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Wangsty Heroine, Complicated World BuildingHalf shifter Jaylin Avgar chose to specialize in helping shifters going through the stages that follow the loss of a mate Watching their grief and struggles has her determined that she will never mate with a shifter All she wants is an uncomplicated human husband and to no longer work with anguished shifters But when Aidan O Connell contacts her to help one of his closest friends, Liam, whose human mate rejected him, she finds herself sucked into their world again.As the pair try to help Liam get his life back the attraction between them begins to sizzle Aidan knows she s his mate, the only one for him, but Jaylin is terrified of what will happen to them if one should die When Aidan uses his talents as a ruthless businessman to force Jaylin to give him a chance the result could be disastrous for both Can Jaylin move past her fears to see the love that s waiting for her or is she set to destroy Aidan no matter which life she chooses I hate when I love an author s ideas but find the execution less than pleasurable If you read and enjoyed Niles DEFYING CONVENTION which I loved hardcore you know what I m talking about in regards to an author with great ideas Alas, I found THE AWAKENING AIDAN strangely tedious to read Conceptually, I totally dig the pseudo science of the world even if I m not a big fan of fated mates as a trope It s the overall way it s done that just had me cringing and sighing If you love fated mates you will seriously dig the concept as it s set up Shapeshifters have their own religion of sorts, or rather, their own version of heaven Humans go to Heaven and have God and Shapeshifters go to Anavrin and have Dea, their goddess Half shifters get to choose which they go to when they die Mates love goes into Anavrin with them so the concept of eternal love is very important to shifters This is Jaylin s big traumarama and for me as a reader, a big pain in the butt She s so wangsty about dying or having a shifter mate that dies that she annoyed me before I d even finished two chapters I mean, I do get that, but I found that she was so over the top against accepting the bonds with Aidan that when she flipped her decision it felt forced, very forced What ultimately saved THE AWAKENING AIDAN from being unlikable was Aidan Niles had me at ginger I m a bit of a closest redhead fancier, so I was instantly a fan there But importantly, he was pretty multi dimensional He s a caring friend, has a big secret that gets revealed that made him extra interesting, and though he was under handed in how he tried to force Jaylin to give him a chance it s never Alpha male jerk tastic in nature While I only found this to be an okay read for me, I very much look forward to seeing of this world though I hate the BDB series like terminology style ie Dsershon, Fewshon, Bahrraj I think other readers will really love it if they can wade through the annoying wangst fest that is Jaylin Notes ARC received via publisher. Shape shifters and romance great combo for meand having never read any of Abby s work before there s the excitement when you find a new to you author Well, it started promisingly with lead male Aiden introduced to us right in the first paragraph I like to get to know my heroes and love to see them quickly into the story Abby has created a shape shifter world where they share many of the usual histories, including the one true mate concept but she adds a new twist in that if the female rejects the male, then he is left with a problem where he can lose touch with reality and sink into deep depression she gives names for various stages but that s the basic concept This only happens to 1% of shifters but has happened to Aiden s good friend Liam, who has so far refused help and been living with Aidan for past six months Liam suddenly moves on a stage and Aiden phones a local specialist for help Jaylin has given up shape shifters as clients having seen too much heartbreak treating people in this situation but Aiden persuades her to see Liam as an emergency as he is by then comatose When she arrives one look and scent of her, and Aiden knows she s his mate But there s a problem.Jaylin doesn t want to be anyone s mate she s got personal reasons but has decided she will never get involved with a shape shifter Aiden decides he s not taking No for an answer and the book follows their up and down, one step forward two steps back romance Aiden is a great hero strong and single minded and very caring, Jaylin is equally strong minded about holding out against him its fun reading just how each of them deal with it There are some pretty spicy sex scenes where they do get together, with Aiden convinced he can change her mind and Jaylin sticking to the friends with benefits line Its a well written and edited book, the main plot is their romance, nothing very dramatic and adventurous, just a sweet easy to read romantic tale If you re looking for an in depth read this isn t it but if you just want an easy to read, feel good romance with paranormal elements this is perfect Its what I think of as a train journey book, or one to read while you re waiting for an appointment my kindle goes everywhere, a few spare minutes and out it comes when you want something you can pick up and put down easily, without losing the thread of what is happening.Stars it does what it says romance Its a one off read for me fun to read but won t join the keepers as its lighter than I like for re readers So four stars from me. 3.85 Stars Dr Jaylin Avgar knows first hand what happens to shifters when the bond between mates is unfulfilled or broken She is a Psychologist who has been treating shifters for this condition and has sworn off