Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Begging for Forgiveness - Reviewed by Trix

Begging for Forgiveness
By Astrid Cielo
Pinewood Creek Shifters #2

When Aspen Clarke saw Skylar Ashmore for the first time, her cougar screamed that this wolf would be hers. But Aspen can't trust the mating call because she knows all to well that sometimes fate can get it wrong. After a steamy night with Skylar, Aspen is broken-hearted to find that her worries are founded when she awakens alone and confused. So, she runs back to Pinewood Creek and her old pride who'd always made her feel welcome, unlike her own parents. Little does she know that she carries more with her than emotional baggage. Now faced with motherhood alone she's decided that she doesn't need a mate.

Skylar just wanted to forget his last assignment, so like he had for the past six months after he was forced to execute yet another shifter he stopped at the little restaurant a town over from his apartment to lose himself in good food. He never expected to lose himself in a female. He took the beautiful Aspen to bed the moment he caught her scent, his wolf beside itself wanting to claim its mate. But after it was over he knows he's made a mistake...because he's already mated. So, he runs and hopes he can beg his mate for forgiveness.

Xavier had never felt a betrayal so deep as when Skylar slid into bed beside him smelling of a female, not even when his old pack had nearly beat him to death. But soon that feeling of betrayal faded to confusion, then surprise when he realized that whatever female his mate had taken was also his mate.

Now Skylar and Xavier will hunt for their missing mate. But little do they know, Skylar's last assignment has a loose end that's just waiting for the right moment to strike--and it's set its sights on Aspen.

Can Aspen accept the man who left her pregnant and doubting mating all over again? Can Skylar and Xavier convince her to mate with not one, but both of them? Will Aspen survive to forgive?

Trix’s Review:

2.75 stars

Insta-love is a common thing in "fated mate" stories, but in BEGGING FOR FORGIVENESS, things move even more quickly than usual. Aspen and Skylar end up in a passionate clinch within minutes of meeting. The story then jumps a few months ahead to find a brokenhearted Aspen alone and pregnant. In both instances, I wondered if I had missed something. Likewise, when Skylar confesses his attraction to Aspen to his male mate Xavier, Xavier blows up before proclaiming (sight unseen, strictly from her scent on Skylar's body) that she is his mate too. There is a lot to digest here, even before the (surprisingly graphic and disturbing) serial-killer subplot comes into play. This is compounded by the scattershot copyediting, especially in the first third of the book. The prose is very densely written as it is, and a lot of the sentences cry out for commas. It's a shame, because the story's intriguing world-building and sympathetic heroine give it real potential. (Cielo's real-life nursing career gives the hospital scenes believability, too.) The above blurb reveals a lot about the promising plot and flawed editing of this installment, and only the reader can decide which is the overriding factor.

In spite of my issues with this installment, I am curious about REWRITING DESTINI, the fourth book that's planned in the series. Nurse/platypus shifter Destini has a very brief appearance in BEGGING FOR FORGIVENESS, but is likable enough to make me want to know her story. Besides, I have to admit that a platypus shifter sounds intriguing!

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