Welcome to my stop for the tour of Courage (Mark of Nexus #2) by Carrie Butler. I'm excited to take part today, I read Strength, followed by Courage recently and loved both!
Courage (Mark of Nexus #2)
Author: Carrie Butler
Release Date: 15 October 2013
Making a deal with the bad guys wasn’t the highlight of Rena Collins’ semester, but hey, it saved her boyfriend. Now, in order to appease the human-altering organization known as ERA, she’ll crawl under their microscope while they study the Mark of Nexus and plot their eye-glazed version of the future--until she realizes that’s not all they’re plotting.
Wallace Blake has always known his girlfriend is unlike most girls. But now that information has surfaced regarding the two bloodlines that balance his supernatural race, he finally understands why. Rena belongs to one of them. She’s been augmenting his power, all along...
Enter: Corynn Catley. Brought into the country under the guise of an internship, she’s intended to become ERA’s secret weapon. Kind of. Her abilities cancel out Wallace’s, rendering him powerless, but that’s exactly what he’s always wanted. Too bad it only works when his girlfriend’s not around.
All the while, Rena fails to notice the crush her geeky best friend, Aiden Ross, is nursing. He’d give anything for her to see him in a new light--even reinvent himself through questionable means--but there’s a reason people are told to be careful what they wish for. Finding the courage to tell her could put everyone’s lives in danger.
Strength (Mark of Nexus #1)
Author: Carrie Butler
Release Date: 16 August 2013
When college student Rena Collins finds herself nose-to-chest with the campus outcast, her rumor-laced notions are shattered. Handsome, considerate, and seemingly sane, Wallace Blake doesn’t look like he spends his nights alone, screaming and banging on the walls of his dorm room. Hell, he doesn’t look like he spends his nights alone, period.
Too curious for her own good, Rena vows to uncover the truth behind Wallace’s madman reputation—and how two seconds of contact had left her with bruises. Of course, there are a few setbacks along the way: guilt, admiration, feelings of the warm and fuzzy variety…
Not to mention the unwanted attention of Wallace's powerful, supernaturally-gifted family.
They’re a bloodline divided by opposing ideals, two soon-to-be warring factions that live in secret among us. When Rena ends up caught in their crossfire, Wallace has no choice but to save her by using his powers. Now they’re really in trouble. With war on the horizon and Rena’s life in the balance, he needs to put some distance between them. But Rena won’t let go. If fighting is what it takes to prove her own strength and keep Wallace in her life, then that’s what she’ll do—even if it means risking a whole lot more than her heart.
*Probably best not to read this review if you haven't read Strength, book 1, as there will be spoilers.*
Where to begin...so Courage picks up from the end of Strength, after Rena and Wallace's big showdown with Faye and the rest of the ERA. Then they learn about the different supernatural races there are, along with the Dynari, which is what Wallace is. This basically introduces a whole bunch of new factors.
I love Rena, I really do. She's strong and she fights for the people she loves. She's also funny, loyal and kind. She's pretty awesome, and she continues to be mostly awesome in this book. I wish she had fought harder for her and Wallace at some points, but her insecurities about their relationship and the introduction of Corynn into their lives, confused and overwhelmed her. So I forgive her for her temporary insanity.
Man, did I love Wallace...again. He sounds so damn gorgeous, and he loves Rena so much. He's just such a good guy as well. He shoulders so much of the responsibility in trying to stop the ERA and protecting his loved ones, he's just such a sweetheart.
One of my favourite things about this series is how developed and fleshed-out the secondary characters are as well. Corynn and Aiden also have POVs in this book, although they pop up less frequently than Rena and Wallace's This is definitely a good thing, in my perspective. It was nice to understand what was going on with them, but I liked the focus to be more on Wallace and Rena.
To be honest, Aiden irritated me quite a bit. I felt kind of bad for him, because he loves Rena but it's just not going to happen. She loves him as a friend and nothing more. Then he goes and does something really, really stupid and I wanted to him over the head. Honestly, silly boy!
Corryn was quite likable and I did feel sympathetic towards her. She's caught between a rock and a hard place, and doesn't have much choice in what she has to do.
Gabby was as brilliant as ever, and such a good best friend!
The plot thickens in this sequel, as more light is shed on the ERA's plans and Rena and Wallace fight to save their loved ones safe. Rena and Wallace have their problems in this book, but their relationship grows and strengthens in leaps and bounds. I can't wait to see where the next book, Loyalty, will take them. They deserve to find peace and happiness with each other and I hope it happens, and happens soon!
I'd definitely recommend this series, although I probably wouldn't read Courage, without having read Strength first. You'd be a little lost, although it does recap events from the first book at the beginning. It has some off the charts sexual tension (looking at you, Rena and Wallace!), good vs evil battles, suspense, love and friendship. It's also got a rather refreshing take on the paranormal, and it'll suck you into the Dynari's world of the supernatural.
*I received a review copy from the author, for my honest review. Thank you!
About the Author
Carrie Butler daydreamed her way through college—until they thrust a marketing degree into her hands, slapped a summa cum laude seal on the corner, and booted her out into a less-than-stellar job market. Instead of panicking at the prospect of unemployment, she used her Midwestern logic to steer into the skid and point her life in the direction she really wanted to go: writing out those daydreams.
Her passion for New Adult fiction led her to co-found NA Alley—a widely recognized informational hub for the category. She is the author of STRENGTH (Mark of Nexus #1) and COURAGE (Mark of Nexus #2).
Author Links: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Pinterest | Youtube | Goodreads
There's a fab tour wide giveaway as well. Up for grabs is a signed paperback of Courage (US only), 5 e-book copies of Courage (INT) and a limited edition Mark of Nexus pillowcase (US only)- which I really want. Good luck!