Release Date: April 5, 2016
Format: ebook (Kindle)
Pages: 508 (Hardcover)
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Review Date: June 6, 2016
Rating: 5 bookmarks
Synopsis: Nothing is as it used to be for the Black Dagger Brotherhood. After avoiding war with the Shadows, alliances have shifted and lines have been drawn. The slayers of the Lessening Society are stronger than ever, preying on human weakness to acquire more money, more weapons, more power. But as the Brotherhood readies for an all-out attack on them, one of their own fights a battle within himself…
For Rhage, the Brother with the biggest appetites, but also the biggest heart, life was supposed to be perfect—or at the very least, perfectly enjoyable. Mary, his beloved shellan, is by his side and his King and his brothers are thriving. But Rhage can’t understand—or control—the panic and insecurity that plague him…
And that terrifies him—as well as distances him from his mate. After suffering mortal injury in battle, Rhage must reassess his priorities—and the answer, when it comes to him, rocks his world...and Mary’s. But Mary is on a journey of her own, one that will either bring them closer together or cause a split that neither will recover from...
Rhage, as you know, is the guy who has a beast living inside him hence the title The Beast. While the Beast itself isn't the main focus of the story, it's about Rhage and Mary. It's about them figuring out where they are as a couple, what they want in a family, including dealing with some issues around not being able to conceive.
Ironically, while this non-baby issue is happening with Rhage and Mary, Layla is pregnant and is close to having her twin young. If you recall, Layla is pregnant with Quinn's baby, so Quinn and Blay are the Dads. There are complications for both the pregnacy and Layla. Don't forget, based on the last installment that Layla has a thing for Xcor so of course she's trying to help him without anyone knowing. A big secret about Xcor is revealed, but I'm not entirely surprised by it.
We don't see any of the recruits from the new spin-off series, but maybe next time. I felt like this installment was a connector story, essentially intended to set us up for a major plot twist. The drama was very low key and was all very relationship-driven. We didn't really have a mortal enemy at this point and if I'm really honest, I would have like to have an enemy that they were fighting. There was one big fight scene early on, but after that it was pretty tame as far as conflict outside of the relationships within the group.
The sweetest ending ever. There was no Cliffhanger, but it was a happy ending. I was content with it. While I appreciate how the little things were wrapped up and how the story is set up for the next story arc, I still ultimately miss the drama and conflict that the ultimate bad guy(s) would lend to the story. When it's all said and done, Ward still has the "Midas touch". If you love this series, you will love The Beast.