Posts tagged “lydia dare

I WON the Liebster Award for Blogging!

So cool! And totally unexpected. The Urban Book Thief, who is now officially the best person I have never met, left a comment on my recent post about the upcoming novel by Jeaniene Frost, Up From the Grave. I was super-shocked (in a good way) and speechless (which for me is beyond unusual) for bout 5 minutes and then I started screaming “OMG, OMG, OMG!!!” on repeat. (Insert hysterical shrieks and jumping up and down here.)

The Liebster Award for Blogging, is a award given to new note-worthy blogs (those with less than 200 followers). Before I was nominated, I knew people were reading my blog, because some of those people had left very thoughtful comments, but I had no idea that I would be up for an award. Again I would just like to say thank you!

So do I choose to accept this award! Hell YEAH!!!

As a recipient, I have to do the following:

  1. List 11 random facts about myself
  2. Answer 11 questions by the blogger that nominated me
  3. Nominate 11 other blogs for the award and link to them
  4. Notify the bloggers that they are awesome and have won a shiny pink blogging logo
  5. If they want to accept the award, ask them 11 questions to answer

(*Note: Nominees, should you choose to accept this award, you will also have to complete the above tasks.)

So here goes…

RANDOM FACTS ABOUT ME (AKA, THINGS YOU NEVER WANTED TO KNOW BUT WILL LEARN ANYWAY)

1. I still watch Saturday morning cartoons.
2. I’ve had three near death experiences…but thankfully they were near, not exact.
3. If I could go back in time, I would and then I’d kill the guy who invented Math.
4. If I could live anywhere in the world, it would be in Scotland.
5. I’m an arachnophobia…that’s just a fancy way of saying that I’m terrified of spiders.
6. I’ m the laziest person you’ll never meet, because showing up for the actual meeting would require effort on my part.
7. I once appeared on a TV new cast, but I missed it.
8. When I was small I used to dress like a princess for Halloween, until I realized that being a witch was way more fun.
9. I have a very big ego…the biggest in the world, I’m sure…no make that the universe.
10. My Disney movie is Beauty and the Beast.
11. My favourite Greek myth is the one about Narcissus…I could really relate to how he fell in love with himself…lol.

RANDOM QUESTIONS, AS ASKED BY THE URBAN BOOK THIEF

1. Chicken or the Egg – CHOOSE!

I would have to say egg – maybe a chicken was the result of some random mutation in a bird’s egg.

2. How did you come up with the name of your blog?

Muse (aka, someone who is a total inspiration to art – yup, that me, an inspiration). But in all seriously, my blog is full on random thoughts and ponderings (or rather musings) on books I’ve read, things I’ve watched and my experiences in the amazing journey that we call life, so the title naturally fit.

3. Which one of your posts/book reviews was the most fun to write?

My favourite post to date has got to be my review of Lydia Dare’s series on the Westfield Brothers, called “Lydia Dare: The Dynamic Duo with a Terrific Trilogy, Plus One“. I’m glad I had the chance to share this series, and these writers, with readers – especially considering they were relatively new at the time. The best part was when Lydia Dare – the writing tag-team of Tammy Falkner and Ava Stone – stopped by to comment!

4. What did you eat for breakfast today?

Some watermelon. I LOVE watermelons! And some toast.

5. Where are all the baby pigeons?

Divebombing some poor stranger on the sidewalk. Run, mon ami, RUN!

6. What are you reading right now?

“The Sword of Truth” series by Terry Goodkind – I’m currently on Soul of the Fire. And I’m highly antipating Nalini Singh’s, Heart of Obsidian. I keep rereading her excerpt and trying to predict who the unknown heroine is going to be. (Yes, I am a tiny bit obsessed.)

7. Which book character do you simply love the most?

Lothaire, from Kresley Cole’s Lothaire – I love his sarcasm, bad attitude and narcissism, and his total mushiness when it comes to his wife, and her alone. I’m glad Kresley Cole didn’t make him a conventional hero.

8. Which is your favourite book series?

The “Guild Hunter” series by Nalini Singh. (I would also say the “Harry Potter” series by J. K. Rowling and the “Deltora Quest” series by Emily Rodda to name a few of my favourite children’s authors.)

9. Ninjas or pirates – CHOOSE!

PIRATES!!! The Pirates of the Carribbean films, and Jack Sparrow, have forever stolen my heart.

