Of Beasts and Bonds

Death and Destiny Trilogy Book 2

Fiction - Paranormal
436 Pages
Reviewed on (not set)
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Author Biography

N. D. Jones lives in Maryland with her husband and two children. She is the founder of Kuumba Publishing, an art, audiobook, eBook, and paperback company. Kuumba Publishing is a forum for creativity, with a special commitment to promoting and encouraging creative works of authors and artists of African descent.

A desire to see more novels with positive, sexy, and three-dimensional African American characters as soul mates, friends, and lovers, inspired the author to take on the challenge of penning such romantic reads. She is the author of two paranormal romance series: Winged Warriors and Death and Destiny. N.D. likes to read historical and paranormal romance novels, as well as comics and manga.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite

Of Beasts and Bonds: Death and Destiny Trilogy Book 2 by N.D. Jones is the story of Special Agent Assefa Berber and Dr. Sanura Williams. These two are already madly in love and they feel their bond is very strong. But, according to a prophecy, they are Cat and Fire Witch of legend. They are living together and they love each other very much. However, the Mami Wata and Oya are now free and wrecking havoc in their lives. She is killing people all around them so that their powers will ignite and provoke them to take action.

Sanura and Assefa don’t have it all though. Their bond is not complete or strong enough. She has not accepted his claiming bite and this is causing rifts between them. There is definite tension between them which is only intensified by their partial bond. Mami Wata is taking full advantage of this situation and if Assefa and Sanura don’t do anything soon there would be too much damage. Can they do something? Can their bond survive this?

Wow, this was certainly an intense novel. I love romance and I love paranormal novels and, since this was a mixture of both, I was in heaven. The characters are strong and the villain is stronger. I absolutely loved the African culture and the African mythology portrayed in this novel. Jones portrayed the threat and the critical bond between the two main leads beautifully. I loved the atmosphere, I loved the characters, and I loved the way it was written. It was a fabulous read. This is definitely a series to look out for.

T.Wemett

ND Jones has a way with words, she keeps them flowing as you get to know her characters, who are strong willed, independent and learning as they go, how to accept help from their mate without losing them self in the process

KIWES

Well my favorite couple is back and better than ever in the continuing saga of Death and Destiny series. Special Agent Assefa Berber and Dr. Sanura Williams had their hands full trying to juggle their relationship and the fates that fight against them. Anyone who has read this series knows that Sanura loves Assefa, but their relationship wasn’t quite complete since she has yet to receive Assefa’s claiming bite. What would possess her not to do this you might ask? For starters, Sanura’s father’s spirit lives through her, and to give in to Assefa’s claim, of which he rightly deserves, would cause Sanura her only chance of keeping her father safe to her. What daughter doesn’t want her father’s love, especially, since he is no longer within our world, but more so has crossed over. Confused? Well you won’t be after you read this second installment.

Mami Water is a water goddess who is desperate to do away with the dynamic duo. And trust and believe she will stop at nothing to have them abolished from our world, but there is a mightier God who is also working with them to assure they live to fight another day.

Jones is an exciting writer bringing to life this paranormal world in which I, for one, cannot get enough of. Her imagination is through the roof and as you delve into the lives of Sanura and Assefa, you will find yourself rooting for them as I have. Her writing is even stronger in this installment than her first novel wherein she laid the groundwork for the characters I have grown to love. And, I must add, once again, Jones has a way of writing a love scene that is truly out of this world. If you aren’t feeling what the lovers are feeling, you obviously do not possess a soul. Of Beasts and Bonds is an incredible read and a story line that keeps on giving.
Mello & June gives Of Beasts and Bonds five stars beyond the paranormal. You will learn more about this couple and how they deal with adversity, trials and tribulations. Having faith, love and strength is a true testament to the love of Sanura and Assefa and how they work together to overcome. The book is on sale now wherever books are sold. I highly suggest you pick up your copy and continue on with the Death and Destiny series. You will not be sorry you did.

