Author: Lora Leigh
Book Name: Bengal’s Quest
Rating: Didn’t Like
Blurb: He was a shadow, ever shifting and insinuating, able to blend in everywhere and anywhere. The elusive ideal conceived and created by the Genetics Council, he went by just as many names as he had identities—the last one being Gideon.
Now calling himself Graeme, he hides in plain sight, terrifyingly close to his goal. A rogue Bengal Breed, he has loyalties to no one but himself. And he has a need for vengeance that surges hot and swift through his veins.
Graeme plans to exact an extreme and ruthless vendetta against those who wronged him—Breed and human alike. All will suffer his wrath: those who created him, those who pretended to love him, and those who betrayed him.
That includes the one at the center of it all: a seductive, enigmatic woman helpless against the man whose desire is just as desperate as his need to destroy.
And he’s on her scent…
Review: It is kind of hard to review this book without some heavy commentary on the series as a whole. Originally, I had liked the concept and the world that this series exists in, but there have always been bits that I haven’t been all that thrilled with. As I’ve continued to read the series, those things continue to be issues and other, new things keep popping up.
It is hard to follow along from story to story, even reading in order, because sometimes there are huge time gaps on the story arch between stories, sometimes you end up in an entirely different group of characters with new connections and histories that the reader has never been introduced to, so it feels like you’ve missed a lot, especially when the last book left you hanging on something and it never gets addressed. Sometimes there are just some random things that get tossed in there and it all ends up being confusing because the purpose isn’t defined or explained. I guess you just have to assume that it is something of the world the story is set in, but it is hard to understand because of the lack of definition.
One of my biggest problems with this series, and this book is no exception, is that almost 100% of the time, the relationships start out on a rather antagonistical foot. In some cases, they start out from a point of out and out hate. Because of that, almost every single one of them end up with the initial sexual encounters coming across as forced, not consensual, with a whole lot more continuing throughout the majority of the book, not just the first time.
A series aspect in this world is this mating hormone thing, which is supposed to go a long way to explaining some of the issues with the forced concept, but honestly? It is just a date rape drug as far as I’m concerned. That is not sexy. Taking a person’s will away from them by any means is not sexy. I don’t really care if it is a “biological imperative” and something that is created naturally, it still takes away a persons will and ability to decide for them self what they do or do not want. This bothers me on so many levels, but I sort of skimmed past some of that because I still liked the story beyond that part.
This story in particular just kind of pissed me off (and isn’t the only one that has done so). I don’t think it is remotely attractive to have a romance story where one character out and out hates the other in the beginning, yet later in the story it is all “Oh, but deep down I really love them” later on. Especially when you start throwing a sexual relationship in there. It just does not work for me in any way.
The last thing that really drove me nuts with this book is that there were some pretty glaring editing problems that kept tripping me up, forcing me to reread parts to try and figure out what certain sentences or paragraphs were actually meant to say. Along with the editing (have no clue who’s job it is to push an author for variety), and this is also a series peeve for me, is the constant and repetitive use of certain words and phrases in specific scenarios. If I had to read the words flesh or pleasure-pain in one more sex scene, I’d have burned the damn thing.
I came very close several times to just putting this down and not reading. I had already passed it up on my list several times before I decided I just wanted to get it over with (should have known I really wasn’t all that jazzed to read it in the first place at that point). Between issues I’ve had with the series in the past and issues with this book in particular (which was actually pretty boring in comparison to some of the others), I think I’m done with this series. I know I missed several books throughout the series up until this one, but I just do not have the desire to suffer through one more. Besides, by the time you get to book 30 in a series (really?), you are at or beyond the cookie cutter stage and there just isn’t much new you can offer unless you are seriously damn good at what you do and are a creative genius and that is not the case here.