10. If you could have a supernatural power what would it be?

Pyrokenesis, because I think the ability to control and create fire would be EPIC!

11. What’s black and white and red all over?

Newspapers!

BLOGGERS, I CHOOSE YOU!

The following are the bloggers I have nominated for the award:

11 RANDOM QUESTIONS FOR THE NOMINEES

Nominees, should you choose to accept this award in honour of your efforts in cyberspace, then you must answer the following questions on your blog or in the comments box below.

  1. What made you create a blog?
  2. What mythical creature would you want as a pet?
  3. If you could meet any one in the world, who would you meet?
  4. What is your favourite book?
  5. If you could invite three people (dead or alive) to a dinner party, who would you pick?
  6. What is your favourite movie?
  7. If your friends had to define you in a single sentence, what would they say?
  8. Who is your favourite author?
  9. What is your favourite song right now?
  10. Are you a summer or winter person?
  11. If you could travel to any city in the world, where would you go?

If you get the chance, check out the nominees.

Rika Ashton

(aka The Honoured)

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Three Vampires and A Wolf: A Review of Lydia Dare’s The Gentlemen Vampyres Series and a Revelation

At last here it is, the long anticipated review of the Gentlemen Vampyres by Lydia Dare trilogy along with an interesting revelation at the end of the post…

The first book, It Happened One Bite, in the series stars our favourite warrior witch, Blaire Lindsey, and the vampire trapped in her brother’s castle, James Maitland:

He’s lost, trapped, doomed for all eternity… 
Rich, titled, and undead, gentleman vampyre James Maitland, Lord Kettering, fears himself doomed to a cold and lonely existence-trapped for decades in an abandoned castle. Then, beautiful Scottish witch Blaire Lindsay arrives, and things begin to heat up considerably…

Unless he can persuade her to set him free…
Feisty Blaire Lindsay laughs off the local gossip surrounding her mother’s ancestral home-stories of haunting cannot scare off this battle-born witch. But when she discovers the handsome prisoner in the bowels of the castle, Blaire has no idea that she has unleashed anything more than a man who sets her heart on fire

The witch meets the vampire, and the series starts off with a bang…I could say I loved the book from start to finish, because I did, but I really want you to know why I loved the book. So I’m going to tell you, and title this part of the review…

Ten Reasons to Love It Happened One Bite:

1. One castle…presumably haunted.

2. It contains a vampyre who doesn’t sparkle, who is also the hero.

3. A fire wielding witch, who is also the heroine.

4. Villains who act like villains.

5. A clairvoyant witch.

6. A heartbroken, potential future hero.

7. The final showdown is not a staring contest.

8. An adorable younger brother.

9. A small tribute to the Vampire Diaries.

10. A interesting twist at the very end, that makes you feel all warm and tingly with its romantic sweetness.

All very good reasons for reading this novel…But I have to say this book made me laugh and then cry. (Though that was mostly Alec’s doing, who was obviously still nursing a wounded heart…don’t worry Alec, your Happily Ever After is arriving soon!) I was also glad that Blaire was how I remembered her from Cait’s novel, brash, bold and as tough as ever. James, on the other hand is a never before seen character — and, although Cait’s vision had me thinking that he might have ulterior motives, he was actually a complete (or in most cases, complete) gentlemen. ( A nice change from all the badboys I’ve been reading about.) My favourite part of the novel, was the twist at the end — completely unexpected, and a total change from other vampire myths, and oh so sweet!

The next novel, In The Heat of the Bite, is about Rhiannon Sinclair — weather controlling witch — and Matthew Halkett — a chivalrous vampire:

Chivalry is far from undead…

Matthew Halkett, Earl of Blodswell, is one of the few men in the ton who can claim to be a knight in shining armor- because that’s precisely what he was before being turned into a vampyre. When he spies a damsel in distress in the midst of a storm in Hyde Park, his natural instinct is to rush to her aid…

But not every woman needs to be rescued…

Weather-controlling witch Rhiannon Sinclair isn’t caught in a storm-she’s the cause of it. She’s mortified to have been caught making trouble by the imposing earl, but she doesn’t need any man-never has, and is sure she never will…

