Saturday, February 26, 2011

Review: Dreams of a Dark Warrior


Murdered before he could wed Regin the Radiant, warlord Aidan the Fierce seeks his beloved through eternity, reborn again and again into new identities, yet with no memory of his past lives.

When Regin encounters Declan Chase, a brutal Celtic soldier, she recognizes her proud warlord reincarnated. But Declan takes her captive, intending retribution against all immortals—unaware that he belongs to their world.

Yet every reincarnation comes with a price, for Aidan is doomed to die when he remembers his past. To save herself from Declan’s torments, will Regin rekindle memories of the passion they once shared—even if it means once again losing the only man she could ever love?
Making the Grade: A-

For My Thoughts

Dreams of a Dark Warrior is only my second book by Kresley Cole and while Declan Chase is no Malkolm Slaine (from Demon from the Dark and one of my favorite characters and books of 2010), he is a hero forced to endure unspeakable horrors which have left him the hardened, dark and damaged man he is today. He’s a character that Cole makes you simultaneous weep for while you hate his guts. I think I am safe in assuming from my limited Kresley Cole reading experience that she certainly delights in making her heroes some of the most tortured souls I have every read.

The premise of this book intrigued me from the beginning. One kiss on the lips triggers the memories and one act of sex is akin to signing a death warrant. I couldn’t wait to see how Cole would write the H/h out of the seemingly impossible corner she’d painted them in to.

1000 years of love and heartache is a long time for any couple to endure and yet Reginleit the Radiant and Aiden the Fierce have been loving and losing each other for that length of time. Whether he’s a knight or a privateer or a Calvary officer in his past lives, one thing is for certain Regin and Aiden are soulmates destined to repeat their past sins and suffer the consequences. Maybe the 5th time’s the charm? Only if Regin doesn’t kill Declan Chase first herself. Let the games begin!

Cole makes it exceedingly hard to like the latest reincarnation of Aiden in the form Declan Chase. Dark and brooding, unfeeling except for his hatred of all things detrus he is the perfect candidate to oversee the secret installation housing all things immortal and Regin the Radient his own personal capture is the latest inmate to be a "guest" in the hellhole jail.

The first half of Dreams of a Dark Warrior was spent showing us how Declan became the man he is and his understandable hatred of all things immortal and he had every right to hate them with every fibre of his being. He suffered at the hands of the Neoptera, scarred and barely escaping sure death while he watched the vile creatures kill the members of his family. Declan was a mean, torturing S.O.B. and Regin and her friends and enemies alike were treated to several rounds of torture at his hands.

Once all hell broke loose on the island (literally the walls came on tumbling down), then the story really started to heat up.

I really like the band of weary brother’s allegiance formed by Declan, Regin and a cast of great secondary characters including King Vamp Lothaire, Aiden’s life long friend and fellow Berserker Brandr, the Fey Natalya and the young and innocent half-vamp Thad (surely Ms. Cole has his story in the works!) as they worked together to survive. Watching these characters form an uneasy alliance was funny, full of betrayal, promises made, deals struck and finally honor among immortals?

I just wanted to include a couple of funny memorable lines that had me LOL’ing:

Regin: “I like em young, dumb and hung“.

Regin to Declan as she observes him stripping: “Thanks for the view of your junkyard.”

And lastly just a little description to whet your appetite:

Rock-hard ridges descended to the low waist of his camo pants. Her gaze dipped to his flat navel, then to his goodie trail. And lower... She swallowed. He’d begun stiffening in those pants.
She yanked her gaze up determined to look at anything else. Around his neck he wore dog tags, and a big, butch military watch was strapped to one brawny forearm. With the combat boots, low-slung pants, and tacticool accessories, he looked good. Even scarred, he looked better than good.

The struggles were many but in the end you can’t deny that a 1000 years is a long time to wait for a happily ever after!

Cole has certainly set up a world full of great characters whose stories are still be told. Whose story is next Lothaire? The Nucking Futs Nix? Thad? I for one can’t wait. Oh and while I’m waiting I’ve got a whole backlist to get caught up on.


Larissa {Larissa's Bookish Life} said...

Great review! I gotta start reading ths series! =P

The Book Pimp Blogs said...

You really should Larissa. I think it would be right up your alley.

A Buckeye Girl Reads said...

I so need to read this series-I just glanced at this review, because it's on my list of series to start this year!

The Book Pimp Blogs said...

You most definiely need to read this series. I went and bought the entire backlist and just need to find time to read them. The two I've read have been most enjoyable and I don't think I've missed out on any storyline by starting so far into the series.