Fated: Blood and Redemption by Bey Deckard
Series: Baal’s Heart #3
Source: Review by Request
Copy provided by the Author
My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
With the captain’s mind in shambles, Jon and Tom set out to find the passage home through the black mountain range, hoping to find a cure for Baltsaros’s madness. However, when the men are forced to part ways, darkness takes root in the schism created; fate, lust, and vengeance become obsessions threatening to tear apart the fragile bonds holding the three together.
Following on the heels of Sacrificed, Fated takes the pirates on a quest to find those responsible for the captain’s bloody beginnings. But can they survive what awaits them where past and present meet?
A million times, YES.
Their relationship would continue to grow, to change. There would always be pain, and they would be tested… Their triad had the shakiest of foundations, based as it was on mistrust, jealousy, and deception. But ships didn’t need pillars pounded into the earth; no, they needed strong, protective hulls that could carry them over the ever-changing waves of an uncaring sea. With trust, hope… love – all things they had built together – they could weather anything.
I hereby give this series ALL of the stars. I expected great things from the third book in the Baal’s Heart series, and I was not disappointed.
Bloggers don’t always have the luxury of reading exactly what they want when they want. We’ve got schedules and deadlines to stick to, and I take that shit seriously… So understand how enthralled I am by this series when I tell you I dropped everything to read this book.
I tried to stick to my schedule, but these characters were tempting me away from prior obligations. I gave in to temptation and I am so very glad that I did.
This book is flawlessly written.
The characters are extraordinary.
The plot line is gripping.
The details are gorgeous.
If you’re looking for hackneyed and campy stories of sex and piracy, you won’t find them in the world Bey Deckard has created…
What you will find is a brilliant series which bends the genres of Action, Adventure, Historical Romance, and Erotica…
Oh, they would probably die, but he’d die knowing Baltsaros’s heart, and that warmed him like nothing else.
Jon has has grown up so much of the course of this series.
Miles away – literally & figuratively – from where he started in the first book. In Caged: Love and Treachery on the High Seas, Jon was kidnapped and imprisoned on a pirate ship. He was weak and sickly and oh so innocent…
When we begin our journey in Fated: Blood and Redemption, Jon is Captain of Baal’s Heart with Tom as his First Mate and Baltsaros is locked in the infamous cage inside the Captain’s quarters. My how times have changed. Jon’s struggle to maintain the respect of his crew is second only to his struggle to maintain a sense of morality when it’s so easy to rule with fear and death.
Jon worries for Baltsaros and is lucky to have Tom by his side as they sail home…
His rebellious soul, the true pain he rarely let surface, the memories that burned like a prison in his heart – all of it fell away when Baltsaros stripped him of control. It was like losing the fight but winning the battle; it was defeat and love and courage and need… Tom felt himself relax into it.
The man we’ve come to know as eternally affable is slowly slipping away. Tom worries about the darkest parts of Jon exposing themselves as the young man embraces this life of piracy. He worries that Baltsaros may never be the man he once was. The two men he has grown to love are being pulled away from him by violence and madness.
Tom’s past is told throughout this book in flashbacks which shed light on his relationship with Baltsaros. Those memories from Tom’s past (told though both Baltsaros and Tom’s POV) were wonderfully enlightening and beautifully incorporated into the narrative – flashbacks are tricky, but Bey Deckard has mastered the art.
A man lost in his own brain, he had to dive into open wounds and strange waters to find his way through the burnt labyrinth.
In the previous book in the series, Sacrificed: Heart Beyond the Spires, Baltsaros had a delicate grip on his sanity – He was fighting against his bloodlust and looking for salvation. Unfortunately, his search landed him in a twisted prison which stripped him of his humanity.
Jon and Tom managed save his broken body from the Emperor’s prison, but Baltsaros the man – the eloquent, predatory, whip-smart sea captain – was completely eclipsed by the murderous animal hidden within his psyche.
It was a tumbling violent fall from grace which was fascinating to read and kept me on the edge of my seat. His fight to regain his own mind was every bit as riveting…
The former Captain’s lucid moments are few and far between – broken both mentally and physically, his violent outbursts put the entire crew in danger.
With Jon at the helm and a weary Tom at his side as Fist Mate, it’s a race to get Baal’s Heart back to the island of Madierus where Baltsaros might find the time and sanctuary to heal.
The Heart picked up several new crew members and passengers before leaving Ereme’ia Balor. One such crew member, Saban, has attracted the attention of both Tom and Jon. We fist met the former Balorian slave when Tom broke his arm in a fight at the inn. There’s no hard feelings between the two men, in fact, there’s a heated attraction growing between them.
Saban becomes the unofficial nursemaid to the ailing Baltsaros as The Heart sets sail, and the big man’s proximity lands him in more than a few voyeuristic situations inside the Captain’s quarters… As though our favorite pirate threesome needed yet another obstacle wrapped in lust and jealousy to overcome.
A connection between Jon and the Queen is revealed, one which sheds light on how Baltsaros became aware of the young man’s talents in the first place. We learn of the events leading to Jon’s kidnapping and the battle which led Baltsaros to his decision to find Jon and bring him aboard The Heart.
The foreboding images in Jon’s dreams are increasing in intensity, and he knows better than to ignore his instincts – after all, his metaphor-laced dreams warned him of the dangers in Ereme’ia Balor and we all saw what happened when those warnings were ignored…
As if the poor boy wasn’t worried enough, a card reader tells Jon his future and the troubling images of her reading leaves him reeling. Jon is set on edge by her accuracy and becomes obsessed with attempting to decipher her prophesies.
As Captain Balsaros works toward returning to sanity, he is forced to confront many long-burried memories. The root cause of his life-long affair with blood-lust is revealed, and the decision is made to return to his origins and set right the wrongs of his past.
