Now, as they waited for the dinner to be ready, they sat on the verandah in the early evening and talked quietly.
"The Rangers were founded over one hundred and fifty years ago, in King Herbert's reign. Do you know anything about him?" Halt looked sideways at the boy sitting beside him, tossing the question out quickly to see his response. Will hesitated. He vaguely remembered the name from history lessons in the Ward, but he couldn't remember any details. Still, he decided he'd try to bluff his way through it. He didn't want to look too ignorant on his first day with his new master.
"Oh… yes," he said, "King Herbert. We learned about him."
"Really?" said the Ranger expansively. "Perhaps you could tell me a little about him?" He leaned back and crossed his legs, getting himself comfortable. Will cast about desperately in his memory, trying to remember even a shred of detail about King Herbert. He'd done…something, but what?
"He was…" He hesitated, pretending to gather his thoughts. "The king." That much he was sure of, and he glanced at Halt to see if he could stop now. Halt merely smiled and made a rolling gesture with his hand that meant go on.
"He was the king… a hundred and fifty years ago," Will said, trying to sound certain of his facts. The Ranger smiled at him, gesturing for him to continue yet again.
"Ummm… well, I seem to recall that he was the one who founded the Ranger Corps," he said hopefully, and Halt raised his eyebrows in mock surprise.
"Really? You recall that, do you?" he said, and Will had a horrible moment where he realized that Halt had merely said the Rangers were founded during his reign, not necessarily by him.
"Ahhh, well, when I say he founded the Rangers, I actually mean he was the king when the Ranger Corps was founded," he said.
"A hundred and fifty years ago?" Halt prompted. Will nodded emphatically. "That's right."
"Well, that's remarkable, seeing how I just told you those facts a minute or so ago..."
To tell the truth, i havent finished this book yet..but it's getting really boring and pointless i can't even force myself to continue anymore. First...more To tell the truth, i havent finished this book yet..but it's getting really boring and pointless i can't even force myself to continue anymore. Firstly, the book is really uneventful, and im alrdy near the half mark. Secondly, i'm getting annoyed that the characters are constantly subjected by the author to have sex. I mean, why is it thrown around so casually throughout the book? EVERY SINGLE damn page has them doing something erotic..And two of them arent even in love, for freak's sake. Ugh, Trey is in love with Brin(gayness) and Brin is a (is he a monk?)monk devoted to the Goddess of Love and Sex, so he's pleasuring Anje like ever minute he can get her naked- once even after a hunt and they were riding back on horse, he stripped her and tied her hands behind her back..I mean,come on man.. Not that i don't enjoy this type of things(haha), but enough is enough.
Until around the midway of the book, i've only gotten a glimpse of the main plot of the book, which was to save Brin's people. Yep, that's about it for the book so far, the rest are all about their wondrously countless number of sex sessions they have, and still counting. Seriously this book was really pointless and meaningless, i kinda regretted picking it up. It's kind of like a worse version of Jory Strong's novels. Her books are, to put it crudely, are short, simple, and horny. Gift of the Goddess was just horny. Period. And after some time, the horny part wears off and you're left wondering,' why the hell am i reading this pointless pos?' Ugh ok im getting vulgar. Which means its time for me to stop degrading this book. Well it's my view..apparently it has received many 4 and 5 stars reviews, but oh well, not my type.(less)
Fave part: Halt thought for a few moments, then nodded to himself. “Yes. A few weeks with people closer to his own age will do him good. After all, fo...moreFave part: Halt thought for a few moments, then nodded to himself. “Yes. A few weeks with people closer to his own age will do him good. After all, folk do say I can be a little grim from time to time.”
“You, Halt? Grim? Who could say such a thing?” Gilan said. Halt glanced at him suspiciously. Gilan was, all too obviously, just managing to keep a straight face.
“You know, Gilan,” he said, “sarcasm isn’t the lowest form of wit. It’s not even wit at all.”
WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW. Cover is awesome, story is awesome, EVERYTHING about it is plain awesomeness. Seriously there's no words to describe it. When i saw...moreWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW. Cover is awesome, story is awesome, EVERYTHING about it is plain awesomeness. Seriously there's no words to describe it. When i saw the book cover when it was released, i seriously stoned for a full 5 min staring at it. It's PERFECT. haha how is that even possible?
