Series: Soulbound #2
Author: Hailey Turner
Publication Date: March 19, 2019
Length: 364 pages
Reviewed by Sammy
You can’t bargain with death if you’ve already sold your soul.
Special Agent Patrick Collins has been reassigned by the Supernatural Operations Agency to New York City. Navigating his new relationship with Jonothon de Vere, the werewolf he’s now soulbound to, is nothing compared to dealing with territorial disputes between the vampires and werecreatures who call the five boroughs home. But the delicate treaties that have kept the preternatural world in check are fraying at the edges, and the fallout is spilling into the mundane world.
Manhattan’s club scene is overrun with the vampire drug known as shine and the subways have become a dumping ground for bodies. When the dead are revealed as missing werecreatures, Patrick and Jono find themselves entangled in pack politics twisted by vampire machinations.
Learning to trust each other comes with problems for both of them, and the gods with a stake in Patrick’s soul debt aren’t finished with him yet. Bound by promises they can’t break, Patrick and Jono must find a way to survive a threat that takes no prisoners and is stalking them relentlessly through the city streets.
Old and new betrayals are coming home to roost but the truth—buried in blood—is more poisonous than the lies being spun. Trying to outrun death is a nightmare—one Patrick may never wake up from.
All Souls Near & Nigh is a 104k word m/m urban fantasy with a gay romantic subplot and a HFN ending. It is a direct sequel to A Ferry of Bones & Gold, and reading the first book in the series would be helpful in enjoying this one. Please see the disclaimer at the beginning of the book for content some readers may find triggering.
SPOILER ALERT: Please if you haven’t read the first novel in Hailey Turner’s Soulbound series then do not read this review as it contains spoilers based on information revealed in A Ferry of Bones & Gold. This second novel, All Souls Near & Nigh, did the near impossible by being even better than the initial book in this group. We are back with Patrick Collins and Jono de Vere and I couldn’t be happier.
Picking up pretty much where the last book left off, Patrick and Jono are living together and still secretly a pack. Their soulbond is still intact although Patrick never discusses it and avoids thinking about it at all cost. It still hurts him to know that, though by accident, he has essentially enslaved the man he cares for just as his father has his sister. That fact has Patrick determined never to call on the bond—but, as in most things, never say never when you are a damaged mage with a debt owed to the goddess, Persephone. This time out, it will be the vampire Lucien who is calling in the debt he feels Patrick owes him so that together they can tack back the Manhattan ward his errant child has corrupted for his own.
The errant child in this case is the vampire Tremaine—sired by Lucien himself, and having escaped him once, Tremaine now has control of the city where independent werecreatures have gone missing and ended up dead at an increasing rate. It will be Patrick’s job to bring Tremaine back into Lucien’s hands. What neither he nor the ancient vamp knows is that Tremaine has made a pact with some powerful friends and they are not interested in what Lucien wants. A battle is brewing between the gods and Patrick and Jono are about to end up solidly in the crosshairs. This time Patrick may very well find it difficult to survive the fight.
Once again, much like a broken record, I find myself apologizing for this skimpy summary and yet it would be ever so wrong of me to give away any of the incredible action that takes place in this second novel. Jono comes into his own in the book and it was wonderful to not only learn more him but watch him go up against the hated alpha god pack leaders and force them to acknowledge his pack—that pack at the time consisting of only Patrick—but that is about to change. I loved that the focus, while still on Patrick, broadened more to include Jono and how the bond between them affected him. Jono proves once again to be everything a man could want in a mate—he is kind, powerful and loyal to Patrick. Without ever speaking the words, it’s obvious he loves Patrick and he reminds the mage every day that he is with him to the end. While I understand the HFN endings to these stories I really want to see these guys declare their love for each other soon—I just love the two of them together.
We also get to meet a new character in this novel, a teenager named Wade. Hailey Turner, please, please give us a break-off novella just about Wade—I absolutely adore him. This is the character that provides much needed comic relief and I can only hope we will see him in future installments. Turner’s ability to write teenage whining as reflected in Wade is on point and the fact that Wade is a bottomless pit when it comes to eating only adds to the fun. Honestly you can’t help but fall in love with this kid.
All Souls Near & Nigh is an action packed, heart in your throat story that keeps you on the edge of your seat. More than once you are filled with the fear that Patrick may have lived his last life but never fear this mage is tough and Jono will stand between him and danger every time. Fans of this series are going to love this one—I know I certainly did.
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