Just under a decade ago, the evil Synestryn attacked the Madison household. Nika was near death, but was saved by Theroinai warrior Madoc. Since she suffered mental damage during the assault, no one believed her when she said her younger sister Tori lived, but was abducted by the vicious intruders even though the siblings have a psychic connection.
Nika became a Sentinel whose purpose for living is to rescue her sibling. However, she fears time is almost over as the link between her and Tori is dying. She vows to make an attempt to find her sister or die trying while her savior from nine years ago continues to deny his attraction to the damaged goods female who cannot be his mate yet his heart argues otherwise. If Madoc ignores his personal vow to never return to Synestryn for fear of unleashing the monster inside him, he could harm those he cares abut including Nika.
The latest Sentinel Wars romantic fantasy (see Running Scared) is a terrific tale of two star crossed lovers struggling with how they feel about one another and how to mount the sibling rescue. As the Butcher world continues to vividly expand, readers will enjoy this exciting thriller. Harriet Klausner
In Savannah, Riley Poe reflects back to her wild youth as now she is raising her younger teenage brother, Seth. She is recognized as one of the city’s best tattoo artists; always in demand.
Seth and his friends pull a teen stunt in Bonaventure Cemetery. Their prank backfires when it frees the strigoi vampires, who leave their “prison” taking the humans with them. A desperate Riley turns to Eli Dupre and his kin to save her sibling from the vicious Victorian and Valerian who plan to convert Seth and toast their victory by dining on Riley's rare blood. Eli, sworn to protect the city from the strigoi and to keep Riley safe plans to help her rescue her brother but also hopes to persuade Riley they belong together.
The first Dark Ink Chronicles romantic urban fantasy is a fast-paced thriller starring a kick butt heroine whose unique blood proves more in demand than her unique tattoos. Although Riley’s personality and tattoo skills have been used in other series (see Karen E. Olson’s amateur sleuth series The Tattoo Shop), Elle Jasper’s rendition of the vampire Everdark underworld of Savannah provides a welcome addition to the sub-genre blood bank. Harriet Klausner
The marriage between Patience and Brandt White-Eagle was nearly dead before they sent their twin sons away for the safety of the kids; now each knows it is only a question of announcing the marital wake. However, they continue their efforts to prevent the upcoming 12/21/2012 catastrophe from occurring by performing a dangerous rite to capture the Triad magic.
To their chagrin, the depressed pair not only fail to obtain the magic, but the spell backfires leaving Brandt near dead as an Aztec God is returning to regain domination. Patience knows she must go back in time to learn what curse has left them in jeopardy.
The fourth Final Prophecy “Mayan” fantasy (see Dawnkeepers, Nightkeepers and Skykeepers) is an engaging tale as the lead couple are mated Nightkeeper warriors set to fight the enemy deity, but go into combat at less than full strength because of their marital woes. Their estrangement especially shows up with the failed ritual. Character driven, series fans will relish this strong entry as the end of the world, at least for this mated pair, if not everyone, seems closer to reality.