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Heart of Darkness (Bound by Magick Novel) Mass Market Paperback – 19 Jan 2012
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About the Author
As a stay-at-home mom, Lauren Dane had lots of conversations in a singsong voice but no real outlet for adult thoughts and words. Armed with a secondhand laptop, she decided to "give that writing thing a serious go." Nearly a decade and several dozen books later, including the Brown Family novels and the Delicious series, she's well aware of her good fortune and is loving every moment of it, even when she has to edit and put Barbie's dresses back on over and over again.
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When Meriel is asked to check in on a rogue witch who is siphoning her clan's magick without permission, she is immediately aware that not only is Dominic untrained and unaware of the amount of magick he has, he is also her bond-mate; someone that she can unite her own magick with and amplify the power of both. It also doesn't hurt that they're both free and single and have a healthy attraction to each other.
With very little knowledge of magick, Dominic's relationship with Meriel opens up his past and reveals secrets that his father figure Tom hoped would never come to light. As Dominic faces a danger of a more personal kind, Meriel is hunting down mages who are draining witches of their power and killing them. When Dominic becomes a target, he may be pretty tough, but Meriel proves even more impressive when someone tries to take away the man she now considers her own.
This author creates some great characters and throws them together into some increasingly tension filled situations. The romance is also pretty intense, their sexual chemistry incredibly heated as Meriel tries to slow things down and give Dominic the time to choose her rather than their magical bond force them quickly into a relationship he may question later. With plenty of action, romance and magic, I look forward to seeing where this author plans to go with this series.
To be fair to the author, this is a new series she's creating, so I did understand that it might take a bit to get into it, but there was no creation or explanation of the new 'world', and no background to the characters: it was just 'these are the players'.
Meriel is the crown-princess of the Owen clan of witches, her mother being the queen, The Owen. Much is expected of Merial, and she is being primed to take over from her mother, who loves her, but who seems to love her clan, heritage, role and responsibilities more.
There are attacks happening to witches over the country, and most witches belong to clans, which can help protect them, but some don't, and one such lone witch, Daniel, comes to Meriel's town and opens a nightclub, warding it against evil, which seems to be drawing magick from Clan Owen, so she's sent to check him out; he could be a baddie...
Whaddya know? He's her bond-mate - not necessarily her love/lover, but someone whose magick links with hers and enhances both of their magick powers. And yes, there's an attraction between them, but the sex wasn't frequent, wasn't erotic, simply sensual. So not typical Lauren Dane. There was a shifter type who may well be a lead in the next tale, but I wasn't interested enough to read the first chapter of the next book in the series, which was included at the back of this book.
Yes, there were kind-of-baddies...but there wasn't a feeling of danger, nor suspense, nor was there anything particularly interesting about the tale or about the characters. it was slow, a bit boring, and didn't have anyt stand-out characters. Did I enjoy it? No, as I kept thinking that there would be a great 'reveal' at some point, and I felt totally let down. Will I read the next? Perhaps, but only if it was available at my library and I didn't have to pay to read it.
That's two successive LD books that haven't been great, but I may be doing her an injustice, as the next book might be a bit more fast-paced, but I'm not holding my breath, if you'll pardon the pun.
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