Started here and kept going. Having made it all the way to the end of book 14, I figured it was a good idea to come back and review. For me, I loved this series particularly because of the amount of effort that went into the world and the characters. Yes, some heroines I wanted to shoot and really only kept going because I 1) needed to know anyway and 2) loved the male characters. Each character has their own quirk, and I appreciate that.
For Claimed itself, I think it is a nice start. It and one other book are the only ones where the whole Bonding ritual actually go ahead, the rest center on adventure. There were times in this one where I totally rolled my eyes, but I loved it and I think it was worth it to get all of them
This second book is arguably where this series starts picking up. The whole thing becomes less about how Kindreds claim their brides and more about adventure. I appreciate that Sophia has a past that affects her behavior - and that the past actually makes sense to explain her behavior.
I would argue that this particular book doesn't actually require you to read Claimed, but having marathoned the entire series, I would recommend reading them one by one and in order. Especially in later books the villain may span for a few books or someone you forgot about pops up again and you're like "OH YEAH!!! THAT PERSON!!!"
Book 3 is a nice continuation from where the second book leaves off. There is just as much adventure and heartache and super gooey bits with lots of juice as Hunted. Having read all 14, I would say that this one is not one of my favorites, but that doesn't mean I don't like it- it's just not in my top five. And that's not from lack. This book made me laugh, made me cry, and made me squeal. The twin dynamic and the amount of heart-aching moments that happen make this one of the better books in this series. This book is great, but after book 4 I kind of had to give my heart to other couples further on in the series.
Lauren and Xairn are my favorite couple. They know what they want from the get-go and they go through so much stuff to get there. I have less to say here because the story speaks for itself - you just need to give it a shot.
The only note is that I've read other books and the BDSM element in here is tamer than what most people might anticipate - especially because it's supposed to be the biggest part of Scourge life.