October 19, 2022

REVIEW The Hellmouth Guardian's Lover (Peculiar Tastes #3) by Adrianna Herrera

The Hellmouth Guardian's Lover (Peculiar Tastes #3) by Adrianna Herrera
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Release Date: October 4, 2022
Format: eBook (Kickstarter)
Publisher: Bonkers Romance

My tastes must definitely be peculiar because I'm really enjoying the books that Bonkers Romance recently released through their Shadow Market Kickstarter. The latest book I finished in the series is Adrianna Herrera's The Hellmouth Guardian's Lover, and you should read this book if you enjoy monster romances with a second chance romance, badass heroines, and lots of action (in more ways than one). 

Five years ago, Hellmouth Guardian Ariadne was betrayed by her sentinel and exiled from the order. She’s since built herself a home and a business (‘a traveling monster bacchanalia named the Monster Smash’). But when that same sentinel comes knocking on her doorstep asking for her help, she will have to face all the emotions she tried to bury and the serpent demon that broke her heart. 

There’s a lot of history between Ariadne and Augustus, and the tension between them is evident. The moment they gave into said tension was spicy and very fun for me as a reader. On the surface, their love story in this book is a second-chance romance. It’s also a mentor/mentee relationship as August was the one to recruit Ariadne into her role as a guardian. Admittedly, the plot is a bit sparse (even for a book this length), but I didn’t have much issue with that given that this is a very character-driven narrative. Potential readers should be aware that this is very much an adult romance given the orgies and other sexual activities Augustus and Ariadne like to partake in. 

There is shared worldbuilding between the different Peculiar Tastes/Shadow Market books, but there is little to no crossover between characters. I did enjoy the tiny Easter egg-Esque nods to the other books. For example, Augustus notes very on in the book that there “Fae queens, death gods, and powerful witches all running amok looking to settle their scores” (referencing The Fae Queen’s Captive, The Death God’s Sacrifice, and The Demon’s Bargain, respectively)

Overall, The Hellmouth Guardian’s Lover was another short, enjoyable paranormal romance/fantasy tale. It didn’t quite have the plot twists that the other books did, but it was an entertaining read nonetheless. I’m so excited that the Shadow Market books have introduced me to some new authors I’d never heard of before (I was previously only familiar with Katee Robert), and I’m looking forward to checking out Adriana’s backlist titles in the future. 

Content Warnings (Courtesy of the Author): Some Incidental Injuries during sex, violence, murder (of baddies), blood, explicit sex, mention of parental death

About the Author

Adriana was born and raised in the Caribbean, but for the last fifteen years has let her job (and her spouse) take her all over the world. She loves writing stories about people who look and sound like her people, getting unapologetic happy endings. Her Dreamers series has received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and Booklist and has been featured in The TODAY Show on NBC, Entertainment Weekly, OPRAH Magazine, NPR, Library Journal, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. She’s a trauma therapist in New York City, working with survivors of domestic and sexual violence.

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