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The Rose of Shanhasson (Blood and Shadows Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Joely Sue Burkhart
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

As Our Blessed Lady’s last daughter, Shannari must rule as High Queen or the Green Lands will fall into eternal darkness. Her destiny is to shine against the Shadow, protect the land and people with her magic, and keep the Blackest Heart of Darkness imprisoned. Her blood is the key, powered by the love in her heart. However, Shannari’s heart is broken, her magic is crippled, and the nobles must have forgotten the dire prophesies, because everyone wants her dead.

Only love can restore her magic, but her scars testify how love can be corrupted. So when a barbarian warlord conquers her army and professes a love like no other, Shannari’s first instinct is to kill the mighty Khul. Even worse, one of the Khul’s guards used to be an assassin–a very skilled assassin, if the darkness in the Blood’s eyes is any indication. The same darkness festers deep in her heart and draws her to the wickedly dangerous man as inexorably as his Khul’s unshakable honor. Her weakening heart is not only torn between love and duty, but also between two magnificent warriors.

Yet neither warrior will be able to help her when Shadow calls her name.

Warnings: Explicit sex, BDSM, violence, a barbarian warlord, an assassin, and a woman who not only wields a sword but might also kill both warriors.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 560 KB
  • Print Length: 258 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Joely Sue Burkhart (23 Dec. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006QP5SGE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #88,407 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Love it! 27 Aug. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm a fan of this author, but love this series. get ready to want to know how the rest of the story goes, so you will be buying the rest soon...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Superb! 9 Mar. 2013
By salx452
Format:Kindle Edition
Loved it! Characters are strong, fantastic action, great supernatural elements! Love drives the tale and pulls you in! The main characters make you fall in love with them, so be prepared to be seduced by a whole new world!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect romantic Fantasy 1 Jun. 2010
By SusiSunshine - Published on
I received this book from the author and I'm totally biased cuz Joely is one of the nicest people I know and I totally adore her work. You have been warned!

I haven't read a romantic fantasy book as good as this one for a long time. It has everything I love about this genre and even a bit more. I always like it when the fantasy is something special. I don't want to read about orks and elves any longer. I have so had enough of those.
I appreciate it when the author creates something new and creative and not just a Tolkien copy. I love the invention of new races and divine creatures. I love it when the different cultures speak individual languages. Yes, I know it's totally crazy but I'm one of those people who actually owns a copy of the Elvish Dictionary.

But back to this book. The world we find ourselves in is kind of medieval with a touch of magic and more than enough divine intervention. The people in this world believe in the power of their deities, so they all try to stay on the good side of the one they chose to follow.

The story is all about Shannari. She is a princess but not the kind we normally think of when hearing that word. She had to defend herself more than once and got gravely hurt in the process - physically and even more so emotionally. She is a strong character with deep bonds to her people. She knows what her destiny is and she is not afraid to sacrifice herself on the way. She knows what the important and right thing to do is but all this knowledge doesn't make her feel better. She knows there is no way around it so she will hold her head up high and just live through it.
The first time she meets Rhaekhar is in a battle and she sees him as a strong warrior and also as the barbarian he is. But OMG, I want my own barbarian now. Nope, I take that back I want my own PAIR of barbarians now. *wicked grin* But more about that later.

Rhaekhar is the Khul of the Nine Camps of the Sha'Kae al'Dan, so to speak their leader. He is the best in everything *wink* and has to stand up to all expectations in order to stay Khul. He's an alpha male from head to toe and he never gives up when his goal is in sight. And his goal is to have Shannari. Not as some low sex-slave as some of our dirty minds might think. No, he wants to marry her and spend the rest of his life at her side- forever. He knows from a vision that she is the one and he will fight for her hard with all he has and let me say that this would win my heart ASAP. He's a kind man although he rules with a strong hand. But he has a good heart and wants to make everything right.

And then we have Gregar *big sigh*- the Shadowed Blood. A Blood is a kind of personal bodyguard for the Khul and all 7 of them should never leave his back. And with never I mean like not even in the personal moments we sometimes have. *blush* Gregar is a special one- he has so much darkness, shadow inside that it sometimes broke my heart. He's a passionate man with a really wicked grin and oh so many other good characteristics but he really can be scary from time to time. I can't even say for sure why I loved him so much. Perhaps cuz I wanted to hug him and make it all better? I'm really not sure but Gregar is so my new book boy friend. We get the first glimpse at a wonderful love triangle but at the end we have to be patient for the next book to get a better look at my beloved Gregar.

