Date of publication: November 2011
Benedicte Lavelle is a single father raising two small daughters. When his neighbors put him in charge of handling the haunting that plagues their neighborhood, he has no choice but to use disreputable means in order to bring in a Conditioned ghost hunter to help with their problem. He doesn’t expect to be drawn to the young woman who arrives at his house in chains. He doesn’t expect to have his entire life thrown into upheaval when she is snatched away.
Conditioned prisoner Seven-Two-Four has never had a name. She cannot read, and is scheduled to die as soon as she is returned to the Institution. The Conditioned are not considered human, but Seven can see ghost energy and she can love Ben like no one ever has before.
When fate takes Seven from Ben’s arms, can he move on and find a new purpose in life or will he be forever trapped by the need to rescue those like his lost love?
Embraced is the second in The Conditioned series by Rebecca Royce. I reviewed the first in the series, Eye Contact back in November. What I did like about the book was that there was more information about the Conditioned and how things have changed for them since the first book. Madame was intriguing, even if she was evil. Who doesn't like a good villain? It is interesting the the institutions choose a conditioned person to keep the others in line. I also liked more of a glimpse into Guy and his cause from the island.
While I did enjoy this one, I'm not sure I felt the connection between Benedicte and Seven. It wasn't as strong as in the first book. Mainly the reason is that the characters don't spend much time together and then there is a gap of 5 years before they see each other again. Also, I liked Seven's character more after the 5 year separation. I felt like her character fit Benedicte better.
Embraced is a good addition to the series. I hope that the next book is Roman's. For a fierce Fury, he is still a sweet guy and needs his own HEA! Pick up both books, I think they are great.
As I am writing this blog post, I am sitting on the couch next to my husband and Christmas Vacation is on television. This is one of his favorite movies and it’s become a bit of a tradition in our home to have it on a lot during the cold months of the year. My children, ages 6, 4, and 2 don’t yet enjoy this film. I think they’re just a little bit too young to truly enjoy it or maybe they just haven’t had enough really tense holidays yet. (And for that, I’ll give myself credit.)
I can’t help but think of my characters in Embraced who are Conditioned. They don’t get to have traditions. Their lives are, from the moment they are caught or turned in, are all about service, helping the very people who keep them institutionalized, who deny them their very human rights.
But you cannot deny the power of love and these stories are examples of that. In this world, love will eventually overthrow tyranny.
I hope that wherever you are in the world you are warm and happy. Since the Conditioned came to me, I no longer take it for granted.
About the author:
As a teenager, I would hide in my room to read my favorite romance novels when I was supposed to be doing my homework. I hope, these days, that my parents think it was worth it.
I am the mother of three adorable boys and I am fortunate to be married to my best friend. We live in northern New Jersey and try not to freeze too badly during the winter months.
I am in love with science fiction, fantasy, and the paranormal and try to use all of these elements in my writing. I've been told I'm a little bloodthirsty so I hope that when you read my work you'll enjoy the action packed ride that always ends in romance. I love to write series because I love to see characters develop over time and it always makes me happy to see my favorite characters make guest appearances in other books.
In my world anything is possible, anything can happen, and you should suspect that it will.
I'd love to hear from you!