EP Clark

"Of Beasts and Bonds" is a satisfying continuation of the "Death and Destiny" trilogy. Sanura and Assefa are now living together, but they can't complete the mate bond, for reasons we discover during the narrative. Meanwhile, there are challenges to Assefa's position from within the Sankofa magical community, and Mami Wata is trying to weaken Assefa and Sanura by attacking those close to them.

The tension between Sanura and Assefa is based on elements that are typical for the paranormal romance genre, but they're both likable, relatable characters, so it feels less cliched than it might for more two-dimensional characters. Sanura's relationships with the other women around her in particular make for a more developed and sympathetic character than you tend to find in a lot of such books. There are a lot of characters and a lot of subplots, with the action jumping from subplot to subplot; sometimes this made me ask what was going on, but I was normally able to put things together pretty quickly, and the effect of the subplots is to create a rich and detailed background for the characters.

For me the best aspect of the book and of the series so far was the use of African culture and mythology to build the magical system the characters inhabit. African mythology is under-utilized in fantasy, in my opinion, and having it here transformed common urban fantasy/paranormal romance tropes--magic school, the Chosen One--into something refreshingly different. Readers who enjoyed the first book or who are looking for a paranormal romance that follows the conventions of the genre while also bringing a new cultural/mythological angle to it should find a lot to enjoy here.

Blanca Welsh

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for a review.

This is my first read from this author, and I signed up for the book blitz and review option back in August to take a chance on this series, especially since I didn't know what it was about.

OBAB follows the exploits of Assefa and Sanura and an extensive world built around Western African lore and culture.

I thought that was pretty cool, considered how Western culture has completely demonized anything and everything that has come from African culture. I know Africa isn't a monolith, so for the sake of the review, and from my knowledge of lore, it seems Yoruban(Afro-Cuban culture is deeply inspired by Yoruban religion and culture, so I say it because it's familiar to me).

But anyway, since this is book two, a few events lead Assefa and Sanura to the events of book two, and they're struggling to complete a sort of mate-bonding(that's supposed to make them stronger) but it comes at the cost of loosing her connection to her father. This was where I was at a disadvantage for not reading book one. While the author makes a bunch of loose ends clear, one might be more accustom to the world building of how things are done before the plot brought Assefa and Sanura's circumstances to this point.

You can still enjoy and follow pretty well without it, but I am a lover of spec fic, so I wish I would've read book one first.

It goes without saying I loved that most the characters in the story were Black, the couple was Black, and the culture behind everything was Western African lore. I love speculative fiction, but this is one of the first PNR books I read in a while, because they're not very inclusive. To be set in a world where it's this lit was pretty awesome.

Sanura passed the Bechdel test throughout the book, and I was glad she had strong relationships with other women that wasn't dependent on men. You'd be surprised how often conversations between women are about men in fiction, tv, media. It may even pass the Mako Mori test so long as you consider Sanura the biggest character in the book. I think it's equal, but Mami Wata really wants her, and Assefa is just a bonus.

Between the strong world building, and the extremely hot sex, I'll definitely be hitting up book one and re-reading! As a lover of speculative fiction, I was impressed! A big win for Black love in books for me =D

The Book Junkie Reads

I'm sorry there are no spoilers found here except the quest will continue on. Now on to the prophesied Cat and Fire Witch of legend, Assefa and Dr Sanura. With their incomplete bonding and the evil, Mami Wata, water goddess, their coming together has unleashed on the world. Death. Destruction. Magic. Mystery. Myth. All things are tested and re-tested again. Bonding should be a simple step in their progression, but every turn leads them to another task that needs to be completed.

As with the first book, I got rich memorable characters, strong mythical depictions, vivid imagery, and a battle that included death, destruction, and defeating the evil to some extent. I could feel the action, the intense bonds and the frustration of not connecting fully, the struggle between secondary characters, the pull of turmoil, the pull of frustrations. I got a full range of it all. I am on the hunt for the next installment. I have many things that I am hoping will be wrapped up in the next book.
**This eBook was provided via N.D. Jones in exchange for an honest review.**

Expresso

Wowza! What an amazing read! I honestly had no idea what to expect. With this author, expect the unexpected!

