Reviewed by Chris
TITLE: Treasure for Treasure
SERIES: Being(s) in Love #7
AUTHOR: R. Cooper
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 357 pages
RELEASE DATE: December 12, 2016
In the nineteenth century, the dragon Dìzhèn put the small coastal town of Everlasting under her protection. Her family was supposed to carry on the tradition, but all of Dìzhèn the Great’s heirs eventually left rather than live in the shadow of such a powerful dragon.
Only the youngest dragon of the current generation remains: Zarrin, the softhearted disgrace of his family. He might be weak, small, and afraid, but he is determined to show the humans they have not been forgotten… one human in particular. The problem is, Zarrin can barely get that human to talk to him.
It should be a dream come true to have a dragon trying to get his attention. But Joe refuses to bow to Zarrin like everyone else. Yes, Zarrin is sexy, oddly gentle for a dragon, and stares at Joe with a gaze so hot it makes him shiver. But hurt, mistrustful Joe can’t believe Zarrin’s promises that he’s here to stay. Joe doesn’t realize he is the treasure Zarrin has been looking for his whole life, a treasure he once let slip through his fingers out of fear. Now, to win Joe’s trust, Zarrin has to be brave and become as strong as Dìzhèn herself.
Joe is kind of an outcast in the small town of Everlasting. His high school “boyfriend” was a bit of a closet-case (with a real asshole of a girlfriend) and Joe ended up being labeled all sorts of horrible things after they were found out. Even years later, after he has come back from his attempts to get away from his hometown by going to college, Joe is seen by everyone as that (mixed race) gay guy who lured that poor (rich) unsuspecting (white) boy into a (half) life of homosexuality with his supposed tricksy poor non-white people’s magics. Even if Joe doesn’t have a magic bone in his body. It has left him with a few trust issues. To say the least.
Which is why he doesn’t respond all that well when one of the town’s dragons comes back to Everlasting. The dragons were supposedly there to guard and protect the city, but from where Joe is standing they have been doing shit all for years now. And yeah, Zarrin doesn’t seem like the kind of asshole-dragon that Joe figures they all are, but then Joe hasn’t had the best luck with trusting his instincts, either. Zarrin has after all been living a life of privilege probably not even the rich white folks of the town can have, so he is bound to be even worse than them, right? And even if he isn’t…well. It’s not like a dragon would want someone like Joe.
A Boy and His Dragon was the first book in this series that I read, and I was thrilled to find out that R. Cooper had decided to do another book based off their take on dragons. I remember happy-sighing my way thru Boy and hoped some of that same feel would come into play here. And boy oh boy did I get that and more.
There is just something about Zarrin and Joe that really just hits all my buttons. Joe, a human with some major trust issues, and Zarrin, a dragon that only wants to be a good and proper (read: fierce) dragon, are such a wonderful pair. I don’t even know how to describe how absolutely wonder, either. Like this book is over 300 pages and I was laughing and crying and sighing and just wanting someone to go buy me a damn latte already (even if I don’t even really like the things, either–which is actually kinda perfect for this book) the whole time.
I don’t know if this book is my favorite, but if it isn’t at the top of the list it is probably in comfortable second place. Seriously, I can’t even describe how much I loved it. Which, is probably a bit of a problem when it comes to writing reviews. I do know that the sheer amount of tension in this book should have been driving me batty, but it never did. I wanted to shake Joe, hug Zarrin, but never once did I want them to stop doing whatever the hell it was they were doing to make this book so damn fun to read.
R. Cooper is just so very good at creating characters that pull on all eleven of my heartstrings. And enjoy every second of it. Even when I was crying I was more than happy to keep reading. Just. Damn. I loved it, ok? These characters had me so tied up in their story that I almost missed getting off the bus at my stop. Twice. I didn’t wanna stop reading.
I fully, truly, and extremely recommend this book. Especially if you have been a fan of this series so far. Ugh, it was so good. Have I said that yet? Yes? Well, it bares repeating anyways.