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Deadly Pursuit by Nina Croft
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Suffocating under the regiment and routine of being the chosen high priestess, the heroine uses the first opportunity she gets to escape out into the world. Naïve and innocent of what the real world is like, she finds herself on a ship under the rule of a vampire who scares her to death. But disguised as a boy, the heroine is finally able to experience freedom and though she convinces herself that she'll eventually go back to the Church, she revels in the open air and vows to experience all she can while she can. This includes feeling the touch of a man, whom is more wolf than man. The hero is not a good guy. As an assassin he's killed without conscious or remorse and the idea of being stuck on a ship in space with a blood sucker and a doe eyed little girl makes him sick to the stomach. He's never been one to desire the company of others and his surly attitude doesn't endear him to the other members of the crew either. The girl is obviously got a crush on him, she practically throws herself at him at every opportunity but he makes sure to turn her down every time. He tells himself that he doesn't find her attractive or that she's too much work, too easy to caught feelings but deep inside he fights off the idea that she affects him more than any other woman ever has. He feels unwelcome compulsions to care for her, to protect her and mark her as his woman. But when the Church comes looking for their lost priestess, she asks him to take her back to spare the crew the danger of having her on board. He does it, though the pain in his chest urges him to take her far away from those people. His instincts are right and he returns to find her beaten and nearly raped. Right then as he carries her back to the ship, he recognizes that she's become to mean something far deeper to him than he's comfortable with. When his enemies come calling and he's captured, he goes willingly to protect the heroine and the crew. Just when he's found something worth living for after so many years longing for death, he's also found someone worth dying for but the heroine is no longer the meek girl but a strong woman. And she'll fight tooth and nail for the man she loves. I liked this book so much more than the first in the series. I thought this story had what the first one lacked. Which was heart and vulnerable characters. The anti-hero who was really a good guy underneath and the heroine who grew up sheltered and coveted willing to kill the men who hurt her and the hero. They both had such a marvelous balance of good and bad, light and dark. Though they were both quick witted and had snappy comebacks, they had substance and it was far from all fun and games. I loved how reluctantly possessive the hero was. You could see inside his true intentions and into his heart even before he really came to grips with his feelings. But he was never fake. When the heroine was being an idiot or being a cry baby, he would call her on it. It wasn't to be a dick, it was to make her stronger and it worked. The story was great and the action was intense. The romance was a slow bloom but it was genuine and hard won. I was pleasantly surprised that I liked this book as much as I did because as I said, the first in the series left something to be desired. Yet I really enjoyed this addition and it gave me interest to read the coming 3rd book. ( )
  Eden00 | May 14, 2016 |
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

DEADLY PURSUIT is an excellent paranormal science fiction adventure. The world building is inspired with shifters of various sorts, vampires, aliens, living under two powerful sources; The Collective (a large government agency) run by an immortal elite and the Church of Everlasting Life. I love the idea of having all of our familiar paranormal creatures having adventures in space. The plot gets pretty twisty very quickly and really has no dull moments. The romance is a different one especially since Alex is introduced posing as a young boy. It actually took me awhile to adjust to the fact that Alex is indeed an adult woman and that no Jon is not going after a child because I would have stopped reading if that were true. Age and gender confusion aside there are some pretty big hurdles these two have to get through before they actually start their romance. The frustrating part was that they kept getting interrupted any time they start to make some progress in their relationship. They both develop, grow, and learn about themselves and eachother pretty well. Its a slowly building romance with a ton of frustrating interruptions but worthwhile for their happily ever after. DEADLY PURSUIT is an entertaining addition to the genre of sci-fi that is equal parts adventure and romance. ( )
  kryssi | Nov 28, 2014 |
Firefly with a paranormal twist. Better than [b:Break Out|11829006|Break Out (Blood Hunter, #1)|Nina Croft|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1308940767s/11829006.jpg|16783737], Deadly Pursuit continues from where BO we left off.

Al, the small teenage boy, turns out to be Alexia High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life, the 24 year old woman. Suffocating from boredom and lack of control over her high profile life she escapes, disguises herself as a boy and ends up on the spaceship El Cazador.

Both the Collective (people who've taken the expensive immortality treatment Meridian) and now the Church (believe in immortality of the soul which goes to heaven when they physically die) are chasing the crew for the recapture of Jon the werewolf assassin and the return of the High Priestess.

Despite her deception, the crew immediately defend Alexia. She's one of them and they're not going to hand her over if she doesn't want to go. Jon, on the other hand, is wanted for an unknown reason, pointing to a conspiracy so they're not giving him up after they were hired to risk their lives breaking him out of prison until they get some answers.

