I'm disappointed.. this book took me forever (!) to read simply because I felt it could have been so much more.. I kept waiting for it to get BETTER but in the end, and literally in the end I was just disappointed (all over again...)
Lex could be so much more, Dallas SHOULD have been so much more and the other characters? I want them to be complex, to have a lot to them, things we would discover in time, things that will change what I think of them or make me like them more than I do. But sadly I feel that the characters aren't developed enough..
when I look at Jasper and Noelle, what I see is Dallas's second in command though I don't know whats between them to make Jas so loyal to Dallas. In their book we didn't get to really know him and Noelle, there;s basically only one side to Noelle - sex - the more the better and the kinkier the better (the best is also with Lex naturally). There are maybe two scenes in this book where she is actually a person - being a friend to Lex. But it wasn't enough for me to feel she has enough substance. She was just a side character Lex unloads to and considering she was a main character in the previous book I would have wanted her to feel more flesh and bones.
But lets talk about the main characters - Dallas and Lex -
I'll start with Lex because I half like her or I used to like her in the previous book, but up close in a book were she is the "star" she is just a shadow. I wanted to see this strong independent woman who have been through hell but still got the meanest bastard of them all - got him tamed! because if someone can tame the beast - she can!
I had so much respect for her in the previous book but here? she isn't even interesting.. and we didn't even really get her back story. It's more like we got speculations to what she went through. I felt it was missing and it was robbing us a lot of how her character was built, who she really is and why..
It also didn't make sense to learn that basically all she wants to do is be owned by Dallas. WHY OH WHY? a woman this strong needs a man to hold her neck in a possessive grip? why not the other way around? What does she get "in return" from her relationship with Dallas? If she is really this strong woman can her wish truly be to let go of her power and surrender? and basically when we look at Lex with Dallas she is just this tame little kitten who just want to please, far from the lioness we came to love and appreciate in the previous book. As it seems, it's all in the collar..
and why, oh why, didn't they even try a relationship before if they were infatuated with each other for the past few years? because they didn't trust each other?! really? well, trust is built and not in one day so this too doesn't make any sense..
Now lets get to Dallas. Oh.. I truly hated him. I think I snorted while reading every sentence he said or thought (while reading his POV). Let's face it, he's an arrogant bastard. He is self consumed, he is possessive of everything around him in a megalomaniac sort of way. Or you know what, like a 3 years old - That's mine! Mine! Mine! (doesn't matter if we are talking about a bottle of drink, a crate or a living person...). I fail to see the attraction..
I wanted him to be this interesting character, the one who has to be Dallas the fearsome leader but actually wants to be just Declan once in a while, and especially with Lex, but can't because of the expectations people have of him. I could and would have got that if that was the case. But actually there is no Declan. There is only Dallas and all he wants is to own. Own more grounds, more people, more money and ho, also to own Lex. As his Queen. The beautiful Queen he expects to stand and look pretty but nothing more (and don't tell me you expected him to treat her like an equal because even SHE was naive to even consider that!)
I really wanted to see a more vulnerable side to him. See that under all his shit he is "human" but there was nothing (and sorry I REALLY didn't buy the "grand gesture" he made if I can even call it grand...). All he talks about when we are in his POV is possession and ownership, which in my eyes is disgusting. He is jealous, possessive, growling all the god damn time! If he was a vampire or a werewolf that would have made him somewhat sexy. But considering he is SUPPOSE to be human it only made him more of a beast and less of a man - deserving someone like Lex. At times I just imagined an ape banging his hands on his chest. I think the Kit Rocha duo wanted Dallas to be raw, true king material, but in my eyes they missed because he is lacking credibility - mainly humanity. I just couldn't understand what Lex found in him unless she would have been power hungry and she is clearly NOT the type..
I didn't appreciate how Dallas treated Lex right about 95% of the book. I don't think he really gets her and I don't think he will be in the future what she wants him to be. I didn't buy his repentant, becauseI don't think he really realized what he did wrong and there were a lot of things he did wrong!!!
I must say that considering the air and vibe of the series, I didn't expect THAT MUCH possessiveness and jealousy from any guy, mated or not. What about the concept of freedom? in my eyes what we saw in this book is the total opposite. only thing they are free to do is fuck each other. In the previous book there was a lot of bondage and rough handling (which we also have a lot of here plus the toys), then, I thought it's fitting the scenery but I don't find someone holding a girl's neck tightly and thinking of ownership anything more than I would think of a dog owner holding his loving dog.. Instead of having a vibe of "otherness" to the whole collar and mating concept, all I got is it's about having a dog that trusts you enough to let you do to him what you know is best for them (and if we're talking about Dallas here then consider that trusts can be misused..).
I think that most of the book I didn't think Lex is more than a whore. Maybe a whore that is fucking the high and mighty and enjoying herself, but still, a whore.. wouldn't Cerys be proud.. I actually really loved Cerys (Section 2's Ruler) I thought she was the true powerful woman in the story. Lex might despise her and Dallas might hate her but she is better both as a ruler and a role model of "strong independent woman". I think Lex missed some of the most important lessons from her...
So yeah, the previous one was great, I loved the world and how it was built but I feel like this could have been SO MUCH MORE but basically was a lot of sex with a little bit of plot and that's saying something considering this one has a lot more plot then in the previous one. Like a good side character that moves the plot, I felt that the plot that wasn't centered around Dallas and Lex had the sole purpose of making certain clashes for the main couple and not really having a real story line that meant something to the story / series.
i'll keep reading because I SO want Six and Bren's story to be more to my liking. We'll see how it goes.
Additional Details: Kindle Ebook, 400 pages, 8-13 May 2014 / On GoodReads