Melanie's Reviews > Shadow's Claim

Shadow's Claim by Kresley Cole
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5+ stars!!! Sign me up for a one-way ticket to Dacia...

There's a reason why I love Kresley Cole's brand of paranormal romance - because it's hands down the best! It's sexy, smart, fun, sexy, compelling, and... just plain sexy - and 'Shadow's Claim' was all of that!

Every paranormal romance author has to build a "new" world and make up the "rules" by which players must adhere to - things like what it means to be a paranormalian in that world, what defines them, and often who is a mortal enemy of whom. Well, KC, IMHO, has developed one of the most interesting worlds in the genre with her 'Immortals After Dark' - her werewolves, vampires, valkyries, and vast multitude of other creatures are my favorites above all others. And, most importantly, she always manages to give us fresh and interesting stories, while keeping true to her "rules".

Now with her IAD spin-off series, 'The Dacians', we get a taste of a "new" breed of vampire - these guys are clear-eyed, rational and unimaginably powerful... and it's oh so fun to watch them succumb to their baser vampiric instincts!

What I loved:
1) Trehan - he's a nearly thousand year old cold-hearted assassin with a strong sense of duty to his kingdom... but when he meets his young, vulnerable Bride he's completely undone and his sense of duty and need to protect are transferred to her. The lengths he goes to in order to prove himself to her is amazing, but it's when he realizes he loves her that he moves from being swoon-worthy to sigh-worthy.

2) Bettina - at a mere 22 in an immortal world she starts off the story as sweet but incredibly naive. Having grown-up in an overly-sheltered world, her girlishness and juvenile infatuation with Cas is at odds with what we've been conditioned to expect from someone who is half sorceri. But, she dramatically matures as the story progresses and you can't help but admire her and her hard-won mettle.

3) Trehan and Bettina together - explosively HOT. 'Nuff said!

4) Salem - loved this phanTom wiv the jaunty accent. He's a foul-mouthed, sylphic former manslut with boundary issues and I really hope we get a lot more of him as the series progresses. Something tells me he's got more substance to him than it seems...

5) LOTHAIRE (and Elizabeth)! - Oh Lothaire! You crazy, rarely lucid newly crowned King of Dacia, I do love it when you're a little bit bad! I thoroughly enjoyed the cameo appearance of Lothaire and his Lizvetta. Honestly, when Lothaire mentioned in 'Dreams of a Dark Warrior' that he's an 'incurable romantic' he was not kidding - he can't lie after all!! I sincerely hope he continues to dole out whacked romantic advice as the series continues...

What I didn't like:
1) How quickly it was over... I did the best I could trying to savor this one slowly, but it was too damn good! At 481 pages, it's definitely a respectable novel length, but when it's KC the pages can't help but fly...

Now, my only questions are: Who's next?! and When do we get it??!!!!!

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Comments (showing 1-46 of 46) (46 new)

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The Window Seat Can I get the seat next to you? :)


Melanie LOL! Of course! I am so stoked for this book... the countdown is on!


The Window Seat LOL! Yes, I think this is a great spin-off idea. We still get a little IAD, but it gives her some more characters to work with! :) So is the "hidden royal" that they don't think Lothaire knows about Male or female.... Think Lothaire will be sending Kosmina to New Orleans yet? :)


The Window Seat Just thought of something..... Kosmina and Thad? I like it!


Melanie Hmmmm, I have no idea the gender of the hidden royal - but if I had to hazard a guess I would go with female... And Kosmina and Thad?!! A+wesome idea (although I do hope that Thad at least makes it to his twenties before meeting his Bride). IAD vamps usually reach immortality in their late twenties/early thirties right?


Keri I can't wait!!! It is like Christmas coming early! 11/27 is going to ROCK!


The Window Seat Melanie wrote: "Hmmmm, I have no idea the gender of the hidden royal - but if I had to hazard a guess I would go with female... And Kosmina and Thad?!! A+wesome idea (although I do hope that Thad at least makes i..."

