This review is based on a complimentary book I received from Author, Bec McMaster. It is an honest and voluntary review. The complimentary receipt of it in no way affected my review or rating. Nobody's Hero by Bec McMaster
Series: Burned Lands #1
Also by this author: Kiss of Steel
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Post-Apocalyptic
Release Date: May 23, 2016
Publisher: Lochaber Press Pty Ltd
Source: Author, Bec McMaster
Purchase at: Amazon ◊ Barnes & Noble ◊ Book Depository ◊ Kobo ◊ IndieBound
First rule of surviving the Wastelands: don't be caught out after the sun sets...
After her father was killed in a warg attack, Riley Kincaid was forced to stand on her own two feet in the brutal Wastelands she calls home. She knows how to survive, but when a lapse in judgment leaves her out after dark, Riley realizes she's in trouble. The sun has set, the monsters are out to play, and there's a band of reivers heading straight for her settlement. Riley needs to warn her people, but that's before she runs a handsome stranger down in her jeep. A stranger who might not be a man after all...
Kidnapping her was the worst mistake he ever made.
Dangerous outlaw, Lucius Wade, lives only for revenge. But when he kidnaps Riley in order to lure an old friend into a trap, suddenly the tables are turned. Riley has no intentions of being bait, and she tempts him in ways he hasn't felt for a long time. He's never played the hero, but suddenly a part of him wants to. Even as he knows there's no point.
When dangerous secrets are revealed, and Luc realizes an old enemy is on his trail, he's forced to change his plans. The hunter is suddenly the hunted, and the only allies he has... is a stubborn blonde who thinks there should be more to live for than revenge, and the ex-friend who shoved a knife in his back ten years ago.
I received this book from Bec McMaster because I subscribe to her newsletter. What a phenomenal present for me because I am a huge fan of her work and I am grateful. I was introduced to her work with the book Kiss of Steel from the London Steampunk series. From the book forward I will absolutely read anything Bec McMaster. There are still several books that I haven’t read so maybe their reviews will make it to this blog.
Nobody’s Hero is a post-apocalyptic story set in a world of drought-stricken wastelands in the year 2147. A meteor had crashed in this world and it has caused several catastrophic events that affected the environment, inhabitants, and the terrain. Once a complete continent before the Great Divide that split the continent in two, the wastelands are on the side that was without the cities. When I am visualizing this world, I see it as similar to the Mad Max franchise by George Miller.
I did mention the inhabitants were affected and not just from lack of resources, although that is a big impact as the resources are dwindling. After the crash, there was a long period of darkness that blanketed this world and it caused the near extinction of most animals and affected the vegetation. Of course, there were some human survivors and they have joined together to live in scattered settlements. Hmmm, so why am I mentioning humans specifically? <**devious smirk**>
When the meteor crashed, it hit a government facility that had been doing research trials on humans and creating creatures later referred to as wargs. Think werewolves but not the kind that are men that shift to wolf. The warg lose their humanity after they are infected. They are cruel, barbaric and driven by their primal instincts. There are also reivers, these are the worst sort of human beings that have very little humanity. These people formed bands after the crash with the purpose of raping and pillaging every settlement that they choose to. Then there are the revenants, can we say zombies? Oh yes we can, these creatures were infected by something not of that world and turn into flesh eating walking dead.
There is quite the world that has been built and it is scary. It is a dog eat dog world and they have no time for anything but survival. I love this world! It is raw, terrifying, and sadistic. Every moment is “Am I going to live through this?” At any point in time a person can be assaulted by the wargs, reivers, or revenants. No encounter would be a good one. Which is why when Riley Kincaid meets Lucius Wade she knows that she is in trouble. He is nothing like what she has ever seen before because he looks like a man but is really a warg and he is kidnapping her to use as leverage to seek his revenge. Luc is capable of retaining his human shape due to a talisman that he wears that holds the warg shifting at bay. Without it he would have no control. He is the most dangerous man and it terrifies Riley to no end.
Unfortunately, Riley is put into a situation where her only hope of freeing a friend is Luc. They make a shaky truce where they both will get what they want. Not used to trusting others this duo has to work together to stay alive. What started out simple quickly becomes complicated. Their two worlds collide and they are forced to decide if they can truly trust each other in order to protect what matters most.
In addition to the action, which is non-stop, there is an immediate attraction between these characters and that could be a turn off to some. It didn’t bother me because realistically he’s hot and Riley is attracted to the fact that Luc treats her as his equal and not that she should just be home taking care of the homestead. Like most men in this world do. Uh yeah, that is very attractive in a man. For Luc, well he’s a warg and there aren’t many women around who would talk to him let alone respect him and she’s beautiful. Plus, it’s a post-apocalyptic world. So, the insta-love-attraction I think makes sense and it has its eye-roll moments but I found the attraction between these two characters to be steamy with a definite heat factor. There were sexy times that are pretty intense as well.
I was appalled at times, captivated almost every moment, and kept in suspense. This is way more than a paranormal romance. For me it is the world development that caused me to not put this book down. I want more of this world and the characters in it! I highly, highly recommend this book and big mega yay that the second in the series is already out.
*Thank you to Bec McMaster for this complimentary copy of Nobody’s Hero*