace when the Dwaerindim stones are recovered.

Lady Embra Silvertree is the sorceress daughter of a bellicose baron with an eye towards world domination. She has been imprisoned by her father who hopes to use her as a magical battery to fortify his castle. When a pair of good natured rogues attempt to steal one of her jewel encrusted gowns, they are quickly enlisted as allies to help her escape and, with the aid of a shape-shifting cleric, to seek out the Dwaerindim.