The Rose of Shanhasson grabbed my heart from the first sentence to the last word and I wanted to scream for the next book when I closed this one. Okay, it's probably not for the faint of heart with all the blood and shadows in it but I felt honored with every drop. The emotional build up was heart wrenching from time to time and the sexual tension will boil your blood. The fantasy is fascinating and wonderfully developed, the storyline thrilling through the whole book. All in all a must read for all the fantasy lovers out there who love to read something hot and spicy. The Rose of Shanhasson so deserves the title na'lanna for me.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The richness of the Medieval Era combined with stunning fantasy and magic! 21 Dec. 2009
By Bookaholics Reviewer - Published on
The Rose of Shanhasson by Joely Sue Burkhart
Paranormal Romance - November 1st, 2009
4 1/2 stars

The Rose of Shanhasson enthralled me with its lush imagery and vivid characters. I felt as if I had been swept away into a world that blended the richness of the Medieval Era combined with stunning fantasy and magic. Since this is smaller publisher I hope that this romance will enjoy the wide readership it deserves.

Shannari's destiny is a hard one. The prophecy foretells that she will wear the Rose Crown and that she is the avatar of the Goddess. But the Goddess no long speaks to Shannari and she has no clue how to fulfill her destiny! Still, she dedicates her life toward the will of the Goddess. Unfortunately, as a soldier and a princess there is little time for pleasure or relaxation. When she has tried to love she has been betrayed or used for the greater good. Her needs as an individual and particularly as a woman have been ignored. Caught between a forced alliance with a power hunger madman who wants her dead and a disgusting and traitorous lecher Shannari feels trapped. But she knows her duty. When these negotiations are interrupted by the invasion of desert barbarians Shannari finds herself surrendering. But the desert warrior doesn't want Shannari for mere politics. He wants Shannari for herself and that may be the most dangerous reason of all.

Rhaekhar had a vision of Shannari. He knows he must make her his. But Shannari has built a wall around her heart. Breaking it down will be no easy task. Especially since her life is much more than her own. And Rhaekhar must decide if he can share her...

This was an epic romance with characters I enjoyed. I loved that the hero knew the heroine was destined for him and would not give up his pursuit. The heroine was noble, honorable and fiery. In addition to the strong characters, this story excited me because it was original, unexpected and thrilling. Because the world is both familiar (has aspects of the Medieval Era) and fantasy I found it easy to orient myself but was constantly surprised and intrigued. The only thing which may disappoint some readers is that this book does not end conclusively. I can only assume that the author must be planning a 2nd or even 3rd book. So while Shannari triumphs there are still more battles and heroics which will no doubt bring more drama to this intense series!

Reviewed by Steph from the Bookaholics Romance Book Club
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For those of us who want it all... 10 Jun. 2010
By SJ Collins - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
"Love; the greatest Gift of all and the greatest Sacrifice."

If you haven't heard that before, you've obviously never read "The Rose of Shanhasson", the first book of Bloods and Shadows, by Joely Sue Burkhart.

In which case? You're missing out and I'll tell you why.

Joely Sue Burkhart weaves a perfect blend of romance and fantasy. Her poetic prose sucks you in and refuses to let you go as we dive into this heart wrenching love story about Bonds, Honor, Duty and above all else, Love and Sacrifice.

Shannari is destined to rule as High Queen of the Green Lands lest they fall into darkness, despair, and decay. As the Blessed Lady's Last Daughter, only she can wear the Rose Crown and live. Prophecy says she'll acquire magic through love and that Blood is the key, but Shannari lost faith in such things a long time ago.
Resigned to her fate, Shannari sets plans in motion that will allow her to do just that, while hopefully burning some less desirable bridges along the way, but not without the cost of gaining others. Her heart's already scarred, broken. Hell, she doesn't even think she was one left.

So why not?

It's not as if she has anything to lose.

All that goes to the Three Hells when the Barbarian Warlord and his Nine Blood conquers her army though. With very minimal effort, I might add. A man of honor, the mighty Khul asks only one thing for his victory; Shannari, his beloved. He's convinced she's a gift from Vulkar himself and professes to her a love like no other.
Shannari's first inclination is to bolt, but she never runs from anything and she certainly doesn't intend to start now.

So killing the arrogant warrior will have to do.

But she'd surrendered and her honor dictates she go with him to the Plains where the Nine Camps of the Sha'Kae al'Dan reside. Not to mention one of the Khuls' warriors, one of the nine Bloods, was once an assassin, and their shadows call to one another.

