Thursday, February 17, 2011

Mermen, Immortals, and Werewolves

In the Dark of Dreams
Marjorie M. Liu
Avon, $7.99
ISBN: 9780062020161

Twelve years old Jenny found the injured silver boy on the beach. She is taken aback somewhat by his fins, but also fascinated by them and him. She comforts him until a merman arrives to take the wounded lad home. The sea adult frightens Jenny as he ignored the boy’s pleading not to take him back to the sea. Every morning that summer and several years afterward, Jenny would return to the beach hoping her sea friend would return; he never did but she never stopped hoping.

Because of that incident at the beach, Jenny became a marine biologist. Her goal is to find the silver boy who she considers a friend and more though their acquaintance was for a short duration. Meanwhile, Jenny’s family is divided as some have joined the Consortium while others like her work for A Priori.

Exiled from his world beneath the sea, Perrin constantly thinks of the female surface dweller who befriended him when he needed help. Soon they connect through their dreams at a time when a world threat begins to emerge from a dormant respite at the bottom of the ocean.

This is a tremendous Dirk & Steele thriller (see The Fire King) that grips the audience from the moment the pair meets on the beach and never frees the reader until the final apocalyptic confrontation. Fast-paced, the lead couple and the anticipated fight with the Monster from the Ocean Floor (Roger Corman movie) make for a strong entry as a chance short meeting on a beach as tweeners years later turns into a superb save the world romantic ocean fantasy. Harriet Klausner

Hungry for You
Lynsay Sands
Avon, $7.99
ISBN: 9780061894572

Marguerite Argeneau has the uncanny skill of pairing off life mates. Her ability sends family member immortal Cale Valens to Canada to meet his fated intended Alex Willan. At the same time, Alex’s sister Sam still refuses to change until both of her sisters (Jo Willan since has found Nicholas in The Renegade Hunter) find their immortal mates as she has with Garret Mortimer (see The Rogue Hunter). She has hopes her sibling Alex and Cale are the final pairing of mortal sisters to immortal caring hunks. Mortomer’s aide Bricker learning Marguerite sent Cale says his bachelor days are over.

Cale quickly learns his Alex is ignorant that vampires exist. He obtains a position as a chef in her restaurant, but there is one minor problem; Cale can’t cook so is fired. However, an unknown adversary goes to incredible lengths to prevent Alex from opening her second restaurant. Cale assisted by the Argeneau brood protect Alex.

The entertaining finish to the Willan sisters is a fun Argeneau-Hunter vampire romance. Filled with humor from the onset with the Olive Oyl – Jessica Rabbit comic gender debate and with a terrific casualness re vampirism when Bricker welcomes Cale to Canada with one bag or two, fans will enjoy this entry. The suspense takes a back seat to the chef who can’t boil water without burning it and the restaurateur falling in love but after waiting for an eternity for his lifemate, he must show patience he does not have. Fans of the urban fantasy saga will appreciate the latest romantic thriller. Harriet Klausner

The Wolf Prince
Karen Kelley
Kensington Brava, $14.00
ISBN: 9780758238405

In Texas, Darcy Spencer is taking a walk near the home of her parents when she sees two strange sights. First she notices a wolf followed immediately by a naked man. Assuming she has run into a pervert, Darcy hammers the nude dude with a stick to his head, knocking the streaker out.

When he regains consciousness he recalls nothing except his name is Surlock. Feeling guilt for causing the amnesia, Darcy allows Surlock to move into the guest house. Having become a private investigator, Darcy uses her new skills on her first case to learn who her visitor is. Surlock begins to regain his memory of his mission on earth to protect the mixed-race human-Symtarian Darcy from rogue shapeshifters who want the half-breeds exterminated.

The third New Symtaria royal ET Texas romantic fantasy (see The Falcon Prince and The Jaguar Prince) is a fun lighthearted romp although the story line reads so similar to the previous princes’ thrillers; the character can replace each other with no slowing of the plot. Still filled with humor due to the alien’s behavior like swimming naked in the pool to the delight of gawking maids, Karen Kelley fans will enjoy the third close encounters of the first kind humorous tale. Harriet Klausner

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