Mistress of the Stone
By: Maria Zannini
Genre: Paranormal, Shape-shifters
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
Publication Date: 08-28-2012
File Size: 472 KB
Print Length: 262 pages
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (August 28, 2012)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
X-Ray: Not Enabled
Source:EARC from author in exchange for honest review
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
BOOK SYNOPSISShe was ready for his steel, but not for his flesh.
Luísa Tavares has a list of sins the length of the Antilles, but there’s no time to repent for them now. When a pockmarked Frenchman hands her Papa’s ring—still attached to his severed finger—she orders the Coral back to the Caribbean, despite her father’s earlier warning never to return.
It’s Luísa’s luckless fate that the only man who can help her is a blasted Inglés pirate hunter who’s more dead than alive and locked in a curse he doesn’t want lifted. Worse, his feral sensuality sparks a hunger she can’t ignore.
Xander Daltry hadn’t planned on kidnapping this wild woman—or succumbing to his uncontrollable desire for her. But he needs Luísa and the moonstone she wears around her neck to rescind a witch’s spell. His sister, long dead, and others like her have been cursed to remain in the mortal plane for eternity. Only the stone can set them free.
The only way to convince the reluctant pirate queen to help him is to withhold one small bit of the truth. For if she learns who really betrayed her father, the longing in her fiery eyes could easily turn to murderous wrath…
Contains a pirate queen with a sacred gem, a werewolf with an agenda, an island where nothing is as it seems, and a hero with a Jolly Roger that’ll make you purr like a kitten. }
My ThoughtsLike all of the previous books that I have read written by Maria Zannini this book is "clean"; the characters are enjoyable, well developed and well thought out as to how their role is necessary to the story and most of all the various plot lines that intersect keep the readers attention without overwhelming them. I thought that the idea of a female captain to a Pirate vessel was unique, especially when you learn she is only 19 and has a crew of 50 men that are in no way immune to her beauty but would fight to the death to defend her honor if they feel she is in any way threatened.
Luisa Tavares is a combination of her mixed heritage, a beautifully seductive dark haired vixen but an innocent as well, she is a young woman who has been sheltered as best she could be growing up on a ship filled with men. At 19 Luisa is longing for a man of her own, one to pleasure who will pleasure her in return but also one to love.
Xander Daltry is a captain of a pirate hunting vessel, he has chased and brought to heel many a privateer in his career and he is fully aware of who and what Luisa is but once he "tastes" her all he can think of is "claiming her" for himself.
This makes for a highly combustible combination when Luisa and Xander interact, they catch the pages on fire and also keep readers entertained very well with all the twists and turns that their respective stories takes before the book ends.
The time period for this story is unusual because it is a paranormal that involves pirates on the high seas, werewolves, curses, zombie like creatures and a little bit of what I would call voodoo if not downright black magic. The characters are very strong, they all have a very distinct voice for the full cast not only the main male and female character. The side characters actually at times overshadow the main two characters of Luisa and Xander, as in real life it is not always about one or two people but about the group as a whole and this group has quite a story to tell.
There are several threads running through the plot that you can follow with ease. There is a lot of mysticism and there are also several points where the reader is going to sit down and reread because they are going to have to make sure that what they read was actually what was written, not because it is hard to understand but simply because when you read it you go "Wow, that makes sense how did she come up with that?" It is kind of neat to get surprised that way every once in a while.
I particularly enjoyed the revealing of how the witches curse came about, and also the fact that according to the legend the bloodline needed to break the curse was flowing in Luisa's veins. Not only did she have the power to right wrongs on hundreds of poor souls but she also had the power to finally release them to their eternal rest. Also enjoyed the way that the author used the breaking of the witches original curse to create a new curse that readers will find quite interesting when they get to that particular scene in the book. (Not telling you anymore because you have to read it yourself to find out what I am talking about.)
Like everything that I have read in this author's repertoire this book is full of action, full of incredibly well rounded dialogue, characters that you can easily relate to and it is quite simply a joy to read her work.
Anything more specific and I promise you that I would ruin the story for readers by revealing too much of the actual plot and how things turn out for Luisa and Xander. I will say that anyone who likes to read a melting pot of genres will get their wish with this one as it has action, it has mystery, it has intrigue, it has romance, it has hot scenes between the leading male and female characters, it has magic and it has horror elements all carefully and skillfully mixed into the story.
[EARC from author in exchange for an honest review.]