Alexia is instantly attracted to Jon. Unfortunately her disguise worked only too well, looking like a scruffy child. Her innocence is compounded by the fact that she's a virgin who's lived a sheltered life, and Jon doesn't do virgins. He's a rough, tough, manly 6ft 4 werewolf to her doll-like 5ft 1. He'd break her. But she knew what she wanted and was determined to experience as much of life as could before she was forced to return to her duty so the predator became the prey. Poor man, he had no chance. At least he has a new pack now i.e. the crew and a buddy in Rico despite him being a vampire.

Similarities to Firefly (Rico is Mal with fangs and a lust for blood) and the introduction of shapeshifters, my favourite supernaturals, meant I quite liked this. However, I'm slightly uncomfortable with how Alexia, seconds after being almost raped and killed on two occasions, jumped her mate-to-be's bones. That struck me as wrong since she was beaten and manhandled. I doubt I'd feel up to it if I was in her shoes.

Tannis is next to be matched up with her crush Callum Meridian, the man who first took the immortality treatment and has been transformed by it. They're hired as his bodyguards in the next book.

***Many thanks to Entangled Publishing for providing the ARC via Netgalley for an honest review.*** ( )
  Cynical_Ames | Sep 23, 2014 |
The second book in Blood Hunter series is an intriguing and exciting read that gets the reader’s adrenalin pumping.

Werewolf and assassin, Jon is used to working alone and now he’s stuck on the El Cazador while he figures out what he is supposed to know that puts him on everyone’s most wanted dead list. High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life and runaway, Alexia is finally having fun, she never meant to runaway and is planning on returning one day. And she has decided that Jon would be a very exciting companion only Jon gave up being a protector a long time ago.

This fast paced and stimulating plot is brought to life with well written and vivid scenes that put the reader right in the middle of the action and keeps them on the edge of their seat. The fascinating journey has lots of surprises and twists as the characters try to outrun and outmaneuver their enemies.

All the characters are strong and compelling with lots of charisma that captures the reader’s imagination with snarky and fun dialogue that adds depth to this delightful adventure. The attraction between Alexia and Jon is hot and steamy, despite the fact that Jon tries his best to stay a lone wolf and the sex scenes leave the reader sizzling.

The author conveys all the emotions and personalities with intensity that it makes it easy for the reader to connect to the characters and feel as if they are a part of the story.

This is an exciting journey for a ragtag crew of misfits that has futuristic, science fiction, fantasy, paranormal and romance elements that come together to make this a must read series. The author does a brilliant job of combining all the elements and blending several conflicts into wonderfully entertaining stories that the reader doesn’t want to end. ( )
  Evampire | Dec 19, 2013 |
Action-packed, this story is brimming with an odd assortment of characters. This is the second book Nina Croft’s Blood Hunter series; and in this episode, the crew of the El Cazador get fleshed-out a bit more. While each of them still have their own demons and mysterious pasts, the author does dole out some juicy morsels which serves to keep interest on high alert while satisfying that basic desire to discover more about the unique characters I have come to care about.
Chased by two wealthy and highly motivated factions, the ship plays hide and seek in space, barely escaping several close encounters before the final nail-biting showdown. Jon, a lone wolf assassin finally begins to question some of his strongly-held beliefs, and to hope that maybe this time he will be able to prevent the pending catastrophe. However, fate and one pint-sized, curvy priestess may be his complete undoing. Determined to make up for lost time, Alexia, knows that the brooding, over-protective werewolf is worth all the effort she has expended, and then some.
When you are crew, you belong. Jon begins to accept his new, unexpected circumstances and learns first-hand what it means to be crew. A quick death beats a slow, lingering demise in the Meridian mines, afterall. This engaging story is another winner. If you have read the first book, Breakout, then this will be another treat for you to read. However, this book does stand alone quite nicely, so do not be afraid to pick it up right now and jump into the adrenalin-charged adventure.
The review copy was provided to me from Net Galley via Entangled Publishing, the author, and Bewitching Tours. The thoughts presented in the review are my own. I am under no obligation to write favorably about any book I choose to read. ( )
  Laurie170 | Nov 27, 2011 |
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Jonathon Decker knows how to keep his enemies close -- and his allies closer. But what about his women? Everyone wants a piece of the world's sexiest werewolf, now that he's been broken out of prison. Enter Alexia, the High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life. Captivating and independent -- Alexia is everything Jon could want in a woman. But can she be trusted? It will take more than one night of endless passion to find out...… (more)

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