Now not only must she choose between love and duty, but where that love resides. And if that will even matter when darkness calls...

I knew Shannari would be the type of character I could easily identify with. That alone would have been enough to make me want to finnish the story. It would have been enough for me to find it enjoyable.

But-oh man!

I fell in love with this story on page 17, with the introduction to Rhaekhar and his Nine Blood.

Gregar, oh Gregar! He was so deliciously wicked and dark that I knew he would end up being my favorite. Which is not, of course, to say that I didn't love Rhaekhar as well, but *le sigh* I will always, always, always prefer the dark tortured soul. That's just me. Hell, I even liked Varne!

But then, Joely makes it exceptionally hard to dislike her characters.

Except, you know, the REALLY evil ones.

The Sha'Kae al'Dan? A fascinating culture. The parallels? Superb!

The Love scenes? Passionate, scorching and surprisingly believable given some of the circumstances.

I highly recommend "The Rose of Shanhasson" to any lover of romance, fantasy, or those of us who like it all in one.

My heart's still racing and my eyes are still a little moist, I need to go grab some Klennex.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully Wicked! 2 May 2008
By Clarissa Elaine Brown - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Wonderfully Wicked!

Those are just two words to describe "The Rose of Shanhasson" by Joely Sue Burkhart. Joely expertly blends Fantasy and Romance in a novel that will make your heart thump thump thump as mine did. She produces characters that pull at your heart-strings and you'll ache just as they ache. They are well put together and absolutely magnificent.

Shannari is the Rose of Shanhasson destined to wear the Rose Crown and rule as High Queen of the Green Lands. She is betrothed to Prince Theo, a vile man who intends to rule the Green Lands alone. However, the Blessed Lady has her own plans that she has already set in motion. Betrayed and heart-broken, Shannari's magic is crippled and that magic is the key to saving her home, the Green Lands. Shannari has her own plans though and they do not revolve around the use of her magic to save her lands.

Shannari's plans, however, are put on hold when the Sha'Kae al'Dan attack Dalden Bay. Rhaekhar, Khul of the Nine Camps, his nine Blood and his warriors defeat Shannari's soldiers in battle. In victory, Rhaekhar claims Shannari, sparing her soldiers. Shannari refuses to let any of her soldiers take her place because that would wound her sense of duty. She surrenders and allows the Khul takes her home to his Plains. Rhaekhar is convinced he has found his Rose, given to him in a vision from the Great Wind Stallion. The Khul showers her with his love but Shannari rebels unwilling to love another.

Among Rhaekhar's nine Blood, there is Varne, who dislikes this outlander chosen by his Khul. Calling to Shannari's own shadows is Gregar, the Khul's Shadowed Blood. Between the honorable Rhaekhar and the dark shadows of Gregar, Shannari's destiny grows more complicated by the minute. Will she choose to love again or will she choose to give herself in marriage to the Dark Prince of the Green Lands.

I absolutely loved Gregar and Rhaekhar however I do have to claim Gregar as my favorite because of his darkness. His character is so tantalizing, the former assassin who's shadows call to Shannari's. He's absolutely heart breaking at times and fearsome at others. The whole culture of the Sha'Kae al'Dan drew me in and wouldn't let me go as Joely wove her tale around Shannari's destiny. Her time with Rhaekhar is full of passion, desire, honor, battle, blood and choice. I have only a few words of closing and these are particularly for Joely Sue Burkhart.

I want more! ...and a Gregar doll.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creative, Imaginative, Hot ! 25 Jan. 2012
By Annette - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
I love to read, I read at least two to three books per week. That said, I was blown away by this Trilogy. There is no way this book and the other two in the series deserve just five stars...can we change it to 11 stars? Five for a wonderfully written adventure saga and Six for a Hot, Steamy, unselfish (you'll just have to read the book to understand) Love scenes.

I will not re-write the excellent story synopsis the other reviewers have already written. I will just tell you that if you enjoy a well thought out, well written and well plotted story this is a book for you. Her descriptions of the "world" let you imagine exactly what it looked like without distracting you from the story. The main characters are are so well constructed that you are immediately intrigued by them. The conflict between strong alpha males (yes more than one!) and just as strong alpha female is written steamy but not lurid, explicit but not tawdry and above all with Love as the core theme.

After finishing The Rose of Shanhasson, I had to have the other two books, so go ahead and order them all at once, because if you finish this one late at night.... you will not be able to rest until you know you have the rest of the saga!
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