Bekah's Reviews > Prince of Dreams

Prince of Dreams by Lisa Kleypas
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's review
Nov 25, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: read-own, 2011-reads
Read from April 18 to 22, 2011

4.5 *

Prince of Dreams is the second and last book in the Stokehurst series. Nikolas is the coldly dangerous villain from book 1, Midnight Angel and he is just as cold and dangerous in this installment as well. He wants Emma Stokehurst and will do anything to possess her. Though when he gets her satisfaction is not quite his.

This is Lisa’s second time travel romance and the last one to date. I really liked this one a bit more than the last. I felt the use of time travel enabled some growth, new perspectives and a richer HEA. This also had a short element of the ‘strangers/enemies’ in marriage theme that I love. I realize this is not a fan favorite and so I had a lot of reservations going into it. But I found I liked it quite a bit. It was intense, it was a grand ride, and it was quite romantic.

Our hero Prince Nikolas Angelovsky is one of the most intense and fiercely driven heroes I’ve ever read, and he’s certainly the darkest of LK’s heroes that I’ve read so far. He was the epitome of a tortured hero. He had to have Emma, and I liked how LK described his pursuit of Emma. It was very cat like as when you watch a cat circle its prey and then pounce on it and hold it in his paws and plays with it – very predatory. In contrast to that, Nikolas was very much the wounded beast that Emma was always saving and nurturing back to health. But once he got her there was no way that he could allow her to care for him because once she did – the wall he created to protect himself would come crumbling down. All of his capacity to feel, to love, to care had literally been beaten out of him time and time again. As a victim of physical and sexual abuse he learned to cope, endure and survive the only way he knew how – and that was to shut down his emotions and bury his love. It literally petrified him. Nikki was the most frightened strongest hero I’ve read in quite some time. He was terrified of Emma and the unknown emotion she evoked within him. He had no clue of the complete and utter peace he would feel and experience once he let go of himself and loved. (view spoiler) I feel that my darling Nikki is a misunderstood hero. I’ve read worse heroes with less horrific things in their past who are loved and I’m feeling like Nikki is getting the short end of the stick from his haters! :) LK using his trip back in time in this plot was really quite interesting and allowed for Nikolas to literally and figuratively lose(or let go) his outward and inward scars. It was a creative vehicle for him to allow himself to be open and receive love and care for once. Nikolas was also always very gentle with Emma, he touched her gently and reverently and it showed what his potential as a hero would be. I loved him, sorry ladies, but he was great fun reading! I give Prince Nikolas Angelovsky a 8/10 on the LK hero scale and yes he gets an extra point for being so misunderstood!

On a side note, all through reading this book, Prince’s Darling Nikki’s lyrics kept running through my head and though it’s a song about a girl..some of the lyrics just fit:

She took me 2 her castle
And I just couldnt believe my eyes
She had so many devices
Everything that money could buy
She said sign your name on the dotted line
The lights went out
And nikki started 2 grind

The castle started spinning
Or maybe it was my brain
I can't tell u what she did 2 me
But my body will never be the same
Her lovin will kick your behind
Oh, shell show u no mercy
But shell shonuff shonuff show u how 2 grind

Woke up the next morning
Nikki wasn't there
I looked all over and all I found
Was a phone unmber on the stairs
It said thank u 4 a funky time
Call me up whenever u want 2 grind

Come back nikki, come back
Your dirty little prince
Wanna grind grind grind grind grind grind grind grind grind

Which brings me to : The steam factor in this book was sufficient, but didn’t take precedence over the love story that was happening. It wasn’t a focal point but a nice accompaniment. There were several really nice steamy moments and many nice steamy moments that were inferred that added nicely to the story. Nikolas had an all consuming need for Emma that you could feel and Emma didn’t hide from her need and attraction to him either which was quite nice. I rate it a 7/10 on the LK steam scale! You won’t find it lacking by any means!

I’d also like to mention Emma. She sort of takes a backseat because really our star is Nikki. We meet him in the first book, become intrigued by what his fate might be from Tasia’s mysterious warnings but Emma also intrigues us. We can tell there is something in store for her with Nikolas. I love how she was not a dainty petite heroine. She wasn’t blonde or dark haired but a big tall beautiful red haired woman. My only negative observation is that in the beginning of the book she is a bit immature. It was warranted because she was quite young, but it does sort of grate. But it was because of the time travel that I felt she was redeemed and grew. I didn’t see past Nikolas and past Emma as different but just different versions of the same people.

Finally the romance. The sigh factor. I think in this book the time travel piece allows this factor to be quite high. Nikolas/Nikolai and Emma/Emelia are meant to be no matter in what space of time they find themselves together. And if they are together in a period of time, believe that they will find one another. Nikolas’ love with and for Emma/Emelia is timeless, boundless or infinite – whichever word you want to use – it knows no end and no time. And tall, beautiful, independent and strong Emma *is* the only woman for him. The only one who is his other half, his ‘little soul’, his whole world. She is his light, his peace, his infinite, absolute, enduring, eternal, everlasting, incessant, inexhaustible and sempiternal love of ALL times. Yes, the romance is there. In spades. I give it a 8/10 on the LK romance/sigh factor scale.

In the end, though this wasn’t a 5 star read for me, (it did lack a little extra LK magic) it was such a wonderful and romantic journey that really makes you believe in soul mates and true love lasting for all time. Isn’t that what romance is all about anyway?

One point of interest: Prince of Dreams is the first of four books that are dedicated to Lisa’s husband Greg. I wonder if these books are significant in some certain way?
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04/19/2011 page 102
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