But when Rhiannon encounters Matthew again, her powers go awry and his supernatural abilities run amok. Between the two of them, the ton is thrown into an uproar. There’s never been a more tempestuous scandal…

Matthew can’t let go of his knightly code of chivalry, and Rhiannon is too tough to need rescuing…or is she? Matt was so sweet, with the way he falls for Rhiannon at first sight — though he doesn’t know it, we do — and his continous attempts at trying to rescue her. Plus, you know how much I love the alpha male hero, and Matt can be very alpha. (He gets a lot of opportunities to as well, with Dash’s ultra-hot half-brothers always underfoot.) Rhiannon, on the other hand, has grown up independent — with her absentminded father and I’m-too-jealous-of your-witchy-coolness-to-care-about-you aunt. (Yup, hate her aunt!) Her sister, though sweet, is too young to realize Rhiannon isn’t as indestructible as she seems. Underneath Rhiannon’s strong exterior is some serious loneliness and vulnerability that even her coven sisters don’t understand.

Matt does though, and that’s what makes him so sweet — and such a distraction to Rhiannon. However, added to Matt’s love for Rhiannon is his need to protect her from his vampirism — he really doesn’t need to worry about that, but both he and Rhiannon don’t know that (we do though…actually there are a lot of things that we know but the characters don’t, courtesy of the first book in the series).

Is there a villain in this book? Yes and no. There is the cruel aunt and the cruel (but complex) sire/mentor of Matthew, but neither are conventional villains. First off, the aunt was more of a supporting villain that a real antagonist and dealt with easily. The sire is never dealt with but disappears. The book seemed to focus on the characters inner conflicts that on outer drama, but was enjoyable nonetheless.

The last book of the series, Never Been Bit, is the much awaited story of Sorcha Ferguson and Alec McQuarrie:

The glittering world of high society is the playground for the rich, titled, and reluctantly undead…

Alec MacQuarrie’s after-life has become an endless search for pleasure in an effort to overcome his heartbreak and despair. Wandering through the seedy world of London’s demimonde, he’s changed into a dark and fearsome creature even he doesn’t recognize until he stumbles into a magical lass he knew once upon a time and sees a glimpse of the life he could have had.

But the ton is no match for one incorrigible young lady…

After watching each of her coven sisters happily marry, Sorcha Ferguson is determined to capture a Lycan husband of her very own. When she encounters Alec, she decides to save her old friend from what he’s become, all while searching for her own happily-ever-after.

Over his dead body is Alec going to allow this enchanting innocent to throw herself away on an unworthy werewolf, but that leaves him responsible for her, and he’s the worst monster of them all…

The last novel contains the “unworthy werewolf” vs. the “unworthy vampire” syndrome, developed mostly through the contemplations of one Alec McQuarrie. He thinks he doesn’t, but actually does, think of Sorcha that way but doesn’t want to see her fall for a werewolf either. (Confused, yet?) Alec loved Cait and thinks his heart died when she married Dash, but in comes Sorcha. Sorcha is a bright ray of sunshine to Alec constantly cloudy mood.

So then what’s the problem?

Sorcha wants to marry a werewolf like Elspeth and Cait.

Problem two?

Alec doesn’t want her to.

Problem three?

The Hadley brothers are back and more than willing to help Sorcha rectify her unmarried state…and Alec is more than willing to punch them.

And the biggest problem of all?

Alec thinks he’s too dangerous for Sorcha, what with him being a vampire and all.

You’ve all heard me moan about how sad poor little Alec is and how heartbroken…Sorcha thinks so too, and makes it her duty to avoid the subject of Cait at all costs. (Ain’t she sweet?) But Cait doesn’t want to be avoided and wants Alec to move on…with Sorcha (who she knows is Alec’s HEA).  Alec has moved on (to a point) but also continues to brood, which annoyed me at times, since it was so obvious he wanted Sorcha.

Of course, I nearly died of happiness when Alec pulled himself together and started to pursue Sorcha for real. (Score!) Poor girl really didn’t stand a chance.

My overall impression of the Gentlemen Vampires series was that it was nearly flawless in it execution of the plot. The events of each book fit together perfectly. And the little bit about the dramatic irony (us knowing more about the events than the characters in subsequent novels) kept the stakes high and rising.

So from me the series gets a 10/10.

