Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Emmy's Book Review... Darkangel

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Finding the man of your dreams can be a real nightmare….

As the future prima, or head witch of her clan, Angela McAllister is expected to bond with her consort during her twenty-first year, thus ensuring that she will come into her full powers at the appointed time. The clock is ticking down, and her consort has yet to make an appearance. Instead, her dreams are haunted by a man she’s never seen, the one she believes must be her intended match.

But with time running out, and dark forces attempting to seize her powers for their own, Angela is faced with a terrible choice: give up her dreams of the man she may never meet and take the safer path, or risk leaving her clan and everyone in it at the mercy of those who seek their ruin.

Darkangel is the first book in the Witches of Cleopatra Hill, a paranormal romance trilogy set in the haunted town of Jerome, Arizona.

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Angela McAllister is twenty one years old, and the next in line to be prima (leader) of her family’s coven.  She is impatiently waiting for her consort to come along, the one man who will not only be her soulmate, but will bring her into her full power.  She lives with her Aunt Rachel, who has been setting her up with various eligible males from all over the area where they live (Jerome, Arizona).  She will be able to tell at the first kiss if he is the one or not, so most of her dates lately have been pretty short.  (Literally, hey, how you doing, would you like a coke, kiss, sorry dude, have a nice life.  Very frustrating.)  She has kissed 44 “frogs” so far,  and no prince has been found among them.  

She is told that if she is not married (or at least mated) to her consort before her 22nd birthday, the consequences could be….difficult.  She could experience a drop in her powers.  She may not be strong enough to lead the family when her Great-Aunt Ruby passes away.  Time is starting to run out.  She has been dreaming of him for years, literally, and knows that he will have dark hair and green eyes.  Angela is getting desperate, and frustrated.  She is sick of not being able to be normal, to go out with and kiss a normal guy, because what would be the point. If he’s not her consort, then he’s no use to her.  (Nice to know that the guy you marry is your soulmate before hand, huh?)

Her Aunt Rachel runs a gift shop type store, and Angela makes jewelry for it.  The story starts out with her being afraid of a shadow type figure that shows itself to her twice saying that it’s looking for her.  Ghosts are no big deal for her, she sees them everyday, but this shadow gives off a very negative energy.  Aunt Rachel calls the clan together and has Angela lead them in re-warding the shop, which was the last place the shadow shows up.  Great-Aunt Ruby calls her a few days later, saying that she heard how she lead the ritual and that she knows now that Angela is ready to be prima.  But what about the consort, Angela wonders. She hopes that Ruby, although in her eighties, will still live a good long time.  Angela and her best friend attend a Halloween dance in town, where Angela meets a man from Phoenix about her age.  He’s perfect, interesting, even an artist like her.  

Once again she wishes to be normal, to just be able to spend time with this guy and kiss him without the responsibility of her heritage hanging over her.  They exchange numbers, even though she tells herself that she’s only wasting his time and hers.  He’s not her consort: for one thing he’s a civilian, not a warlock (her consort would only be a warlock) and his eyes are the wrong color.  She is called away before the dance is over to Great-Aunt Ruby’s bedside.  The time has come, Ruby dies and passes her powers over to Angela.  She feels like she is not ready for all of the changes, but she moves into Ruby's old house, although she doesn't want to.  Her distant cousin Adam offers to marry her by her birthday if her consort is not found.  He has been crazy about her for years.  

I don’t understand how this whole consort/magic sperm thing is supposed to bring her into her full powers.  Angela has been told her entire life that a prima’s powers only fully develop if she’s with her consort.  She finds her Aunt Ruby’s old diary from when she was Angela’s age.  At that time a rival clan, the Wilcox’s,  tried to kidnap Ruby.  Angela’s family fears that the Wilcox clan will try to kidnap Angela as well, which is one of the reasons that she has had guards on her ever since the shake up with the shadow creature earlier in the book.  Why they would try to kidnap Ruby had never been explained to Angela to her satisfaction, so she uses some of her new authority to get some answers.  When she is told that you don’t necessarily need to be bound to your consort to lead it only raises more questions.

“The energy of a prima is a receptive energy, what some refer to as a female energy.  a prima cannot force her energy on another.  but the energy of a primus (male prima) is something different - it can be aggressive, outward seeking.  Dangerous, which also why all the clans have a prima rather than a primus, except for the Wilcox’s .”

Angela: “ I was always told that it was bad for a prima to be with someone who wasn't her consort, almost as bad as making it to 22 without a partner”

“If you’re not a virgin you can’t be bound to a primus.   Just reaching your 22nd birthday would not be enough to protect you.  Of course you carry your greatest potential for power now, but don't think that you will be safe as long as you are on your own.”

Now this conflicts with everything she has been told her entire life, and she feels like she has been lied to by her Aunt Rachel.  There’s some friction between them because of it.  Nevertheless, life goes on, and they plan a trip to Phoenix for Christmas shopping.  She indulges her normal-girl fantasy for a bit when she gets there and calls up Chris Wilson, the boy she met at the Halloween dance.  She only gets his voicemail, and figures that is just as well anyway.  Normal is just a fantasy for her.  While shopping they run into the previously mentioned Wilcox clan.  Damon, their primus, is intimidating and lewd, and Angela is duly shaken up after this encounter.  Angela decides adam may just be the lesser evil and agrees to marry him (have sex with him) if her consort is not found by her birthday.  

Time has wound down, and it is the night before her birthday.  Angela has run out of options for consorts at this point, and she and Adam return to her house.  Angela sends her guards away, for privacy.  They are about to get down to business (as it were) when suddenly the Wilcox’s appear right there in her living room, through all of her wards and protections.  They knock Adam out, and kidnap Angela.  She wakes up tied down in a shadowy room, with Damon Wilcox leering over her.  “I told you I wanted you,” he says.  He kisses her, and is enraged to find out that he’s not her consort.  He yells for his brother, Connor, thinking that if it isn’t him, then it must be one of his brothers.  His seers have told him that Angela’s consort will be of the Wilcox clan.  Connor walks out from the shadows and Angela is flabbergasted.  Connor Wilcox is Chris Wilson, the “normal college guy” she hasn’t been able to get out of her head for the last several weeks, the one she has tried to make herself stop wanting because he wasn’t a warlock.  Connor is not like Damon, and does not want to force her to do anything.  Damon is standing over them though, so Connor kisses her to meet his demands.  Fire erupts in her veins, her head spins…..Connor was her consort the whole time.  

Damon is jubilant, and orders Connor to take her back to his apartment.  The underlying subtext was that he commanded Connor to take her home and rape her.  Connor takes her home, but tells her that he will not touch her.  Kissing her has lit a fire in him as well, though.  The book ends with him and Angela alone in his apartment, Angela telling herself that she will not, she will not, she WILL NOT, touch him.  

Well, that was a deliberate cliffhanger, and as much as I hate cliffies, it does make you want to run right to Amazon and spend the 3.99 for the next installment in this series, Darknight.  For all of the exposition and filler in this novel I quite enjoyed the story.  I will be getting the second novel at some point, if only to satisfy my own curiosity about what happens next

Keep it between the pages,

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