Monday, February 22, 2010

REVIEW: Seduce Me in Shadow by Shayla Black

ISBN 9781416578444
Series: Doomsday Brethren, Book 2
Genre: Paranormal Romance
(c) September 2009, Simon and Schuster
Shayla Black's website

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Links (paper): Amazon, Book Depository, Barnes and Noble
Buy Link (ebook): Barnes and Noble Ebook

"Teeming with magic and mayhem, adventure and romance!"

Due to a mishap in his childhood, Caden hated magic and decided to live among humans. However, he went back when his brother Lucan needed his help, only to find himself embroiled in a war among magickind as Matthias, an evil wizard, has come back from his exile, more powerful than before.

A powerful artifact called the Doomsday Diary has been stolen from Bram, the leader of the Doomsday Brethren, an underground force dedicated to battling against Matthias. Moreover, a human, Sydney Blair, was seen reporting about magickind's battle and Caden was sent to find out more about how she knew about these things and to stop her from continuing. The attraction that sprang up between them was a complication Caden didn't need, nor did he welcome the instinctive urge to take her as his mate. But when Sydney found herself in trouble, he couldn't deny the need to rescue and protect her.

As I was reading, I thought some elements of the story sounded familiar. And I realize what they reminded me of: Harry Potter. The arch enemy, evil wizard Matthias back from his exile (Voldemort coming back after being defeated ages ago), but the Council, a group of elderly wizards, wouldn't believe the rumors and even wanted Bram to squash them (Ministry of Magic [?] doing much the same thing in HP book 5, I believe). A rogue group of wizards banded together and called themselves the Doomsday Brethren to fight against this evil (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix), a pitiful few against Matthias and his Anarki (Voldemort and his Death Eaters). The only thing not in Harry Potter is the matter of the wizards and witches needing sexual energy to recharge their magic.

It's best to clarify that I haven't read book 1, so I don't know if I'd have the same impressions if I'd started the series in sequence. That aside, Shayla Black made this series her own with her unique characters and the particular adult dilemma the characters faced in their fight against evil and their own internal struggles.

Sydney, for all that she's human, is fascinated by magic. When she stumbled into magickind, she takes to it like fish to water, despite the dangers the Brethren are facing just then. I like that she's smart and ethical, that despite being a reporter, she knows the danger to magickind if she reported certain news ahead of time, so she didn't and had no intention of doing so. However, her zeal to help the Brethren overcame her common sense at times and thus, she unwittingly put herself and others in danger.

Caden MacTavish is the typical guy who denies his feelings for Sydney to the death, in part because of his brother's experiences. That I can empathize with, though he comes across as a man who isn't willing to risk his heart. But then, what man or woman is? Only someone who hasn't loved before or one who has witnessed terrible tragedy in a person close to him.

However, there is one thing that made me want me to wallop Caden over the head with something hard. His irrational fear and denial of magic. I understand the childhood trauma he has witnessed, and this might have a bearing on his definitive stand against magic. However, when he instinctively called magic to save Sydney, he should've realized that magic can also be harnessed for good. Accidents do happen, but magic in the hands of an untrained wizard like him would do more harm than good. If nothing else, I think he would've wanted to learn to use and control his magic to protect Sydney. I think this part of his denial went on a bit too long.

Still, action and adventure abound in this story, making for an exciting read. In my opinion, it isn't necessary to read the first book in the series, as past important events were highlighted in the story without info dumping.

Buy Links (paper): Amazon, Book Depository, Barnes and Noble 
Buy Link (ebook): Barnes and Noble Ebook


Sunny G said...

Interesting! I loooooove magic, so I'll give this a try. :)

Erotic Horizon said...


Thanks for the rec...


Silver @ TRR said...

You're welcome, E.H>!

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