"This mesmerizing story begins where most novels end: in a tension-filled climatic event, in which the fate of the protagonist and a nation hang in the balance. Goodman catapults the reader headfirst into a pivotal moment in the Empire of the Celestial Dragons, a world so richly imagined that it feels real." --Booklist, starred review.
I totally agree. Omg i really don't know where to begin my review..it's so...wow that i really think no words in the english language would do it justice.
ok..firstly, the plot is REALLY complex, it's so amazing how Alison can keep everything coherent and running smoothly. At first where everything was a huge mess and tangle, in the end it was like everything really started clicking into place automatically even tho i was wondering how she was gonna tie all those knots up initially. It was complicated, but not in a bad way. It was because of it that it felt very real, and very intrigueing. All that court politics was like China's 三国演义, where there was the war between the Three Kingdoms and the main players Cao Cao, Zhu Ge Liang and Liu Bei. All this are the true history of China, and Goodman's Empire of the Celestial Dragons felt like that. Real. And totally imagineable.
It wasn't like the first book at all. The first book had to get all the descriptions out of the way because her world was really different from ours, and now with everything basic established, she could really get all the fun stuff going. Some examples would be the romance part and the court politics.
I enjoyed the romance part a lot..tho i felt there could've been more at the end. Not that i'm complaining about the end. Don't get me wrong the ending was phenomenal, albeit a little abrupt, but still awesome all the same. Just that there could've been more.
I really enjoyed the parts where Kygo and her were together..It was sweet and frustratin all the same.. But i really was annoyed when Eona kept lying to Kygo, even tho i thought i would do the same had i been her..Such mixed feelings thru'out the book! I felt like i really aged alot after i finished the book...whoo!
One thing i thought was..um not very well-planned was the fact that Goodman seemed to have conveniently made Ido change his personality in the end to enable Kygo and Eona to be together. I don't know..I mean Ido wouldn't have done what he did in the end if he really cared about Eona, and he already proved that in the beginning of the book, and no one would've done what he did if they weren't in love in truth.
Sigh..I'm hungry and i didn't plan this review so it must seem very disorganized and whatever, but yeah..that's all i can remember about the book..Time to eat~
Anyway, this book just hit my top charts with the Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa, the Seven Kingdoms Trilogy by Kristin Cashore and 夜凝夕 by 飞烟. I really really love it a lot, and i am thinking of suggesting to Alison to write a short e-novella or something about Eona and Kygo after this book, where they are restoring the kingdom and hopefully a little insight on their budding relationshp:D BACK ME UP PEOPLE!(less)
**spoiler alert** This book, i must say, was rather disappointing. Monotonous and anti-climatic, slow-paced and uneventful, the reading process was re...more**spoiler alert** This book, i must say, was rather disappointing. Monotonous and anti-climatic, slow-paced and uneventful, the reading process was really quite laborious.
The heroine in the book was courageous, that i must give her credit, even though she has no inkling where and who she was and uncertainty of the place and people around her and the doubts and suspiscions in her supposed allies' eyes, which was a thing she was very unfamiliar with were screwing with her emotions, she still continues to forge on ahead with what she thought was her pre-destined fate and purpose. This was kind of my motivation to forge on reading and she had to quash it in the end(which really sucked..)
The lead male, Prince Rokan, is rash and immature, totally unqualified to be a king and undeserving of the legendary, all-powerful Shifter's protection and love.
There were many unanswered questions at the start of the book that piqued my interest - like who was she? How was she related to Prince Rokan and why was he there in the Mistwood looking for her? I really wondered how Cypess was going to break all this things to us, however nearing the one-third mark of the book, all was suddenly and mraculously answered by one mage's apprentice. Mm, now that's real exciting.
The whole book kind of revolves around the mystery of Isabel's(the lead girl) true identity, purpose and where her loyalties lie. I don't dislike that, i mean she's a strong, smart and awe-inspiring heroine, of course she's appealing, however even that little spark of curiosity was quashed when Cypess revealed that she wasn't really the true Shifter of the legends.
Cream of the crop was the utterly unemotional, unimpactful and totally meaningless ending that left me thinking," What? So that's the end?..ok..."