mating with a shifter despite being a half shifter herself Then she meets Aiden, a wealthy business man and shifter who drags her from her office to see his friend Liam because he is suffering the effects of being rejected by his mate whom he bonded with The problem is she refused to bond with him, broke it off and now he is psychologically damaged There is no un bonding Aiden recognizes Jaylin as his mate and sets out to bond with her They are both attracted to one another His instinct tells him to go after her But she is firm that bonding will not be happening and would prefer to avoid him to make sure they are never tempted.Aiden tricks Jaylin into spending time with him and she is having a hard time denying her want of him How the author resolves this problem is quite unique and they do get a hea to their story.The world building or shifter existence is rather complicated And I am not so sure it makes the story interesting.rather it distracted me What I liked best about this story is the pace, the characters both main and secondary I also thought there were moments when, as a reader, I was touched by the feelings that developed between the two If I were to change anything it would be to make the heroine, Jaylin a little less paranoid and stubborn about bonding with her mate All in all I liked it and will read any future novels this author puts out with the characters from this story in the future. I started this one completely based on a recommendation I m happy to say that I m going to be taking those recommendations from now on because this is a really good story, so much so that I m hoping there s a series coming because the premise is a good one shameless plea 1 Niles has built an entire world around shifters and their mates that s resembles nothing in a good way that I ve read in the past This is story of meeting the one that s your eternal love, not just in this but in the afterlife too Aidan is in a pickle because his fellow shifter and friend, Liam, is in serious trouble and the only one who can help is Jaylin Avgar Half shifter Jaylin is one of the few psychiatrists who not only knows what ails Liam, she also knows what needs to be done this calls for a house call Once she arrives at the cabin to see about Liam she meets Aidan O Connell and the sparks fly Oh boy, do they ever Aidan knows of the stories that tell what will happen once he meets his mate but he s not prepared for the roadblocks that Jaylin puts up about why she doesn t want him The fun s about to start so buckle up.Aidan is the shiznit plain and simple He was cool, calm and collected and let me put this out there he played nice with the imaginary retinas, which is all good His likability was high considering he s a guy with a not so great past but he s worked hard to make a change and I appreciated him that much for it The relationships that he had with his fellow shifters spoke highly of the person that he is but it was the relationship that he wanted to have with Jaylin that made me just heads over heels for him Aidan knew what he wanted and his willingness to go the extra mile to make her want the same thing was admirable because there were a couple times when smacking Jaylin on the back of the head seemed appropriate Jaylin s character was well written she had a complexity and vulnerability that I could empathize with up to a point She s stubborn as heck and is convinced that she knows what s best and although that s admirable kinda sorta her unwillingness to allow Aidan to make his own choices got to me a little bit Thank goodness that Aidan had the patience of Job to try and try and try some with her Once this story takes off, it doesn t take long, I realize that is not about this short life that we live but about whom you re going to spend your eternity with Because the world that Niles builds is focused on the eternity that a bonded couple will share and the negative effects that can occur if the human female chooses not to bond I m completely fascinated to find out what happens to Liam that s a shameless plea 2 for a sequel If you enjoy a different way of looking at forever love and wouldn t mind a little smut with the tale then I d recommend that you pick up Aidan s story Happy reading folks Rating B Review posted at www.redhotbooks.com A very well written, well thought out and well executed story So different from what you can come to expect from shifter stories, although perhaps a little too focused on the negative aspects of what can obviously become a great and enduring love, it still had truly amazing moments I loved Aidan and would have happily made him mine, which only made feeling sympathetic toward Jaylin that little bit hard with her stubbornness not to believe anything but what she sees as truth A great story and I think the rest in the series will be just as good. 2.5 stars pretty good This had an interesting premise Since I love shapeshifter romances and the whole mate connection bond idea, it was interesting to have the twist of consequences mate bonds rejected or broken by death Leading lady Jaylin is a half shifter grief counselor, who until recently included shifters and humans in her practice but who stopped treating shifters until, cougar shifter Aidan convinces her to take on his brother s case In Aidan s brother Liam, we get to see the devastation of a rejected bond and in Jaylin s explanations of his condition we get a whole slew of cheesy terms that go along with the broken mating process fewsion, Dsershon say em out loud for full effect so that we know the pain that Aidan faces when he decides that Jaylin is his mate, only to discover that Jaylin doesn t see the mate bond as something wonderful and is adamant that she will never bond with a shifter ever Of course, Aidan