Review – Obsession by Jennifer L. Armentrout

March 29, 2014 Reviews 8 ★★★★½

Title: Obsession
Series: NA spin-off of the Lux series
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: May, 2013
Pages: 275
Goodreads Rating: 4.16 Stars
My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
My Content Rating: 18+ (Explicit sex)
Summary from Goodreads: This is a stand alone novel that is an adult spin-off of the Lux Series. You do not need to read a Lux book to read Obsession and vice versa.


He’s arrogant, domineering, and… To. Die. For.

Hunter is a ruthless killer. And the Department of Defense has him firmly in their grasp, which usually doesn’t chafe too badly because he gets to kill bad guys. Most of the time he enjoys his job. That is, until he’s saddled with something he’s never had to do before: protect a human from his mortal enemy.

Serena Cross didn’t believe her best friend when she claimed to have seen the son of a powerful senator turn into something… unnatural. Who would? But then she witnesses her friend’s murder at the hands of what can only be an alien, thrusting her into a world that will kill to protect their secret.

Hunter stirs Serena’s temper and her lust despite their differences. Soon he’s doing the unthinkable—breaking the rules he’s lived by, going against the government to keep Serena safe. But are the aliens and the government the biggest threats to Serena’s life… or is it Hunter?

 

I picked up Origin and started reading it, but when I got to a point about 10% in where Daemon runs into an Arum named Hunter and a girl named Serena, I just knew I’d missed out on something. Sure enough, I dug a little and found out that Obsession featured Hunter and Serena and that it was published before Origin.  I am the type of person who can’t bear to skip books in a series (even if they’re just supposed to be standalone spin-off books), so I had to stop right there and buy Obsession!

While the synopsis insists that you can read this book without reading the Lux series, I don’t see why you’d want to.  It might be good as a standalone I suppose, but you’d be missing out on a ton of history and background – I’d just go ahead and read them all!

The negatives:
  • NA spin-offs.  I have some mixed feelings about NA spin-offs of YA books.  I’m sure that the NA book gets more older readers interested in the series in general.  But, I just know that there are teens out there who feel exactly like I do about missing out on books in a series and are dying to read this one.  Some might decide to pick it up despite the 18+ rating – and it’s really NOT at all appropriate for the under 18 crowd.  Not.  And, yes, you could definitely skip this book and still be okay, but there is TONS of information about the Arum and Daedalus in this book that really enhances the series.  I wish that Armentrout would write a YA-friendly version of the book (it could definitely be done – I’ve seen other authors do it) so that her YA readers could still get the Arum perspective, but not be exposed to the explicit sex.
  • Serena’s bad decision.  Toward the end of the book, Serena made a decision that was just plain dumb and that got them into a lot of trouble.  I just didn’t understand her reasoning for the decision – and Hunter pretty much had no choice but to go along for the ride.  There were a few other things about this part of the book that bugged me too (I scratched my head at some of the Luxen’s decisions as well), but I can’t think of any way to talk about them that won’t be a spoiler, so I’ll just leave it at that.  Luckily, the rest of the book made up for this one kind of frustrating part.
What I loved:
  • The Arum.  I absolutely LOVED getting to see the other side of the story when it comes to the Arum vs. Lux.  Up till this point in the series, we’ve only seen the Arum as the bad guys. In this book, the tables are completely turned and we get to see the reasons behind the war between the Arum and the Luxen.  When seen from the Hunter’s perspective, suddenly the Arum are fighting the evil Luxen and protecting humanity from a huge threat.  This is something that I LOVE in books.  When the lines between the good guys and the bad guys are most decidedly gray.  We definitely don’t see Hunter as evil in this book – in fact, the biggest, baddest bad guys in the book are actually Luxen (with the US government coming in at a close second).  So, who’s good and who’s bad.  Well, just like the humans, there are good and bad Luxen and good and bad Arum – makes it all just that much more realistic.
  • Daedalus.  We also got to learn a lot more about Daedalus in this book – Who they are, what they’re trying to do, how ruthless they are.  There are definitely still lots of mysteries, but this book gives us quite a few hints and fills in some holes.
  • Hunter and Serena.  From the beginning Hunter and Serena have awesome chemistry together, even when Serena’s terrified of him (which she should be sometimes) and when Hunter is aggravated with her.  Hunter has spent his life feeling a whole lot of nothing, and liking it that way – he reasons that that’s the way the Arum are and anything else will only cause him pain.  So, he’s completely unprepared when he starts to actually care for Serena and he’s not even really sure what to do about it.  Add to that the fact that he is constantly afraid he might kill her if he gets a bit too passionate and can’t help but feed off of her – well, it makes for a complicated romance.  Serena, on the other hand, isn’t sure what she feels about the frightening and yet beautiful alien who seems to be both protecting her and pushing her away.  I was 100% invested in this couple and couldn’t WAIT to see where it all led!
If you’re  a fan of the Lux series (and you’re 18+) then you should definitely read this book!  If you’re an NA fan and you haven’t picked up the Lux series yet, this might be a great place to start.  I guarantee you’re going to want to go read those other books after you check this one out!  4.5/5 stars.

Check out my reviews for Obsidian, Onyx and Opal too!  My review for Origin is coming soon! 

 
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8 Responses to “Review – Obsession by Jennifer L. Armentrout”

  1. itara sosa

    I’m so glad you like this. I bought this book probably 6 months ago when I read the whole series. I haven’t read it cause I was skeptical about Arums. I love NAMES so I’ll enjoy this book.

  2. Megan Nicole

    I’ve read Obsidian and loved it! I really can’t wait to read this!! 😀
    I personally love NA’s and I love spin-offs, but I do agree with you about the NA spin-offs of YA books. It’s totally unfair to younger readers who can’t read it because of it’s rating.

  3. Jessica Haluska

    So I absolutely LOVE the Lux series, but I’ve been putting off reading Obsession b/c . . . well, I don’t really know why, I just have. But I am SO curious about the Arum as not-bad-guys, so maybe I need to stop delaying . . .

    Jessica @ Rabid Reads

  4. Naomi Hop

    Great review girl! I understand your reasoning about YA people missing out when it comes to this book. But I’m selfish…. so I loved it! You know I love the NA genre! Hunter was great and I loved seeing this side to the Arum’s!

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

    • Nicole Hewitt

      I know – there are two sides to it. I definitely loved this as a NA story, but I think it would be great if Armentrout would put out a “clean(er)” version too. 🙂

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