Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Strength (Mark of Nexus #1) by Carrie Butler

(Mark of Nexus #1) 
Carrie Butler 
Published August 16th 2013 
by Author Self Pub 
ARC for Review 

When college student Rena Collins finds herself nose-to-chest with the campus outcast, her rumor-laced notions are shattered. Handsome, considerate, and seemingly sane, Wallace Blake doesn’t look like he spends his nights alone, screaming and banging on the walls of his dorm room. Hell, he doesn’t look like he spends his nights alone, period.

Too curious for her own good, Rena vows to uncover the truth behind Wallace’s madman reputation--and how two seconds of contact had left her with bruises. Of course, there are a few setbacks along the way: guilt, admiration, feelings of the warm and fuzzy variety…

Not to mention the unwanted attention of Wallace's powerful, supernaturally-gifted family.

They’re a bloodline divided by opposing ideals, two soon-to-be warring factions that live in secret among us. When Rena ends up caught in their crossfire, Wallace has no choice but to save her by using his powers. Now they’re really in trouble. With war on the horizon and Rena’s life in the balance, he needs to put some distance between them. But Rena won’t let go. If fighting is what it takes to prove her own strength and keep Wallace in her life, then that’s what she’ll do--even if it means risking a whole lot more than her heart.

(Upper YA/New Adult)

The Way I See It

In one word I would stay intriguing yep Strength was an intriguing read. This is described as a New Adult paranormal so I was salivating at the mouth to get my hands on this. I would say it was a super tame NA which was okay because the focus was more on the story, but I did miss the budding romance and pull of a powerful love. Don’t get me wrong they fall in love and they have an incredible bond but I didn’t really feel the development. It happened really quickly but never the less I enjoyed this read and I can’t wait to see what happens. There is sooooo much potential I’m excited to see where Ms. Butler is going to take this story. Strength reminded me a bit of Marvel comics X-men but they aren’t mutants they just poses extraordinary abilities and they are all different. I hope we find out the origin of these powers soon. I still have TONS of questions that need to be answered but the ending was not cliffy but things were left open. Like I said I can’t wait to find out whats to come. 

urprise, Rena is afraid of rumors and things unknown. She goes in search of a friend and is struck with a difficult realization disproving things she believed to be true.
ruth, things are not the way Rena has been lead to believe. Her kind heart and desire to help others will fuel her towards finding out more about the enigmatic Wallace Blake.
ealization, cold and cruel Rena knows she has to do something to make things right with Wallace. Something changes and they find each other drawn to each other inexplicably.
mpath, Wallace has always felt peoples emotions but Rena introduces an entirely different spectrum. He is more in tune with her he is connected in a way that he doesn’t understand but he embraces this gift and will do anything in his power to protect her.
earness, Rena knows wherever Wallace is lead she must stand by his side. Promises have been made and he has tried to keep her at arms length for her own safety. Rena refuses to stay away and will do whatever it takes to find him.
ail, the truth is revealed and it is more than anyone could've imagined Rena pushes to brake the control Gail has over Wallace. The showdown has begun and lines have been drawn, the time has come for action to save the man she loves.
est, everything has been planed but no one saw who was behind it all a betrayal has left everyone stunned Rena will act in order to make things right. Drawing on a power no one could've predicted Rena will do what it takes to bring Wallace back from the abyss.
ealing, knowing the bond is something no one understands Rena and Wallace walk away from doom but her deal with the devil looms before her. For now they will find peace but that cannot last for long. Now they are faced with a race against the clock, Rena and Wallace vow never to run from each other everything they do from now on will be together.

The ending was peaceful after much turmoil and I’m highly anticipating the next book in the Mark of the Nexus series. The flow was good and the author did a great job at world building. I found myself drawn into this world and i’m starving for more answers. Rena has told us of her past and we get to see why she reacts to certain things in certain ways. Cole was an interesting and powerful character. He is Wallace’s brother with different gifts he is never shy about any given situation. I love how he bounces off of the pages with a larger than life personality. This book has caught my attention in a good way and my intrigue is on high. I know there is so much more than meets the eye with this tale and I am looking forward towards finding out all of the whys. Not to mention I hope we get to see how these complex characters came to be. 

My Fav’s


Wow talk about brooding. This guy has had to live with a power he doesn’t quite understand and will do everything in his power to over come the obstacles life has thrown his way. Wallace has always been guarded but something about Rena has pulled at his heart. He is tormented daily and I hope to find out more as to why. I also hope he and Rena can find a way to overcome this painful reminder that he is not normal. Wallace is kind and compassionate I’m looking forward to seeing where his character goes. 


She is unlike any character I’ve ever come across she has some messed up things that have affected her in the past but I love that she opens herself to Wallace. Rena is able to take a chance and confide in the person she once believed to be crazy. She believes there isn’t anything remarkable about herself but I hope that get disproven very soon. I know there is more than meets the eye regarding Rena and I want to be there to see it. Her compassion and capacity of love is what guides her and what Wallace needs more than anyone can admit. 

My Rating

3.5 College, Snow, Drunken Stupor, Bruised shoulders, Bruised legs, Scrunchy, Flat Tire, Broken Chains, Grandmother C, Moonlit Kiss, Promises made, Promises Broken, Love Confession Filled Stars. For an intriguing paranormal read that goes beyond the mold check out this book!

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Book Trailer

About The Author

Carrie Butler daydreamed her way through college—until they thrust a marketing degree into her hands, slapped a summa cum laude seal on the corner, and booted her out into a less-than-stellar job market. Instead of panicking at the prospect of unemployment, she used her Midwestern logic to steer into the skid and point her life in the direction she really wanted to go: writing out those daydreams. 

Her passion for New Adult fiction led her to co-found NA Alley—one of the first websites dedicated to the category. She is the author of Strength (Mark of Nexus #1) and Courage (Mark of Nexus #2).



  1. Awesome review! This is a book I've been meaning to read - it's waiting patiently on my kindle. :) I like the fact that it's intriguing. I might miss the romance development as well but I'm still interested in the story.

    1. Thank you, I'm def looking forward to whats next! Yea their affection for each other is totally believable but I missed the stuff that lead up to the "I love you's"

  2. I love the way you do your reviews, spelling out the title. Very cute. I have this one on my TBR and it is one that I have been looking forward to reading. I have no idea why it has taken me so long. I want to check out this romance to see what you mean :)

    Great review

    Michelle @ Book Briefs

    1. Thanks Michelle :0) I understand the perpetually growing TBR I too am a victim! LOL

  3. I think it's really hard to balance that NA romance with the paranormal. I've felt the same way as you did about this one on a lot of the NA paranormal that I've read. I think I still want to read this series but maybe not right away. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Yea I definitely agree with you...I'm actually in the market for more NA paranormal clearly I need to do some digging so I can find more :0)

  4. Fantastic review Ria and wahoo to paranormal NA..I hope we see more genres :)

    1. Aw Thank You!! RIGHT?! I need to find more :0)


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