Friday, February 24, 2017

AotM ~ Cronin's Key Series by N.R. Walker (Reviews + Giveaway)

Cronin’s Key

NYPD Detective Alec MacAidan has always been good with weird. After all, his life has been a string of the unexplainable. But when an injured man gives him cryptic clues, then turns to dust in front of him, Alec's view on weird is changed forever.

Cronin, a vampire Elder, has spent the last thousand years waiting for Alec. He'd been told his fated one would be a man wielding a shield, but he didn't expect him to be human, and he certainly didn't expect that shield to be a police badge.

Both men, strong-willed and stubborn, are still learning how to cope with the push and pull of being fated, when fate throws them another curveball.

Rumors have spread quickly of turmoil in Egypt. Covens are fleeing with news of a vampire who has a talent like no other, hell-bent on unleashing the wrath of Death.

Alec and Cronin are thrown into a world of weird Alec cannot imagine. What he learned in school of ancient pharaohs and Egyptian gods was far from the truth. Instead, he finds out firsthand that history isn't always what it seems.

5 Stars! 

While Alec MacAidan enjoys being a NYPD Detective, his comfort level with all things weird has alienated him from most of his colleagues. His latest encounter with the unbelievable may be the nail in the coffin of his career, though. How can a gunshot victim turn to dust right before his eyes? Who is the man that appears out of nowhere and disappears with Alec in the middle of the police station?

Cronin is an ancient Vampire who's spent most of his Vampire life waiting for his fated one. Surprisingly it turns out to be Alec, a very human Alec. Immediately he feels the pull and knows he can not ever be apart from him. He'd do anything to protect Alec and to make him happy.

There really isn't time for Cronin and Alec to explore their relationship. There is a real threat to the world and Alec discovers he is right at the center of it all. Now Cronin, along with his coven, will have to do everything in their power to stop the threat and keep Alec safe.

I loved it! What a great addition to my N.R. Walker library. I am all about paranormal reads and I am a huge N.R. Walker fan but I wasn't sure if her style of writing was going to work when it came to Vampires, why I was worried I have no idea because she has an incredible ability to write almost anything (I would love to see what she could do with an MC Romance *coughs* wishful thinking).

This book was a whole lot more than a typical paranormal romance story, though. This was a really well thought out mystery both interesting and exciting and while the sexual tension is thick, it just adds that extra oomph to what is happening. I loved how the romance is drawn out and almost slow burn, even with Alec and Cronin being fated.

These two men are great for one another and I loved them. Their connection is enviable in a way and I was very entertained by their banter. The both of them seem to press each other's buttons constantly but instead of it being annoying it's funny and in ways endearing. There is also a good cast of secondary characters that bring the story even more to life.

Overall, I loved Cronin's Key and can't wait to read book 2.

Cronin’s Key II

History isn’t always what it seems.

With the battle of Egypt behind them, Alec and Cronin are enjoying the thrill of new love. Though fate doesn’t wait long before throwing them back into the world of weird.

They know Alec’s blood is special, though its true purpose still eludes them. And given Alec’s inability to be changed into a vampire, Cronin is free to drink from him at will. But the ramifications of drinking such powerful blood starts a ripple effect.

With the help of Jorge, a disturbing vampire-child with the gift of foresight, Alec and Cronin face a new kind of war. This time their investigations lead them to the borders of China and Mongolia—but it’s not what lies in the pits beneath that worries Alec.

It’s the creator behind it all.

In the underground depths of China, amidst a war with the Terracotta Army, they will find out just what the Key is, and what Alec means to the vampire world.

5 Stars! 

With the fight over, Cronin and Alec are laying low and strengthening their bond. Alec can't show his face on the streets of NY after all that has happened so he's been practically confined to Cronin's apartment. A need to get out and have some fun sends the men to a club in London where Cronin meets up with an old friend. From there they learn of more disturbing rumors of possible danger.

Needing answers, Cronin introduces Alec to Jorge, a child Vampire with an extraordinary gift. Jorge is possibly the scariest thing Alec has ever encountered, though, and while he's helpful, Alec is not excited at the prospect of ever having to approach him again. Left with the riddle Jorge has revealed to them they are determined to solve its meaning and find out who's behind the latest threat.