It was a rather simple read with too simplistic court politics and romantic relationsips, this is another one of those books that has an intrigueing synopsis but an unbefitting story.(less)
Wow. I'm in some kind of mild shock. This book started off at a rather slow pace, like seriously slow cause Goodman was trying to illustrate rather d...more Wow. I'm in some kind of mild shock. This book started off at a rather slow pace, like seriously slow cause Goodman was trying to illustrate rather detailedy the setting of almost every(if not all) place and setting her characters might be in. But it's a really wondrously breathtaking story of wits and deception.
At the beginning of the book, i was actually kind of pissed off at the ridiculously slow pace as almost every other paragraph is about describing every single, minute detail of the villa, palace, and how it appears through the eyes of the protagonist, Eon(not that its a bad thing, just..not so many, please). But surprisingly, the story progresses and unfolds faster and faster, something like an exponential graph if you get what i mean..haha. And not only once have i grabbed the book with cold, sweaty palms(i'm not kidding, my palms and toes became cold with anticipation..o.o), anxious to find out how that small adventure/danger in that part of the book ends. Somewhere along the quarter of the book, i just couldn't put the book down; I read till it was almost 3 in the morning(i would've continued if not for these weird, freaky noises in my house oming from who-knows-where-or-what).
The ending was superb. I literally rushed to the computer to look for the sequel but found out that the book would not be released till spring next year. I almost fainted.. But seriously, authors usualy talke a year to get their next book published, why does she need 3? boo..:(
Anyway, now about the characters. Eon/Eona is a really courageous girl, especially when women were brought up thinking that they were scums and cowards in her time, and also having to bottle up all her fears for herself and the lives of those she love, grief and the terrible secret of her frowned-upon gender without anyone to turn to. would totally just burst from all this pent up emotions if i were her. Lord Ido(the antagonist)is cruel, disgusting and charismatic(and maybe a little mad), very befitting of the bad people in that time and era of the book- though I do think the cunning and political affairs in the book were kinda simplistic.
Dillon, a pitiful victim whom i totally feel for. Lady Dela and Ryko were totally loveable. Strong and handsome Prince Kygo who is in some serious shit at the end of the book(I really want to find out what happened to him after Eona and him seperated at the Ox Dragon Hall). He's a really good, kind guy, and a just merciful emperor-to-be. I was kind of annoyed cause everyone who's not the main character(even 2 who were) are eunuchs- i think most of the Imperial guards are! I mean come on, just because it's in a Chinese setting doesn't mean every guy is a eunuch..
All in all, really liked this book. I love stories with brave, young heroines who can really pack a punch and are powerful( but the Dragon Dragon-aka Mirror Dragon- thing sounds funny tho). I think Goodman's gonna make Kygo and Eona fall in love. Well, let's keep our fingers crossed till April 19, 2011!(less)
I had very conflicting emotions about this final book in the series, and the one that featured most prominently was of course the bittersweet knowledg...moreI had very conflicting emotions about this final book in the series, and the one that featured most prominently was of course the bittersweet knowledge that our journey with our beloved (do you call it quartet?) quartet has finally come to their beautiful close.
My summary(which i will try my very best to leave out any spoilers): Previously in THE IRON QUEEN, Meghan, the new Iron Queen, forbade Ash the son of Winter to enter the Iron Realm where she resides. So now, Ash, with the help of Puck, Grim, and two others (the revelation of these two would surely be a kick in the guts - a real, hard, unexpected kick) would try to gain a soul to be able to stand beside Meghan as Ash, a once-Fae with a mortal soul - in short, the Ash that would not burn to death when placed amidst a whole landscape of iron.
I shall end the summary there lest i reveal more. I love to spoiler stuff, as can be seen from my other reviews, but i shall restrain myself. For now.>:) (Oh and for convenient and my promise for a non-spoilery review's sake, i shall name the 1 of the new companions A).
Wow, there is so much to gush about this book i don't even know where to begin! This book has twice the number of adventures than in the previous 3 books, and a lot more lores and legends brought into play. Our little band of travellers had to venture deep into the Deep Wyld where only the most Ancient calls them home and is considered dangerous and uncharted lands to the normal Fey folks. From there, they have to fight off monsters and spirits, and most importantly, fight through their dark emotions, past torments and inner demons.
