Joint Review – His Dark Bond by Anne Marsh

His Dark Bond
Publisher: Kensington
Publish Date: Out Now
How we got this book: Purchased

Zer is no angel—well, not anymore. He’s explored every flavor of sin imaginable, drinking in the pleasures of humanity. But now he must find the woman who carries his salvation in her very blood…a woman like Nessa St. James.

Nessa has considered the bargain the Fallen offer. Anything she wants in exchange for accepting Zer’s bond? No way. Not her. Not when she finds out about the mind-blowing ritual involved, and the marks of surrender that will ink her skin. But with a serial killer to stop and centuries of experience on his side, this is one job Zer’s going to nail.

This blurb came from the author’s website here.

E: After I finished reading Bond With Me book 1, a couple of years ago I eagerly went to Ms Marsh’s website hoping I could get information on an upcoming book 2. Unfortunately at the time there wasn’t much if anything out there so I kept hoping and waiting. Then one of the times I checked back Ms Marsh had provided a title and a release date. As I am sure you can imagine I was pretty excited so when Has and I started chatting about upcoming books and decided we would review His Dark Bond I couldn’t wait.

Has: I felt the same way! I really enjoyed Bond With Me which had an intense and erotic romance but in a paranormal setting which I really liked. I am not a huge fans of fallen angels and the mating trope which is beginning to feel pretty derivative, but Anne’s take on them was sublime and sexy, so I was definitely looking forward to the followup! His Dark Bond, follows Zer who is the leader of the fallen Dominion angels and now they are that aware of their only hope to regain their wings, which is to find their soul-mates have been subverted by a faction of rebel angels and rogues who have been killing their mates over the centuries. I liked the fact that we actually got the leader’s story very early in the series. Usually it is held off right towards the end or starts off a series, which empathizes that the leader type hero holds more importance than the people who follow him. I also liked that Zer was in many ways, was unsure had real doubts about the mistakes he made as being a leader and felt very responsible for the Dominion becoming fallen angels. I found that really refreshing, and it added some depth to his character. So when they come across Nessa St James, a soul-mate who is also a geneticists/researcher who has the keys to find more potential soul-mates it is imperative for the angels to protect her from their enemies.

E: Like Has I found it interesting to see the leader despite all of his good intentions get stuck with his soul-mate. In a way I think that was a really good thing because I got the impression he was on the borderline of becoming a Rogue which would have been a really BAD thing. As long as their leader was still “sane” some of the Fallen would retain hope. Plus now that a small group of them knows it is possible to regain their wings legitimately and that they have enemies in Heaven they really need their leader. It also made sense that Nessa, with the knowledge of how to find potential soul mates, would need to pair up with Zer. I also *ahem* loved how Nael one of Zer’s lieutenants andbodyguard convinced Nessa to choose Zer. I am really looking forward to his story especially since he is hinted at being umm more into smexy variations then the others…

Has: It was pretty obvious to everyone BUT Zer and Nessa they were attracted and drawn towards each other, although I did wish there was more time in developing that transition from being reluctant to admitting their love for each other. But I did like how they felt reluctant – the bonding trope can be a lazy way to excuse romantic tension, however Anne Marsh has a great way to convey this and sizzles up the heat factor by a 100 degrees with the love scenes. I really like how she incorporates emotions and sex into the world-building with the Angels who need to feed off this to fend off from being a rogue. Both Zer and Nessa share hot sexual tension, but I did wish there was more time expaning on the emotional element, because so much time was spent them fighting off their feelings and trying not to get invested. However when they do realise what they mean towards each other, it was sweet and passionate. I have to quote this passage, because it sums it up perfectly.

“I love you, too,” he said roughly. “You’re part of me, body and soul, Nessa. And I wish—” He hesitated, then kept right on going. “I wish all my brothers had found their soul mates. Because, what we have … it’s more than the wings. What we have, it’s me and you and …” His voice trailed off. “I’m no poet. You’re the heart of it all. The heart of me. And that,” he said forcefully, “is why I have my wings back and we’re even having this goddamn conversation.”

E: Great quote! I did enjoy the relationship build-up more in the first book. This one seemed almost like I hate you but I want you, then just because you DON’T want me to I will choose you, then since you are bound and determined to hold back on me I will make you open up without much if any emotional caring before hand. Yet if you looked at some of the subtleties Nessa did have trust that Zer would rescue her on more then one occasion. She also could have picked something very superficial as the bonding favor and instead she went for something deep. Then she had a very special conversation with another individual that I am hoping will pay off in later installments. I did like the glimmer of hope that remained in the Rogue preserves but I think the Fallen are going to have their hands extremely full later on. I also really like how Ms Marsh puts holes in the stereotype that all Angels are good and all Fallen are bad. This was a satisfying installment an I am looking forward to the next. I give His Dark Bond a B-.

Has: I totally agree about the subtleties between Zer and Nessa. I loved that she was a scientist and he was a figure of mythology which added another level to their dynamics. I also LOVED how science was added into the story, it was realistic and detailed and that was an interesting dichotomy with the paranormal factors. I do think that the ongoing plot-line with the angelic war and rogues is really starting to cement the series and I love the gritty nature and tone of this world. His Dark Bond, is an erotic and fast paced entry to this series and I am definitely in line for the next book!
I give His Dark Bond a C+

Interested in learning more then check out Anne Marsh’s Guest Post with us and E’s review of The Fallen book 1, Bond With Me.

Links to purchase

Barnes & Noble | Kindle eBook | Amazon Book

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