HALF PAST DEAD
ZOE ARCHER & BIANCA D’ARC
December 29, 2009
Brava, an imprint of Kensington Publishing Corp.
$14.00 US/ $16.95 CAN
Rating: 4 cups
The Undying Heart
Cassandra Fielding is a very independent woman living in Yorkshire, England, in the year 1858. She is not cut out to be a gentlemen’s wife. She likes the danger and mystery that come with being a Blade of the Rose. She is only one of the courageous people involved in helping maintain the balance of magic in the world.
Samuel Reed has returned to Yorkshire in pursuit on his former commanding officer, Colonel Kenneth Broadwell. Sam is a strong and powerful man who was able to break the control Colonel Broadwell had over him.
Cassandra is stalking Colonel Broadwell on a mission from the Blades of the Rose. The colonel is carrying a source of magic that does not belong to him. She is surprised to find her childhood friend, Sam, following the same person. Especially since Sam died on a battlefield with Cassandra’s brother. Colonel Broadwell is creating an army of zombies to carry out the evil plans he and the Heirs of Albion have. Together, it is up to Sam and Cassandra to defeat them.
This is certainly a different twist on a paranormal romance. I would never have thought a zombie could be sexy, but Sam changed my mind. I have such admiration for Cassandra because, in a time when it was not lady-like, she is outspoken and trying to make a difference in the world. The sacrifices these two characters are willing to make in order to bring the magic of the world back into balance tugs at the heart.
Dr. Mariana Daniels – Mari - is a Navy doctor. Her Naval career is coming to an end, and she does not know where she will go from there. She misses the man she was dating, but he left her. Now, he is back and with him comes danger.
Simon Blackwell was a Marine. Now, he is a civilian working for the military in a top-secret capacity. He worked special ops, but his team was attacked by zombies and turned. Simon was attacked as well but something in his chemistry kept him from being turned.
Mari is trying to forget about the fact Simon broke her heart. Then, he shows up at the clinic, injured. Mari puts her feelings for Simon aside and treats him, but there is something different about Simon. His wounds are healing at a supernatural rate. When Mari begins to put things together, Simon has no choice but to fill her in on his mission: to rid the area of the Marines who were turned to zombies. Danger and love ensue.
There is not any man much sexier than a man in uniform. Simon is no exception. He is trying to put right something that should never have occurred. I love the strength inside of Mari. She is such an inspiration.
Both of these stories are extraordinary. The two authors have created such a wonderful book. Zoe Archer takes the reader back through history. Bianca D’Arc pulls the reader into the present. Zombies are the obvious thread, but for me, it is the strength of the women, Cassandra and Mari, that brings the stories together. These two characters are bright lights in their individual tales.
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More