ARC Review: Taken to Kor by Elizabeth Stephens

About the Book:

Title: Taken to Kor

Author: Elizabeth Stephens

Series: Xiveri Mates #5

Page Length:

Publication Date: April 17, 2021

Synopsis: Deena
Rhork. He’s a space pirate. The bad kind. But he’s also been my only source of company for the past rotation that I’ve been held captive.

Halfway across the galaxy, I’m happy to have finally escaped and found more humans…well, I was.

But now, I’m not so sure that people are so much better than pirates. And I’m very sure that I’ll need Rhork’s help to get out of this. But Rhork thinks I’m a defective female because of my twisted leg. What if he’s not willing to give it?

Rhork
Communicating with the human female for almost a rotation was, in retrospect, a poor choice. Now, she seems to be the ever-present voice in my head, distracting me, making me want things I shouldn’t.

To make her a pirate.

To show her the universe.

And most of all, to keep her for myself.

Taken to Kor is a full-length (95k words) SciFi space opera romance featuring an alien pirate who looks like an alien and a plus sized heroine with drive and heart. Enemies-to-lovers who are also fated-mates are common staples of all Xiveri Mates books, which each end with their own special HEA. I recommend reading this book after book 4.

LINKS:     Goodreads    |      Amazon   

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, including Amazon, and I may earn a small commission, at no cost to you, if you purchase through my links.


My Review:

Stephens continues the Xiveri Mates series with an action-packed, heart-pounding, space pirate romance, and it is epic! Prior to the start of the story, Deena has spent years held in captivity by her grandmother after finding out that her grandmother betrayed their colony. Deena’s only communication with the outside world is with Rhork, a space pirate she talks to via a communication token. Deena manages to escape and, at the start of Taken to Kor, arrives at a human satellite, excited to meet other humans and start over away from her nefarious grandmother. However, things are not as she expected, and Deena’s life is quickly endangered, and Rhork is the only one who can help her.

Deena can’t trust Rhork. He is a pirate, and his customs are deplorable to Deena. However, the male she talked to for the years of her captivity and the one who saves her is so different from his reputation. Rhork knows he wants Deena and that she is the perfect mate for him. He just has to convince her that becoming his mate and a pirate is where she belongs.

This is my favorite book in the Xiveri Mates series. It is fast-paced and action-packed, and I adored the characters and the romance! The book starts with a sense of foreboding as Deena enters the seemingly abandoned human satellite. Where there should be humans prospering, Deena finds something horrifying. Rhork and his crew show how ruthless and heroic they can be, coming to Deena’s rescue when she needs them the most.

I love Rhork’s crew and the way that they embrace Deena as one of their own. Though they are ruthless, they are also more honorable than I expected, especially after hearing about them in earlier books. Deena finds a family in Rhork and his crew and a home on Rhork’s ship. This band of pirates is nothing like Deena expected, and it is with them that she finally feels a sense of belonging. This devoted found family of pirates is one of my favorite parts of the story.

Deena struggles with self-esteem and has a low opinion of her self-worth. Because of this, she has a hard time believing that Rhork cares for her. She sees herself as less than, and the wounds of her past, as well as something hurtful Rhork said to protect her, has severely affected her feelings of worth. At the start of the story, she’s sensitive about her physical appearance and feels unworthy of love. However, as the story progresses, Deena changes. She becomes more confident and sure of herself, and her self-consciousness fades.

Rhork is a swoon-worthy hero, and the love story between him and Deena is fantastic! He is so in love with Deena and sees her for the strong, smart, and beautiful person that she is. I think he has a lot to do with Deena’s healing, as he loves, protects, and defends her more than anyone ever has. Of course, miscommunication, jealousy, attempted kidnappings, space battles, and more stand in their way, but that just makes their love story all the more wonderful and intense. They seem to bring out the best in each other, and their chemistry is amazing.

Though this, like all of the books in the Xiveri Mates series, is a standalone, I would recommend reading Taken to Heimo, the fourth book in the series, if you want more context about Deena and Rhork. It provides the background about Deena and her grandmother and how Deena escaped, and it gives you a look at Rhork and his crew from a different perspective.

Some of the characters from the first four stories in the series make appearances in this book, which I also loved. It is interesting to see what the characters are doing and how their lives, relationships, and goals have progressed. I also like how all of their stories, though separate, intertwine. The couples from all of the books in the series want a different future, and they have created the changes necessary to bring their dreams to fruition. It’s fascinating to see how their work, and their relationships, have developed.

Stephens’ created a vast, immersive with unique worlds, customs, and beings, and I’m always amazed at the vividness and clarity of her descriptions. It’s so easy to imagine, yet so different from anything I’ve ever read. On top of that, the plot is intricately developed. Plots and sub-plots are gripping, exciting, and unpredictable. I’m excited to read the next book in the series and am so thankful to Elizabeth Stephens for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.


Rating:

Favorite Parts:

  • The romance!!!
  • The continued world-building.
  • The found family of space pirates!

Favorite Lines:

Old wounds are better left as scars.

Family is not bound by blood. Family is bound by love.

Recommendations:

Want to learn more about the series? Check out my reviews for the first four books!

Want to learn more about Elizabeth Stephens? Check out my interview with her!

Author Spotlight: My Interview with Elizabeth Stephens

6 thoughts on “ARC Review: Taken to Kor by Elizabeth Stephens

  1. This sounds like such an incredible book! The found family of space pirates sounds so amazing, and I loved reading your thoughts on the book. Great review 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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