Monday, September 29, 2008

Wicked Deeds On A Winter’s Night by Kresley Cole

Title: Wicked Deeds On A Winter’s Night
Author: Kresley Cole

Type: Paranormal (Book 3, Immortals After Dark)
Published: 2007


Bowen MacRieve of the Lykae clan was nearly destroyed when he lost the one woman meant for him. The ruthless warrior grew even colder, never taking another to his bed -- until a smoldering encounter with his enemy, Mariketa the Awaited, reawakens his darkest desires. When sinister forces unite against her, the Highlander finds himself using all his strength and skill to keep her alive.

Temporarily stripped of her powers, Mari is forced to take refuge with her sworn adversary. It's rumored that no one can tempt Bowen's hardened heart, but soon passion burns between them. Though a future together is impossible, she fears he has no intention of letting her go.

If they defeat the evil that surrounds them, can Mari deny Bowen when he demands her body and soul -- or will she risk everything for her fierce protector?

Why: Really enjoyed the first two books in this series, a series recommended throughout blogland ages ago.

Thoughts: Overall, clever. Introduced earlier in the series, Bowen is an interesting character. His backstory and, more importantly, his fate, caught my heartstrings and deftly cued up my desire to read his story. That it took me months to get to it is not a reflection on Cole. Say it with me…I’m busy.

All torqued up to learn of his fate, it took me a little while to settle into the story. Cole conforms to no mold here. Instead, she forces patience. Bowen is not at all sure that Mari is his intended mate. For good reason. Lykae have only one mate in the world and Bowen believes his was found and lost 180 years before. Coming into Wicked Deeds, series readers know of Bowen’s mate, her grisly death and his consuming guilt and sorrow. So when he resists the idea of another mate, we understand. But like Bowen, we’re also unable to resist Mari. Amidst a lot of spark, Cole deftly pulls readers forward until we, like Bowen, begin to look for any reason for it to be true.

Mari’s resistance is substantial as well. Left at a young age by both parents, she trusts no one to stay. Especially one who questions her place in his future. Add to that the fact that she has not yet transitioned into an immortal or come close to mastering her given talents and you have a young, vulnerable woman still longing for the comforts of her teenage-like existence back home in the coven. She’s not wrong in thinking a romance with the much older, chauvinist Bowen is off the mark.

For context, Cole picks up where she left off in book two—near the end of The Hie, an international contest the author likens to The Amazing Race. To thwart Mari, Bowen traps her and an assortment of other contestants in the bowels of a mountain inhabited by the long-tortured souls of some nasty critters. To his credit, Bowen believed her capable of escape. When she does not return, the Lykae is ordered to retrieve her or face war. He goes, compelled mostly by the fact that he needs her to reverse the curse she placed on him just as he sealed the mountain. The curse prevents self-healing or limb regeneration and Bowen is in desperate need of both. He is also drawn however, by lingering feelings sparked between them in the mountain and genuine guilt for putting her in mortal danger.

Avoiding predictability, Cole buffers Mari with a cast of others bent on protecting her from Bowen. She also allows Mari physical power over Bowen, effectively countering his natural domination and possessiveness. Cole tilts that balance further by making Bowen honestly squeamish in the face of Mari’s magic. Throughout, there is emotional depth to accompany the laugh-out-loud entertainment.

So, thus far, two very appealing characters, bonafied obstacles to their union, highly believable challenges to the hero’s strength and charm and a ‘scary’ factor climbing up and off the scales. There is also a delightful, wry sense of humor in every character and an authentic Scottish brogue from your hero. Utterly captivating. And charming. Bowen may not be able to charm Mari into complete compliance, but he had no trouble charming the pants off of me. I was so enamored I hesitated to pick up another book after finishing this one. I wanted a few more days to let Bowen’s brogue ring in my ears.

The drama that ends it is fabulous. Exciting and surprising. And finally, the window through which we see the HEA. Granted, the reader does not doubt it will happen, but Cole certainly leaves us puzzled as to how it can happen right up to the end. Every word, worth it.

Overall: I enjoyed myself. Very much. Doesn’t get much better than that.


  1. I came to this series late, and I'm so loving it.
    You say,
    "There is also a delightful, wry sense of humor in every character..."
    I so agree with that. The wry humor all through this series is so wonderful. I'm on #5!

  2. Hi Carolyn Jean - Book 5, eh? Hopefully I can catch up soon. I JUST saw the cover of book 6. Very nice. Enjoy!

  3. Hmmmm.... I had a meh experience with book 1, and never really had the desire to pick up any more of them. I know so many who have loved these books, though. So glad you liked it, Jen!


Have you read it? What do you think?

Related Posts with Thumbnails