s instincts are not to be denied, he takes Jaylin s words as a challenge and sets out to play dirty in order to win her.So that s where the execution of the idea work less well for me, Aidan basically kidnaps Jaylin and put her in a situation where she has to be around him and then goes all cold and controlled on her to prove that he can fight his instincts Jaylin, who I didn t find at all likable even before that point, gets a bit muddled by his rejection and starts regretting pushing him away, so they decide that their time together is going to be just about sex Which of course insidiously forms a connection she s still not willing to commit to until events occur which cause her to see the light just as fate looks to separate them forever So well everything works out in the end, but I didn t end up wanting them together, because I was able to forgive readily Aidan than Jaylin who ends up being a seemingly smart woman who came to some dumb conclusions and treats him really badly I realize that it sounds like I didn t like the story at all, but that wasn t entirely the case but on the whole The Awakening Aidan was just an interesting idea that was tough to carry off while making the heroine determined but still sympathetic and I have a hard time with I want you, but I don t want to want you as a mechanism for making a pair work for a HEA when it is sort of adversarial. I read the blurb on this story and thought the background of the characters and the shifter world building made it sound interesting The heroine is a former therapist to shifters and left her position because she got burned out because in this shifter world building males can t help the mating pull and females have a choice The thing that should have flagged me was that the blurb also said the heroine wanted nothing to do with mating for herself because she was afraid of she or her mate dealing with what happened when the mate died And so any dissatisfaction I felt reading this one is on me The writing is good, the characters were well developed, and the plot was decent The world building about the fated mate was fascinating and creative.The story begins when Aidan is dealing with his friend, Liam, going through the grief called Dsertion when he marks his mate, but gets rejected Liam goes into a catatonic state so Aidan calls on a specialist, Dr Jaylin Avgar, to help him She reluctantly agrees to come.Jaylin, a half shifter half human therapist, made the decision to stop including shifters as part of her caseload She can t handle the heartbreaking stuff they go through as a result of their mating issues Her heart is tender and she can t in good conscience resist helping the traumatized shifter who is only a short drive away when there are no other specialists close enough When she gets there to the cabin in the woods to help Liam, Jaylin is bowled over by her instant attraction to his friend, Aidan Aidan is obviously in the same state she notices She wants to runaway fast even though she stays for Liam s sake.Thus begins the cat and mouse game when Aidan tries to convince Jaylin that she is his mate and they should be together She puts up walls and he scrambles to quickly tear them down When she really digs in and denies all the obvious, he pulls out his old hated persona and plays hardball with her His move does have the desired results, but even then she s still willing to pull back It takes a tragic circumstance to open her eyes, but it might be too late.As I said before, there are many really wonderful elements to this story, but there are a few things that really annoyed me Good elements were the worldbuilding particularly the side story about Liam s tragic love affair and the enjoyable storytelling style I am so curious about Britton s reasons for distancing himself from his own shifter world I loved the changes in perspective that allowed me into everyone s heads to see what they were thinking I liked most of the characters.Unfortunately, one of the annoyances was a biggie I didn t like the heroine much of the time This gal is so far up the River Denial that she s exploring the headwaters I was okay with this at the beginning until it went on too long for me The other issue about her that angered me was that she of all people shouldn t have been so ignorant about the truth since she not only grew up in a loving family home with a shifter for a parent and knew other shifters and half shifters, but she also had a nice dandy higher education that should have kept her open and objective Nope, didn t help because she willfully saw what she wanted to see and to be fair, later she admits this Truthfully, I found it ironic that a therapist was in need of therapy This was obvious to me from the beginning She spouted that she d only take a human mate because of not wanting to deal with the death issue and the old phrase about the only things you can count on being death and taxes kept cycling through my head hello honey, humans die too bereft humans grieve too Even her friend observed that she really shouldn t be closing herself off the way she was I just can t understand the difference that she draws the line over So the fact that much of the story was about her running as hard and as fast as she could from Aidan and her own feelings just irritated the heck out of me It was late in the book when she had the epiphenal moment of oh, wow how did I not see the truth before and I could only role my eyes I also was none to pleased from a few times when her behavior came across as a cruel tease hot cold, come hither physical displays while her mouth still said no I doubt the author intended for her to appear that way and Jaylin s tender side kept me from really believing it, but yet again it was still harming Aidan and