Alex Lawrence may be wealthy, but he is trapped and controlled by his mother, who is threatening to cut him off and make him lose his art studio. Alex has his small rebellions, however. Despite her insistence that he not cross over the border into the supernatural side of the city, Alex chances it now and then. He is fascinated by that world, particularly now that his best friend, Luca, has found a fated mate with the fae prince. Alex is happy for Luca, but life with Cair means that Luca isn’t around as much, particularly when the two cross the veil.
While they are away, Alex is aware that Cair’s brother, Teighan, has been watching him and his studio. Alex is crushing hard on the huge, hulking Teighan, but the man seems to want nothing to do with him. Alex can’t help but delight in provoking Teighan just a bit though. He loves the growly, stern side of Teighan and is happy when he lets it out.
Teighan doesn’t have a lot of fondness for humans and he figures Alex is the same as all the rest. Not to mention Alex is sassy and smart-mouthed and pushes all his buttons. But Teighan promised Cair and Luca he would look after Alex and he is determined to keep his word. Teighan is prepared to keep Alex at a distance, but something about the man is softening all his resolve. The two have a fiery connection, both in and out of the bedroom, and can’t quite stay away from one another. Teighan never intended to get involved with anyone, let alone a fierce and fiesty human. But Teighan and Alex are a perfect fit and, if he can just take a chance, they may find a happy ending together.
Teighan is the second book in Eryn Hawk’s Veiled City series, following Cair focused on Cair and Luca. Alex and Teighan’s story mostly stands alone, though they do appear as side characters in the first book. However, I do think this story would have benefited from repeating some world building details and refreshing readers on the revelations that come at the end of the first book. I found there were things I couldn’t remember that would have been helpful to have repeated here and new readers might find things a little more difficult without the first book as a foundation. But, overall, I think this story can work on its own.
The focus here is really on the developing relationship between Alex and Teighan. They already know each other at the start of the book and Alex is totally hot for Teighan, but Teighan wants nothing to do with him. Teighan is wary of humans, plus with his warrior past, he doesn’t see himself as a good bet for a partner. Alex is sassy and strong-willed and can’t help but try to provoke Teighan a little, as he loves him snarly and grumpy. Basically, everything about Teighan turns Alex on and, if he pokes Teighan enough to incite some angry sex, he is all for it. There is somewhat of a few steps forward, few steps back dance that goes on for much of the book, as the pair have explosive sex and then Teighan puts up walls again. But, eventually, they get to the point where both can admit how much they want each other and begin to explore it. For me, this story did run too long for the amount of plot, however. It basically boils down to Alex wants Teighan but Teighan doesn’t want him, then he does and they have lots of sex and fall in love. At almost 400 pages, I needed more to the story to keep things moving, as it just felt too long.
I did like the way we see Alex and Teighan connect over both feeling rejected by family (aside from Teighan’s close relationship with Cair). Seeing that personal side of Alex really helps Teighan see the real man behind the front he puts on and they eventually open up nicely to each other. Alex is sassy and fun and I found him an entertaining character, and Teighan is all gruff, hulking hotness. This story is pretty sex heavy and there is a definite rawness to it all, so if you like big size differences, dirty talk, and some unapologetic monster-fucking fantasy, I think this book will particularly appeal.
As with the first book, I did wish for more in the world building area, as there isn’t a ton of depth to it here. However, there is less focus on the fae and the fae world in this second story, so I don’t think the issue is quite as noticeable.
It looks like the next book picks back up with Luca and Cair again and continues their journey. We get some revelations here that I assume will play out in the next book, so there is a nice running series thread. I am looking forward to continuing on to see what is next for these characters.