I've read a couple of Laurel K. Hamilton's Anita Blake vampire-hunter series, but had never even heard of the Meredith Gentry novels — though wildly popular — until the review copy landed on my doorstep.
It's the fifth in the series, and while I can't say I'd recommend it as a standalone novel, fans of the fictional fey princess should be sprinkling faerie dust in anticipation (the book hits shelves on December 12).
Princess Meredith was once a hardboiled private detective in Los Angeles, but ever since discovering her secret past and her familial connection to the faerie world, "princess" has become a full-time occupation for the oversexed siren.
Yep, this is a paranormal romance novel — expect a lot of flitting from bed to bed as the disgraced royal tries desperately to conceive a baby… or be killed. As Meredith explains it, "The only certainty is death at the hands of my cousin Cel, or his followers, if I fail to conceive."
But there's a new captain of the guard ready to gird his loins, among other things, as the story picks up and mixes sex with skullduggery, and of course a lot of magic, misdeeds, and mushy promises.
"If I can reclaim control of the fey power that once was, there may be hope for me and my reign in faerie. I might yet quell the dark schemes and subterfuges surrounding me. Though shadows of obsession and conspiracy gather, I may survive."
If you like this sort of thing, or you're already a fan of Hamilton's, you can't go wrong with Mistral's Kiss — it's beautifully written; the characters, while somewhat stock (aren't they all, in romantic novels?), are three-dimensional enough; and the story is rousing, each page filled to the brim with elements of horror, fantasy, supernatural history, and passion.
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Reviewed by Staci Layne Wilson