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Monday, April 21, 2014

Kept by Shawntelle Madison

After reading COVETED, I dove into KEPT since it, too, had been sitting in my (virtual) TBR pile for ages. I wasn't sure what to expect from the love triangle and Natalya's continued drive to rejoin the pack but I was confident that Shawntelle Madison would deliver a great story. And KEPT is a fun book. There's lots of excitement, as Natalya prepares for the trials, the physical tests she must take to re-enter the pack. But Natalya's training is pushed to the back burner when her father doesn't come home after trying to pay his moon debt to Roscoe, the alpha of another pack. Nat takes it upon herself to investigate since her brother's baby is due at any moment and ends up on a very bizarre road trip, complete with mystery package and support group in tow.

I really enjoyed this storyline because it gives us more insight into the werewolf world. Madison's werewolves have a Code, which they take very seriously. It governs every behaviour and decision. A moon debt is a Big Deal and the stakes are quite high since failure results in death. And the drive is quite entertaining because Nick, Heidi, and Abby end up accompanying Natalya on her drive. I won't say too much about the details but I can promise you that the Coveted world mythology grows significantly as a result.

Another great part of KEPT is the fact that Natalya's struggles with her anxiety and OCD continue to be depicted realistically. She hasn't gotten better overnight. In fact, it's a constant battle for her, which seems to be an honest portrayal of the problem. As someone who does not suffer from these types of illnesses, it's hard for me to know if it's completely accurate but Madison has created a very sympathetic and likeable heroine in Natalya and her problems are just one aspect of her character. Thankfully, Natalya is making some progress and is able to push her worries aside in times of crisis, which shows a lot of growth. And it's growth she needs to face the pack's trials, which involve a 10-mile race, an obstacle course, and a one-on-one fight. I figured Madison would drag things out but she brings the matter to a head in the final part of KEPT.

The downside for me was the love story. I still don't really like Thorn, though we do finally get an explanation for why he left five years ago and never came back. It's not what I expected and it makes him a more sympathetic character, which is good. And it creates a whole new aspect of the world to explore. I can only hope that Madison will continue with this plot thread because I'd love to know more about this side of things. On the plus side, however, we do get a partial resolution for the romantic elements, which was a pleasant surprise.

KEPT is a strong follow-up to COVETED, the first book in the series. Madison is a talented author and she's assembled a memorable cast of characters. We have a little while to wait before the next story in this world but I'm sure it will be a doozy.

Read an excerpt



Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

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2 People left their mark' :

  1. Very nice review Jenn, thank you. I hope to read this series someday.

  2. I hope you'll enjoy it when you do!