Monday, August 10, 2020

Blood Oath by A.T. Brennan Blog Tour

A witch, a human, and a werewolf. Three men connected by love, but two of them have never met, until now.

After losing his family and coven six years ago, Felix was finally happy again. He has a job he’s good at, two boyfriends who love him, friends, and a place to call home. That is, until a mysterious stranger brings a job into the Assassins Guild where he and his lover, Ryder, work.

On paper the job is simple, take out the sorcerer who heads the most powerful dark magic church in the country. But magic is never simple, and Ryder and Felix enlist the help of a ragtag group of unlikely heroes, including Felix’s other boyfriend Luka, to complete the job before time runs out.

Will Luka and Ryder see what Felix has always suspected? And more importantly, will they be able to accept it, and each other?

*Blood Oath is book #1 in the Legacy of the Assassins series. It is not a standalone and ends in a soft cliffhanger. The story within the book concludes at the end, however, the bigger story continues in books #2 and #3, This book is an urban fantasy/paranormal m/m romance story. It contains a polyamorous relationship and no cheating.

Book 1
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They lay together for a few minutes, enjoying the afterglow, but it wasn’t long before Felix began fidgeting in Luka’s arms.

“So, what’s wrong?” he asked softly. “What happened?”

“It’s Ryder. He’s in trouble.”

“What kind of trouble?” Luka asked.

He didn’t know Ryder, had never met him, but he didn’t understand Felix’s connection to the man. Other than them both being assassins, they had nothing in common. Ryder had been born a citizen. He might have willingly given up his privileges when he joined the guild, but he’d grown up as part of the population that actively oppressed, not to mention hunted and killed, not only his kind but Felix’s too.

“The kind that can kill him,” Felix said with a sigh.

Luka listened as Felix filled him in on what had happened in the last week, and to say he was shocked was an understatement.

“I’m sorry I wasn’t there.” He pressed a kiss against Felix’s temple and sighed.

The thing he hated most about his condition wasn’t the physical and mental strain of the shifts or having to constantly live in fear and always stay on the move. It was how he was constantly letting Felix down when he needed help.

“That’s not what this is about, and you know it.” Felix looked up at him, his eyes serious.

“What can I do?” he asked after a pause. “By the sound of your plan, you could use some help. I’m not an assassin or a thief, but I’m a hell of a fighter.”

His condition did have a few perks, if they could even be called that, considering the trade-off. He was naturally big and strong, and his instincts were sharper than anyone he’d ever met, human, magic, or wolf. His reflexes were heightened, he could hear and see things no one else could, and his sense of smell was unmatched. None of that helped him in a physical fight, but his preternatural strength and uncanny speed certainly did.

“If you’re willing, we could definitely use the help,” Felix said, a smile lighting up his face.

3.5 Stars

A.T. Brennan is a new-to-me author, and I felt Blood Oath being the debut in a new series to be the perfect opportunity to see if we were a good fit.

I truly enjoyed the interesting world-building and plotting of Blood Oath. Two lovers – one human and one magic – work for an assassination company, where they are legally obtained to take out the target. The fact that you were legally allowed to place a hit on your cheating spouse was intriguing – perhaps a little terrifying, because was anyone safe? Someone with a perceived slight against them was allowed to just pay for someone to kill you. This portion was riveting but didn't take up much time on the pages.

The first scene had me hooked from the get-go. The second scene, where the human has magic levied against them to take a hit that they would have otherwise turned down, not only that, he swore a Blood Oath. To be honest, I was fearful the hit was on his lover, talk about some tense reading.

The fact that the human basically said he would kill the most powerful magic-user, or die trying, was both exciting and angsty. Having Felix, being self-sacrificing for his lover, decide to volunteer for the task. The fact that Felix introduces another lover, Luca, to the mix, setting it up for the promise of a polyamorous group... as the three band together to do their task.

After that intriguing setup, it all went downhill for me from there. Simply because the author's writing style and dialogue were not a good fit for this reader. The delivery of information just felt ho-hum. Felix's revelation of being the most-wanted magic-user, how he's been on the run – the delivery was just meh and out of nowhere with little to no buildup. Ryder was like, "If you want to tell me," in a passive voice.

The characters didn't have a different vibe to them, sounding similar when speaking. Felix and Ryder are supposed to be two assassins, which should give them a dangerous air, risk-takers and bad boy vibe, they both felt passive and sounded passive, while also not very masculine. Basically, it didn't matter what vibe they gave off as long as it wasn't the same one, so I could hear them inside my head as I read as not being the same character.

While I enjoyed the premise, I think it suffered from a lack of execution. I do believe many will enjoy Blood Oath and the subsequent installments, but that reader isn't me. A.T. Brennan and I are not a good fit – not my cup of tea, so to speak.

I'm up in the air about this book. I liked parts of it but other parts I was getting bored. I liked that there wasn't a massive world building all at once. I felt some things were repeated over and over again. The romance part was good but I'm hoping the next book is better. This ended on a cliffhanger, but I knew that going in, so I was okay with it.

A.T. Brennan, a native of Ottawa, Canada, has always had her head in a book and a story to tell. A veteran of the Canadian Armed Forces and current entrepreneur and author, she enjoys spending her days working on her many projects and her nights writing and not getting enough sleep. She currently lives on Canada’s East Coast with her kiddo and cat, and enjoys collecting shoes and exploring the different aspects of romance in her works. She also publishes erotica under the name Mandie Mills.

Connect with A.T.

Facebook  ~  Goodreads
Amanda's Den Dwellers Facebook Group

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Blood Oath (Legacy of the Assassins #1) by A.T. Brennan to read and review for this tour.

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