I have to admit that I wasn’t overcome with excitement with the idea of Ulleam MacRieve as the next IAD hero. True, the MacRieve Lykae are sexy to be sure, but Ulleam never did much for me –and frankly, I was itching for a Lanthe and Thronos book. I love this series, though, so I figured any book was going to be a win one way or another –and for the most part, it was.
Basically, it’s your standard Immortals After Dark book. The hero has a dark past. He wants the heroine, but he doesn’t WANT to want the heroine. He is strong; she is vulnerable. Nix is funny… It’s comfortable. Pretty predictable. But mostly enjoyable.
From the very beginning of the story, we find out the root of MacRieve’s suffering. He was sexually abused by a succubus for years as a child. The culmination of the abuse destroyed his family and warped him sexually. It’s been hundreds of years, but he still hasn’t gotten over it. His torture on the island featured in Carrow & Regin’s books only made it worse. He is ready to just end it all with a one-way trip to the place where immortals go to die. Until Nix manipulates him into finding his mate.
Chloe grew up believing herself to be a human. She has no idea that her father is the evil man behind those island experiments. She doesn’t even know the Lore exists until she starts to exhibit signs of impending immortality. Her dad tosses her a book on the Lore and disappears, clearing the path for some very unhappy immortals to snatch her away.
Once MacRieve wrests her from the bad guys, their connection is instantaneous. The change in him is immediate and everything is so wonderful, you have no doubt it’s all about to go to hell. And it’s obvious how it’s going to happen. In some ways after that, it’s a lot like Bowen’s story… where the hero’s instinct tells him one thing, but his past and his personal damage tells him another. Frankly, he is pretty mean to poor Chloe. But unlike Lothaire, I had the chance to know him as a good guy first. I got to see what he went through. So I was able to muster some sympathy for him. Chloe had a lot to handle in a short time and I thought she handled it extremely well (almost too well.) When all was said and done, you had to root for them to work it all out.
Overall, I liked it. There wasn’t as much overlap with other characters in the series as usual. The broad landscape of the world is one of the things I like most about the series, so I missed that. It was pretty much just Ulleam, Munro, and Nix (with a cameo from Malkom.) It felt like a periphery story, more than one built into the main series arc. I would have liked to see a surprise or two in there, but I left the book feeling satisfied… in a comfortable and familiar way.
MacRieveby Kresley ColeRelease Date: July 2, 2013Publisher: Gallery Books