Rating: 4 stars
Buy Link:
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Length: Novel

 

Lake is a water dragon omega who was betrothed to a highborn dragon who had a freak accident and died. In their tradition, a surviving dragon’s hearthstone is buried with the dead partner, which will cause Lake to slowly fade out of existence. Lake’s seer brother won’t stand for this fate for Lake and arranges to have Lake smuggled out from the tower in which he’s been locked and taken to a conclave of exiled dragons in the Colorado Rockies.

Lake’s rescue is fraught from the beginning, but the extraction team arrives in the nick of time, and Boone is determined not to let Lake die. This seems like his heroic side coming out strong, but it’s soon clear it’s more than just Boone being an alpha hero; Lake’s comfort with Boone is unique. It’s a mate bond, where he’d never anticipated one blossoming. Lake had practically resigned himself to dying without his heartstone, but his unexpected connection with Boone forces him to re-evaluate his life, which to this point has been insular and lonely. Boone, who was exiled from his own clan of dragons out of fear that he’d gain too much power, never expected to find, let alone deserve, a mate. They are both overjoyed with their connection, and resolve to find Lake a new heartstone so he can live.

The conclave where Boone and Lake have found sanctuary is run by Cain, another exiled Seer. He’s been setting up this vast area in the Rockies to save all sorts of dragons, and keeps a hoard of heartstones to facilitate omegas in need. Once Lake agrees to search for a replacement stone, Cain steps in to help him. The whole operation is intense, and geared to accommodate far more than Lake and Boone. Many dragons live there, along with some humans, and all are willing to help Lake get accustomed to this new life.

This is a Heartstone Universe novel, and the first book in the Heartstone Rescue series that features dragons living undercover in the human world. It’s a sweet and sexy fated mates romance, with a lot of magic and a giant, supportive community ready to welcome any discarded dragon from the realms. I loved the interactions with Lake and Boone, as well as all the other dragons–including Boone’s brother, Durango, and his teammate on the extraction team, Reno. Lake especially bonds with Dex, another displaced omega who also had to replace his heartstone. Dex is happily mated and has fathered two dragonlings. Their friendship provides lots of support for Lake, especially when Lake’s recovery nets him more than mated happiness, with a chance at fatherhood for himself.

This is the first in a bigger story series, where there are lots of rescued dragons entering the keep, and their fates are not quite determined. This story features Lake and Boone, who find a way to forge new fates together, and grow their family by leaps and bounds. The side characters are found family in most cases, and we can expect either Durango or Reno to find a mate pretty soon. I really enjoyed this breezier romance that has lots of heart and many characters, all of whom felt unique. It’s a sweet read that doesn’t just focus on the connection between Lake and Boone, but how to navigate interesting challenges as a new couple, especially when one of the partners has serious abandonment issues.

If you like dragon fantasy, fated-mates romance, this book will engage you from the start.