Defy the Dawn (Midnight Breed #14) by Lara Adrian
Synopsis: Daywalker Brynne Kirkland survived a hellish upbringing as a product of a madman’s lab. Tough, driven, and devoted to her work in law enforcement, Brynne has never dared to risk opening her heart to anyone–least of all a handsome immortal from a world on the verge of war against hers.
Atlantean warrior Zael left the intrigue of his realm several lifetimes ago, along with the battles he fought as one of the queen’s legion. As a free-spirited loner walking the fringe of two worlds–that of his secretive and powerful people, and the outside world belonging to mankind and the Breed–it was never his intention to return to combat and bloodshed. Nor had he imagined that he might ever be tempted into anything stronger than desire . . . until he meets Brynne.
Thrust together as allies of the Order in the fight against a diabolical enemy, Zael and Brynne embark on a mission that will ultimately force them to decide between duty to their people, and a passion that defies all bounds.
Review: I very much looked forward to Brynn and Zael’s story since they met in Bound to Darkness. They seemed so passionate even before they gave in to their desires. Zael sees Brynne’s horrible past and scars as being why she tries to push him away. He also realizes that after so many years of being nomadic in his travels and lovers, she represents something new that he has never had. He won’t give up no matter how much she pushes back and when he sees why she pushes back he acknowledges her fears and proves to her that what he sees when he looks at her is beauty, not monstrous. When they are tasked to go to the Atlantean colony to petition for an alliance, their love and passion are tested. Her insecurities flair, but he proves to her more than once that his attention to her isn’t fleeting. He wants her forever. Their love was beautiful and I really liked Zael as a character a lot. Brynne is a strong female lead and her fears and desires to have someone see her for not being the monster Dragos created in his lab creates a beautiful story as Zael sets out to show her that his love is real and permanent. The conflict isn’t too complicated in this one, no epic battles and major villains. It has more of an overall conflict that the series is dealing with as a whole; preventing a war and stopping Opus Nostrum from destroying all that they have built in the last 20 years. Once in the colony, the conflict leads to Zael and Brynne becoming even closer and fighting to be together. I enjoyed the story a lot.