Synopsis: This novel started out life as Wing of the Swan, a short story in the anthology Sexy Beast VI and this acts as the second part of it. Odette is the Swanmaiden’s daughter and was left orphaned from being a young girl when her land was destroyed by cruel enemies. Vanda was supposed to be the one to look after her, but she was as cruel as the men who had laid siege to the land around her, as Vanda grew to envy and hate her. Vanda’s husband takes her away to another land, Athla where she has a much better life out of Vanda’s way. She can’t believe that she is living the life many only dream of, but Vanda has other ideas when she knows where she has been taken and wants Cu’Lugh to take Odette from this sacred place as she wants to use her in a sacrifice to Loki. Cu’Lugh does this knowing nothing of what she wants with Odette, so both are kept in the dark as to her sister’s true motives for wanting her back.
Review: Unlike many erotic novels written by women, that I’ve read, this one starts out with sex right from the offset, which is not a bad thing at all when it shows Rulf and Inga engaging in a bit of healthy bondage in the privacy of their own hut. Regardless of the intense sexual content of this novel, it reads more like a historical piece in many ways; it is interesting, full of historical information about the Saxons and Viking type pagans. Odette finds she is at odds with her being brought up a Christian, and wants to train to become a Priestess of Freyja, but Vanda has other ideas for what she has in store for her.
Final Thoughts: It is worth the read just to find out what kind of pain and heartache Odette goes through in this novel. Odette is the perfect submissive, and that aspect of this novel can tire sometimes, but I think it is part of the story that she should be like that, and in itself in modern literature is unusual. She starts out as a sacrifice, then has to go on her own quest to discover who she really is.
Worth The Hype? If you want a historical style novel with lots of sexy bits in it, this is the book for you.
H.P. Mallory has struck Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance Gold!
She has combined mystery, romance, supernatural creatures, thrown in a heaping spoonful of humor and *3 big hunks of burning alpha male <G>. Put this all in a book and shake…you get a story that sings to me!
Let’s get the formalities out of the way…The story is told in the first person POV. Dulcie is a fun smart-mouth heroine and I don’t think I will ever get tired of being inside her head. All the secondary characters are quirky and well developed. The mystery and action are fast paced and clever. Mallory has done an excellent job of slowly revealing the main characters flaws and secrets. All the while, introducing us to a new and exciting world.
Now, onto the important things. We all read PNR (paranormal romance) for one reason, smexy men (okay, maybe I am generalizing, but let’s be honest ladies. ;)) Dulcie has not one, not two, but three incredibly sexy alpha males who care (i.e. want to get in her pants, as she puts it) for her.
The front runner is Knight. He is a loki (a type of shapeshifter), neither Dulcie or the reader really know what he is and what his powers are. He is a self-assured ass most of the time, but in a very mysterious and endearing way.
Bram is a very old and powerful vampire that walks that line between good and bad. He is also a self-assured ass that seems to have a weak spot for Dulcie.
Then there is Quillian. Her old boss and guess what? He is also a self-assured ass that has a soft spot for Dulcie (are you feeling sorry for poor Dulcie yet <G>). Quillian, for reasons we don’t know, is involved in illegal activities.
You don’t need to read the first in this series (To Kill A Warlock) to appreciate this book, but you would be missing a whole lot of goodness if you did.