PRINCE OF FIRE
LINDA WINSTEAD JONES
Berkley Sensation/The Berkley Publishing Group/Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
Rating: 5 cups
Keelia is Queen of Anwyn. She is from a race of shifters that turn into wolves when the moon is full. Unlike many of her kind, she can control when and if she shifts. She knows from her gift that there is a great darkness sweeping the land. Hoping that someday she will find her true mate, Keelia has opted to remain pure and wait rather than take a lover. However, that all changes when the man she has been dreaming of for years kidnaps her, and suddenly the pieces of a very old prophecy begin to fall into place.
Joryn is a Caradon, a shifter who turns into a large cat when the moon is full. He is convinced that Keelia is evil and is the one turning his people into terrible creatures. He keeps her locked up in a cave, but it is not long before he begins to have doubts. Keelia does not appear to be evil and although their peoples have been enemies for centuries, he cannot help wondering if she is not what he thinks she is. While he is very attracted to her, he does not see how he can truly have her since she is not only his enemy but a queen.
When the darkness that Keelia and Joryn have seen sweeping the land reaches out and grabs them, they must begin to trust one another. While it is not a complete trust, they are at least able to call a truce of sorts. They become lovers, but Joryn, a solitary man wounded by a secret in his past, cannot quite come to grips with a love that lasts forever. Because of this, he nearly loses not only Keelia but his life as well. In a land ripped apart by war, unnatural creatures, and a stygian darkness, can these two put aside their differences, embrace each other’s strengths, and move forward? Or will their lands fall to the darkness?
Ms. Jones has written a winner with Prince of Fire! All the characters, including the secondary ones, are well drawn and help the story to flow smoothly. The obvious emotional dilemma that Joryn and Keelia face, coming from what they perceive to be different races, is very realistic and reminiscent of our own struggles with the fear of that which is different. Keelia, as the queen who has always gotten her way and now has to deal with the fact that this is one time it is not happening, is very humorous. Joryn, as the man who just wants the freedom to do as he wants but who can feel love’s noose tightening around his neck, is like the typical guy not wanting to leave his single life behind. This book is well thought out and has enough twists and turns to keep the reader interested long into the night. I am anxiously waiting for the next book in this series so I can find out what happens to these characters next!
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
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