Book Review: Dangerous Alphas series by Freya Amber
This book review of the Dangerous Alphas series by Freya Amber differs slightly from my other reviews. The author kindly sent me free copies of the first two books in exchange for beta reader feedback. Many of my thoughts on both books won’t appear here as this is neither an ARC review nor something I read as part of my reading hobby. The first book in this series is Bloody Escape and its sequel is Fractured Pack.
(Reviews contain spoilers of the first book.)
Book Review: Bloody Escape (Dangerous Alphas I) by Freya Amber
My rating: ★★★★ (3.5 rounded up to 4/5)
Summary: Briar is a female alpha, a rarity on this new Earth. Male alphas try to control her, study her, take advantage of her. When the King of Germany tries to abduct her, Briar ends up battered at an inn where she meets two other alphas. Nick and Alasdair soon decide to help her fight against the King of Germany, but they need more help than they think.
Genre: Omegaverse, Romance
Audience: New Adult
Themes/potential trigger warnings: LGBT+, polyamorous undertones, neurodivergent representation, attempted sexual assault, torture, gore, mental illness
Enjoyable read, minus the reverse harem vibes
In its current state, I would say this book is an enjoyable read. Reading this book didn’t bore me, although it certainly could use a little more polishing.
This novel starts out with reverse harem vibes, but it has the potential to be so much more and can delve into more specific topics. This is a story told from multiple points of view, which is something I really enjoy. However, while Briar and Shadow were close to being fully developed characters, the others left me hanging a little.
What I liked in this book was the depiction of mental illness with Briar’s trauma. I also loved to read about neurodivergent characters. Shadow has a personality disorder, and it was something new and beautifully written. This novel delves into PTSD while combining found-family tropes.
Rushy romance and lack of world-building
The downsides I found are the lack of world-building and missing explanations regarding the magic system and the imprint/soulmate trope. The romance bits felt rushed and the wobbly structure of the narrative, combined with the lack of background for the villain, had me wondering what exactly was at stake here.
But truthfully, this is a novel that raises good points on some social structures and has the potential to become a series featuring polyamorous characters, so I’m looking forward to seeing how the author will polish her voice. It’s a niche that could use more literature.
Book Review: Fractured Pack (Dangerous Alphas II) by Freya Amber
My rating: ★★★ (3/5)
Summary: After Todd tricked her into driving in the wrong direction, Briar and Shadow enter Poland. Under the King’s protection, Briar meets new alphas and learns new skills. But Germany captured Nick, and now she must rescue him with the help of her new allies. Meanwhile, Poland is trying to convince her to dethrone Gavriel and become Queen of Germany.
Genre: Omegaverse, Romance
Audience: New Adult
Themes/potential trigger warnings: LGBT+, polyamorous undertones, neurodivergent representation, torture, gore, mental illness
A book a bit too long!
Fractured Pack comes with many problems, the main one being that several elements belong in the first book. The world-building, the explanations given about everyone’s powers and origins… These should be in Bloody Escape. The pacing is odd, as it takes many chapters for the characters to get somewhere or do anything. I think this also has to do with the fact that there’s a lot of internal conflict happening. That could be chopped.
Characters that need to discover their purpose
It upset me a bit to see that some characters do what others should. The prime example would be Todd versus Briar regarding the predicament Nick found himself in. It feels like Fractured Pack is more about Shadow’s character that Briar. Alasdair also seems to be more in the background to make room for new characters, and I’m not sure how to feel about that.
Nick was done a little dirty in this installment, but things might change as the novel is still in the editing phase. I hope the author uses less plot armor in some scenes and distributes the spotlight accordingly. Either way, I think Dangerous Alphas is a promising series. The author’s got humor, looks for action and adventure, and her characters are unlike anything I’ve read before. I’m sure the final version will be stellar.
Do you need beta reading services? Contact me, maybe I have a spot.