making it harder for him Now just to be clear, I wouldn t have been upset if this was about her telling a guy no and having no interest in him, but it was obvious even in their first encounter and afterward being privy to her internal monologue that she was just as interested as he was He knew her feelings were as strong as his own which is why he pushed.Alright, I ll wrap up my thoughts with this Yes, I went on and on about what irritated me, but I also want to leave the last impression to be that this is an enjoyable read that had many wonderful qualities balancing things out What bothered me may not bother someone else I would definitely read a book about Aidan s friends Liam or Brit or Jaylin s friend Pam because the author is a good storyteller I recommend this to those who love steamy shifter romance and want to delve into a new shifter world with a unique idea about the destined mate. Aidan O Connell is still learning to deal with his roommate, his friend Liam Liam is nursing a broken heart after his human mate rejected him and his shifter ways This rejection has caused serious problems with Liam and the only way to help him if for Aiden to call a half shifter psychiatrist named Jaylin Avgar As soon as she stepped on the porch, Aiden s inner beast knew she was The One Dr Jaylin Avgar hasn t treated a shifter in months, having completely removed them from her practice The horrendous consequences of their eternal mating has Jaylin completed jaded to the point that she will never mate with a shifter Being eternally linked to a shifter with the potential of having to live life without her mate, or her mate having to live without her, in case of an early death doesn t sit well Jaylin is only going to seek out human companionship because she thinks it will be safer for her heart.When Aidan and Jaylin meet, there is a definite change in the air They both know when Aidan s beast symbolically marks Jaylin as Aiden s mate Jaylin fights the attraction tooth and nail, rejecting Aidan before even giving their relationship a go Seeing that she s going to be difficult, Aidan falls back to the guy he used to be in order to persuade Jaylin Aidan even goes so far as to fake a psychiatric case to get her on a plane to the tropics Will Aidan be able to convince Jaylin that all she feels about the mating instinct is false and that they truly do belong together The shifter aspect was a bit different than the norm which gave this book an edge I almost wasn t sure about this story at first, though The beginning is heavily devoted to Liam and the rejection by his mate, Ava, so I wasn t quite sure who the book was supposed to be about Especially so, since the book description clearly spoke about Aidan and Jaylin as being the main characters The information, however, is detrimental to the plot and is a great set up for not only Aidan and Jaylin s story but Book 2, The Awakening Liam which I started immediately after finishing The Awakening Aidan.The author wrote Jaylin pretty well and brought out her emotions, paranoia, and feelings with intensity Aidan was a strong male character but he also had emotional depth These two were not superficial nor 2 dimensional they were very much full of life, regardless of the emotions they were feeling at the time Jaylin really felt that she had a handle on her life, the ways of shifters, and how to avoid the unhappiness that mating would cause She was woman enough to admit her inaccuracies and fully realize what mating means Aidan tried and tried to get her to understand that the patients she s seen in the past were not part of the normal shifter population His patience began to wear pretty thin toward the end and a situation arose that forced Jaylin to rectify the issues she had and accept who she was and what her relationship with Aidan meant although, it may have been too late you ll have to read the book to figure it out.I enjoyed this story very much.Review Copy Courtesy Of Entangled Publishing, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. A potentially very good idea destroyed by the way it was written.For once a mated couple story that deals with the idea that one half could be uninterested I guess I should know better The story went downhill from the beginning, as soon as we were shown she s no real, professional person, but a walking bag of hormones The woman is often portrayed as two faced in Pnr What she says and what she wants are never the same In some stories it gets worse Anyway after he forced a bond on her, he had the gall of accusing her of robbing him of choices and kidnapped her, I decided I really can t stomach this kind of novels Not in this mood.Some other time, maybe. ^READ EPUB ↡ Aidan (The Awakening, #1) ⇺ Is The Gift Of Eternal Love A Blessing Or A Curse After Years Of Counseling Grieving Shifters, Psychiatrist And Half Shifter, Dr Jaylin Avgar Has Become Jaded On Shifter Mating She Wants To Marry A Human And Forget About The Love For Eternity Crap Then She Meets Aidan O Connell, An Infuriatingly Laid Back Shifter Who Represents Everything She Doesn T Want Yet, The He Pursues Her, The She Craves A Future With Him Only One Thing Stands In Her Way Death Can She Overcome Her Fear Of Losing Aidan To The One Guarantee In Life Millionaire Consultant, Aidan O Connell Knows He Ll One Day Meet A Woman Who Ll Awaken An Unrelenting Mating Instinct Unfortunately, That Woman Is Jaylin, Who Has No Qualms About Telling Him That He And His So Called Eternity Can Shove It When She Pushes Him Away, He Takes A Drastic Step So She Can No Longer Escape The Close Proximity Throws The Instinct Into Overdrive Can He Control The Need Engrained In Him Until He S Certain She Will Reciprocate The Bond, Or Will A Moment Of Weakness Doom Him To Hell On Earth