Title: Fallen (Kingdome of Blood & Forest #3)
Author: Raven Stone
Heat: 2 Flames
Rating: 4 Hearts
Synopsis via Goodreads:
He will be mine.
Aleric came to my town with evil on his mind. I know it. I just have to prove it.
When my investigation leads to a man tied up in a warehouse in a rather unique state, I realize I’ve found the key. I know Aleric wants the handsome human, so I claim Owen for myself. I also place him under my protection, even though I know Aleric will be coming for him. In fact, I’m counting on it.
Aleric, out of control, will give me exactly what I need to put him away.
Unfortunately, my captain has a few choice words about what I’ve done. He insists that I call my old friend, John Degarr, for help.
I haven’t talked to Degarr in a long time, and the sound of his voice brings the memories rushing back. Degarr saved me. He changed my life forever. And now, as our vampire king’s Head of Security, he has the power to help me again.
I’ve also wanted him for years.
So it’s probably forgivable that I don’t put up too much of a fight when he says he’s coming to help me in person, instead of over the phone.
And after all, nothing’s really changed. In spite of the rumors, I know Degarr is straight. He’s still the same man who turned me down years ago. Nothing will happen between us.
Review: Fallen is a slow burn paranormal romance featuring a bisexual vampire with multiple love interests, a gay human caught in the wrong place for the right reasons, and a couple of vampires with plans of their own.
This is a new to me author. It doesn’t appear that she has much of a public profile other than a small profile on amazon and her own website, so I’d not heard of her before, nor was I sure what to expect. I’m happy to report that I was pleasantly surprised by this one. While it is the third in the series, it can be read as a standalone. I did not feel as if I was missing anything during the read, with the exception of one part, but we’ll get to that later.
The story starts with our main character, Kai, who is a vampire, and part of a law enforcement type team for vampires, in a warehouse on an investigation.
In this world, there are different levels of vampires. Kai is a good man, powerful, but not one of the elite. However, he is a Fallen. A fallen is a special type of vampire, more primal and capable of more power than the average vampire. Figuratively and literally. The man he is after is Aleric, a cruel, heartless Fallen out to make a name for himself. When he finds a man named Owen in the warehouse, held captive by Aleric, he knows that by claiming Owen, he will drive Aleric to the extreme, drawing him out and making it easy to capture him.
Kai has made it his mission to catch him and bring him down, metaphorically or permanently, he’s not picky. His captain has warned him off the latter, that power reserved specifically by the King. Which leads us to an old friend, and our love interest, John Degarr. Degarr is the King’s head of security, and is the only one allowed to kill other vampires along with The White Guard (King’s security team.)
Degarr and Kai share a past, an unpleasant one in which they bonded over during a difficult time in their lives. (This is the only part in which I was a little confused. I didn’t understand how or why they ended up on “The Island” together. I must’ve missed it at some point in my reading.) Afterwards they went their separate ways and had not spoken in years until Kai needs his help with this case. Old feelings are dredged up with the arrival of Degarr, along with some … surprises. In this world, polyamory is a regular practice. The Fallen are not wired for monogamy. They maintain relationships with other paranormal creatures and humans alike, men and women. That said, the humans must undergo an examination so to speak, an interview of sorts to seek approval to harbor the knowledge of this paranormal world they live alongside.
Despite all this, it still throws Kai for a loop when Degarr, a man known for his solitary ways, shows up with his mates, plural. He struggles with pain of rejection and jealousy for a while. Little does he know that there is a place for him with Degarr and his family, but it takes him a while to understand and accept that he deserves it.
These two do get their HEA but it is a very slow burn type of story. There is very little heat in this one, but somehow, I didn’t mind all that much. What I did not particularly care for was that the heat there was was not with our love interest. It was with other side characters, all m/m but there was very little with Degarr. (I think there was one scene.) I liked him as a character, and calming presence for Kai. I would’ve liked to have seen more of the dynamic between them as well as the others. I guess I am not very polyamorous? I don’t know. I like reading about it, but I do like to see my OTP have more interaction than a kiss or three.
There is romance though. Kai’s thoughts betray him. He’s a romantic at heart. He truly loves John.
All I could think of were Degarr’s arms around me, and the sound of his thundering heart loud in my ears.
Maybe it was because of the look on his face. The love and happiness I saw in him when he looked at her. I wanted that for him. I wanted him to be happy, as much I wanted his heart always to beat.
– Sigh –
Even if it’s not about them, it still makes me swoon a bit. I admit.
Incidentally, there is an author’s note in the back of the book that we do indeed get more from Degarr & Kai and Degarr & Owen. I went back and looked, so I am quite happy about that! I’ll forgive the lack of heat. For now.
Since that was my only real criticism of the book, I enjoyed everything else. Once the author laid the background in the first few chapters, it took off and I had a hard time putting it down. Then again, I love vampires and there aren’t many new stories out there that are m/m pairings that I haven’t already read. I will devour all m/m vampire stories if they are well written.
It’s really hard to discuss this one without giving away spoilers. I don’t want to give away too much. I loved the slight differences the author made for the vampires. I liked the idea of the Fallen and the very slight twist at the end. Ms. Stone includes worldbuilding that I cannot possibly cover, but it was interesting to me and I very much enjoyed learning about it.
I would read other stories by this author, and I am excited to see more of these two in future books!
This title will be available on May 24, 2022 through Amazon. It is currently available for preorder.
Purchase Link | Amazon
Thank you to the author and Gay Romance Reviews for providing a copy of this book for me to review. A positive review was not promised in return.