I made it a goal to read more M/M books written by male-presenting authors, and this trilogy looked like a great choice that featured lots of my favorite things in the paranormal romance genre. On the plus side, this book was well-written, and it was easy enough to get swept along in the plot. However, certain less-than-realistic elements continued to jerk me out of the story. (The term “realistic” can be contrary to the genre, but even a book with werewolves who run a BDSM club can suspend a reader’s disbelief through world-building. And basic research can tell anyone that the weather in Washington State is significantly different on opposite sides of the Cascade Mountains.)

Setting aside the overwhelming ridiculousness of a club exclusively for gay men that draws a crowd of hundreds from a small college town, even Remus’ own life gave me cause for side-eye. Don’t get me wrong: I enjoyed him as a character and protagonist. But even after ridding himself of an abusive, controlling relationship, he continues to fall into the same patterns with Sebastian and Victor. I understand that change is difficult, but Remus’s interactions with his two supposed love interests made me sigh more in frustration than swooniness.

I thought that the conflict regarding Remus and his two werewolves would involve a bit less “which one will he choose??” That’s on me as a reader and not a mark against the author’s storytelling. However, this story’s final climactic moments were so epic that returning to drama between the two brothers afterward was less than appealing. When Remus does evolve as a character, I found that I’d rather follow his adventures without the romantic elements.

Plenty of readers would probably enjoy the world-building and relationship drama established in the first book of this trilogy. Unfortunately, I’m not one of them.

Rating: 3 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Amazon and Goodreads.

At this time, I have no plan to read the other two books in this trilogy.

One thought on “Review: Pendulum (Kingdom of Night #1) by Joel Abernathy

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