Yes... but here is the thing... Wouldn't that be a neat change of pace? He meets his bride BEFORE he deadens. So it would be a new "issue" - what does a vamp do when he meets his bride before immortality settles in? Does he still have to be dead?


Melanie Keri wrote: "I can't wait!!! It is like Christmas coming early! 11/27 is going to ROCK!"

I know, right?! Have you read the excerpt? I finally broke down about a month ago and did.... Now I'm even more excited about it! :)


message 9: by Melanie (last edited Nov 17, 2012 09:01AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie The Window Seat wrote: "Melanie wrote: "Hmmmm, I have no idea the gender of the hidden royal - but if I had to hazard a guess I would go with female... And Kosmina and Thad?!! A+wesome idea (although I do hope that Thad ..."

I love reading about the vamps "awakening" for their Bride, so I hope Thad gets that trouser-tiger-rejuvenating experience (wink wink)... But whatever happens KC will pull it off brilliantly!


The Window Seat Melanie wrote: "Keri wrote: "I can't wait!!! It is like Christmas coming early! 11/27 is going to ROCK!"

I know, right?! Have you read the excerpt? I finally broke down about a month ago and did.... Now I'm eve..."


I have been SOOOOOO good! I have NOT read any excerpts! I spoiled myself too much for HTDADC that I learned a lesson - better to try to resist. So far, so good! :) Fingers crossed!


Melanie The Window Seat wrote: "Melanie wrote: "Keri wrote: "I can't wait!!! It is like Christmas coming early! 11/27 is going to ROCK!"

I know, right?! Have you read the excerpt? I finally broke down about a month ago and did..."


You're a stronger person then me, lol! I always end up regretting reading excerpts, because then the wait just seems that much longer, but I just couldn't resist this tease....


The Window Seat Trust me... this is a first for me! I think I have just had distractions that let me get away with it! :)


Melanie Well, here's hoping you don't have too many distractions when it's released Aimee! :)


Aoxboro Does anyone know what else Thad is? Vamp and... maybe he won't go dead?


message 15: by Melanie (last edited Nov 20, 2012 06:26AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie Thad is a vamp/phantom halfling...


Ellen Aoxboro wrote: "Does anyone know what else Thad is? Vamp and... maybe he won't go dead?"

But it's so good to read them waking up. I really want him to.


The Window Seat So is Salem connected to Thad......???? Kosmina and Caspion?


Melanie Who is Salem??? How can I not know this character?! Now, I'm racking my brain trying to rectify this oversight!


The Window Seat Have you read Shadow's Claim? He is Bett's phanTom.


Melanie Just started it.....


The Window Seat Ahh... Salem is her phantom peeping Tom who has a mysterious past - kind of part guard, part partner in crime.... I am thinking there is a connection between him and Thad. Maybe he is Thad's father? But then the mother would have been a vamp long after all the vamp females were dead.... but there is something there....???


message 22: by Melanie (last edited Dec 10, 2012 11:49AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie Aimee - Well... Salem was interesting alright! Hard to say at this point if there's a connection b/w Thad and Salem. I always assumed Thad's parents were similar to Conrad and Neomi.....

What about Cas and.... Mirceo????


message 23: by Keri (new) - rated it 5 stars

Keri Great review Melanie! I am like you, I wasn't ready for the book to be over. KC is so darn talented...and the IAD world is so addictive!


Blacky *Romance Addict* Awesome review Melanie :D


message 25: by The Window Seat (last edited Dec 10, 2012 07:42AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

The Window Seat Great review Melanie....

You are not the first to say Mirceo and Cas!!! My other friend said the same! I just don't see Cole going there.... Maybe! But I would be shocked.... Yes, there were some hints of it, but... here is the thing. Cole is a little more... light hearted than Ward. I think that she would REALLY struggle with an M/M book in a mainstream series. Though I would find it a unique twist... I just don't think so. Obviously both guys are bisexual, I think that she may play the safe route... but what do I know!!! :)


Melanie Blacky wrote: "Awesome review Melanie :D"

Thanks Blacky!!


message 27: by Melanie (last edited Dec 10, 2012 08:43AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie Keri wrote: "Great review Melanie! I am like you, I wasn't ready for the book to be over. KC is so darn talented...and the IAD world is so addictive!"

