Friday, April 20, 2018

Review: The Claiming (Bound Gods Book 6) by Adrienne Wilder

the claimingTitle ~ The Claiming (Bound Gods Book 6)

Author ~ Adrienne Wilder 

Published ~ 29th March 2018

Genre ~ Dark M/M Romance, Paranormal/Fantasy, BDSM





The Claiming: Book Six in the Bound Gods Series. This is NOT a stand alone book.
What begins as a day of celebration, the Claiming of two Doxies to a single god, transforms into a spiraling path of cataclysmic change.
Hearts will break.
Friendships will shatter.
And betrayal to those closest to the heart of the Association is only a small price to pay for the protection of the gods’ most precious possessions…
Note: This book ends on a cliffhanger to book Seven.


Debra’s Review

We are back with Leo, Kaleb and Aaron in this installment and boy does it start off hot! Kaleb and Aaron are preparing for the Claiming banquet and rare as they are, this one will be historic as Leo will be claiming two Doxies - something that is unheard of. If you've made it this far in the series, or even just read the blurb, you know that bad things have been brewing both within the Association and outside of it and one of those bad things comes to fruition on what should be the most joyous of occasions.

That bad, horrible, gut-wrenching thing sends Kaleb into a tailspin, feeling betrayed and hurt. Even though Aaron has been a big help, Kaleb still hasn't fully accepted what it is to be a Doxie and he lashes out at Leo in his anger and despair. Leo's desire to keep Kaleb for himself is at odds with his realization that without sharing Kaleb with the other gods, Kaleb will suffer and likely die if anything happens to Leo. This results in Leo making a decision that requires him to intensify Kaleb's Doxie training. Meanwhile, the Chimera has his own plan to protect Kaleb. The creature has even more power than anyone knows about and his foremost intent is to keep Kaleb safe, but the methods could destroy him instead.

There is so much that has been building in the books and it's clear that Adrienne Wilder is not going to go easy on anyone. This one hurt and left me with a need for vengeance. My heart broke about 20 percent of the way in, but that had nothing on what he pulls out and hits us with further on. It's a good thing I had some online support while reading this one.

Aside from the emotional devastation, these books are heavy on kinky sex so please heed the entertaining warnings at the start of each book. Pain, fear and humiliation are the key to training doxies and Kaleb’s training is ramped up here. Leo likes nothing more than Kaleb's pain and Kaleb struggles so much with his warring desire for it and his humiliation at it. There is also plenty of sharing, some interspecies loving and mythical creatures doing their thing. It's definitely not a series for the squeamish.

You should not read this book without having read the prior stories. There is some serious mythology, world building and complex storylines about the creation of the doxies, the place of the gods and the Association in the world, and the upcoming potentially cataclysmic Tide which is likely to rain havoc on everything. This all leads me to Alton, the creator and head of the Association. From the very first book, The Chimera, Alton has existed in a gray area for me. His intent seems to be to protect the doxies and thereby ensure the existence of the gods, but his scientific meddling has its victims. Every time we learn more of what he's been doing, I've felt more uneasy. I'm just going to say Alton has officially crossed the line for me and leave it at that so as not to spoil anything or just let this review devolve into an expletive filled rant, but I really need to see him suffer for what he's done.

The timeline here runs concurrent with Crocuta Crocuta (Book 5) and picks up shortly after Reborn (Book 4). I would love to talk about everything that happens here but that would spoil too many things. There are appearances from many of the prior characters including Sonny and his bad attitude, Zen, and The Priest. We are introduced to a few more gods including Taurus who I can't wait to see more of and, happily, will also feature in the next book.

I think Adrienne Wilder did his best to emotionally destroy his readers with this book. One thing after another, each worse and, as forewarned, ending on a cliff-hanger. The running storyline has held my interest through six books and doesn't show any signs of slowing. With all the betrayal, the hints of danger to come from men, monsters, gods and the universe I'm not sure how much more intense this series can get, but I'm buckled in and ready. This ends on a cliffhanger alright, but don't fear - the next installment, Purgatory, is already available and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Purchase Link



The Bound Gods Series


Bound Gods Book 1: The Chimera

Kaleb Holten’s father’s debt to an underground group The Association has just been called in, and the man can’t pay the loan. Instead of turning over his wealth, he releases his son and Kaleb finds himself thrown into a world where a class of men see themselves as untouchable. Going so far as to call themselves gods.
After the Great Economic Collapse there are no laws that cannot be broken. And Kaleb is forced into a ten-year sentence of servitude where he will have no say, no rights, no value and yet be coveted and protected as if he were a priceless treasure.
Leo Roan, has slipped the noose the Association bound him with by breaking his addiction to ambrosia and Kaleb Holten was supposed to be his last assignment as a doxie Master. But something about the boy begins weaving a new net that will not only ensnare him but the conscious darkness inside, that craves pain, agony, suffering, and death.



