Protector (Underground Guardians – 1) by Lisa Renee Jones

In their quest to create a stronger fighting force, the elite Black Knights unwittingly give birth to a dark force, led by a man of evil. Now the Knights must battle their counterparts to keep civilization out of harm’s way. There is one man whose destiny it is to keep humanity safe, but Mason Alexander will need the help of his soulmate to accomplish his goal.

Forever changed by the medical experiments he underwent, Mason needs Holly Heart to teach him how to control his special talents. Holly, a doctor who has devoted her life to genetic research, is frightened by the changes she finds in Mason, yet she is spellbound by the desire she feels for him.

As Mason and Holly join forces to defeat the enemy, passion explodes, burning as hot as a raging fire. And as their souls unite, Mason fears that if Holly ever sees the beast within him she will run forever, dooming him to the dark side.

I downloaded Protector during one of my freebie download frenzies. Before you remind me, I know that I have a serious problem, hich is probably a good topic for another post all by itself, so it’s safe to skip the lecture and carry on with the review.

As long as we’re on the subject of problems, I suppose now would be a good time to admit that I have a serious weakness for alpha males. I’m not quite sure who to blame on this, but several authors (along with a long list of loving book bullies who all know who you are) come readily to mind.  I’m not exactly sure when this happened either, but it did and now I have to deal with the consequences. *sigh* When I read the description of this book I have to admit, I wasn’t sure. I usually like my alpha males with fur and/or fangs. Who knew an alpha with an alien slant would fill the bill? I suppose this means that I now need to add aliens to my list of alphas.

Mason was strong, possessive, damaged and considered himself totally unworthy of love. Yet he couldn’t bring himself to pull away from Holly. All the traits that make up a perfect alpha. Holly was strong, determined and damaged in her own way. The collision course they were on was inevitable and intense which turned Protector into a surprising page turner.

This book probably isn’t for everyone. It’s steamy almost from the beginning and alphas will be alphas. If you understand the concept and can wrap your mind around the intensity of that type of attraction, then this is the read for you. There was also plenty of action, twists, turns and allie confusion to go along with the hot and steamy scenes to keep your attention.

I was glad to find out that this is part of a series. There were a lot of lose ends and places for the story to continue at the end. Not necessarily a cliff hanger, but it did leave me wanting to know and read more. From what I read, the next book doesn’t center on Mason and Holly but the story line was left wide open to return to these characters in the future. I will definitely be looking for more installments of the Underground Guardians.

I received Protector as a free Kindle download from Amazon on January 17, 2012.