This book was relatively darker and more sinister-feeling since Ash himself hadnt had a very clean, untainted history. And without Meghan there to shower some love, it became rather gloomy at parts. However whenever Puck is there, i can guarantee the smile that will surely sprout on your face. Oh man, Puck is hilarious! Seriously, i love the man. Example: “You realize you’ve just been duped by a fish,” I said, watching the catfish grin at me before slipping into the dark waters, lost from view. Puck shrugged. “Hey, it was going to name one of its grandfish after me,” he said, tossing the line into the water again. “That’s one of my rules, you know. I refuse to eat anything that names its kid after me.”
Puck has been infinitely more adorable, but when he isnt joking, he can be pretty serious. He does feel lots of strong emotions, i mean not only to Meghan, but to our dear ice-boy too. He's a good friend and i was kind of sad when it was time for.....sigh...i shan't spoiler.. (Are you all hyped up to read the book already, Team Puck-ers?:D)
Anyway, back to Ash. I had this constant fear that the Ash i have come to really, REALLY like (the reclusive, brooding, quietly protective one) will slowly fade away since we're going to constantly look into his head. At first, i was amazed by how well Kagawa managed to keep that image up, like, really well. Really, it was absolutely amazing the skill which she has shown. However towards the ending, it did sort of change a bit, and yeah, i was quite disappointed there. It was sort of like his essence kind of leeched away a little and i couldn't reconcile the Ash that was teary and scared near the end and the Ash i have painted in my head. But the epilogue saved everything so I assure you that everything is still right on track:).
Talking about ending......Ash was SUPER, S.U.P.E.R swoon-worthy! Yep, swoon-worthy indeed. Tho there was the "Im happy you found happiness" thing that was kind of weird..i have an idea of who said it, but still,i like a little confirmation after everyone else has read the book.
The new scenery, new folklores, new legends and myths were abundant here, all richly-detailed, and ever much more enchanting than ever. I really wonder where Ms Kagawa gets them..Did Shakespeare really invent and cover a whole new world so precisely and just so..full of magic in that one little book? Really doubt that..but if he didn't and those things in THE IRON KNIGHT was actually Ms Kagawa's own input, then i must applaud her for her ingenuity and creativity. They are absolutely stunning and just so..cool.
However having all that said, i have to admit that the middle portion of the book got a little boring. Which is surprising since i NEVER get bored reading any this book's predecessors..never. I guess that it is because there wasnt quite as much Ash-Meghan love in here than the others..but still.
Moving on, an old friend, Companion A, joined in our little travelling party. I was feeling rather disgruntled that she was admitted into our protagonists' group, to be able to get re-aquainted with Puck and Ash(*grinds teeth*). I was afraid of Ash being distracted from his vow to Meghan (Yes, the situation is THAT dire!). But as the story progressed, i started feeling sorry for her. For one, Kagawa seemed a little..cruel to her. Made her seem so disposable. It was kinda sad.. That's one of the things that made this novel a very dark one.
Overall, this book was filled with adventures and obstacles, sacrifices and self-discovery (for Ash at least). The plot was rich, refreshing and unexpected, all this amidst the mystical forest deep within the Nevernever where the true monsters lurked. A wonderful curtain call to an amazing series and i really do hope to see more of each of them in the next series which is going to feature Ethan, Meghan's brother, as the main protagonist!
Just a little side notes and thoughts that you would not want to read if you havent already read the book and would contain spoilers:
1) This is something minor..When Ash and Puck were in the wyldwood looking for Grim, it was kind of funny that there were dragonflies in there. I don't know, is it me only or what, that there things in the mortal realm that lives there..I mean, dragonflies? Why not fireflies? They seem more..magical to me, dont it?haha
2)Seriously, this going to be very spoilery.(view spoiler)[Isnt the River of Dreams which Ash&co utilized to travel to you-know-where kind of like the River Styx in Greek mythology? The one in the Underworld? (hide spoiler)] oh well, just my idle musings.
*This ebook was supplied by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.* Thank you Netgalley and Harlequin!:D["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Yara was all set and ready to ascend the throne. Cyn has gathered and amassed an entire nation ready to r...moreIn a world where the female population ruled,
Yara was all set and ready to ascend the throne. Cyn has gathered and amassed an entire nation ready to rebel against the Grand Sister, the Matriach, and the Elite.
When Cyn "kidnaps" Yara, she was forced to see the ugly side of her beloved Azra; Being sold to the flesh traders and all that. And when it was time to choose sides, she chose him, and conveniently for the greater good of Azra.
