Bethany reviews ‘Saved: An Omegaverse Story (Breaking Free Book 1)’ by A.M. Arthur. Published by Briggs-King Books on September 12, 2017, 243 pgs.
Why I read this book: This week is Out Of Your Comfort Zone, and I had just snagged this one when it was free. I wasn’t sure what I would read for this week and one of our reviewers pointed out it was mpreg which isn’t really my cup of tea. I also saw the note that is had warnings for physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, all of which are hot buttons for me.
He didn’t want an alpha to save him, but fate had other ideas…
Braun Etting was raised to know his place as an omega by his alpha father’s cruel words and fast fists, and he expects nothing but violence from the alpha who may one day mate him. His older brother Kell mated a cruel alpha who abuses him daily, and Braun is terrified of that seemingly inevitable future. When Braun’s father dies in a car crash, leaving Braun an orphan, he’s sent to a halfway house for omegas. But on his fourth night there, he witnesses a horrifying crime that sends him fleeing to the streets alone—and edging into his first heat.
Tarek Bloom is settled in his workaholic, single lifestyle, even if it is somewhat embarrassing to be a twenty-eight year-old unmated alpha. He enjoys his job as a constable, helping people and solving problems, so he isn’t prepared for his life to flip upside-down when he walks into his beta friend Dex’s apartment to help with “a problem.”
The problem turns out to be an unmated, nearly in-heat omega orphan who Dex and his husband rescued off the street last night. The even bigger problem is that Tarek feels the mating bond for this terrified omega immediately—and he’s pretty sure the omega feels it, too. But Braun hates alphas as a general rule, and no way is he giving in to the bond. All mating leads to is violence and suffering, so no thank you. But Tarek’s gentle kindness slips under Braun’s emotional shields, and Braun begins to want. To dream. All Braun has ever known is violent alphas, but Tarek is determined to make Braun trust him—and to trust in the idea of their happily ever after.
NOTE: This is a non-shifter Omegaverse story with alpha/omega/beta dynamics, heats, knotting, and mpreg. In this world, omegas are second-class citizens with few civil rights and almost no protections under the law. Trigger warnings for physical, emotional, and sexual abuse. 67,000 words.
So I have only recently heard about Omegaverse stories, and my first thought was shifters right? Oh how wrong I was. While having a conversation with Marc and Dana, they informed me that while Omegaverse books have Alphas, Omegas and Betas sometimes, there is no shifting. Wait wait, no people shifting into animals? I was intrigued, so both Marc and Dana recommended an Omegaverse book they both loved I did get it but when I saw it had mpreg in it I put it on the back burner. Why you ask? Well I am not the biggest mpreg fan, they just are not the trope that I usually go for.
But when ‘Saved’ was free on Amazon, I grabbed it. Hey, free and a new to me author, of course I grabbed it. The same day I got it we were talking about what to read for our out of comfort zone week, and Eloreen mentioned it was mpreg. I figured now was the perfect time to read my very first Omegaverse book. But it wasn’t just the mpreg that was out of my comfort zone, it also has abuse, physical, sexual and emotional. I just really do not like reading books with abuse, but I have to say that A.M. handled it very well.
So I started ‘Saved’ not really know what would entail and if my hang ups on mpreg and the abuse would keep my from enjoying this book. This was the first book by A.M. that I have read so I had not clue about her writing style, or what to expect. I don’t tend to step outside my box when it comes to new books and new to me authors so I was afraid this would hinder the way I judged it. I will tell you right now, I am glad I did this for my out of comfort zone book, because I have since bought book two in this series, as well as two more books by A.M.
Now let me see if I can properly do this book justice. Starting it I thought best case scenario I would enjoy it enough, and worse case I would have to find something else to review. But neither of those happened, because I not only enjoyed it, I flippin LOVED it. The world building this author created hooked me from the first page. It was so intriguing that I finished it in one sitting, yes me who wasn’t quite sure I would like mpreg book, read it in one day. And it’s not exactly a short book.
That is what I loved so much, that it’s not a quick read, there is background and we get to know these character. Starting with Braun, you can see the fear he has lived his entire life, and why he doesn’t want anything to do with finding an alpha. Oh my heart ached for this, so much. As an omega, he has been told his whole life he is a second class citizen, so easily thrown out like garbage. You can really see the parallels to this in real life and I think that is why my heart broke as it did. Because this actually happens today in our world.
But then you have Tarek, who believes that not only should omega’s have equal rights but that they actually hold the power. Again the lines in their universe and ours is eerily similar. There are good people that want equal rights for everyone. But back to the story. Braun makes it clear he wants nothing to do with Tarek, especially being mated to him. Tarek knows that Braun is terrified of alphas, though he doesn’t know the “why” of it. He knows he needs to tread carefully with Braun, and prove to him that he can trust him. Watching them navigate, their obvious bond was so very enjoyable to read, I liked how even though they both knew they were meant to be together they didn’t just fall into bed. But OMG when they did. HOLY. HELL. THAT. WAS. HOTTTTTTT. I have to say that was one of the hottest, raunchiest, best sex scenes I have EVER read. I need ice water after it.
But that wasn’t the only reason I love this book. The secondary characters play such a major role, that without them, the book would be lacking something. It also feels like there are two different storylines going on that don’t compete with one another, yet weave together to make it whole. Getting close to the end of the book I wondered if maybe by the end, Tarek and Braun and some of the secondary characters story was far from over. And I am so happy to say that no, it wasn’t the final end, there is more to this series and as so as I was done with Saved I rushed to buy book two.
I can understand the hesitancy of reading if this trope is new to you, it was brand new for me. But I can say I highly recommend it. I will definitely be seeking more of this type of universe, both from this author and others.
A.M. Arthur was born and raised in the same kind of small town that she likes to write about, a stone’s throw from both beach resorts and generational farmland. She’s been creating stories in her head since she was a child and scribbling them down nearly as long, in a losing battle to make the fictional voices stop. She credits an early fascination with male friendships (bromance hadn’t been coined yet back then) and “The Young Riders” with her later discovery of and subsequent love affair with m/m romance stories.
An avid reader of het romance, her first foray into reading published m/m romance (slash fanfic doesn’t count) is thanks to a Dear Author review of K.A. Mitchell’s CHASING SMOKE. After devouring K.A.’s existing backlist, she dove headfirst into other authors. While she prefers contemporary, she’ll occasionally sample an historical or SFF m/m romance.
A.M. wrote her first m/m stories in the guise of Kish fanfic (the Kyle/Fish romance from cancelled soap opera “One Life to Live.” As her stories were met with more and more positive feedback, A.M. was inspired to try her hand at creating original m/m romance. And the rest is history.
When not exorcising the voices in her head, she toils away in a retail job that tests her patience and gives her lots of story fodder. She can also be found in her kitchen, pretending she’s an amateur chef and trying to not poison herself or others with her cuisine experiments.