Book Review: The Blood King by Abigail Owen

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I am so excited to see this series continue with the second Dragon King to get a phoenix mate! Abigail Owen creates such colorful stories full of enchanting history and strong, exciting characters. I am never disappointed, and this book threw me for a loop with how different and creative it was. With four phoenix sisters, each one so different from the other, I was bound to have one sister that was a bit more difficult to feel close to, but even so, by the end of the story I loved her as much as Kasia. Each book has brought more detail into the Dragon/Phoenix history for me to devour, and with each new piece of information, things come together even more to form a picture of what life was like for the girls' mother. I'm thinking perhaps a Prequel about their mother is in order, once they all have their happy endings.

Skylar Amon has always been the protector among her sisters, and when she learns that her sister, Kasia, was kidnapped and forced into mating with a Dragon King, she immediately sets out to rescue her. After all, such a fate is exactly what their mother was trying to prevent when she flung each sister to different corners of the earth to save them from the Rotting King of the Red Dragon Clan, Pytheios. However, upon arriving, she sees her sister in a seemingly happy relationship with her mate, and Skylar soon finds herself in the sights of Brand's fellow King, Ladon Omarr, the Blood King of the Blue Dragon Clan. Ladon is determined to wrest control from Pytheious, who is destroying dragons and laying siege to their world. Having a phoenix for a mate would give Ladon some leverage over Pytheios, and his initial reaction is to claim Skylar immediately. He soon realizes that it will be easier said than done, and when his hand is forced, he and Skylar must learn to survive as mates, or die trying.

I will admit, initially I was not so sure about this couple. They barely had any time to get to know each other before they had to do the deed to seal their mating. Unfortunately, sex so early on in the relationship seemed to define every subsequent scene they had for a good portion of the book, so we didn't get to see their emotions catch up for quite some time. Lust was prevalent but love? That took some time. So my connection with their romance didn't fully click in until later, when they began to realize that while their mating was one of convenience, it was slowly developing into of longing and trust. Skylar was headstrong, willing and able to fight her own battles, and thankfully Lor saw that in her and boosted her up rather than tearing her down. He was the perfect mate for her, and she was the same for him, as she recognized in him the strengths needed to be a leader.

Now for the excellent news - there is another book already slated to release in early 2021! I can't tell which sister yet. I really, really want Meira to get her, because we get an amazing teaser of her future mate at the end of the book. However, I'm excited either way. We also gained some insight into a new species - gargoyles. And there are not enough gargoyle romances, just saying....*wink, wink*.

**I received this free book via NetGalley and this is my honest review.**