The third book in Theresa Meyers’ trilogy, The Chosen, is an over-the-top but appealing mix of paranormal romance, steampunk, western, and road romance. When an educated, clean-cut attorney/hunter teams up with a darkin thief in order to retrieve a relic they’ll use to save the world, they both have to broaden their horizons, mental and physical, in order to survive the adventure.
Remy Jackson is the “good” brother, attorney by day and darkin hunter by night, chosen to be the one to get China McGee, a darkin shifter and thief by trade, out of jail after Remy’s brother Colt double crossed her. Instead, Remy ends up in jail with China and has to bust them both out, ending up on the run across the desert to escape. Their travails begin almost immediately when they are attacked by snake demons before they can make it to safety.
Although predisposed to hate all darkin, Remy has to admit that China’s strengths are necessary for the success of their mission, which is to retrieve a portion of a mystical book which will allow Remy and his brothers to close the gate to hell. So they embark together on a journey that will take them to the Aztec jungles and into a movie style adventure and romance. But China is hiding a huge secret that may foil all efforts to close the gate. Will she be able to overcome her darkin nature in order to save humanity?
I was worried when I began reading because I hadn’t read the first two books in the series, but thankfully found that not to be a problem. The books run concurrently, so it’s easy to quickly catch up with the story, and the other sets of main characters are present in this last book of the trilogy. I did feel that, in an effort to bring all the characters and story lines together in this one book, China and Remy’s adventures were given short shrift, but that is a minor complaint and I got over it easily. The author does an excellent job of bringing the heroes and heroines together and tying up all the loose ends at the end of this book.
A couple of other very small negatives include China’s language usage. Sometimes she sounds uneducated, saying “ain’t” and using bad grammar, and other times she sounds sophisticated and educated. She’s a smart character, though, so maybe it was impossible for the author to let her speak badly all the time. It’s too bad that China’s smarts weren’t involved in designing the cover of the book. It’s silly looking, embarrassing, and does not do the book justice.
Remy is a lot of fun. Born the middle brother, he wasn’t as highly trained in darkin hunting as his older brother, and he isn’t allowed to be a charming scapegrace like the baby of the family. He chooses instead to be the “respectable” brother, holding a legitimate job, and dressing and speaking well at all times. He certainly has no intention of getting involved with a darkin, but in the course of the book finds himself admiring China more and more. Before he loosens up completely, he tries to maintain his stylish dress, going out to buy jungle adventure clothes that the other characters found highly amusing. You can just see him in his ludicrous whites and pith helmet.
The series is spoiled for me because I read this last book before the others. I wish I’d known about them and read them in order. If you’re intrigued at all, that’s what I suggest you do. You probably won’t learn anything or embrace a new philosophy, but this last book is worth checking out and I bet the series as a whole is a lot of fun.