Title: KNIGHTS OF STONE: MASON
Series: Highland Gargoyles #1
Author: Lisa Carlisle
Format: Kindle, 138 Pages
Published: October 17, 2014 (Amazon Digital Services LLC)
ISBN: ASIN: B00O9EHH5E
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 Wine Glasses
Gargoyles, tree witches, and wolf shifters have divided the Isle of Stone after a great battle twenty-five years ago. When Kayla, a tree witch, hears about the unconventional rock concerts in the gargoyle’s territory, she sneaks from her coven and into their territory to see for herself. Night after night, she returns to see one in particular shift into human form and play guitar at these unconventional shows.
For several nights, Mason has kept watch for the pixie-like female. He plans to seduce her, thinking she’s a visitor from another island. When he discovers she’s one of the tree witches, he retreats, attempting to keep his distance. The temptation is strong, but forbidden.
Kayla and Mason attempt to meet in secret, but other elements on the isle command their attention. A magical cloak created by the three clans on the island is thinning, leading to repercussions for all the clans. Kayla and Mason are caught in the middle of it, and their actions may change the fate for all.
This novella was originally releases as part of the Highland Shifters paranormal romance boxed set. 18+ due to adult content.
“The freak show was about to begin.
Spotlights flooded the musicians powered by solar panels near a massive amplifier. The guitarist continued playing and the others joined in, playing a raucous crossover between hard rock and heavy metal. The one with long blond hair grabbed hold of the microphone and belted out a shattering cry that sounded like a call to battle. The crowd went pin drop silent to listen and then cheered in unison as the band played on. The front man sang piercing growls and low croons about the Knights in Stone, the protectors of the ancient forests, battling against the evil tree witches... Kayla's coven.”
THE KNIGHTS OF STONE: MASON by Lisa Carlisle is the first novella in her Highland Gargoyles series. It was originally released as part of the Highland Shifters paranormal romance boxed set and is set on the Isle of Stone, home to three clans of beings:, the gargoyles, the tree witches and the wolves. In decades past, the three clans had combined their magic to cloak the island so that it remained undetected by human technology. But, when a feud erupted between the witches and gargoyles twenty-five years ago, it led to a division of land. Without the clans' combined magic, the island's camouflage shield has seeped away.
Fast forward to present day. There has been no movement to re-unite the clans or to put the island's protection back into place. . Contact between the clans is still strictly forbidden. Most of the gargoyles who had resided on the island have relocated to the Highlands leaving five brothers who have formed a rock band. They had previously successfully played on the continent, but they cannot be themselves there. So, they've been playing a concert each night on their part of the island drawing more and more humans as word spreads of their fantastic show. Mason is a guitarist with the band. One woman in the band's audience has been catching his attention. He finds himself seeking her presence each night and thinks about her as he sleeps during the day. The pull between them is undeniable.
Kayla, a tree witch, has been told not to cross into the gargoyles' territory, but she can't help herself. She simply feels more alive watching the gargoyles transform and she has an unexplainable connection with one particular guitarist whose hair is as black as midnight. One evening after the concert, while walking home through the dark woods, she and 'her' guitarist meet face-to-face. Sparks fly from the get-go as he sweetly escorts her home ensuring she arrives safely - but not before he elicits a promise from her to meet him, again, the next night.
Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from this read:
“The five statutes loomed above the crowd, still and timeless. The last light of the setting sun cast an eerie glow around them. When she fixed her gaze on Mason's stone form, her heart thumped. She scanned every inch of his silhouette, wondering about the spark of life within the stone that would animate him into flesh. A warm-blooded male with a heated touch and sensuous lips that made her melt.”
“During the show, she studied him on stage. The way he strummed the guitar, the movement of muscles in his arms and torso, the sway of the tartan fabric with his movements. Her cheeks heated when she thought about running her fingers over his torso and under his kilt. Oh, the things he could do to her with that body.”
“I'm consumed with thoughts of you. Have you bewitched me?”
One of the scenes that has stuck with me since I finished the book occurred as Mason took Kayla on a visit to his clan's homeland in the picturesque Scottish Highlands. As they flew above the rolling terrain, Kayla had looked down at the sheep populating the landscape and inquired as to what they were - since she'd never seen a sheep. "Sheep," Mason replied. "I once heard someone describe them as floating like clouds across the hills.” That comment still resonates with me and I can still picture sheep as clouds.
I enjoyed this introduction to the characters on the island and the politics of living there. The author's concept of gargoyles is quite unlike any of the previous gargoyle books I've read. I also liked both primary characters. The couple had a sweet and hot chemistry and, even though prospects for their romantic relationship seemed sadly doomed, I held out hope. Indeed, fate seemed to have their future and the island's intertwined. I would recommend KNIGHTS OF STONE: MASON to anyone who enjoys paranormal urban fantasy romances. I've already started the next book, KNIGHTS OF STONE: LACHLAN. Lachlan is the oldest of the brothers.
Suggested Reading Order:
Knights of Stone: Mason (Book #1)
Knights of Stone: Lachlan (Book #2)
Knights of Stone: Bryce (Book #3)