Jaguin’s Love is the latest book from author S E Smiths Lords of Valdier series. I thought this was going to be the last, but going by the end of this book I think its safe to assume there will be more. If you are not familiar with the series, the books tell the story of a civilisation of dragon shifting warriors who live on the planet Valdier in the outer reaches of space. The Valdierians are ruled by the Reykill royal family. They battled other species during the Great Wars but have now established peace.
There are very few females on Valdier and as a consequence the warrior race is dying. Without their true mates and the inability to control their inner dragons, the warriors are forced to meet their death. When Jaguin is sent to Earth the last thing he expects is to find is his true mate. His dragon has been growing more and more difficult to handle and Jaquin knew he was running out of time. But as fate would have it, his saviour came in the form of a small human woman. Hurt, confused and on the fringe of death.
Sara is a survivor. Growing up in an abusive home, she broke free and worked her way through school earning herself a degree in Botany. She was doing what she loved, working with plants, when she was kidnapped and held hostage by a brutal and sadistic man. The cartel boss had one thing on his mind, to inflict pain on anyone who looked like his enemy. For Sara, she just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
When Jaquin and his fellow warriors attacked the house Sara was trapped in, Sara was on the brink of death. But thanks to Jaguin she was safely removed and taken on board The Valdier space ship. Under the close eye of Jaguin and his team of healers, Sara’s health is restored. But when Sara awakens and discovers she is on a ship headed to an unknown destination her fight and flight instincts kick back in. Jaquin and his dragon may have found his mate, but now he fears he will still lose her. Will she accept him, or will she leave him forever?
Ok, that’s my premise. Sound great? Wrapped up like that, it does. Truth was the story could have been so much better. As soon as Sara woke on the ship, the story just dragged on and on. Each day was the same, the same dilemmas, the same struggle. I understand she was recovering but her recovery moved at a snail’s pace and for a book, it was tantamount to death. I found it difficult to continue with the story. Ordinarily I would ignore my Amazon Kindle App for a few days, and when I would return to the story I would forget what happened. Normally I can read a book in a day. Two, maybe three at the most. Jaquin’s Love took me a week to read!
Every book in The Dragon Lords of Valdier has the common subject of a Dragon shifter finding his true mate in a human and convincing her he’s the one. What captures my interest is how S E Smith complicates their attraction and injects some rather interesting drama into the story. It didn’t happen in this book. It was all about Sara’s struggle in coming to terms that she was with this dragon warrior who wanted to mate and live with her. I kept waiting for something else to happen, but it never did, leading me to reread the same passages over and over. S E Smith is a fabulous author, but when it came to Jaquins Love, I think she ran out of steam. Personally, I think it’s time she brought the series to a close and thought up something new and exciting. I guess we will find out what she has planned in the months ahead.
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Amazon Premise –
Jaguin is one of the finest trackers on Valdier. To date, there is only one thing he has never been successful at finding – his true mate. That failure is eating away at him and his dragon. Even his symbiot is feeling the drain as the centuries crawl by with no end to the emptiness gnawing away at them. Hope flares with the discovery of a species that is compatible with their own. The Lords of Valdier have found their true mates on a distant planet, bringing hope to the warriors of Valdier where females are few and true mates almost non-existent.
Jaguin is rewarded for his help in tracking one of the Lord’s stubborn females with the promise of a chance to find his own true mate on the planet called Earth. His search appears fruitless until the last mission before they are to leave. Sara Wilson is a botanist working with the National University of Colombia. Her love of plants and their potential for medicinal uses consume her life. She feels confident she is on the verge of a breakthrough when she is kidnapped by a cartel boss with only one thing on his mind – to extract revenge. A revenge that not only comes close to taking her life, but will change it forever.
After a fruitless search for his mate, Jaguin accepts one last assignment to guard Lord Creon’s mate, Carmen, during a mission to seek justice against the man who brutally murdered her husband back on Earth. Instead, he finds his true mate in the man’s cruel clutches, barely clinging to life. His only thought is to spirit her away where he and his symbiot can heal her and his dragon can claim her. The scars left during her captivity run deep inside Sara as she struggles to come to terms with her new life. She is no longer on Earth but the fear and terror still haunt her. She needs time to discover who she is again and whether this is a life she can accept. Can Jaguin’s love heal the scars on the inside or will his true mate believe she has traded one monster for another?