Guest Review – Dying Wish by Shannon K. Butcher

Today we have the always fabulous Tori, from Smexybooks here to give us the skinny on the 6th book in the Sentinel Wars series, Dying Wish, by Shannon K. Butcher. Welcome to The Book Pushers Tori!


Publisher: Signet
Publish Date: March 6th
How we got this book: ARC from publisher

Paranormal Romance
March 6, 2012

Favorite Quote: “Well…when a boy Theronai and a girl Theronai love each other very much-”

Jackie Patton has been rescued by the Theronai from her captivity and torture at the hands of the Synestryn, only to learn that she’s a potential match for the Theronai warriors who need a woman to literally save their lives.
Forced to choose, she unexpectedly selects Iain, a cold-hearted warrior who doesn’t want to be saved. Iain is convinced that it’s too late—that his soul is already as dead as his former betrothed, killed by the Synestryn. Still, he is the only man Jackie feels a measure of peace around and the only one she wants. But is Iain indeed beyond saving? (Goodreads)

Dying Wish is #6 in Shannon K. Butcher’s phenomenally dark and gritty series, The Sentinel Wars. Since finishing Blood Hunt, I have been anxiously waiting Jackie’s story. Jackie Patton was rescued by the Theronai after a long and brutal two year captivity with the Synestryn. Once she is safe, she is informed that she is compatible with the Theronai and has to choose a warrior to mate with in order to save his life. Jackie doesn’t want to choose. She wants her old life back. When she is given no choice in the matter, she makes a deal with the leader, Joesph. She will choose, but then she will be allowed to leave the compound and live her own life. He agrees and she chooses Iain. Iain was the one who rescued her and his cold nature leads Jackie to believe that he doesn’t care if she stays or goes.

Iain was betrothed in the past but when she died, he gave up and allowed his soul to wither and die. Only through deception has he managed to keep this secret form the rest of the Theronai. When Jackie chooses to “save” him, he is angered that she would waste her time with him. He knows his time is almost up so he agrees to her demands to let her go. When demons attack and Iain is hurt, Jackie takes his Luceria and uses it to heal him, not knowing that the promises she makes in return will bind her in a literal sense.

As Jackie and Iain fight against their attraction and bonding, the Synestryn are once again massing forces to take back the females the Theronai rescued. Only Jackie knows of the locations she was kept, so she as she is pulled deeper into a world that she wants no part of, she finds herself having to make choices that will force her to leave her old life forever.

Ms. Butcher continues to deliver an emotionally dark, gritty, action packed story that held me captive till the end. A fabulous blending of urban fantasy and paranormal romance, Ms. Butcher gives us a series that intertwines new and old story lines in a way that doesn’t leave you over whelmed by the sheer amount of knowledge she imparts. A smooth flowing story line and continuing progressive arc engages the reader and sets a fast pace for reading. The premise of this one still revolves around two main characters but multiple sub plots keeps the series engaging and fresh.

This book is an absolute whirlwind to read as Ms. Butcher goes further in depth into multiple character story lines and POV’s,  which I loved. We are given more insight in to Thor and Grace’s situation, along with Joesph, Cain, Tynan, and more. I want Tynan’s story so bad now. *swoon* Her characters are rich in depth, development, and personality. Ms. Butcher imparts diversity and individualism into her character dialogue. She has added some humor in the last three books which balances nicely against the over all seriousness of this series. I enjoyed the brief bouts of levity. Her characters continue to walk in a gray area between good and evil, constantly surprising me. The Theronai, Slayers, and Sanguinar continue to use nefarious means to achieve their goals almost as much as the Synestryns. We see lines being crossed, misconceptions capitalized on, and actions being questioned. You never know till the end how it will all play out.

Both Jackie and Iain are extremely strong, protective, yet fatalistic protagonists. They both have seen the worst their worlds have to offer and they have, in a sense, given up. Jackie doesn’t want to save anyone and Iain doesn’t want to be saved. Yet for their somewhat bad attitudes, they both will, reluctantly, do what needs to be done. I will admit that both their attitudes became trying at times. Her constant demands to go home and refusal to see that she will always be a targeted by the Synestryn along with his, “I’m no good for anyone…” and trying to set her up with other men frustrated me. Especially when you realize that they know they are being stubborn. It continues through out the story but the other story lines are compelling enough that you are willing to forgive their overly angst driven scenes. One thing that confused me is that all the mated pairs have gone through this and a part of me wondered WHY doesn’t someone tell our confused couple this.  But they don’t. It’s like they all forget that they went through the same emotional turmoil. All Jackie gets is people telling her you owe us. That’s easy to say if you weren’t abruptly dragged out of your world and in to a demonic hell, kept of the verge of death for two years.

“I need you to give these men hope. They’re good men. Whoever you pick would give up his life to keep you happy and safe. Hell, even the ones you don’t pick will.”

“It’s not what I want.”

“I thought I’d made it clear that I don’t give a fuck about what you want. We saved your pretty little ass and kept it safe for weeks now. I’d say it’s time to pay up.”

“I didn’t realize my rescue came with strings attached.”

The romance is slow to develop because they each realize the bonding capitalizes on their emotions and neither wants this connection. Even with their bad attitudes, their sexual scenes are quite steamy and has you hoping that they will realize, as you have, they are perfect for each other. Their relationship reaches a pentacle point when Jackie is faced with the fact she may lose Iain and decides to finally face and accept her true fear-losing someone else she loves. This is where I really started loving Jackie. Once she makes up her mind, she is a powerful force of nature no one wants to go up against.

“…if you think I’m going anywhere, you’re wrong. I’m going to be with Iain every second of his death. I’m going to soak it all in, memorizing every detail, every ounce of fear, every scrap of suffering. And then, when he’s dead, I’m going to to take all of that and find a way to shove it so deep in your brain, you’ll never be able to sleep again.”

The ending is a mixture of explosive action, jaw clenching tension, and a mind blowing conclusion. I honestly couldn’t see how it would end in the way I wanted but Ms. Butcher once again manages to achieve the impossible. The Sentinel Wars continues to be one of my favorite series and I look forward to the next in her series, title and release date to be announced.

Over Rating: B


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