Review: Captivated by Lauren Dane

Thursday, May 3

Title: Captivated*
Author: Lauren Dane
Series: Phantom Corps #3
Genre: Futuristic Erotic Romance
Publisher: Berkley Heat
Format: Trade Paperback, E-Book
Date/Year:  May 1, 2012
Reviewed by: Andrea

*This book was provided to the reviewer by the author in exchange for an honest review

Summary from the publisher:

Vincenz Fardelle, exiled son of the Supreme Leader of the Imperialist Universe, has spent much of the last ten years working to stop the threat his father poses. But he’s not alone in his quest. Julian Marsters has lost his best friend and countless others in the war and has made vengeance his only goal. In each other, Julian and Vincenz find not only like minds, but kindred spirits.

However unexpected their relationship, everything changes for Vincenz and Julian when Hannah Black comes into their lives. Having been captured and held in near total isolation by imperialist troops, their immediate response is to protect her.

Emotionally shattered but resilient, Hannah rebuilds herself. Because of the warm safety she finds in the arms of Julian and Vincenz she becomes someone harder, stronger and bent on preventing the Imperialists from harming anyone else.

For the two men, wrestling with their passionate feelings for Hannah is only the beginning. War is about to send all three into harm’s way and an equally dangerous secret could tear them apart.
My Musings:

I’ll start with a warning, this book is smoking hot!  You’ll need to keep clean, dry panties on hand because you’re going to have to change them multiple times while reading.  The sex is frequent, graphic and steamy.  

I had no idea what I was getting into with this book.   I started reading and quickly realized that Julian and Vincenz were a couple, then Hannah entered the scene and I realized I was going to be reading my first menage relationship.  That was a surprise, a good one as it turned out.

When Hannah enters the book she is a prisoner, she had been kept in isolation for a year and was tortured during the time.  To say she is barely functional and emotionally broken is an understatement.  It takes months for her to begin to emerge from that state and as she did I realized how much I loved her character.  She is smart, has an endearing vulnerability, and an incredible amount of courage.  She’s everything I secretly wish I could be.

Vincenz is the one to discover Hannah in the prison.  He sees what has been done to this woman and becomes fiercely protective.  He’s caring but tough, the perfect alpha male.  He has a complicated past and had to make some tough choices in order to do the right thing.  I love him for that.

Julian came from nothing but managed to overcome his past.  He has a tough guy exterior but underneath he is emotionally damaged yet so loving.  He doesn’t give his love easily but once he gives it he is loyal and protective.

Vincenz and Julian are in a relationship when the book begins.  It’s a committed, strong and loving relationship.  Hannah comes to live with them and in this environment she begins to heal.  It’s purely a platonic love between the men and Hannah in the beginning and I was thankful for that.  It gave Hannah time to heal and the support to do it with no other complications.  Strong bonds among all three of them develop and slowly transition into another type of relationship.  They all have some personal demons they are trying to work through.  It’s almost as if they can see and understand the pain the others are feeling and that is what draws them together. I loved how the relationships developed over the course of months and they never felt rushed.  At times the relationships seemed to meld together a little too seamlessly but the romance is so hot that it doesn’t really matter. 

The backdrop of the story involves a war between universes which is fabulous on its own.  Vincenz and Julian are soldiers in the war.  That helped to integrate the war and romance really well.  It introduced the obstacles and challenges the romantic relationship was missing on its own which made the overall story much more interesting.

This is book 3 in the Phantom Corps series and the first one I’ve read.  That made it a little difficult for me to get familiar with the world and the war taking place.   The side characters were thrown into the story with no introduction which told me I should have met them in previous books.  As much as I enjoyed the book, I know I didn’t pick up on everything.  I will definitely get book one, read the series in order and then read this book again.  I think on the second reading I’ll enjoy it even more.


Overall:  4
Sensuality level: 4
(menage relationship, M/M/F, lots of explicit sex and light BDSM)

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Carol L. May 3, 2012 at 5:05 AM  

Thanks for the review. I was happy to read how Hannah was given the time and space to heal before the relationship changed for the three of them. Always enjoy Lauren's work..
Carol L
Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

lorimeehan May 3, 2012 at 6:57 AM  

I'm glad you liked this book. I read book one (4*) and I have the second. I've been reading Lauren's snippets from this book and gave loved them. I've read a lit of her books. I highly recommend them.

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