Yara's journey towards the great realization that not every part of Azra was ruled as justly and orderly as she was taught in Training was fraught with a lot of doubts, but there was the humor bits that leveled the seriousness. All those snark comments from the cold Yara was funny in a serious way, haha, if that even makes sense. She is a good fighter, and she lives up to her regal bloodline of Yarine the Just(if i remember her name correctly..which i dont think i did..oh well). But under all that, she is rather naive and soft(in a good way), which made her rely on Cyn a lot in the outside world(universe in this case) and ultimately falling in love with him in the end.
Cyn is a headstrong, INCREDIBLY witty, protective, selfless, heartwarming, loving, brainy man. He is awesome. He leads the rebellion like a true leader, he talks like a charmer, he loves so swoon-worthy-ly, and yeah the list goes on.
The Grand Sister(or the Grand Bitch, as Cyn calls her), was plenty wicked. I mean, this is one of those books where they portray the real ugliness of the baddies of humankind with less reservations. And her ending was WOO! COOL! READ THAT PART!! She had more than what..20 knives thrown into her!
The ending was kind of weird..but still very satisfactory. It ended without the war that seemed so inevitable. The final fight was wicked, i totally loved it. It lasted long enough for my violent side to be sated enough:)
Overall: The fighting bits were vivid, suspenseful and i totally fell in love with both of them when they fought. The lovey dovey part wasn't overly mushy and excessive.
It's not surprising that I liked this the least in the series, as I'd guessed that BITTERBLUE would focus more on the politics and subtle castle intri...moreIt's not surprising that I liked this the least in the series, as I'd guessed that BITTERBLUE would focus more on the politics and subtle castle intrigues than good hard action as was the case for GRACELING and FIRE (sort of). It is surprising that I enjoyed this as much as I had for the same reason that it has less action than I would prefer to have in my High Fantasy novels, much less sitting through a whopping 563 pages hardcover-sized paperback.
BITTERBLUE reads more like a Middle Grade book than Young Adult, but the vivid, graceful descriptions of Cashore simply enchants. At least, for me it did. And let's not forget we get to see a whole lot more of Katsa, Po and gang. THEY'RE HILARIOUS AND AWESOME why couldn't we have another 563 pages hardcover-sized paperback in Katsa's POV !!
Full review to come.
P.S. I LOVE the cover of the UK paperback!!! I have GRACELING and FIRE in the US version, but I got BITTERBLUE at a Times sale so I didn't have a choice but SHIT, this combination of deep blue, white and silver/gold are literally my favorite colors. I'm not even kidding. This book has all my favorite fucking colors blended together on a seriously badass cover. KUDOS to the cover artist at Henry Holt & Co. You have very good tastes. *winks* Heh.(less)
I am disappointed with this book. There, i said it.
Retra lives in a conservative society that restricts and stifles the people's movements, creativity...moreI am disappointed with this book. There, i said it.
Retra lives in a conservative society that restricts and stifles the people's movements, creativity, and education. Everything and everyone is constantly monitored. Retra's brother, Joel, hates it all, says he is a natural born rebel(or something the likes), so he ran away to Ixion, the land of freedom and blahs.
Retra has been dependent on her brother on lots of levels - mainly the emotional level. She doesnt have any friends cause the Elders(the ruling body) do no permit the people to interact much and so, has always just talked and played with her brother. So after Joel left, she suddenly felt lost, bereft, and lonely, so much so that she willingly self-inflicted pain, to train herself to withstand everything with a cool head and a poker face, and to ultimately escape.
In Ixion, she meets all sorts of young people(old people are "withdrawn") - snobby, crazy, handsome, pretty, kind, cool, authoratative, so on. But her journey to find her brother is so fraught with perils and obstacles that more often than not, she finds that the only way to survive Ixion, is to forsake her own identity. And AFTER she finds her brother, she isnt gonna like her situation/predicament any better.
Yep that's about it.
Now on to thoughts and feelings... I know one thing's for sure: I am way disappointed. Firstly, you would expect a book with an average rating of 4.26 to be a hell of a good book. That's the first thing that came to my head when i saw the stars. I was like 'oh wow, that's very high.' Considering that other good books usually get a 3.9 rating or something(like GRACELING got a 4.14). But oh no, i was sorely disappointed.
