Wendy and Erryn review. ‘When I First Saw Red: Soldiers and Mercenaries, Book 2’ by Kasia Bacon. Published by The Order Universe June 5, 2020, 212 pages. The audiobook was published December 9, 2021. It is narrated by Cornell Collins and is 4hrs and 21mins.
Lázhien’s human. A common Imperial soldier. And my soulmate.
How could fate get it so wrong?
The demon in me craves this bond with every shred of his being. He pushes me to accept it.
This time I won’t yield to his demands.
Red’s a lust demon, a whore and a stuck-up snob.
The most beautiful man I’ve ever seen. Pain in the arse. And he hates my guts.
I’d be an idiot to pursue him. Yet something about him compels me to make him mine.
When I First Saw Red is a complete and standalone short novel with an HEA ending, featuring a couple of reluctant fated soulmates—a demon and a human—trying and failing to defy destiny.
*A copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review
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Wendy’s Review: Read my review of the ebook HERE
This has to be one of the best examples of how reading an ebook vs listening to an audiobook can be vastly different experiences. Since I’m already on the subject of audiobook, I’ll give my thoughts on the narration. Cornell Collins did a fantastic job with this story. He gave Red such a refined voice and accordingly, as opposite of Red as Lázhien is, his choice for the voice was perfectly gruff and gritty. In my ebook review, I was deliberately short because I didn’t want to give spoilers away. I have to try to not give spoilers away with this review, but I felt like I got so much out of the narration that it made the story brand new for me. Kasia’s words are brilliant as always but pairing those with Mr. Collins narration was EPIC. I sincerely hope these two do many more stories together in the future.
So, Red and Lázhien…
I love when characters fight the inevitable. I really love when they try to hide their reasoning from each other. I really, really love when the author lets us readers in on those reasons and the feelings and emotions that happen from start to finish. You’re gonna get all of that from listening to this story.
These guys fight their feelings tooth and nail. Both are such loveable characters that are afraid of putting themselves in a situation that might hurt them, that they put themselves in a situation that really will hurt them. And they are lovably stubborn and more than once, I wanted to grab them both by the scruff of their necks and give them a good shake! That’s what I love most about Kasia’s guys. In all her stories, I get so invested in the characters that I can’t help but want to make them see what’s right in front of their stubborn noses lol.
I can tell you that I’m finding with a good narrator, like Mr. Collins, I really get all those angsty feels that Kasia puts her characters through. I mean, these guys torture themselves and each other while they fight for their HEA.
There’s tons of drama, and adventure in this story. It’s not long so a good choice for listening to when you don’t have hours and hours to dedicate to listening. It doesn’t lag at all and I think you’re going to love Red and Lázhien as much as I do.
10/10 Pots of Gold or 100% recommended
I’m not always convinced there’s one perfect person for everyone in the world. That these two people are destined to find each other, fall in love, and live happily ever after. Does that make me a cynic or a realist? I’m not sure.
All that being said, Red and Lázhien are definitely meant to be together. Except that doesn’t make sense. Talk about opposites attract. Neither will fit neatly in the other’s world. And yet…try as they might, those feelings of rightness cannot be ignored. In Ms. Bacon’s world, the two halves of a whole are not what one would imagine. Which is what makes this book so compelling. I enjoyed it and plan to keep listening to every audiobook she puts out.
Quick note about narrator Cornell Collins. I love his work and he’s the perfect fit for this book. I look forward to more collaborations with the narrator/author combo.
8.5/10 Pots of Gold or 85% recommended
A linguist and an avid reader with a particular fondness for fantasy and paranormal genres, KASIA BACON lives in London with her husband. When not tearing her hair out over a translating project, she writes stories about the shenanigans of emotionally constipated assassins and sexy Elves. Otherwise, she can be found shaking her loins at a Zumba class, binging on anime or admiring throwing knives on Pinterest. She has a mild coffee and lemon tart addiction. A lover of MMA and Muay Thai, she also enjoys nature and the great outdoors. She dreams of becoming independently wealthy, leaving the city and moving into her wooden mini-manor—located in the heart of stunning forests resembling those of the Elven Country depicted in her tales.
Find Kasia online at: http://kasiabacon.com
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