And now…THE REVELATION:

On Twitter, Lydia Dare finally put me out of my misery and revealed that the hero of The Wolf Who Loved Me is Weston Hadley (and the heroine is Madeline Hayburn). In the book, Madeline finds herself in a precarious situation when she sees Weston turn into a wolf right before her very eyes.

Oh the anticipation!

Rika Ashton

(aka The Very Excited)


Cover Madness!

First of all, the next novel by Lydia Dare. I believe that is Lady Madeline Hayburn (introduced in Never Been Bit, Sorcha and Alec’s novel) and her hero, one of Dash’s brothers (not sure which one, yet…but you all are welcome to guess).

The next cover belongs to debut author, Susan Dennard. The first book of the Spirit-Hunters trilogy:

How could I forget Jennifer Ashley’s next Mackenzie series book…Hart and Eleanor:

And finally the next in the Chronicles of Nick series because I adore Nick:


In a Long Time Coming…

Updates. Updates. And more updates…oh, and a review, too!

Yes, you all deserve HUGE rewards for your patience. (Contrary to popular belief, I only received about 50 angry emails a day telling me to update as opposed to say 500.) Although it seems that while I’ve been away, cyberspace has moved on without me.

First order of business, Eion Macken, Merlin’s Gwaine has a Twitter account. Follow him, you know you wanna…

Plus, I had some fun revamping the first chapter of Apollo’s Necromancer…again. The novel is now titled Dagger of the Sun, and the first chapter reflects this darker tone. I’m sad about leaving out so much of the comedy for the fantasy and action, but I’m afraid it had to be done. Good news is that Delphyne and Apollo get to fight the dragon (yes, there is a dragon because what would a fantasy novel be without one) a whole lot sooner and Kale gets to do some serious black magic.

I would also to take this opportunity to thank those of you who replied to me plea for critique partners. THANK YOU! 🙂 I am ever grateful and will contact you guys soon. (You know who you are.) I’m not entirely sure how critique partnerships work so bear with me.

Of course, by disappearance from cyberspace was not entirely do to edits. University, as always looms over the horizon — and now that I’ve actually found a volunteer teaching position (glorified slave labour) — it’s harder to find time to blog anything. That, and nothing truly interesting happens when teaching watching a grade 9 and 10 English classes write in-class essays.

On the upside I did have some time to read Jennifer Ashley‘s The Many Sins of Lord Cameron:

Lord Cameron Mackenzie is intrigued when he finds the pretty widow, Ainsley Douglas, hiding in the window seat of his bedchamber. Cam remembers Ainsley Douglas all right—six years ago, he’d caught her in this very bedchamber, during a house party in the Mackenzies’ Scottish manor. Enchanted by her ingenuous excuses, he decided to seduce her, but stopped shy when she’d made a rather touching appeal about her “good husband who didn’t deserve to be heartbroken.” 

Later, Cameron learned that her visit to his bedchamber was part of some female intrigue against him, the kind his late wife used to practice. Ainsley protested her innocence, but Cameron’s anger made him never want to see her again. Now she’s back, at another houseparty—and Cameron finds the gray-eyed minx in his bedchamber, again. Her excuses are just as ingenuous, but this time Cameron is determined to teach her a lesson. 

They have unfinished business, Cameron tells her. He asks her how many of her many buttons she’ll let him unclasp, promising that before the houseparty is over, she’ll be asking him to undo them all. 

Ainsley’s dismay is real. She’s on a mission to prevent embarrassment to Queen Victoria, and time is running out. Though the needs he’d stirred long ago during her unhappy marriage rise again, she knows it would be foolish to fall for love-them-and-leave-them Cameron Mackenzie. 

But he asks her a question that challenges her beliefs about love and happiness, and she finds herself risking all to be with the black sheep of the Mackenzie family.

And now for a very brief review:

I adored this book. Cam was a sweetheart, and almost topped his brother Ian as the perfect hero. In fact, I think the two are tied for the top spot. Cam wasn’t your usual bachelor who was afraid of matrimony because he wanted to sleep around, but he had an actual reason. His first marriage was a disaster (with a capital “d”), and he finds it hard to trust after the abuse (emotional and physical) that his wife put him through. I was glad though that he was clear-headed enough to see that Ainsley was different and that he could trust her. It’s rare to have a great hero paired with an equally awesome heroine, but Ms. Ashley seems to have perfected the technique because I have absolutely no complaints about Ainsley. She was intelligent enough to realize that accepting help is not a slight against her power a a woman. Ainsley’s first marriage was more of a marriage-of-convenience for her, though she did care for her husband and he cared for her, but he was a lot older and died leaving her with little money. Ainsley works for Queen Victoria, who is a bit of a controlling biotch in the novel, and has to find a way to free her from a blackmailer. Though the blackmailer was more of a side-show, an excuse really to get Cam and Ainsley back together. Together, Cam and Ainsley were combustible!