I've read tons of paranormal stories throughout the years. However, I've yet to stumble upon a paranormal read with the depth and complexity of this story. There are so many elements and components to this read. Together each element and component cohesively bind the story of Assefa and Sanura! Their painful journey is filled with strife, betrayal, and death. The death of Darryl Hughes is the saddest part of this story. Hughes lived in agony. As a witness to the devastation he wreaked and unable to stop because someone controlled him....heartbreaking.

Although a fabulous read, OBaB is not a light read. It is a story for those who appreciate not only paranormal elements but the darker Preternatural elements. Read with caution....you may become addicted! This installment ended in a good place for Assefa and Sanura. The epilogue tho......something is definitely coming. Something dark. Ugly. Deeply disturbing. Will Assefa and Sanura survive?

Five stars!

Beltlas vegas

Loved the book! Can't wait for the next book! It captured my attention with details and well developed characters. I was captivated.

Debera

This author does a good job telling a story meant to be the center story of 3 when the reader has not read bk 1. In the beginning I was not impressed. There is a lot of time spent in describing the opulent clothing and home goods of the characters. I would have preferred more of the reasoning for what was happening. However, that peeve gave way to respect of the story telling ability of the author. She brought some really complex characters to the story and was able to make them real to even a reader who had not read the previous book. By the end of the story I was determined to find and read the final book of the trilogy. The world building is good but might be a little more clear without so much bouncing back and forth from one city to another and then to the gods realm as well. So, while there were a few parts of the book I could do without it is a good story told well enough to hold interest to the end. RECOMMENDED

Ray

If you think the first book was great, this one outdid the last one! I read half of the book in one night, but was drawn away by pressing matters I had to take care of, then I finished the other half the next night or is it morning since I stayed up till almost 4 am to finish reading it. It was that gripping good!

I really enjoyed the love story between Sanura and Asefa, a bond strengthened, not destroyed despite Mata Wata inflicting immense tragedies upon them and their love ones. You can feel the deep emotional connection between the two lovebirds, but not only that with cherry on top, the sex scenes were scorching hot, which is how I like it.

Another thing I like what the author did was creating intrigue between Asefa's right hand man, Zareb, who was referred to also as the "Shield," and Sanura's best girlfriend, Cin. I could feel the irresistible attraction between them, pulling like a moth to a flame. You will know what I mean if you read the first book in regard to Cin's relationship status. Just the whole interactions between her various characters had me fascinated.

One moment I was fanning myself from the heat, the next I had tears welling in my eyes from the exchanges between Sanura and her mother or the grief of one of Asefa's close friends. There were other moments too, but I don't want to give spoilers here. You have to read to feel for yourself what the author had evoked in me with her story. It's the hallmark of a great writer if she can touch a chord in the reader's heart. She sure did for me. I can't wait for the next installment!

Disclaimer: I received an ARC for an honest review.

Book Nook Nuts

This story picks up where book one left us. Sanura and Assefa are planning to mate still but there are many things trying to prevent this from happening. The prophecy is trying to take hold so it is going to be an emotional battle for this couple and their loved ones. We also see a new relationship perhaps on the horizon. Zareb and Cin. The water witch is determined to take out Sanura and of course, since Assefa is the cat of legend and her familiar he is to be taken out also.

Sanura' mom cannot tell her daughter what the council has cooking.
And Sanura finally lets Assefa know about the dreams that began when she moved in with him.

This was a really well written book although I found a few missing words, the story is strong and very entertaining. I have a feeling the author has more of this story to tell us about.

I was gifted this book for my honest review.

Gisele Walko

So nice to catch up with Sanura and Assefa again. I liked this book even better than the first one (which was great). I felt the romance and the supernatural elements were more balanced this time around. This is a long book, but I seldom felt that the story wasn't well paced. A time or two it seemed a little slow, but all things considered, fantastic! This one also had more humor in it. Can't wait to see what happens with the rest of the Handfisting Ceremony, and if Mami Wata get's what's coming to her. 5 Stars!!!!