Courtesy of Love Romances
Traian Trigovise is one of the ancient Carpathian hunters, sent out over a thousand years ago by the former Prince. He has dedicated his life to hunting the undead, evil vampires, once Carpathians, who have chosen a life of evil and power. Traian was returning home to see his new Prince when he happened across a pack of vampires working together, incessantly searching for something unknown to him, that can only be incredible power, the only thing strong enough to make these usually solitary creatures join forces. He was severely injured in a battle with them, and was going away to heal when a vision of beauty, unlike anyone he had ever known, comes to him.
Joie Sanders is a self-employed bodyguard, selling her protection services to those in need. She is injured on the job, not for the first time, and uses her psychic abilities to astral project out of her body and away from the pain of her wounds plaguing her. While free and floating she ventures far, into the Carpathian Mountains, where she happens upon a beautiful ice cave and sees him.... One she thought but a dream.
Both are startled to find each other, Traian especially, when he sees color for the first time in hundreds of years, realizing she is his lifemate, the other half of his soul. As they both heal from their injuries, much time passes while they take advantage if their mind link, though Joie is convinced she is going crazy... hearing that voice in her head. When she is on a caving expedition, they meet in the flesh, him again being severely injured, trapped by the vampires, in a mysterious wizard's cave, where Traian is sure the answers sought by the evil ones can be found. Joie comes to his rescue, with the help of her brother, Jubal, and her sister, Gabrielle.
All is still not well though for Joie and Traian. While she adjusts, remarkably well, to being mate to such a wonder of a man - who is very old-fashioned - the vampires are still seeking their elusive answers, which Traian needs to prevent, as he is convinced only something able to grant unsurpassable power would be reason enough for vampires to unite. They are in a race against time... to prevent the vampires from finding their answers, all the while they lean what it is to be lifemates.
Ms. Feehan has written yet another gripping tale of passion in the incredible Dark saga. Joie is probably one of the most memorable heroines to date in this series, showing a fierce independence and strength of her own, as do all the heroines, but she just stands out in the memory banks, making her a more then perfect mate for one of the ancients, the strongest of the Carpathian race. Traian is the typical alpha male in most ways, his desire to protect his mate as strong as is normal for his kind, but with an understanding and respect for Joie's need to feel empowered and strong in her independence.
Also of note, Ms. Feehan expands her world even more, adding a fantastical element in the form of the wizards' world, complete with magical spells, curses, and dragons. She has added new factors, evidence that her world is far from being complete. As always, one will be captivated from the first paragraph, featuring the vivid battle of Traian vs. the band of evil undead. She holds the reader in her spell all the way through the final climactic scene resolving one storyline, but leaving another wide open, hopefully to be carried into future books in the series.
Those skeptics out there who claimed the Dark saga was getting old and stale are in for a surprise as that couldn't be farther from the truth. Ms. Feehan's voice is as fresh as ever, and with all the new elements to the saga being added in this story, the excitement is bound to continue for a long time coming. The only thing wrong with this story was that it was way too short!
© Kelley A. Hartsell, April 2003. All rights reserved.