It was nice to catch up with the other Mackenzie brothers and their wives. Hart was also less distant in this novel and I’m looking forward to his HEA. Unfortunately, I have to wait. Good news is that the Mackenzie series will not end with Hart’s novel, and Daniel (most intriguing teen character EVER, cause usually I find teenagers a little immature) will also get his own story. 😀

Hopefully, this post redeems me for neglecting you guys for so long, but if not maybe my next post — a review of Lydia Dare‘s Gentlemen Vampyres series will.

-Rika Ashton

(aka The Ashamed One)

P.S: I have to thank Priscilla Shay for introducing me to Luke Evans. She somehow manages to go to university, write, read and scope out hot guys! True talent, that!


Lydia Dare: The Dynamic Duo with a Terrific Trilogy, Plus One

If my title doesn’t intrigue you, then these novels will. Lydia Dare is an awesome writing team of two, that I happened to discover – purely by chance – at my public library. I was in one of my reading slumps, you know those episodes when you feel like you’ve read every good book that has been published and everything else you’ve picked up recently has been pure, uhm, garbage. This isn’t true of course, because of course I haven’t read every good book in existence, but it feels like it nonetheless.

So for me, finding a Lydia Dare novel – or I should say novels – was a breath of fresh air, plus chocolate cake!

Let me just say that these two ladies can write, I mean really write. Try as I might, I found no dry spells whatsoever in any of their books – since they have only four so far, and I’ve devoured all of them I can say this with some confidence. And they write their heroes as real ALPHAs, not those jerks who boss the heroine around half the book because they think its the manly thing to do, but real genuine ALPHAs. The cool kind that make you swoon and hope that one of them will catch you. 😀

book cover of   A Certain Wolfish Charm   by  Lydia DareLydia Dare’s debut trilogy about the Westfield brothers begins with the oldest bro, Simon. The first novel, A Certain Wolfish Charm (cute title, by the way) goes something like this:

The rules of Regency Society can be beastly – especially when you’re a werewolf. Simon Westfield, the Duke of Blackmoor has spent his entire life creating scandal and mayhem. It doesn’t help his wolfish temper that since he’s rich, powerful, and sinfully handsome, the town is willing to overlook his outrageous behavior. Lily Rutledge has a wild streak of her own. When she turns to Simon for help, he falls for her immediately. For Simon is drawn to the fearless Lily more powerfully than the moon…

This summary from Fantasic Fiction is missing some important details, like Lily’s and Simon’s ward, Oliver, being the catalyst for drawing them together and cause of much drama throughout the story. Again there is also some descrepency between whether the novel is a Regency or Victorian read. Amazon states Victorian, but I’m inclined to disagree with them because everything within the novel says Regency, albeit late in the Regency era.

A Certain Wofish Charm certainly has a lot going for it: an strong, intelligent and very likeable heroine with a manipulative (but in a very good way) best friend who has HOT brothers, an equally awesome hero with equally HOT brothers, and a totally cute and at times annoying preteen ward. I don’t know how many of you guys will agree, but as a female romance reader so much about whether of not I read the novel has to do with the character of the heroine. I have to like her nearly right off the bat in some way or I probably won’t enjoy the novel. Likewise, the hero has to be equally likable and NOT A JERK, or if he is somewhat a jerk then the heroine has to be strong enough to put him in his place as is the case in this book.