Thanks Keri!! It really is addictive isn't it?! In fact, this one made me want to go back and reread Lothaire, which in turn makes me wanna reread all the books.... I can never get enough IAD ;D


message 28: by Melanie (last edited Dec 10, 2012 08:51AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie The Window Seat wrote: "Great review Melanie....

You are not the first to say Mirceo and Cas!!! My other friend said the same! I just don't see Cole going there.... Maybe! But I would be shocked.... Yes, there were so..."


Thanks Aimee! I was really getting a Cas and Mirceo vibe, especially when Cas seemed so preoccupied and wanted to tell Bettina something about himself (and he never did....). It's true Cole's never seemed inclined to "go there" before, but with the implied bisexuality she's def branching out. I really think Mirceo's story is going to be drawn out and she's going to test the waters so to speak and see what the fans have to say.

So, who do ya think will be the next Dacian on the chopping block?? I'm betting on Stelian! And when the heck will we finally get Lanthe and Thronos' IAD story???


message 29: by Keri (last edited Dec 10, 2012 09:43AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Keri I thought I read somewhere that their story was after MacRieve, but don't quote me on that...It could strictly have been my wishful thinking. Although I would love just a hint of who cray-cray Nixie is going to end up with. He would have to be a God among Gods to compete with who is on the board.

I also think that Stelian is next for the Dacians...please let us get some more just ask King Lothaire for your romantic woes advice. too funny@


Melanie Yay! *happy dance* Lanthe and Thronos have been teasers for too long!! I wonder if Cole will write their story as a full length novel or a shorter story (kinda along the lines of Murdoch and Danii)....

Some part of me thinks Nix will end up with a demon - she really seems to love their horns!


Aoxboro Great review Melanie!!


Melanie Thanks Aoxboro!


Kristen (Peddler of Smut) Great review, Mel. Your review reminded me that I still have to finish the last two books in IAD series and I can't wait to read this book, too.


message 34: by Melanie (last edited Dec 10, 2012 12:38PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie Thanks Kristen! I'm looking forward to reading what you think of Dreams... and Lothaire! *sigh* ah Lothaire! You won't be disappointed.... And this "new" series is classicly awesome Cole ;)


Kristen (Peddler of Smut) I know! I can't wait to get to Lothaire's book. I hear it's one of her best. I just have to get through Declan first. Eek. I hated him so much in the last book that I've put off reading his book. Lol.


Melanie Oh, don't worry Kristen he redeems himself, so well! Honest ;)


The Window Seat Oh.... Declan is my FAVORITE in the IAD!!! He will make it up to you - no worries!!

I am thinking that Viktor will be next. I don't know why, but I think Stelian has too many skeletons in his closet and that will drag it out a bit. Mirceo isn't even fully immortal yet - his heart hasn't stopped. I am thinking... if Mirceo and Cas had been together, Cas would already know he is his mate. Drops come before hand with the right mate, don't they? So if he knows, then he wouldn't have said to Bettina - "would you deny my female her mate?" It would have been would you deny my mate period.... But I could be way off. There was definitely a vibe. he was "altered" when a vamp took his blood and he did flee because his sponsor (Mirceo) changed. So it is a possibility, I can't deny it.

I am thinking I heard the same rumor about Lanthe and Thonos being next. But like the rest, that could just be wishful thinking on my part!! :)

Lothaire is a trip. I think Declan's story is touching and heart breaking while Lothaire is laugh out loud fun!


Kristen (Peddler of Smut) Thanks ladies. I love IAD and now that you both assured me that Declan will redeem himself, I can't wait to read his book now.


Melanie Glad to hear it Kristen!! I've loved them all, but DoaDW and Lothaire are both KC out of the park home runs!

