Rating: 4 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Length: Novel

 

Koios is healing after his very near-death experience, and though recuperating with Logan’s pack has its perks, he’s feeling a little smothered. More than that, he has to deal with Ben Jerrick, the bear shifter doctor who will not give him a break. But Koios is also just as determined to get better, and ignore his trauma, because he has an enemy to hunt down and destroy.

Ben Jerrick has come a long way from the scared 14-year-old his fathers rescued. He’s now a doctor working with his dad and grandfather, taking care of all manner of supernatural beings. But Koios is the patient who has all his focus. Ben’s bound and determined to help Koios not only heal from his trauma, but to also help him get stronger to deal with the affliction that has caused him pain for years. He’s certainly not crushing on the man. Nope.

But one moment between them has the truth coming out, and though both Ben and Koios realize they need to take things between them slowly, the rest of the world doesn’t stop. Koios is experiencing new and different issues, and it only solidifies the need to get answers. On top of that, more secrets are revealed. And when their number one enemy finally shows his face, it will take Ben and Koios together, along with the rest of their friends and allies, to ultimately save the day.

This story has been a long time coming, both because of who Ben Jerrick is and because of the enemy they face. For me, this story was a bit of a mixed bag, and though there were parts I enjoyed immensely, other parts didn’t work quite as well. Let me say here that this book works best if you’ve read all the books in Macy Blake’s Chosen One universe, though that’s not strictly necessary. It is, however, necessary to have read all the books in the Chosen Champions series.

I, like many readers, have adored Ben from the moment he first showed up on page, way back in the prequel that kicked this whole universe off. He’s been through a lot, and with the love and support of his family, he’s turned into a strong and capable man. We’ve seen glimpses of that as he’s grown up through the series, but especially now he gets to shine. And I loved seeing that. I loved seeing his core, which we always knew to be good, on display here as he both cared for and helped Koios. His determination is strong and he’s just a sweet man with a spine of steel.

Koios has faced nothing but hardships through his life, and the most recent ordeal might be his worst. Add to that the fact that his wings are causing him even more trouble than before, and he’s a bit downtrodden. His only focus is to track down and eliminate the biggest enemy they’ve faced, and that gives him an internal fire to keep moving forward. I liked seeing his interactions with Ben, and how the closer they got, the more they moved toward love and being mates, the more his sharper edges were softened and more of his true self came out. Together, Ben and Koios are entering new territory for them both, and I loved the sweetness between them as they figured out what worked for them.

All that being said, as much as I enjoyed the MCs and all the supporting characters, I had some issues with the rest of the story. Namely the magic surrounding Koios. For me, this didn’t quite fit with the world that Blake has built, and it came from left field. To be sure, this could just be a new level that the author is adding, and as the Universe continues to grow, it might make more sense. But for the moment, for me, it stepped a little too far to the left and felt a bit like squeezing in something new to work for these two. Likewise, the “big battle” at the end introduced new magics that came as a surprise, but was otherwise, and I hate to say it, a little anticlimactic for me. While the fight itself was interesting and well written, it came too late, was a huge ordeal, and then over in a flash. I would have liked to see more of a lead up, more of an exploration, and then a bit of a bigger bang.

That being said, however, y’all know I’m a huge fan of this universe, this series, and this author. While parts of this book didn’t work as well for me, there was a lot that did. It’s a nice ending to this particular five book series, and it’s really lovely to see the MCs finally get an HEA, when they both deserve it so much. And there is, apparently, plenty more to come for this universe, since there will always be foes to face, and there are a bunch of characters that we’d love to see find their own HEAs.