Hotbloods is the first installment of a four part paranormal series by Bella Forrest, released on November 26, 2017. The story is a sweet romance as well as a thrilling adventure.
It has everything a good shifter romance should have, from vampires to various types of shifters to rivalries and power struggles. Despite the fantasy world the book exists in, the emotions are very real and very human.
In Hotbloods, Riley and her two best friends Angie and Lauren go to spend their summer on a farm in Texas where they’ll be disconnected from the outside world- no phones, no Internet. It’s supposed to be a bonding trip before they all go their separate ways for college.
One day while bathing in the creek, they discover what can only be described as a large black bat wing. Other weird events occur, like noticing 4 shirtless and sexy lumberjack neighbors who disappear as quickly as they appeared.
The events that follow introduce the girls to Navan and his band of vampire brothers. This is where the journey begins, particularly for Riley who steps up as fearless leader to protect her friends.
Riley travels with Navan on a perilous journey, getting to know more about him and the world of shifters. As Riley begins to lust for the hot touch of Navan’s ashy grey skin, she also realizes more about who she is, especially with the supportive and protective Navan by her side.
Will Riley end up with her vampire crush, and will she and Navan be able to protect themselves, their friends, and the human race?
Riley is my favorite character because she’s such a natural leader and not afraid to risk her own life to protect the lives of her friends. She’s extremely curious, almost to a fault, as her unwavering curiosity often leads to trouble, but also to adventure.
Riley shows great strength and integrity from the beginning of the story to the very end. Throughout the book we also have a glimpse of the conflicts that make Riley who she is. For example, she has a toxic relationship with her alcoholic birth parents. We see her try to grapple with said relationship and the effects it has had on her as a person.
Another great quality of our heroine is that she has a strong gust instinct that she knows to follow. When in high pressure and potentially life-threatening situations both with her friends and with Navan, she always trusts her gut and makes smart and clever decisions to ensure everyone’s safety.
Navan is another favorite character of mine. He is protective, sweet, and complicated.
He has great compassion for the human race, even when it isn’t in his best interest. He goes through a lot and has complicated relationships in his life, just like Riley.
He is dominant when he needs to be, but isn’t hyper masculine. He’s got a soft spot for Riley and cares so much about her that he sometimes gets upset when she makes her own decisions that put her in danger.
Riley is by no means a damsel in distress, but when she’s in over her head in a world that is new to her, she’s got Navan by her side to protect her. They’re a dynamic duo who support each other.
What I Think You’ll Love About The Book
There’s so much to love about this book that it’s likely you’ll read it in one sitting, just like I did. The book is romantic without sacrificing the importance of the plot.
Navan and Riley’s relationship is a slow burn. At first, it’s merely fear-based. As they get to know each other, the relationship becomes more of a friendship. They start to open up to each other and reveal truths about their respective pasts.
I found myself desperately rooting for Navan and Riley to get together romantically, but Forrest takes her time working on their relationship. It’s not instalust and they don’t immediately throw themselves at each other, which i appreciate.
The plot of the story is just as important as the romance between the MCs. The stakes are high and the action is intense as they fight for their lives and the safety if the human race.
The combination of a brewing romance and a thrilling journey as human and vampire work together makes for an exciting book. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series and see what’s in store for Navan and Riley!
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