Simon has moments of jerkishness, but the good thing about Lily is that she doesn’t put up with him. Let me say I really, really hated Simon when he threatened to seperate Lily and Oliver. Even though both Simon and Lily are related to Oliver – Oliver’s father was Simon’s cousin and his mom was Lily’s sister – let me make it known that it has been Lily who has been taking care of her nephew Oliver ever since he was orphaned. Simon, who is the boy’s legal guardian, doesn’t really see him or contact him except to send them money for Oliver. Of course, Simon does have a very good reason for the threatened seperation, since he believes Oliver is dangerous to Lily now that he’s hit puberty and is becoming a full lycan (a werewolf, but the characters in the novel consider this a derogatory slang, I can’t imagine why after the Twilight fiasco *insert sarcasm*). However, Lily doesn’t know about Oliver’s – or Simon’s – lycan heritage and Simon doesn’t explain, despite agreeing that Lily is an intelligent woman who cares for Oliver. Yes, Simon, that is wonderful reasoning *insert more sarcasm*.

But Simon is a man in love, who doesn’t know he’s in love, and doesn’t always act rationally.  

So, of course, it’s up to the great cast of supporting characters to bring these two love birds together. Simon’s middle bro, William and Lily BFF, Prisca take it upon themselves to see these two wed, by any means necessary. William does everything to get Simon to realize his feelings for Lily, including staged jealousies, while Prisca goal in life is to get Simon to compromise her BFF and get them married. (Read to see who has the better plan…) Will and Prisca plans are spiced up by hints of their own shared history and hilarious bickering. This added to the mysterious disappearance of the youngest brother Benjamin and the appearance of Simon’s mother makes for an excellent read!

We learn all about Ben’s reason for disappearing in his book, the second in the trilogy, Tall, Dark and Wolfish:

The reckless, rakish younger brother of a powerful duke, Lord Benjamin Westfield transforms into a wolf under the light of the full moon – until one fateful evening when he doesn’t change and his life is shattered. Fearing he may never be able to change again, Benjamin sets out for Scotland in search of a witch who can heal his inner beast. The noble werewolf is drawn to the beautiful young woman, but what does he have to offer in this broken state?

Unlike Simon, who’s quick to anger in the best of circumstances, Ben seems more gentle. There’s a lot of confusion in the starting because Ben’s lost his ability to transform into a lycan during the full moon, but with some advice from a lycan senior he’s off to Scotland to find a witch to cure him. Of course, his vision of the witch is that she will be old, with wiry grey hair, a hooked nose and a crackling laugh. book cover of   Tall, Dark and Wolfish   by  Lydia Dare

Elspeth is anything but. For one, she younger than Ben’s imagines, doesn’t have a hooked nose or crackling laugh. She’s also a part of a coven of witches who foresaw Ben’s arrival long before he set foot in Scotland. Finally, Elspeth is also the bastard daughter of the witch that Ben was initially suppose to see. Of course, while Elspeth’s bastard status is held against her by some, she’s lucky to have her coven, some members who are also high-and-mighty in society.

Elspeth’s fellow convenors are not so happy to see Ben because they fear he will take Elspeth away from Scotland, thus breaking their coven. So their are some machinations on their part to keep Ben and Elspeth under constant survelliance and to prevent them from falling in love. These coven ladies are an awesome cast of characters with equally awesome powers. So finding himself nearly lit on fire is just another day of courtship in Ben’s life.

But, alas, love shall find a way…and it helps that the coven witches are not 100% against the idea as they may like to think.

Like the novel before it, Tall, Dark and Wolfish also has an intriguing subplot which reveals more about Elspeth and Ben’s individual pasts and keeps the main plot moving. I cried a little when I read and thought about Elspeth’s mom’s past. If was heartbreaking and completely unfair due to the actions of a singular person. But that is enough about that, as I shall leave that for you to discover.

Finally, the final book in the trilogy concludes with Will’s story in The Wolf Next Door:

Rogue, Rake.Werewolf. Years ago on a full moon, Lord William Westfield gave way to his inner beast and nearly ruined young Prisca Hawthorne. Knowing he can never trust himself in the arms of the woman he loves, he throws himself into a debauched lifestyle. When Westfield discovers he has a rival for Prisca’s love, he decides if she’s going to marry a Lycan it damn well better be him. But time is running out as Prisca’s other suitor takes an instant and potentially fatal dislike to Westfield.

book cover of   The Wolf Next Door   by  Lydia DareYou gotta love the way the minds of the Westfield brother’s work. Despite helping Simon discover love in the first book, Will is very dense when it comes to his own lovelife. Will and Prisca have been in love since forever, and being neighbours they’ve had a lot of opportunities to do something about it. Will, of course is too afraid of hurting Prisca as a lycan and isn’t sure how she feels about him, while Prisca doesn’t make a move because she’s not sure Will requits her love.

