Running Scared by Shannon K. Butcher (#3 in The Sentinel Wars)
May 4th, 2010
Paperback, 400 Pages
Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “Are you really that blind? Can you really look around this place of refuge and see such evil? Because if you can, then I have to wonder what might be wrong with you.”
Lexi Johns has spent the last couple of months running. Hiding. Planning. Lexi has been taught since birth that the Sentinels are evil beings and to be avoided at all costs. Now the time has come to stop running and face her enemy. Zach is the Sentinel who has been hunting Lexi, she is his destiny and he will have her at any cost. She is the only one who can save his life and claim his heart but Lexi has plans for Zach and they do not involve a happily ever after.
First off let me say that this is not a stand alone book. If you do not start from the beginning of the series you will be incredibly lost. Each book leaves off from the previous and Ms Butcher has about three to four different story lines running in each book. We first met Lexi and Zach in Ms Butcher’s first book of the series, Burning Alive. When Zach first saw Lexi he knew she was his but Lexi did not trust Zach and took off running as first chance.
In Ms Butcher’s newest addition to the Sentinel War series, Lexi has stopped running and is determined once and for all to destroy Zach and the Sentinels. Lexi’s mother left her long detailed journals detailing the nightmare she called the Sentinels. With tales of atrocities and crimes against humanity committed by the Sentinels read to her as bedtimes stories, Lexi trusts none of them. Convinced that her friend Helen has been brainwashed and held by the Sentinels, Lexi has a plan to rescue her and destroy them. Calling on Zach to “rescue her”, she convinces him that she will accept him and accompanies him to the Sentinel compound. But things are not what they seem and Lexi soon questions everything she was ever taught.
I find books like this hard to read sometimes only because I know what’s going on and I get frustrated because the protagonists do not have my frames of reference. Basically, they don’t act like I want them too – but that’s my problem. However, this book jumps right in the fray and keeps you hooked till the end and I was unable to put it down. Emotionally dark, this is a wonderful blending of paranormal romance and urban fantasy. There are many twists and turns that tell of the past, present, and future.
Zach, and the rest of the Sentinels, are living on borrowed time. They need to find their life mates and soon or they will die.This tends to make them rather forceful and tenacious when meeting who they think may be their life mate. And since their life mate is free till they bond with them, they can be claimed by another. Zach knows Lexi is destined to be his so he has chased her with a single minded vengeance. But unknown to him, this has cause Lexi much hardship. No home. No money. She has been living out of her car trying to stay on step ahead of him. A lot of Lexi’s actions are due to the relentlessness of Zach’s chase. In his relief at finding her he binds her to him and takes her back to the compound.In the other two books we saw a gentler more patient approach to the sentinels wooing their mates.
Once Lexi arrives at the compound she begins to see a different picture then the one she was taught. This leaves her with some difficult decisions to make. She deals with Zach and tries very hard to assimilate everything happening to her but Zach needs her now and pushes for them to bond. I identified with Lexi. She is very stubborn and holds her own beautifully. I liked the fact she stayed true to herself and her feelings; but at times she does come off as a little redundant. She challenges Zach in every way and tries to find common ground for them. Zach is very impatient but it’s completely understandable. It seemed a little silly that he is hurt she doesn’t trust him right away; considering the way he pushes and forces things on her. When Lexi’s test of loyalty comes she handles herself in a truly magnificent gesture. I liked that we see more of Madoc and his running around like a crazy person. I have to say Madoc is my favorite. He is fatalistic in his thinking and you want to smack him while cheering him on.
Ms Butcher gives us some fantastic clues to Sybil and other major characters in the series that left me squeeeeeing for the next in her series-Living Nightmare.