Secondly, when an emo book cover gets a good rating, it means that the author managed to balance out everything so the negative emotions never gets too overwhelming right? But she did not really.. Some parts(i feel) are...how do i say this..got all doom and gloom, then i feel all detached, then it all becomes too surreal. I dont know, it just didnt feel right to me. So no, i didnt enjoy the atmosphere created.
Let's get on to the protagonists. I didnt feel the connection to ANY of them. Which made the whole reading process even more boring on top of the (kinda) uneventful plot. One example is, in the middle of the story after chapter 18, Retra changed her name, but not only that, she almost-completely changed who she really was. Like, she was actually a very conservative person who wears a veil over her face and has to constantly tie up her hair and to do so otherwise would be considered an obscenity or something(hey this kinda reminds me of the middle east..maybe that's where she got her idea from?maybe maybe. the world is full of possibilities.haha), yeah she suddenly wasnt shy to lift up her skirt to expose part of her thigh to show her scar. The change was instantaneous. After this particular event, it was like BAM! Here, i'll lift my skirt up for you because after i changed my name, i'm no longer who i used to be. Yeah ok i get it that you've been thru some tough times, but the basis of a person's character cannot be remodelled so thoroughly overnight. So yeah it got unreal and unbelievable that it really turned me off. And what's more, after Retra have her 180 degrees personality change, de Pierre didnt really develop on Retra's inner take on everything, which left me feeling so un-connected to her! Which is bad since this is written in the first person perspective(mostly).
The other protagonists would be her friends and the love interests. Her friends werent VERY prominent so i'll just move on to the love interests. One of them, Marke, as some reviewers have said and i totally agreed, did not do much to actually win Retra's love. So when she started to feel something for him, i was like 'whaat?'.
The other love interest, Lenoir, head of the Guardians that rule Ixion, was, in my opinion, also rather passive when it came to wooing Retra. I dont know what's wrong with them.. On top of that, they(meaning Lenoir and Markes) didnt get a lot of airtime with Retra, which equates to some serious un-development of the relationship. No chemistry, no connection = what the heck.
There are things like the creepy "come to me" whispers in her head problem that de Pierre did not answer. So was it the Night Creatures in the lesser paths that said it? Or was it the Ripers? If she did answer them, then sorry, it wasnt explicit enough.
The main conflict was written quite messily too. Im kinda tired of slamming this book already, so i'll just leave it at that.
There was one thing that de Pierre did good - the world-building. I have to admit that she did the scenic descriptions in wonderful detail, every color(even tho they're all mostly dark, black or gray or the likes)was painted, every shape was illustrated. That was a job well done. Tho it did tend to the over-desciptive side for some parts, which tend to kill the thrill that had built up.
The whole thing tho, was sort of uneventful and just..wrong. To me. I just felt this constant detachment that made the whole reading process un-enjoyable. Truly disappointed. It had so much potential.(less)
As always, Nalini Singh comes back to tease us with more unconditional love and hot sex scenes! Oh man, this...moreOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
As always, Nalini Singh comes back to tease us with more unconditional love and hot sex scenes! Oh man, this is so wrong on so many levels for someone my age, but sigh. I have always loved Singh's writing, and it was no different in LORD OF THE ABYSS.
Liliana is the ugly daughter of the infamous, powerful and ruthless Blood Sorcerer, the one who murdered the previous King and Queen of Elden who were peaceful, just people, the one who caused 4 children to be orphaned. The Queen, using the last of her life's force, scattered her children to the corners of the realm where the Blood Sorcerer would not be able to find them. The youngest of the 4, Micah, who was but a babe of 5 years, ended up in the lower floors of the Abyss's castle, and a few years later took the helm as Lord of the Black Castle, and Guardian of the Abyss.
The Castle held within it the gateway to the Abyss, where the servants of evil were banished after death to suffer eternal torment at the hands of the basilisks and the serpents. Technically, our equivalent of hell, and Micah was its Guardian, the one who would hunt those shadowed beings of evil and thrust them into the Abyss. And that was where Liliana was headed. To find the Lord of the Black Castle, the youngest heir of Elden, and a crucial member to save Elden from the evil clutches of her father.
