|Title: Dreams of a Dark Warrior
Author: Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #11
Cover Art: Craig White
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Reviewed by: Julia
Explicit sex scenes and violence during a sex scene (which is what you get for kissing up on an angry Valkyrie).
HE VOWED HE’D COME FOR HER . . .
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.
SHE AWAITS HIS RETURN . . .
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.
TO SATE A DESIRE MORE POWERFUL THAN DEATH . . .
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?
DREAMS OF A DARK WARRIOR is a fast paced, violent, smoking hot thrill-ride of a book, and I loved every minute of it. From the moment twelve-year-old Reginleit the Radiant walks into a mead hall filled with wenching berserkers (yeah, I did a double take at the number “twelve”, too), this story breaks the humdrum expectations of a “soul mate” driven paranormal romance.
Of all the circumstances that could kept literary lovers apart, Regin and Aidan’s situation manages to be both entertaining and puzzling. I was pleasantly surprised by a few twists on the “reincarnation of a lost love” theme. Aidan’s present incarnation, Declan Chase, is about as tormented and reprehensible as a man can be. In Kresley Cole’s hands, however, this just adds fuel to chemistry between Declan and Regin. DREAMS OF A DARK WARRIOR has a great balance of flashback love-lost and present tense smoking-hotness to keep things engaging and entertaining.
And when I say Declan is “reprehensible”, I don’t mean he drives aggressively or thinks women are bad at math. He is a tortured, militant xenophobe dedicated to capturing, vivisecting, and destroying all creatures of Lore. Reading about his past, however, and the mental anguished caused by being separated from Regin, Declan garners enough sympathy to keep him hovering at the very end of the “sexy bad-man” continuum for me (Lothaire the Enemy of Old is also on that scale, FYI, if only by the tips of his fine-ass fingers). Despite the sexual tension, and classic Kresley Cole humor, Regin and Declan have a lot of explicitly violent interactions. I never felt the aggressive elements were over the line, but it was marked enough to be beyond the “Valkyries just want to have fun” mayhem of other Immortals After Dark novels.
While DREAMS OF A DARK WARRIOR wasn’t able to supplant DEMON FROM THE DARK as my favorite Kresley Cole novel to date, it is a strong addition to the series. Funny, sexy, and I believe I already mentioned “violent”, this book has me trolling the Internet eager for my next trip into the Immortals After Dark world.