Their’s is a mutual love, but neither seems to comprehend this until Captain Dashiel enters the picture. The new lycan just drives Will crazy with jealousy by spending too much time, in Will’s opinion, with Prisca. Prisca, on the other hand now has time to examine her feelings for Will and realizes that since she cannot seem to feel anything for Dash, who is very, very, very handsome, she may never overcome her feelings for Will.

Like it’s predessecor’s, their is a lot of manipulation on the part of the secondary characters, namely Prisca’s brothers who know she loves Will and that Will loves her and thus, take it upon themselves to see her wed. Purely, unselfish of them of course, their motives have nothing to do with the fact that with Prisca gone, no one will boss them around anymore. Yes, purely unselfish. *eye roll*  

The third book focuses a lot more of the romance between the central characters than the first two. And although, the first two books are very romantic, the shared history between Will and Prisca make this book a lot more so.

This concludes the Lydia Dare trilogy.

But, wait! What’s this? There is one more book, you say, becuase you bothered to do the addition in my title and are now worried that if there are only three novels I need to retake elementary school math.

Fortunately, the addition in my title is correct. There are in fact four books to be reviewed today… 

The fourth lycan book, though not about a Westfield brother, is linked to the series nonetheless. Lydia Dare’s fourth novel, The Taming of the Wolf is Dashiel’s story, who you’ll know from the third book and Caitrin’s, who is one of Elspeth’s coven sisters:

Lord Dashiel Thorpe has fought his true nature his entire life, but whenever the moonlight proves too powerful, Dashiel is unable to control the werewolf within him. It is on one such moonlit night that Dashiel accidentally bites the beautiful Scottish witch, Caitrin McLeod. Though now bound to him irrevocably, Cait decides that she wants nothing to do with him. When she flees to her native Scotland, Dashiel has no choice but to follow her and convince her that it was nothing short of destiny that has bound them together body and soul.

Dash and Caitrin meet at the Westfield estate, when Dash accidentally bites Cait and bonds himself to her. Cait who knows only basic facts about lycans and not the significance of Dash’s bite and thinks it was both a rude and unwarranted attack, flees to Scotland and her home. Dash, of course, does know the significance of what’s he’s done – after a while – and flees after her. (Dash does have another reason for going to Scotland, but considers being able to follow Cait a nice bonus in his plans.)Cover of Taming Of the Wolf by Lydia Dare

And so the chase ensues. Dash does catch up with Cait along the journey, but she ditches him through sheer ingenuity and a sleeping potion. Added adventures and encounters during Cait and Dash’s journey to Scotland only intensify Dash’s need to begin courting Cait, especially when Cait old suitor’s shows up.

Cait, who is the coven seer, and thus, able to see the future of those around her (not her own though) is sure, 100%, that Alec her old suitor is not for her. On the other hand, she is not able to see anything about Dash – which for me set off wedding bells right from the start – and this confuses Cait to no end.

Unlike the three novels before it, their is less manipulation on the parts of the secondary characters in this novel. But we get the added bonus, and pain, of unrequited love for Alec. Poor Alec. 😦

I liked Alec, and so does Cait as surely as she knows he isn’t for her, but for someone else who he will soon come to realize he loves. So there is hope!

The interesting thing about these Lydia Dare novels is that they are most entirely without an actual villain. Most of the action/drama comes from the characters inner conflicts, which in the past I found to be singularly the most boring of conflicts. However, since I was not bored at all during the reading of these novels, I have to reevaluate that idea.

And so concludes the first part of the series. I say first part now, because where there are lycan, vampires will surely follow and so it is that the next two novels that star two more coven sisters also have vampire heroes. So stay tuned for It Happened One Bite and In the Heat of the Bite in March and July 2011, respectively!

Rika Ashton (aka Series Reviewer Extraordinaire)

P.S: For better summaries that those offered on Amazon and Fantastic Fiction, check out the authors’ official website. Unfortunately, I couldn’t copy and paste these here, as this fuction is not enabled from their website.

P.P.S: Looking for more reading materials? You can check out my writer buddy, Priscilla Shay’s blog, and her book review marathon for some great recommendations.