Liliana's plan? To infiltrate the castle, get to Micah, and help him remember a past that he cannot recall, and get him to Elden by the midnight in a few days time to defeat her infallible father. Her job's tough enough as it is, and the longer she stays at the castle, the harder it gets. As the more time she gets to spend with Micah who doesn't only see her flawed exterior, but to the true woman inside, the more he gets under her skin, and gradually to her heart. But how can she allow this to happen, when the only way she can kill her father is through a killing spell which would require a sacrifice - her.
I thought that the collaboration between four authors idea - Gena Showalter with book one, Lord of the Vampires, Jill Monroe with book two, Lord of Rage (Royal House of Shadows, #2), Jessica Andersen with book three, Lord of the Wolfyn, and Nalini Singh with book four, LORD OF THE ABYSS - for this series was ingenious, really. But I've started out with Singh's masterpiece first, since I am a die-hard fan of ANY and every of her books. Yep, she is that good, no matter how many times my sister says otherwise. (Curse you, sista! Lol, kidding. I'm above that.)
LORD OF THE ABYSS started out with a brisk pace, throwing Liliana right into the midst of the throne room in the Black Castle. So the suspense and thrill level has always been on the up high. And from there, it never got boring.
I was a little miffed that the heroine was ugly, deformed, and just very flawed on the outside. Yes, yes, I am one of those who loves her heroine pretty and badass. What can I say? Cliches are cliches for a reason. Micah's reaction to her was very lukewarm too initially, which was only natural. I wouldn't put it past many authors nowadays in the PNR-UF line to make an instantaneous and revolting connection between the protagonists. So again, I applaud Singh for her pragmatism which ultimately made the book more believable. But as the story progressed, and Micah and Liliana got to know each other better, the romance that developed was so sweet! The way Micah behaved around Liliana made her forget about her imperfections... Made me forget her imperfections. He made her feel hot and beautiful. All that and both personas' basal characters held firm. Bravo, Nalini. Bravo.
Liliana, though flawed and with a low self-esteem, had a heart so pure and compassionate. I loved her, and Micah (who wouldn't?). They were just too cute together, especially since Micah's never been around courting couples and as such, he is, in a way, very child-like when it comes to wooing Liliana. He's very honest about his feelings, very straightfoward and explicit in showing what he wants. He loves to tease Liliana as well, oh those parts I like! Example:
“I beg you don’t forget that, or I might forget which is the salt and which the chili.”
Ignoring her threat, he waved her forward. “Pour me more chocolate—” the order of an emperor to his con-cubine “—then you may go and bathe.”
She really wanted to smash the teapot over his head, but she poured the luscious liquid into his cup, watched his eyes glaze over for an instant as his mind tried to drag him into the past. It was the truth she’d told. She hadn’t ensorcelled either the cinnamon or the chocolate—but some sensual memories were strong enough to act as spells on their own. “Now, may I go?”
“My lord,” he said, licking out his tongue to capture a drop of chocolate on his lip.
Her entire body hummed. “What?”
“You forgot to add ‘my lord.’”
She grit her teeth and put down the teapot with extreme care. “May I go, my lord? ”
He took a sip of his chocolate, paused for a second.
Ahahaha, I love you, Micah. All the taunting and teasing...They are really so adorable together. There is a lot of affection between them that made reading it such a joy. The sexual tension's a killer too. It got so intense that I cracked my finger bones unknowingly while clenching my fist too tight. Oh, and one more thing about him - he REALLY knows how to make a woman blush. That is all.
The plot's a little fantasy-like with the usual Paranormal Romance touch. But I daresay it bordered on being an Erotica. There were quite a number of explicit sex scenes in here! Not that I'm complaining, but it did slow down the plot. Upped the sexiness, but debilitated the action.
All in all, I did like this book. A lot. I loved the action, the romance, the suspense, the characters... Everything! People said that there wasn't that feel of finality in LORD OF THE ABYSS, and they blame it on having different authors write each book in the series, but I thought it was there, just not talked about too in-depthly. The three siblings were mentioned and given minor roles in the final chapters of book four, so I guess it still constitutes as a wrap-up. The epilogue's mainly about Liliana and Micah, which is fine by me since I haven't read the first three books yet. Think I'll try book one to three soon!
*Egalley courtesy of Netgalley and Harlequin in exchange for an honest review.*(less)