Good point Aimee... It'll be very interesting to read this all play out! And Victor, he's the least logical of the cousins, right? He did get more page time in SC didn't he, but then Stelian was more prominent it seemed in Lothaire. I wish we had gotten some hint at the end...


The Window Seat Funny enough, Melanie, that is true - Stelian got more in Lothaire and that makes him a character that I think she will hold off on - if that makes sense. He is the bridge between IAD and Dacia and so I think he may actually be last. And yes, Viktor definitely got more page time. It was interesting that Cole really tried to leave us hanging whether either had a hint of who their bride was - they both seemed to cloak if their hearts beat or not...

Either way, I think that Lothaire is going to be CLASSICALLY HYSTERICAL in Kosmina's book. Him throwing her at a male - ANY male just to end her naivete - while the cousins try to protect her from EVERYTHING like super over protective big brothers... just thinking about it makes me giggle and makes me salivate for that one! :)


The Window Seat Do you think.... is it possible... that Cole is leaving the door open for an M/M but not committing to it and waiting to see what will happen with Qhuay? I mean, she has to be aware that it is coming, so is it possible that she and her editor are waiting to see what happens to Ward (and her career!!) with that to commit? Don't know why that thought occurred to me, but it did.... Yes, I think the door is open, but as much as I can SEE Ward doing a great M/M with Qhuay.... I just don't know if Cole can handle that. Maybe I am not giving her enough credit, but right now, she is skirting the issue. Maybe she is a little afraid to take it on? Just some random thoughts!


Melanie The Window Seat wrote: "Do you think.... is it possible... that Cole is leaving the door open for an M/M but not committing to it and waiting to see what will happen with Qhuay? I mean, she has to be aware that it is com..."

That is exactly what I was thinking... she may tentatively test the waters with hints here and there and see what the reaction is from the fans. If she gets a similar reaction as Ward got with Qhuay and if the Qhuay book is a huge success then it could be a real possibility - and I think she'd deliver a great story... she always does :)


message 43: by The Window Seat (last edited Dec 11, 2012 07:47AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

The Window Seat Melanie wrote: "The Window Seat wrote: "Do you think.... is it possible... that Cole is leaving the door open for an M/M but not committing to it and waiting to see what will happen with Qhuay? I mean, she has to..."

The thing is that Ward built Qhuay up so much, through SOOO many books, and with so much angst, that even people who would never pick up a M/M book are dying for them. It is the characters that people want whether it is M/M, M/F, or M and an ostrich! :) I just don't see Caspion or Mirceo getting the same kind of following emotionally and I think without it? Cole would not be wise to go there in a mainstream series. Though Dacians are her spin off.... she could do more there then in IAD itself.... But she would have a LOT of work to do to get the mainstream reader to buy into this. Ward has worked HARD to get Qhuay its following....and all the anticipation that will make it an instant best seller!


message 44: by Melanie (last edited Dec 11, 2012 09:15AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Melanie I can't say I'm dying for Qhuay, but I am intrigued. Ward is really hit and miss with me - some I've loved and some I really haven't.
You're probably right about Cole though. But her insinuating the bisexuality of Mirceo (who is a pretty much guaranteed future MC) and to a lesser extent Caspion is fairly significant - and I think Ward has really been the mainstream pioneer for that. Guess we'll just have to play the waiting game :)

BTW - I do enjoy our little chats! :)


message 45: by Keri (new) - rated it 5 stars

Keri I can't wait to see what KC does with Kosmina...that is going to be a kick..especially if Lothaire gets his way and gets to send her to Nix's crew. (culture shock)I am not a M/M reader at all, but I am girding my loins as it were to read Qhuay's book for the continuing story arc if nothing else. and it gets me one book closer to my Xcor's book.


Melanie Yeah, Kosmina's is going to be a fun book! She is in need of some serious "education".... Lothaire's advice will be whacked, but spot on - I can't wait!!
And I am with you about Xcor... He's got some major potential!


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