Goodreads appetizer: Between the pissed off creatures that want demon-hunter Lily Marks dead and the fallen angel who just...wants her, Lily is about ready to trade in forever for a comfy job in a cubicle farm.
The fact that she and Julian are civil to one another is enough to have her thrown out of the Sanctuary, but she can't shake her not-so-angelic stalker or how he brings her dangerously close to ecstasy.
Her forbidden relationship with Julian provides the perfect fuel for suspicion when a traitor is discovered to be working within the Sanctuary. Lily quickly finds herself hunted by well, everyone.
Her only hope is to discover the real traitor before she loses everything--and she'll need Julian's help. That is, if Julian is really there to help her...and not destroy her.
Yeah, being a Nephilim isn't everything it's cracked up to be.
My Thoughts: Unchained was easily one of my most anticipated books for 2013! Since the moment I saw that Jennifer Armentrout was writing an adult story (didn't know then that her Gamble Brothers series would be available sooner than Unchained) I just couldn't wait to get it in my hands! But I'm afraid that Unchained didn't exactly meet my expectations. And it's the third book in a row that I read by this author that I'm not exactly thrilled about it. And we're talking about one of my favorite authors here, whose books I was pretty certain I could do nothing but love.
Unchained follows the exact same and pretty successful pattern most of JLA books do. It features a kick ass heroine, a pretty hot and smart mouthed hero, a forbidden romance and lots of action. So, maybe, just maybe, I'm tired of that same pattern and I kind of needed something new in Unchained to blow my mind, but I hardly think that is the case. Because that pattern didn't stop me from loving the author's previous series. Quite the opposite. What stopped me from loving Unchained was that everything that made JLA's books so great before, now kind of seemed forced. The author tried really hard to portray Lily as a kick ass heroine throughout the whole novel. The result was a 20 something heroine who didn't know what she wanted from life, who acted like a teenager for the better part of the story but for an unknown reason everyone seemed to respect and think really high of her. The reader can't really see Lily for the strong female character she is, all we get is the fact that the rest of the Nephilim think of her as strong and the best warrior they have. I personally, couldn't witness her strength anywhere in the story. So no, the fact that others think of her as strong isn't enough to make me believe it.
Julian on the other hand, the hero and love interest couldn't be a more flat character for me. He was just there because the plot needed a hot male partner for the story to be complete. But I couldn't really feel his awesomeness. I didn't secretly wish that he was a real character. In fact, I couldn't care less for him I'm afraid. I don't know if his stalkerish ways are to blame for that. Though probably that was a major put off for me. He kept stalking Lily every moment of her life and she was just ok with it. In fact, she was flattered. Me on the other hand, not so mad about it. But that's not just it. Julian, was supposed to be the hot fallen angel but many great sex scenes isn't what makes a hot male character. He needs to act like one and for me, Julian just didn't act his part, much like Lily didn't. And their romantic relationship, oh well that was the biggest failure I'm afraid. Their relationship doesn't have enough depth, just insta-lust which turns into insta-love. I mean Lily is taught all of her life how evil Fallen Angles are, she hunts them every day, but despite all that she is really quick to forget everything she believes in and fall in Julian's arms just because he's hot and she makes her womb clench.
The sex scenes may be well written, but like I said in previous reviews of mine, hot sex, doesn't equal good sex scenes for me. The easy way their relationship progressed made it difficult for me to connect with the characters and emotionally invest in their romance.
The plot on the other hand wasn't anything special either. It was predictable and with not many surprises. I had guessed who the traitor was pretty soon. It wasn't that hard or much of a surprise really. And the reason behind the betrayal.
The most interesting part of the book was Michael. I really liked his POV and I found him a much more interesting character than the main ones and his narration was what balanced the whole story. But the spin concerning him near the end was also rushed and felt unreal. Still, I really liked him.
Verdict: Unchained was a bit of a disappointment for me. Not because it was that bad of a book but let's face it, Jennifer Armentrout is one of the best authors out there, at least for me. So yeah, my expectations of her work are always high. And Unchained, simply can't be compared with the authors previous work. She is able to write so much better stories.
Cover: 5/10 (Better than the first cover but still the way the model stands doesn't really remind me of a kick ass heroine or a fighter)