Daryk Craving by Denise A. Agnew
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
Genre: Action/Adventure, Paranormal, Sci-fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (82 pgs)
Other: M/F, Anal Play
Rating: 4 cherries
Reviewed by Verbena
Her fever for him has always burned high… Daryk One Aknada Tyrus helped destroy Admiral Aramus’ slave trading ship, but now she must resurrect her shattered life and discover if love can repair three years of deceit.
Aknada is a warrior, her unique ability to fight men on equal footing a talent few women can boast. Three years ago she lost faith in herself after surviving a horrible attack. Now she cannot abide a man’s touch, even the tenderness of Marc Gampia, the man she’s craved forever. She returns to Marc’s compound to restore her inner peace and hopefully turn her fears away.
His craving for her has never died… Marc hides his own mangled heart. When he learns Aknada is alive, the fire in him burns hotter and more fiercely than it did before. He will do anything to have her as his wife.
Desire forces her to reach for him, to discover his body one touch at a time. One stroke and there is no going back.
Can the love of a true mate overcome years of anguish and fear caused by the brutal attack of another?
That’s just what Aknada Tyrus must discover. Despite her height, her muscular physique, or her physical capabilities, this Daryk One has been scarred by the cruelty of men, in more ways than one. She must not only learn to accept and love who she is, but also conquer her greatest fear, which means learning to be touched by a man again. This is not an easy task for Aknade when the mere thought of being alone with one makes her tremble with unease, even the one she’s yearned for all her life. She’s waited years, wondering, hoping, and wishing that the one man with whom she’d love to share herself with might return her affection. Can she push aside her inner demons and take a chance on him?
Marc Gambia has loved Aknada since they were kids. Unlike so many others, he never regarded her height or strength as being odd or freakish; on the contrary, he respected her position as a rare female Daryk One and worshipped her for the woman she was. Ignorance and pride kept him from telling Aknada how he felt several years ago. When he thought he’d lost her for good, his heart grieved and he spent every day wishing he could go back and fix what he’d wronged. Now that fate has seen fit to give him the opportunity, he’ll be damned if he’ll let anyone stop him from claiming the woman he wants, not even Aknada herself.
This is book three in Ms. Agnew’s Daryk World Series. While I can’t say I liked it as much as the first two, it was still an enjoyable read. I think the length is where I found most of the drawbacks; I was spoiled by the depth and excellent character development in books one and two. Daryk Craving elaborates on the characters Aknada and Marc, whom you meet in book two. Despite its shorter length, Ms. Agnew still does a good job of giving the reader enough information about these two that you’re able to connect with them and want to see if they can work through their dilemmas.
This story offered quite a different take on the Daryk Ones. Instead of being the strong pursuer, Aknada is plagued with fears from her past experiences, so it’s up to Marc to take charge, which he does quite well. This is a stark contrast to the Daryk Ones in books one and two and is a nice change. It helps to see Aknada as a real woman who reacts like most any woman would who’d suffered what she did, despite the warrior blood in her veins. Sometimes, authors write such strong female characters that they don’t seem like females anymore. Not in this story. I liked being able to envision Aknada garbed in men’s clothes, yet I knew that beneath beat the heart and soul of a delicate woman. I want to commend the author on accomplishing that feat. Well worth the read.
Take one warrior woman with a harsh past and a determination to never be hurt again, add one man who thought he lost the woman who owned his heart and is equally determined to make her his, and you get a passionate mix of two people who can’t keep their hands off each other despite the turmoil in their lives. That’s what you’ll get in Ms. Agnew’s Daryk Craving. Whether you’ve read books one and two or not, this story can stand alone and is a touching one that will leave you with a lasting smile.