Again there is a great adventure for the guys and it is just as exciting as the first. I loved how history with a twist is such a huge theme once again in the story because it gives it an almost cinematic feel while picturing it in my mind (think The Mummy or Indiana Jones). It's fun and entertaining and different from so many of the books I find myself reading. Not to mention that the writing is very well done and engaging.

I'm a huge fan of Alec and Cronin and I must admit I kind of have a crush on Cronin (nothing to do with him being a Vampire). They are great together once again and it makes the story all the better when it feels as if the relationship is solid.

As with the first book I loved the rest of the cast of characters as well. I even have a soft spot for Jorge although in my mind he is more cute kindergartener than evil/crazy vampire child. I hope to see more of him in the third book if possible.

Overall I very much loved Cronin's Key II and am definitely ready to dive into book

Cronin’s Key III

History isn’t always what it seems…

Twelve months after his change, Alec MacAidan is still getting used to his many vampire talents. While most vampires would give anything to have more than one supernatural power, Alec craves nothing more than peace and time alone with Cronin. But when Alec meets entities from outside this realm, he’s left powerless in their presence.

Zoan are half-lycan, half-dragon creatures that have slipped through time and reality, seemingly undetected by man and vampire. Or have they? They bear an uncanny resemblance to gargoyles, leaving Alec’s view on all things weird to get a whole lot weirder.

This new quest leads Alec, Cronin, and their band of friends to Paris, Rome, and Moscow, where they learn that gargoyles aren’t simply statues on walls. In the underground pits beneath churches all over the world, Alec discovers the Key’s true destiny. Facing the Zoan might take every talent he has. And he may need help from the dead to get them all out alive.

*copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by author/publisher via Pride Promotions in exchange for an honest review*

I wish I could rate this higher than 5 Stars, because it deserves more than that! I don't know how she does it, but everything Ms. Walker puts on paper turns to magic. She pulls you in and makes you fall in love with her characters. She writes the epic love stories. Love that stands the test of time, and in Cronin's Key, survives evil and deadly creatures. I'm not really much of a paranormal reader anymore. I've gotten into more contemporary romances over the last couple of years, but NR reminds me why I used to love the paranormal world so much.

Cronin's Key III, like books one and two, introduces us to creatures we could have never imagined. She works history and historical figures into the story, and she does her homework. Her scenarios of great plagues being rampant vampire attacks, and her other explanations for events in history are plausible and believable.

Like books one and two, she pulls you in and holds you captive to the last page. This book is fast paced, exciting, action packed, loving, passionate, sexy, and even sad at times. She keeps you sitting on the edge of your seat, holding your breath with anticipation, waiting to see what will happen next.

This could possibly be read as a standalone, but I wouldn't recommend it. This is an amazing series, and Ms. Walker is a truly gifted writer. I have read just almost every book she has written, and look forward to much more in the future!

5 Stars!!!

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  1. I have always loved Paranormal books there are so many different types of books Vampires and werewolves are my favourite then there are ghosts, witches/Warlocks and also Magic.

  2. I enjoy a good paranormal book.

  3. PNR stories are my all time favourites!

  4. I am a big fan of paranormal romance. And I especially love it when there is paranormal and some kind of mystery.

  5. I love characters with flaws, but I guess I hate to love those that are really bad, like assassins/killers-for-hire. They of course have some redeeming qualities to love, but ... - Purple Reader
    - TheWrote [at] aol [dot] com

  6. "Opposites Attract"? - not sure if you asking about a series, but I think it's about the trope, out of which there are a lot of options to choose from. A latest one is "The Black Sheep and the Rotten Apple' by Merikan. - Purple Reader
    - TheWrote [at] aol [dot] com

  7. I love paranormal, especially if you add another genre in like mystery or historical. And I love NR Walker's, and agree with Jaymie and Tracy's reviews of Cronin. - Purple Reader
    - TheWrote [at] aol [dot] com