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Wednesday, July 19, 2017

5 Wine Glass #Review of Spellbinder by Thea Harrison




33980043Title:  Spellbinder
Series: Moonshadow #2
Author: Thea Harrison
Format: Kindle, 326 Pages
Published: 18 July 2017 (Amazon Digital Services, LLC)
ISBN: ASIN: B072N6LC5W
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Reviewer: Linda
Source: Author
Rating: 5 out of 5 Wine Glasses

From author Thea Harrison comes the latest story in the New York Times bestselling Moonshadow trilogy….

Kidnapped while on tour, musician Sidonie Martel is transported to the mystical land of Avalon. A human without magical ability, she is completely vulnerable to the deadly forces surrounding her.

When she defies her captors and refuses to share her music, an act of violent cruelty leaves her broken, her ability to play silenced, maybe forever. Her only hope is a whisper in the dark, gentle hands that offer healing, and a man who refuses to show her his face yet who offers advice she dare not ignore.

One of the most feared and powerful sorcerers in history, Morgan le Fae serves a Queen he despises, Isabeau of the Light Court. Once a famous bard and an advisor to kings, Morgan has been enslaved to Isabeau for hundreds of years, acting as enforcer and the commander of her deadly Hounds.

Sidonie’s music touches Morgan in places he had abandoned centuries ago, and her fiery spirit resurrects feelings he had believed long dead. For Sidonie, trapped in captivity, passion offers a comfort she cannot resist.

But Isabeau holds Morgan bound in magical chains that only Death can break. And in the court of a cruel, jealous Queen, the only thing that burns hotter than love is revenge…




Linda's Thoughts:
“He who rides a tiger is afraid to dismount.”

Spellbinder by Thea Harrison is the second amazing installment in Thea’s creative paranormal urban fantasy Moonshadow series. This series is a spin-off from her Elder Races series set in the same remarkable world. I’ve been a fan of Thea’s since 2011 when she published her first Elder Races novel, Dragon Bound. I have inhaled every single installment in that series and it was a given that I would jump on board with her new Moonshadow series. I honestly didn’t think anything could top Dragon Bound, but, incredibly, Spellbinder does just that!

Spellbinder is the second installment in this series, but it could be enjoyed as a standalone read if that is your preference. Thea fills in any necessary information so a newbie will never be lost. When Moonshadow, the previous installment in this series ended, Robin, the Puck, had mysteriously disappeared. In Spellbinder, we catch up with Robin. This story mostly takes place in Avalon, where Queen Isabeau’s castle is located.

Spellbinder is the story of loathed sorcerer Morgan le Fae and acclaimed musician Sidonie Martel. As the story begins, it quickly becomes apparent that Isabeau, the Light Queen, has Morgan ensnared under a powerful spell and that she has been forcing him to serve her. It is a difficult task for an author to take a long-vilified character and successfully shift readers’ perceptions of him/her. Thea pulls off the feat of re-casting Morgan as a true hero with aplomb. I am still blown away by this couple’s story – their fortitude, ingenuity, chemistry, passion and strength in adversity and I can’t wait to read more about them as this series continues.

Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from Spellbinder:

He cupped her head with both hands. “You’re full of your own kind of magic, and it’s much more rare and beautiful than all the other spells around you. They are commonplace. You are unique.”
--- 

“Hell is empty, and all the devils are here.”
“Unfortunately,” he said as gently as he knew how, “it would appear so.”
--- 

“I want you too, so much,” she whispered.
He murmured in her ear, “Then take me.”

I had many favorite scenes but one that quickly comes to mind involves a simultaneously flirtatious and humorous discussion between Morgan and Sidonie. Morgan’s surprised reaction still makes me laugh-out-loud: 
“Just when I was coping with the idea that I’d necked with a werewolf,” she muttered. “Just when I was beginning to flirt with the idea of possibly… possibly inviting sex with a werewolf. …
Beside her, he had stiffened. Very quietly, he said, “Sex?” …
Giving her a slow, coaxing smile that turned the heat in the room up by a thousand degrees, he stroked her lips with the balls of his thumbs as he murmured, “Can we get back to talking about possibly inviting that werewolf for sex?”

I grew up dreaming of Camelot and King Arthur and still love well-written tales steeped in mythological lore. Morgan has been blamed over the centuries for turning on his protege, King Arthur, but, in Spellbinder, we learn that this was not by Morgan’s choice. Aspects of the Wild Hunt where Azrael, aka Lord Death, leads the baying hounds at the year’s end are also interestingly incorporated herein.

Spellbinder is exhilarating, addictive, gripping, romantically delicious, magical perfection! This is not a book to pick up when you need your sleep. Seriously, I was unable to put it down until I’d read the last word. LOL, for me, that was at three am a few nights ago. If you enjoy superb paranormal romances that take you on a wild fun ride melding fantasy with Arthurian elements, Spellbinder should absolutely be on your must-read list. I wouldn't hesitate to read it again.  I can't wait to read Lionheart, the next exciting adventure in this imaginatively awesome series, coming in early 2018!


Suggested Reading Order: 
Moonshadow (Book #1)
Spellbinder (Book #2)
Lionheart (Book #3) – coming early 2018!

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