Release Day Review ~ Out of the Ashes by Ari McKay
Title: Out of the Ashes
Series: Asheville Arcana
Author: Ari McKay
Release Date: August 1, 2017
Category: Paranormal: Werewolves/Shifters, Fantasy: Urban Fantasy; Dreamspun Beyond
In their differences, they’ll find strength—and love.
Alpha werewolf Eli Hammond returns from a fishing trip to discover a nasty surprise—five members of his pack murdered and the rest missing. He needs help locating and rescuing his pack mates, but the supernatural council in Asheville, North Carolina, turns him away.
Except for one man.
As they work together, Eli is stunned—and not especially thrilled—to discover half-elf Arden Gilmarin is his destined mate. But as Arden and his friends struggle to help Eli in his quest, Eli surrenders to the demands of his body—and his heart. They’ll need to bond together, because the forces opposing them are stronger and more sinister than anyone predicted. The evil has its sights set on Arden, and if Eli wants to save his mate and the people he is entrusted with protecting, he’s in for the fight of his life.
Fated Mates, sign me up!
I adore Shifters and I like Vampires. I sometimes enjoy stories about the Fae or Demons or even Angels. However, sometimes having a story with them all at one time can be a little too much for me. This was an introduction to a world full of the supernatural and so we are given a look at what that entails. I truly believe that had Out of the Ashes focused more on the Shifter part this time, I'd have enjoyed it a lot more. I understand that we needed to see how everyone worked and existed together but I just found myself kind of lost and disconnected from the story and most of the characters.
The writing was good and the world that was created was well done. It definitely took a lot of thought to create this story full of different species and magical beings. I wished I didn't feel so overwhelmed by it though because I wanted to focus more on the relationship between Arden and Eli.
I liked Eli a lot, however, it irked me that he was so adamantly against mating with Arden. I feel like it's become irritatingly redundant in these stories that the characters are so scared or dead set on believing that their destined mate will be a bad match. Yet it's stated over and over that the mating were designed by fate and are to be celebrated. Basically, you are given the perfect mate for you, so why do they fight it *throws hands in the air*?
Of course, Eli fights it for what felt like most of the story but when he finally changes his mind, BOOM! The relationship moves at super speed and all is right in the world of love (not really but you get my drift). I would have preferred a lot more of the story focusing on them learning to navigate their mating since they are two different species and lead very different lifestyles. I think there could have been some really interesting moments between them that weren't filled with denial, or behaving antagonistic towards each other.
As for the mystery of Eli's murdered and disappeared pack members, it wasn't my favorite. I kind of lost interest in it after a bit and by the end just wanted it to be done with. I think it was just too much and too drawn out. We had so many characters to keep straight that I don't think I had room for the pack.
I'm anxious to see where this series will go and to learn more about the characters we met who definitely have stories of their own to tell. Hopefully, now that we have an idea how the world they live in works we can focus a little more on the specific characters and their personal stories.
*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by Dreamspinner Press for my reading pleasure, a review wasn't a requirement. ***