It’s one more adventure on the high seas for Baal’s Heart one which will have lasting effects no matter the outcome.
I’m sure I could go on and on about this lovely book, but I’ll leave you here…
I HIGHLY recommend reading this series.
This not the last word we’ll hear from this elaborate world of pirates and lust – Bey Deckard will be releasing a book about Saban in the near future. I’m also in the process of bribing him with rum and virgin sacrifices in the hopes that we’ll check back in with my three favorite pirates eventually…
With puppies on top?
Bey Deckard in the hot seat:
Once we finished reading this book (and replenished our electrolytes in the hopes of overcoming our book-hangover) we had one question for Bey Deckard: What’s next for the crew of Baal’s Heart and when does she set sail again? He was kind enough to give us an answer:
It took nearly a quarter hour to get the frightened Balorians secured away belowdecks. Once he was pretty sure there would be no more bloody excitement, Tom sent a few men to stand by the capstan; the wind had shifted, and the ship strained to be on its way. As he mounted the steps to the quarterdeck, he kept his eyes on Jon. The serious young man was looking over the charts at the bench; he would be helping the first mate to navigate the narrow channels once they were on their way.
Tom gave Jon a faint smile as he took his place behind the ship’s wheel. Pitching the bastard overboard wasn’t what was bothering him; the man’s life or death hadn’t concerned him in the least… though being ripped apart by those things sure made for a good tale to tell. No, it was the way that Jon’s voice had taken on the same cold, precise tones that so often fell from Baltsaros’s lips. Even his accent had changed a little. Tom shook his head and tightened his hands on the handles without a word.
“You’re worried about me,” said Jon softly.
Frowning, the first mate nodded, keeping his eyes forward.
“Don’t be worried about me, Tom,” said the young captain.
Chewing the inside of his cheek for a second, Tom nodded again.
“We ready?” he asked gruffly. He looked over at Jon and saw that he was staring at him with an odd expression on his face.
“I’m not turning into him,” said Jon. “If that’s what you’re worried about.”
Tom shrugged and turned the wheel a little back and forth, impatient to get going.
“Ye bloody sounded just like him, Jon.”
When Jon reached for him, he wasn’t expecting the sudden, sharp pain in his scalp as his fingers snarled a wicked handful of Tom’s hair and tugged his head back. Jon brought his face close, his storm-grey eyes furious.
“You wanted me to be captain, so I am being captain. It is not easy for me, but I am fucking doing it the only way I know how,” Jon growled through clenched teeth. “If you don’t like it, you can go fuck yourself. And… What makes you think you can go behind my back and string up passengers without my say-so?”
Tom opened his mouth to speak, but Jon’s hand tightened its hold, and he let out a pained grunt instead.
“The issue should have been brought to me first. Me. The captain. Isn’t that how it works on this fucking ship? No. Instead you go around terrorizing people and then suddenly come dump the problem in my lap with no warning, putting me on the godsdamned spot to figure out what sort of punishment fits the crime. I had no idea what to say… Shit, how do you think that makes me look in front of the crew? Half of them still see me as some kind of fucking bed warmer for you and Baltsaros.”
Jon gave Tom’s head a little shake, and he winced.
“You need to work with me, Tom. Not against me. Godsdammit, you know Punga could have sat, not hung, in the brig for another day or two, and we could have taken care of things together. And, for hell’s sake, you ass, of course I was going to pull him out of the water. I saw that look on your face, Tom. I’m not a godsdamned killer. I’ve killed three men now, and I’m pretty damned sure it’s not going to become a hobby. I don’t want to see you doubt me like that again. Understand?” He let go of Tom and stood glaring him.
Tom rubbed the back of his head.
“Yes, Cap’n,” he said sedately with a small nod. Then Tom let the grin he’d been holding back curve his lips and cocked his head. “Feel better?”
Jon’s face creased into a sheepish smile, and he chuckled, nodding.
“Much,” he confessed. “Gods, I am not cut out for this shit.”
Tom shook his head.
“Naw, love. I think yer doin’ just fine. Yer bloody right, ye know. I should stop worryin’ about you so much, and I should’a come to ye the second that red-haired witch came to see me.”
“Ceara came to you?” Jon heaved a sigh and raked both his hands through his mess of curls. “Argh! Fuck. Ok. I’ll take care of her too. If she’s trying to win me over, she sure as hells is taking the wrong path. I can’t stand the idea that people would take things like this into their own hands rather than bother me. Bother me, for fuck’s sake. I know I’m stressed as fuck, but bloody hells, how else am I going to learn?”
Tom grinned wider at Jon’s increased use of profanity.
Jon furrowed his brow and leaned forward, his blue eyes dark in the dying sunlight as he studied Tom for a long moment. When he finally spoke, his voice was low and intimate.
“What? You think this is amusing? Just so you know, if you get us through these mountains in one piece, I plan on using you so thoroughly that the only words left to you will be please and more.”
The first mate blinked, taken by a sudden pulse of heat when his heart kicked up in surprise. He laughed and Jon smiled back a little wolfishly.
“Aye, aye, sir,” Tom said and eagerly grabbed the ship’s wheel again.
About the Author:
Artist, Writer, Dog Lover.
Born and raised in a small coastal town in northern Québec, Bey spent his early summers on his uncle’s boat and running wild on the beaches of the surrounding islands, lighting fires and building huts out of driftwood and fishermen’s nets. As an adult, he eventually made his way to university and earned a degree in Art History with a strong focus on Anthropology. Primarily a portrait painter and graphic artist, Bey sat down one day and decided to write about the two things that he felt most passionate about: sex and the sea.
Bey currently lives in the wilds of Montréal with his best buddy, a spotty pit bull named Murphy. Caged: Love and Treachery on the High Seas is his first novel.