Dianne Duvall was a quick find through another of my favorite authors, and this cover instantly intrigued me. I mean really, how could you not fall in love with that image? The dark wings of the cloak covering the man in armor like a raven’s wings stretching around him. The cover is cool and I’m vaguely shallow when it comes to covers. Shiny things attract my attention. Of course, it also helps that there’s a bold note stating “USA Today Bestseller”.
Here’s the summary!
Since the day Lord Dillon earned his spurs, rumors of his savagery on the battlefield have preceded him into every room, stilling tongues and sparking fear. Weary of battle, he wishes only to find a woman he can wed who will approach him not with fear, but with the tenderness that has been absent from his life for so long. Yet only the wisewoman seems invariably at ease in his presence. Perhaps because she garners the same fear in others that he does himself.
For seven years, Alyssa has been by Lord Dillon’s side, counseling him from the shadows, healing him with her hands, and staving off the worst of his loneliness while his fearsome reputation keeps others at bay. Blessed–or cursed–with gifts that label her a sorceress, she is forced to conceal her youth and the love she harbors for him beneath umbral robes that lead Dillon and his people to believe she is the same aged wisewoman who served his father.
All is revealed, however, and passions flare when an enemy threatens Dillon’s life and Alyssa sacrifices everything to save him. When Dillon discovers that the wisewoman is far from elderly, he is instantly entranced. And, as he and Alyssa work together to defeat an enemy bent on destroying them both, Dillon will risk anything–even the wrath of his king–to be with her.
My first thought was that this reminded me of Howl’s Moving Castle. I love a Miyazaki film, but I wasn’t certain how much I really wanted to read about an old woman and a young man falling in love. The thought made me slightly uncomfortable and actually prevented me from buying this book for a while.
That was a huge mistake. Once I bought this book, I was swept into an amazing world, wonderfully strong characters, and falling in love along side Alyssa. This is such a marvelous book that grabs you by the throat and shakes you around a little bit. There’s adventure, action, intrigue, and of course romance. It was highly entertaining and thankfully I didn’t need to read Duvall’s other series first (although now that I have, it’s certainly helpful). If you feel like jumping into a series, I’d highly suggest this one.
My number one love in this book is that the romance is believable. There wasn’t a moment where I thought, hey wait a minute that wouldn’t have happened. Yes Dillon does fall in love with Alyssa immediately as soon as he knows she’s young. But who wouldn’t? She’s mysterious, she’s been in his life for seven years, and suddenly she’s not an old woman. He’s captivated by the idea of her just as much as the reality of her, and that’s what was so striking to me. She proves herself more than worthy of his love multiple times and Dillon acknowledges that fact.
Since when do we get romance novels like this? Most romances lately seem to be so caught up in arguing and love triangles that they forget how wonderful a romance is if the people deserve to be loved.
It’s a fantastic book, I would highly suggest it to anyone who loves the fantasy romance genre. I will give a warning however! You’ll want to buy all of her books, especially the series that runs along with this one. They are all absolutely worth it.
Notable Quote –
“I lack the words necessary to describe its beauty and know only that in hiding it from me, you were robbing me of my greatest treasure.” Dianne Duvall – A Sorceress of His Own, The Gifted Ones Book 1