Shadow Bound (Unbound #2)
by Rachel Vincent
Published May 22, 2012 by Mira
"Kori Daniels is a shadow-walker, able to travel instantly from one shadow to another. After weeks of confinement for betraying her boss, she's ready to break free of the Tower syndicate for good. But Jake Tower has one final job for Kori, one chance to secure freedom for herself and her sister, Kenley, even if it means taking it from someone else....
The job? Recruit Ian Holt-or kill him.
Ian's ability to manipulate the dark has drawn interest from every syndicate in the world, most notably an invitation from Jake Tower. Though he has no interest in organized crime, Ian accepts the invite, because he's on a mission of his own. Ian has come to kill Tower's top Binder: Kori's little sister.
Amid the tangle of lies, an unexpected thread of truth connecting Ian and Kori comes to light. But with opposing goals, they'll have to choose between love and liberty...."
“If you live in the dark long enough, you start to forget what light looks like.”
Rachel Vincent is one of those authors that really does get better with each novel she writes. I read somewhere that she found writing multiple POVS to be a difficulty for her. To deal with this, she decided to tackle this problem in her Unbound series, which alternates POVs which each chapter.
She also said she liked to use “old flames” when writing a romance because it was so much easier to pull backstory and rekindle the relationship, as opposed to constructing a brand new connection. As you might know, she did indeed use this old-flames-rekindling-their-fire technique in the first book, Blood Bound with Cam and Olivia.
So, apparently, to challenge herself, she changed tactics in Shadow Bound. And I’d have to say that it worked. REALLY worked.
I’d thought I loved Blood Bound, but Shadow Bound took my breath away. (No cheesiness intended).
“We haven’t met… I’m Kori Daniels. If you don’t get that gun out of my face, I’m gonna take it, then I’m gonna break your jaw so I can unhinge it and shove your pistol down your throat. That way the bullet goes through the long way.”
I was really interested in Kori’s character from book 1, and I was delighted when I learned that this book was centering around her. But after suffering the consequences of what she let happen in Blood Bound, Kori is no longer the same woman. She’s still tough as ever, maybe even more so in this book, but at the same time, she’s much more vulnerable and broken—a side that she tries to keep hidden from everyone.. The things she suffered in the Tower basement were awful. Horrible. Inhuman. The fact that she emerged defiant as ever, still ready to spit fire at anyone challenging her, had me so impressed, so in awe of her strength.
And then we meet Ian Holt…
Excuse me for a moment while I swoon at the gloriousness that is Ian Holt.
*Ahem* OK. Back to business. Ian goes to the Tower syndicate with only one goal in mind: kill Kori’s sister. But then he meets Kori and suddenly, things aren’t so simple anymore.
I absolutely LOVED Ian’s character. He might even be one of my favorite male characters that Rachel Vincent has created! He’s funny and tough and caring and protective and sweet and just SUCH a nice guy. And incredibly swoon-worthy. Really. I’m quite jealous of Kori right now…
“I want you. I want only you. I want all of you. But I'll take whatever you're ready to give.”
His and Kori’s relationship actually only happened over a pretty darn short period of time, but their connection is very believable, and their chemistry undeniable. They complemented the other SO well, I can’t even describe it! (Kudos to you, Rachel Vincent).
In this book, we also get to learn more about Jake Tower and his syndicate—which, I think is safe to say, is even eviler than the Cavazos syndicate. Yeah. That’s saying something. Turns out the Tower syndicate Is full of deceit and secret agendas and just all sorts of general evilness.
My advice if you were ever faced with the choice to join the Tower or Cavazos syndicate: take Ruben Cavazos’s offer!
Considering how Blood Bound ended, Vincent, of course, had to have Cam and Liv make an appearance in this book! I loved that despite this book not being about them anymore, Vincent still gives us an answer as to what happened to them.
As always, the world-building is absolutely incredible. The power of blood and names in this urban fantasy is astounding and the implications of using them to hold power over someone are downright frightening. Vincent is so thorough in the little details of this world that she’s created, covering every base, making everything all the more believable. Rachel Vincent has beautifully crafted a world where champagne and parties and luxury mask the stark ugliness of the Skilled world.
Rating: 5 stars
I have no complaints about this novel—except for the fact that the ending has left me craving the 3rd (and *squeak* final) book in the series! I almost wish that it would continue Kori and Ian’s story because I loved them that much. But here's the cover reveal/synopsis of Oath Bound!Darn you, 2013, for being so far away!