Bound Gods Book 2: Chained

Leo has been sent on a mission to find a missing doxie. And after weeks at Leo’s side, Kaleb is suddenly alone. Free of the cruelty the Chimera, he should be rejoicing. But instead, he becomes aware of a void in his heart, he never knew was there until Leo wasn’t there to fill it. When Leo returns Kaleb is faced with the choice of disobeying Leo—forcing him to take ambrosia—or risk losing him forever.
With a single flower, Leo is back under the control of the Association. And what kind of punishment is suitable for a doxie who disobeys his Master, even though it saves his life? Leo has a list of ideas, starting with Kaleb’s first visit to a Gathering.
At the Gathering of the gods, doxies, and mortal men, Kaleb first lays eyes on Aaron. The beautiful doxie is presented by the god Sol. There he will be fed the ambrosia, Awakened to his journey of immortality, and then serve his god, Sol, for all to see. Only the horror of Aaron’s treatment by Sol makes Kaleb realize monsters come in many forms.
And not all of them hunt doxies.



Bound Gods Book 3: Betrayed

The stakes are rising.
As the god-son closes in leaving more bodies in its wake, treason and betrayal against the Association is unveiled. An inquiry for the Goddesses has been called, threatening everything Leo holds dear.
And the Chimera is not about to let go without a fight.
Despite the dangers lurking in the shadows, Leo wants his doxie Kaleb to think of only one thing. Him. His training. His purpose. And embrace the reality of what he is and not be ashamed of his attraction to Aaron, the doxie tossed aside by Sol.
Attraction is one thing. Bringing the boy to their bed is something else entirely. Kaleb can’t possibly want anyone but Leo. A lie Kaleb will pay dearly for. Penance Leo will be more than happy to deliver.
But penance for a lie will pale in comparison to what Kaleb must do to keep Sol from taking Aaron away, and invoking the Chimera into a lifetime in chains.


rebornBound Gods Book 4: Reborn

Leo promised to keep Aaron and Kaleb forever. Yet he’s left them with nothing more than a note with instructions to obey the commands of another god? A god who has the key to Kaleb’s collar. A god who will tell them nothing about what’s happened to Leo or where he’s gone.
Kaleb and Aaron both fear the worst. That Leo has not abandoned them, but left them because he won’t be coming back. Not because he doesn’t want to, but because he can’t.
Too many have died and the god-son is growing stronger. With no way for any god to track it, Leo has only one choice left. Fight fire with fire.
Or in this case Chimera against Chimera.
The problem is Leo has always maintained control of the beast within him. Using its natural senses to do what no other can. In order to stand a chance at tracking and killing the god-son Leo must give the Chimera within complete control.
And the Chimera might not let him return if he does.


crocutaBound Gods Book 5: Crocuta Crocuta

For a god, what could be closer to heaven than living in a safe haven like Sanctuary, with an endless supply of ambrosia, delivered by the beautiful bodies of the Doxies in Alton’s harem?
But unlike the majority of the gods in Sanctuary who are less than human, Cerberus isn’t exotic or fantastical. His appearance, his…habits…have become the horror stories whispered on the lips of Doxies.
And while Cerberus might be immortal, his pride is not indestructible. Seeing the love of a Doxie for a monster like the Chimera, shatters it.
A chance encounter with an undocumented Doxie named Owen begins to transform Cerberus’s life. At least until Alton removes Owen from Cerberus’s care, banning the god from training the boy—to protect him from Cerberus’s animal nature.
In reality, Alton's motives are far more frightening. And the truth could kill Cerberus and Owen both.


purgatoryBound Gods Book 7: Purgatory

This is a part of an ongoing series and not a stand-alone book. Reading these books out of order isn’t advised.
Purgatory is where gods go to die, imprisoned for their violent crimes, sentenced to never see the light of day again. Trapped within the stone catacombs are impossible, dangerous, barely human gods.
Gods of legend.
And with the potent ambrosia Aaron produces, those gods might soon walk free. If they do, blood will rain and hell will be unleashed.
Trigger Warning: This product contains nuts.
Oh, and it’s the second-half of a three part installment and ends on a ditchhanger.
Or maybe even a gullyhanger.
But definitely nothing nerve wrenching enough to qualify as a cliffhanger.



Connect with Adrienne Wilder



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