Review: Navarro’s Promise

Posted April 23, 2011 by Jen in 3 stars, Erotic Romance, Paranormal Romance, Rating B, Reviews Tags: ,

Navarro’s Promise
Author: Lora Leigh 
Release Date: April 5, 2011
Publisher: Berkley Trade
The Breeds Series #24
ISBN: #978-0425239780
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Erotic
Format(s): paperback (320 pgs), e-book
I purchased a copy of the book for my own reading pleasure.

From the author’s website:

In the wolf breed novel, NAVARRO’S PROMISE, Mica Toler’s best friend is the wolf/coyote hybrid breed, Cassie Sinclair. And now Mica is being drawn into her world in ways she had prayed she never would be when the charming wolf breed Navarro makes good on the promise he made her on a dark, explosive night.The Breeds guaranteed that no harm would come to Micah Toler but they never allowed for her sensual fascination with Navarro Blaine. Aloof, cool, and mysterious, he draws her in as no man ever has. But Micah never wanted this. She had her own dreams, her own desires, and being stalked and seduced by a wolf breed wasn’t part of that plan.

Now she knows her life is in danger. What Navarro knows is that she’s his mate and that the breeding and training that created him is being peeled away in his desperation to claim a woman that refuses to be claimed.

He has her body. She craves his touch. And as the breeds converge the past will rise up to haunt Navarro in ways he never expected.

What I’m talking about:

      Once again, I stress to you all… The Breeds Series is my guilty pleasure. You can read about my love in my recent review of the novella “Primal Kiss” HERE.
      Chronologically, this story takes place after Styx’s Storm and the recent novella “Primal Kiss.”  The story focuses on Breed Enforcer, Navarro Blaine and human Mica Toler.  Mica grew up among the Breeds and is best friends with one of the Breed protected children, Cassie Sinclair.  Mica is now an adult, but has dreamed of and loved Navarro since she was 16. She guarded her emotions from him for years, but when the evil Phillip Brandenmore threatens her life, Mica and Navarro are thrown together in a dangerous fight for survival.
      NOTE: due to some technical issues with the book, I have described a scene that may be slightly spoilerish. In addition, I have mentioned some things about the conclusion of the book that are spoilers.
      I’m going to say right up front that this book was a bit of a let down for me.  It still had the erotic sex scenes and the fast-paced action, but for me, it lacked the “punch” of many of her other Breed stories.  Not only that, but the book is actually missing an pivotal scene that lead to some confusion while I was reading it! A little backstory here… I do not read other reviews or information about a book until after I’ve read it. I received a heads up from tweep @HaileyEdwards that a scene was missing, but I didn’t want to research it until I was done. And sure enough… right about page 299, at a critical moment in the book, we have Mica and Navarro leaving the labs all mad at each other and jump to the bed, post sex, spilling out the emotions we’ve been waiting for the entire story. Oh, and the bad guy happens to be there as well. It was a total WTF?! moment.  After doing some research on both the author’s and publisher’s websites, the only thing I could find out about this “error” is that it was a mistake, the author plans to put the scene up on her website, and the books will be reprinted soon. (The information HERE is located on Ms. Leigh’s FORUM) I called my local Barnes & Noble store, which knew nothing about the problem, but said that they would exchange my book for me when the new ones are available.
      Anyhow, back to the review…  The overall story was okay, and I doubt that the missing scenes will solve the things I didn’t care for in the book.  What I did like: the mating heat and signs have taken an interesting twist and I like how it was directly tied to emotions – in the past we were lead to believe the heat happens, but will only match up “perfect pairs,” and the emotions of either partner didn’t seem to have an impact. Not so with Navarro and Mica. It was a nice adjustment to this little-known phenomenon. I also enjoyed seeing more of the mysterious Cassie and getting a better idea of how Eli (the feline doctor) is doing after being near death and betrayed by those close to her.
      What I didn’t really care for: first of all… the story seemed very repetitive to me.  I got tired of reading about Mica’s juices flooding her pussy, that Navarro was not experiencing the mating heat, that the Breeds have to hide the mating phenomenon, and that although Merinus was over 40 years old, she still looked so young, etc. etc.  Also, I felt that Mica’s reactions to events surround the mating heat were overly conflicted and hyper-emotional. She admitted that she’d been in love with Navarro since she was 16, yet she was so freaked out for a while, even bordering on hateful feelings. I understand that she was afraid of getting her heart broken, but it just seemed over the top to me.
      Finally, the ending of the story was a disappointment. Unless the missing scene can pull together several plot line developments, I feel that the conclusion of the story was lackluster. There was build up of a spy in Sanctuary (yes, another spy… go figure!), but it was never more than a passing mention in the end. Mica was the focus of Brandenmore’s evil plans, yet we never really found out what he was up to, and he was just brushed under the rug in the end.
      I am giving this book a 3 for its rating.  I love the Breeds, and this book did have some wonderful scenes that held an emotional impact. I felt it fell short in the end, but is still a must read for fans of the series. If you are new to the series – definitely do NOT start here. It’s not the best example of how wonderful this series truly is.
My Rating: 
Liked it, but I had some issues – recommend (B)
(recommend for fans of the series, 
but not for new comers to the series) 

8 responses to “Review: Navarro’s Promise

  1. I feel like the Breeds series is at a point where something new has got to happen. I’ve given up on buying books in this series after the incredible disappointment that was Styx’s Storm and hearing about the editorial drama surrounding this book only makes me glad I didn’t drop the cash. I just get the feeling that the books are just being phoned in now, which is unfortunate.

  2. Hi Jen,

    I love LL books, but I never really got hooked on her Breed series, why I have no idea. I do love some of her other work. Loved reading your review, but it does not invite me to start reading her Breed series again.. Hope you are well!

  3. The Breeds will always have a special place in my heart. Callan’s story was my first erotic romance. Needless to say, I was O.O for days afterward.

    So I credit Lora Leigh with my introduction to erotic romance, and sparking my love of the genre.

    With the Breeds, there are some titles, like Mercury’s War, that I loved. Then there are titles like Coyote’s Mate, that I really didn’t enjoy.

    I was sad to hear Navarro’s book would probably fall into the latter category. Thanks Jen, for the review. I’ll wait to read Navarro when I can have a corrected copy and hope the next installment will be back to good.

  4. Wow, that’s a pretty big mistake to leave out a pivotal scene in the book! I’ve only read her early Breeds books that were published by Ellora’s Cave. Scorching hot! Hopefully I’ll get caught up with the series eventually…

  5. Thanks for your review. I’ve only just begun this series so I have a lot of catching up to do. I am in the middle of Tempting the Beast and I am enjoying it so far. I like the characters and the plot about DNA altered humans. I am not really a huge fan of vampires so I’m always looking for other types of paranormal heroes.

  6. Great honest review. I LOVE this series. Ive read 2 reviews that like yours that point out the errors. Ive read 1 that said the error was is barely noticable. I think I will wait for the reprint before I read it. Hopefully the reprint will be out before the next book or anthology. This is a series I keep up with as each new one is published.

  7. Great review…I am on the fence with LL, have read the Nauti series, liked it okay, but a little concerned now that I’m not sexy unless I willingly suffer the Brazillian Bikini Wax.
    I have read some really heated (scathing) opinions about the editing of this book, so I think I’ll step back from getting into this series until things cool down and the book gets fixed!