Author: M.R. Merrick
Source: ebook from author for review
Devastated by a terrible loss, Chase is trying to balance the life he’s been left with, a family he’s still getting to know, and power he never thought he’d have. He doesn’t understand why the Goddess has named him the Protector and granted him two gifts: the Mark, a tattoo that now covers his back, and the ring. But between getting interrogated by the Circle and psychic attacks from Riley, the Mark is the least of his concern. There’s a demon inside Rayna that’s fighting to be released, and it’s not her inner witch. It’s something else—a monster threatening to tear her apart.
As Chase struggles to control his magic, his enemies are closing in. Everyone has staked a claim on his ring, and destroying it may be his only chance to stop Riley. But Chase must decide if stopping him is worth risking the lives of everyone he cares about, or if protecting the ring will be enough to save his world.
Just weeks after losing his mother at the hands of his father, Chase must figure out how to stop him and his plans to summon the demon god, Ithereal. Thankfully he has the help of his new family, because the Elders will not budge on helping. The Circle wants to do things their way…and they want the ring the Goddess gave him too. They are determined they will get that ring…no matter who has to suffer. But they are not the only ones after the ring…Riley (Chase’s father) also wants it. Headstrong on not turning the ring over at first…Chase soon starts wondering if it’s worth all the risk to even hang on to it.
Oh dear me, I think I enjoyed this one more than EXILED. Actually I know I did. Grams was hilarious. Riley was a sick freak. Willy is one of my most favorite, sweetest characters I have ever come across in any book. Rayna is a kick arse character that totally rocked the book. And Chase, my dear tattoo wielding, Chase…you are a great guy. You have come so far since we first met you in EXILED. See, people can change. And I am so glad he has. I like him better this way. He is learning that he doesn’t have to face things alone; that he actually has friends to help him.
Several times I caught myself snorting out loud at the hilarious lines Merrick would scribble out. Grams scene was the absolute best. She seriously needs more action…and I hope there will be more in RELEASE. But there was also times I was hurting for some of the others, especially Willy and Rayna. I hated when people would gang up on my sweet Willy. And when Rayna was trying to shift was heartbreaking to read.
One thing I mentioned in my review of EXILED was how I wish there would have been more romance in the book. Luckily we get to see some in SHIFT…not a lot but some. Chase finally opened those little peepers of his and started realizing he has some feelings for Rayna floating around. And it is about time. And I will say…it was perfect. Achingly perfect. Enough to have us readers needing more in RELEASE.
I immensely recommend this book to anyone out there that enjoys fantasy at its best. You like action and fighting? This series has it all. Merrick’s imagination apparently knows no bounds and I was blown away by this sequel to EXILED. You definitely need to make a point to read this series.