Review - "Enduring Instincts" by S.J. Frost
Fantastic story for Daniel and Ryu
Very Highly Recommended
Daniel Valente is struggling. After centuries of being the sometime lover of his Master, vampire Titus Antonius Calidus, he is on his own. Cal - Titus - has met his love, Andreas, and the relationship between Daniel and Titus had to change. Daniel ventures back to England, trying to find some normalcy for himself.
But the feeling of being watched, followed, sends him back to America and Titus. But Titus has a plan in mind. He calls in Ryunosuke Kimura, the Japanese Samurai vampire who has loved Daniel for untold years. Because the threat to Daniel is very real. Isaac, the leader of a group of rogue younger vampires, is seeking revenge on Daniel for what he did to his lover, Troy.
At long last the passion between the two men flares and becomes something real, something...possible. Something fine. But then, he threat to Daniel and his friends explodes and puts Daniel is the worst possible straits of his ling life.
Will the lovers be split? Will Ryu lose his love forever?
These two characters drew my attention in "Natural Instinct", the excellent first book in this series, and I was thrilled they were getting their own tale. Ah, but then, S.J. Frost created this fantastic, touching and heartfelt story for Daniel and Ryu, and it is one of those rare sequels that surpasses the original.
Daniel is a fascinating character - originally introduced as a somewhat capricious, self-centered diva, he was hard to take. But Ms. Frost kept adding shading and layers and texture to him, and he wormed his way into my heart. I wanted a happy ending for him.
Ryu is the quiet heart of this tale. His backstory is so original, so tragic. And the very real longing he felt, but hid, for Daniel was beautifully told. The love story wove its way around me and pulled me in, mainly because the strengths these two men have compliment each other so well. And the needs and wants make the romantic in me cry out for them to be happy.
But what really impresses me is the time Ms. Frost takes to tell her stories. There is nothing wasted, no red herrings, nothing superfluous in the telling. Just well told, lovingly crafted stories with fully imagined characters who make me root for them.
As a reader, this is nirvana. Ambrosia.
I can't wait to see where Ms. Frost takes me next, because I guarantee this - I will be along for the ride.