Title: Ancient Protector
Author: Katie Reus
Series: Ancients Rising (Book #1)
Publication Date: June 30, 2020
Publisher: KR Press, LLC
Synopsis: Even as he fights for their future…
With the world still rebuilding after massive dragon attacks, famous singer Star isn’t willing to rely on a stranger to protect her family—though dragon shifter Lachlan is difficult to resist. Something about him is strangely familiar, but she doesn’t understand why. He’s already helped Star rescue her sister from a recent abduction, but trust doesn’t come easy when his kind has nearly hunted her race to extinction. When her sister’s kidnapper launches another violent attack, Star has no choice but to accept Lachlan’s aid. But no matter that he’s stepped up to protect her, she’ll never allow the ancient Scottish dragon into her heart.
They’re bound by the past.
Lachlan lost the woman he was meant to mate millennia ago. Unable to live in a world without her, his pain drove him to hibernation. He never thought he would move on—until Star. He’s well aware the feisty shifter is his new destiny, so if tailing her to New Orleans is what he has to do to be near her, then so be it. When Star is attacked, Lachlan resolves to protect her at all costs. And he won’t have to do it alone. It will take Lachlan, his clansmen, and Star’s misfit band of friends to rain fiery vengeance down upon their enemy if she and her sister are to ever be truly free. Only then can he claim her and discover the shocking truth that lies buried in their past.
This is the first book in the Ancients Rising series, and it’s a spin-off of the Darkness series. However, you don’t have to read the Darkness series to fall in love with the characters and world of Ancient Protector.
Star is a fantastic protagonist and leader, always thinking of her people before herself. She is selfless, strong, and powerful, and she’s well-respected. She is also a mystery. There are many types of shifters – dragons, lions, wolves, and more, but Star’s shifter identity remains a secret through most of the story. The reveal is fantastic, and I loved finding out what she was. I knew it would be something powerful and rare, but I was surprised nonetheless.
Lachlan is a wonderful complement to Star. He is an ancient dragon, newly awakened from hibernation. He has suffered much loss in his life, yet he still has hope. He is fierce in battle and protective of those he loves. Additionally, his views on women and equality are progressive and unexpected considering he is ancient and a clan leader. His devotion and loyalty to his people, Star, and other allies in the story is admirable. Plus, he’s a super-hunky and powerful alpha male! What’s not to love?
The sisterly bond is one of my favorite aspects of the story. Star and Aurora have a beautiful relationship, and it is clear that they love each other very much. Star devotes more than a year of her life trying to rescue Aurora from the evil clutches of a greedy dragon shifter, and Aurora struggles emotionally after being held in captivity. Star is patient and encouraging with her younger sister and pushes her without being bossy and overbearing. They understand each other well, and they have both been through a lot. They are a wonderful support for each other, and I enjoyed the progression of their relationship.
And, of course, there is the love story which is intense and strong. Star and Lachlan have a deep connection from the start, and though it is a bit insta-lovey, it still had a slow-burning feel. Lachlan knows from the first meeting that Star is his mate, but Star takes some persuasion. Used to keeping people at a distance, Star seems hesitant to let Lachlan get close. I liked that Lachlan had to work a bit to win over Star, and I liked that, though Lachlan is a possessive and dominant leader, he admires and supports Star’s leadership and independence. He is not looking to change her or control her. He wants a partner.
The ending felt a bit rushed in comparison to the rest of the book. However, with the way things ended, I have a feeling that we’ll see more of the couple in future books. Some things were left open, like the relationship between Aurora and King, and, hopefully, those stories will be expanded upon in future books. I want to know more about Star’s crew as well. Those characters weren’t as dynamically developed as Star and Lachlan, but their personalities were still unique and interesting.
Overall, this was a fun and well-paced story with great world-building, an interesting plot, and a wonderful romance. Thanks so much to Netgalley and KR Press for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
- The love story, of course!
- The amazing supernatural elements, especially the shifting abilities!
- The action! There are some fantastic battle scenes between different shifters and clans.
Readers who enjoy contemporary, fantasy-romance will love this fun and exciting new series!