Thursday, June 8, 2017

The Moon Shines Red (Heart of Darkness #1)The Moon Shines Red by Pamela Sparkman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Category: Adult
Genre: fantasy, Romance
Content: Clean

Lord Lochlan was cursed in the womb, condemned by the perceived crimes of his parents.

I should have stayed away from him. But I couldn't.
HE was my life. And he just might kill me.
So I guess that means...he may also be my end.

The moon Shines Red is a clean historical fantasy romance that has a bit of a fairy tale feel to it. I loved this book and the beautiful messages within it about love and perseverance so much. I haven't felt this way about a book since I read The Bird and the Sword earlier this year. There are a couple of heart-pounding romantic scenes in this book and I fell in love with the tortured Lochlan right along with our leading lady.

Lochlan is a tortured soul who has lived cursed for 500 years unable to touch anyone without killing them, so he has isolated himself from most other people. One day Elin is out walking in the forest and she sees a beautiful white owl. She starts following it until she ends up at a clearing and there she meets Lochlan. They are immediately drawn to each other, but Lochlan warns her to keep her distance. They part and Lochlan plans to never see her again but fate has different ideas.

I liked Elin as a character a lot. There is a secret about her that is eventually revealed and while it's pretty easy to predict, I still really enjoyed the story. The only complaint I have about her is that she is pretty defenseless in the beginning and stays that way throughout the whole story, even after she begins to learn how to protect herself she never has the opportunity to use those skills. I really would have liked it if she would have had the opportunity to come into her own in that aspect.

The antagonist Zeph ended up being more layered than I initially thought and I liked the story behind him and what was revealed about him. I don't always sympathize with the bad guy in books, but this was one of those times where I could feel badly for him to an extent. The next book is going to be about him and I do wonder how he can be redeemed after some of his actions. He just went too far and so I'm not sure how I'm going to feel about him in the next book.

As for the fantasy aspect of the story, I thought it was pretty well done. The story involves the Seelie and Unseelie courts in the faerie realm. We don't actually get to see too much of the faerie realm in the book as it takes place mostly in the human world, and that's something that I would have liked to explore a little more. I'm pretty sure that will happen in the next book though, since it will be about Zeph.

Thanks to NetGalley, Book Enthusiast Promotions, and the Author for giving me a copy of this book.

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