Thursday, July 19, 2018

Audiobook Review: Grigori by Lauren Smith

Series:Ash and Fire #1
Pub. Date:April 24, 2018
Publisher:Tantor Audio
Narrator:Lucy Rivers
Length:7 hrs 42 min

Grigori is the first book in Lauren Smith's Brothers of Ash and Fire series. It was my first time reading this author, and I was pleasantly surprised. This series follows three brothers who are centuries old... dragon shifters!!! Woo Hoo! You know how I feel about dragons. 

The hero of this first installment is, you guessed it, Grigori! He is the eldest Barinov brother, the one who takes all the responsibility on his shoulders. Doing what was best for his family was not always the easiest choice for Grigori, especially when rival dragons liked to stick their nose in his territory and rile things up. I liked Grigori, I felt like he was a "still waters run deep" kind of guy. He didn't get overly excited, but you could tell that he felt things on a deeper level and wasn't as stoic as his outward demeanor always suggested. 

Our heroine is Madelyn Haynes, an academic sort who has always been obsessed with the myth of dragons. She never would have expected that her research would have placed her squarely in the clutches of real life dragon shifters. I liked that Madelyn took things in stride and didn't have over-the-top freak out moments. Things were also happening below the surface with Madelyn, but you should discover that secret for yourself. I absolutely loved this aspect of the story.

This is a fated mates story, so our couple is instantly drawn to one another. Grigori seemed more invested than Madelyn initially, but she had a lot to deal with given that she had no idea dragons existed. I liked the progression of their relationship and felt like it unfolded at a good pace within the confines of the story.

There is a secondary suspense storyline involving the rival dragon clan that was well-integrated and gave an alternate focus to help advance the plot alongside the romance. I think the final conflict could have been drawn out longer as it seemed a tad anti-climactic. 

The narrator did a fabulous job. She did great Russian accents for our dragons, and had no problem affecting both female and male characters. I will definitely look for more of her narrations in the future.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this audiobook that I received from the publisher, Tantor Audio.

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