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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Book Review: Guardian by Nancy Northcott

Guardian (The Protectors #2)
by Nancy Northcott

FBI agent Camellia "Mel" Wray is no stranger to violence but when an old friend is brutally murdered, she takes it personally. The case hits even closer to her heart when the best person to help with the investigation is Dr. Stefan Harper, the only man she ever loved-and lost. One look at the gorgeous medical expert and Mel realizes he's still impossible to resist-and still harboring a secret after all these years . . .


Afraid Mel wouldn't accept him, Stefan never revealed his study of magical medicine or his abilities, instead allowing her to believe he'd been unfaithful. Now she's back in his life-and their mutual attraction burns hotter than ever. But when something dark and otherworldly threatens humans, Stefan must summon his mage powers to keep everyone safe. Will Mel be able to trust him again? Or will their love cost him even more than it did the first time?

Mel and Stefan have a history. They were once in love but it ended badly when Stefan refused to share his secret with her, instead allowing Mel to believe he had been unfaithful to her. Nine years later, a violent crime has brought them together again.

I enjoyed this book for many reasons, the two lead characters are interesting and have great chemistry, the storyline is interesting and easy to follow, but best of all, Guardian can be read as a standalone. It was fun to read a paranormal romance that didn't have vampires or werewolves as the lead characters (not that I object to fangs and fur, I am a diehard fan) and that had a heroine that was so skeptical about the paranormal. It threw an extra obstacle into Stefan's path.

Stefan was, at first, not the type of hero I envisioned for a paranormal romance. He's a doctor who also happens to know magic and demons exist. I honestly pictured him as a geeky, beta male that women walked all over. Don't ask me why, that's just the image I had in my head for some reason. Instead he's this hot stud who walks a fine line between what is generally accepted as fact and what is known to be magic induced. He's so loyal to his cause, to keep the knowledge of magic, mages and demons a secret from a world that just isn't ready to know of its existance, that he sacrifices his chance at happiness. Even when he meets up with Mel again, he fights to keep her at a distance. It would have been easy for the author to create some over the top, paranormal conflict of epic proportions for Stefan and Mel to overcome but instead this couple has the rather normal trust issue to solve.

Mel on the other hand was exactly as I pictured her. An independent, cynical loner suffering from a broken heart. As much as she denies it, she never got over Stefan. Mel refuses to believe that there is such thing as magic and that her friend's murder was the work of demons. Working with Stefan to solve the case strains her resolve to forget him even as it opens her eyes to a new world and new dangers.

While it does classify as a paranormal romance, Guardian reads more like a contemporary romance with a dash of paranormal elements. They don't interfere with the romance, nor do they suffocate the overall story. The steady stream of paranormal scenes add mystery and danger to an already likable story. I enjoyed the world Nancy Northcott created, her characters were lively, fun and passionate.

The only problem I had with Guardian was that the beginning was a little slow. However, it does pick up the pace after a few chapters and then it's one hell of a trip. I would definitely recommend this book to paranormal romance fans, especially those who would like a break from vampires and werewolves. I can't wait to read the next book in the series, but in the meantime I will be reading the first book and novella.

4 1/2 Sheep

Nancy Northcott, author, paranormal romanceAbout the Author:
I still love comic books, fantasy and science fiction, though I don’t read comics as much as I once did. I try to get to Dragon*Con every year. I’m also a lifelong history geek and Anglophile, passions born when I was in second grade and watched a television drama about the Tudors. By the time I reached college and learned just how inaccurate that story was, it was too late. I was hooked! I majored in history and spent a fabulous summer studying Tudor and Stuart Britain at Oxford University (as well as learning to drive on the left side and observe local customs in pubs). These experiences left me with serious geek tendencies, which I indulge by reading a lot of history. My college classes mostly covered who fought whom, when, why, and how, and I’ve been delighted to discover how much material is available about the ways people of different eras lived.

I've traveled extensively in Britain with my husband and our son, collecting numerous tomes, weighty and not, on my passion. My husband, a children’s literature professor who understands the “book thing,” graciously carried home the ones I didn't have time to entrust to the Royal Mail. His help put a whole new spin on the “carry my books” bit and helped make possible the Writer Resources section of this site, where I share some of my best finds.


  1. I've never heard of this author or series... sounds interesting. Now I'm off to goodreads to read about the first one in the series.

  2. This series sounds very intriguing...have to go check it out!

  3. Great review Adria, thank you! I now want to read this book.