Title: How Beauty Met the Beast
Series: Tales of the Underlight (Book 1)
Author: Jax Garren
Genre: Adult, romance, action, steampunk, fantasy
Format: E-book, 152 pages
Publication Date: November 19, 2012
Published By: Carina PressSource: Received from publisher for review.
Synopsis from Goodreads
Scarred. Damaged. Living with a terrible secret. Agent of the Underlight Wesley "Hauk" Haukon has nothing left but the fight for liberty against the oppressive Order of Ananke. He's starting to lose hope…and then he sees her.
Despite her night job as a burlesque dancer, grad student Jolie Benoit has always played the mostly good girl. That all changes following a scorching sexual encounter with a stranger whose face she doesn't see. After she's kidnapped by thugs and rescued by a man with a very familiar voice, Jolie becomes a pawn in a struggle she never knew existed.
Hauk knows he cannot have her, and resolves to protect his heart and his secrets. But as they work together and grow closer, he finds new reason to keep fighting. Dare he risk hope in a new life, one where Jolie can see past his ravaged face and where their friendship can grow into something more?
Jax Garren is descended from Valkyries and Vikings (she’s part Swedish) but was raised a small town girl in the Texas Hill Country. She graduated from The University of Texas with a degree in English and a minor in Latin and stayed in Austin to teach high school. During her eight years in public education she was in a riot, broke up fights, had cops storm her class with guns drawn…and met the most amazing young people who taught her more about life and hope than she taught them about any school subject.
Jax believes in happily ever afters. She married her real life hero, a handsome engineer who is saving the world through clean energy technology. Her heroine is Marion Ravenwood from Raiders of the Lost Ark, the perfect blend of tough and feminine. Jax blames Marion for her dream of traveling to Nepal to experience Himalayan palaces and monasteries and to drink yak butter tea.
Jax loves meeting new people, so if you see her out and about say hello! She’s always happy to raise a glass with her readers (or anyone else) in a toast to courage, adventure, and love.
Before stating anything further I have to make this one thing very clear. THIS IS NOT A YA NOVEL!
OK. Now that I have that out of the way, let's continue!
This is one quick and steamy novel of awesomeness! I have always been a huge fan of the whole Beauty and the Beast theme, and Jax Garren doesn't destroy my faith in the story type at all. in fact, I have the urge to rush out and re-read all BatB novels right this minute!
There is so much to love in this novel, and not a lot to not like. I think one of my favorite things is the main character Jolie (don't get me wrong, I love Haul too). But Jolie is special for many reasons, one of which is that she has Celiac Disease. As someone who has a serious gluten sensitivity herself I just felt an instant connection with her. Add this to the fact that she is a dancer/aerial performer...wow...just an amazing and well rounded character. I absolutely adore her. You will understand when, not if, you read this book.
- Steamy scenes where you hold your breath in anticipation of the excitement to come
- A firm grasp in weaving in tension without killing the reader with it
- Absolutely wonderfully stable characters you cannot help to love...every single one of them
- A main character who has celiac disease...love the added depth of this
- A fabulous and realistic underground steampunky community
- Piercings, tattoos, steampunk, burlesque, magic and mystery...oh my!
- The fight scenes, especially at the end, move very quickly and don't flow well.
This is a really well written steamy book that mixes action, romance, great characters, and so much more into a VERY enjoyable product. I suggest you read this now if you don't mind a little blushing as you read...