Thursday, February 8, 2018

4 Wine Glass #Review of Heat by Donna Grant


33574153Title: Heat
Series: Dark Kings #12
Author: Donna Grant
Format: Kindle, 336 pages
Published: January 30th 2018 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Reviewer: Linda
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 Wine Glasses

Nikolai is a dragon shapeshifter who knows well the meaning of loss. Orphaned and raised to be a Dragon King, he never accepts defeat. Now, Nikolai prefers his solitude . . .until a beautiful, irresistible woman calls upon him for help—and Nikola’s whole word goes up in flames.

Ever since MI5 agent Esther woke to discover her mind taken over with magic, she feels like stranger to herself. She looks to a notorious dragon, one who has the power to help her find her memory. But as she and Nikolai come closer to discovering what really happened to her, a dangerous passion ignites between them. Can this lone Dragon King help the woman he’s grown to love to uncover the truth about her past—or will a deep and fiery danger tear them both apart? 

Linda's Thoughts:
“It’s raining,” she said with a glower out the window.
He rose and walked around the island to stand next to her. “Shall we spend the day before a roaring fire making love?”

Heat by Donna Grant is a captivating paranormal urban fantasy romance and so much more! Returning to Donna Grant’s Dark Kings’ world is a treat that I always look forward to. This entry is the twelfth installment in her series featuring hot kilted dragon shapeshifters, fae and druids set amidst a plethora of back-stabbing shenanigans.

I cannot imagine reading this installment as a standalone. The earlier books could be read that way, but, as we are careening towards the grand finale, a newbie would be lost with the reveals within. We’re talking about multiple chapters addressing the series’ arc and not directly related to the self-contained romance and danger plot – not just a few lines here and there. If you are new to this entire series, you should know that you do not need to read any of the author’s other series before jumping into her Dark Kings. However, reading Donna’s Reapers’ series would be a good move as it takes place alongside this series and includes some of the same characters.

Heat is the HEA story of Nikolai, Dragon King of the Ivories, and M15 agent Esther, Henry’s sister.  I really liked both main characters even though their romance was a low-angst given from the beginning since their attraction was mutual. That is not to say, though, that I didn’t enjoy their chemistry and sexy times. I inhaled every scene!

As the story opens, we learn that Esther’s memories are fragmented thanks to a powerful druid who stole them in a previous installment. Esther prides herself on being a woman in control and she cannot stop worrying about what atrocities she may have committed while a puppet for this druid. Nikolai volunteers his services to help her track down the druid and her previous movements and interactions. His power of projected thermography is unique. It allows him to position himself at a scene, but not be involved in it or present when it occurred. His talent proves to be quite useful as Esther and Nikolai pair up to travel to Ireland from Scotland in search of the elusive druid and Esther’s lost past.

Of course, there’s some juicy aberrants. Nikolai’s and Ulrik’s close connection in the past shows us a totally different side of Ulrik as we are treated to snippets from Ulrik’s past in which he’s not the angry, raging psychopath he’s seemed to be to-date. In addition, readers will be blown away by disclosures regarding Rhi, Con, Henry, Death, the Reapers, Usaeil, Balladyn and the druids. Poor Rhi! Her world is turned upside down in more ways than one. I want her to find her King and happiness so much! Just know that every turn of the page is exciting with so many unveilings.

Following please find a few of my favorite excerpts from Heat:

“The excitement that filled Usaeil could barely be contained. She knew it wouldn’t take Taraeth long to corner Rhi.

As she walked past a mirror on her way to the movie set, she paused and looked at herself. Perfection. There was no way Con would refuse her. He was making a show of it, but she knew he’d cave.

It didn’t matter how long it took, the King of Kings would be hers.

That was something else she’d tell Rhi right before the pesky meddler breathed her last. The need to have Rhi wiped from existence consumed her.

Usaeil wouldn’t be able to concentrate on anything else until Rhi was gone. Forever. No one would stand between the Queen of the Light and what she wanted. Especially not someone like Rhi.” 

“It’s been a while since I’ve wanted to smile.”
“So all you needed was sex?” he teased.

Finally! Everything starts to come together! It’s amazing that twelve books into the series, the installments are still imaginative, original and soooo addictive. I highly recommend this series to anyone who loves romantic paranormal urban fantasies with great characters that will pull at your heartstrings. Heat is fast-paced and action-packed. The puzzle pieces are starting to come together and, oh my, not everything is black and white. Far from it as readers should expect twists and turns galore herein. The ending is a biggie! The next book can’t come soon enough! It is coming in May 2018 and is Ulrik’s book!!!!! I cannot wait!!!!!

Suggested Reading Order:
The Dark Kings series is a spin off Donna's Dark Warriors Series and Dark Sword Series.
DARK CRAVING (Book # 0.1)
DAWN'S DESIRE (Book # 0.3)
DARK HEAT (Books # 0.1 - 0.3 plus a bonus story)
DRAGON KING (Book # 6.25)
DRAGON FEVER (Book #9.5)
FIRESTORM (Book #10) 
Blaze (Dark Kings, #11) 

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