Review: Munro

Review: MunroMunro (Immortals After Dark, #18) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #18
Published by Valkyrie Press on January 25, 2022
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 432

FINAL DECISION: Loved, loved, loved this book. Cole has the amazing ability to give each hero and heroine exactly the story they need. Fun, adventurous, and deeply emotionally satisfying. This book not only is a great story in itself but moves the IAD series forward in new ways.

THE STORY: Munro MacRieve has been captured by warlocks who seek to make his wolf captive to them. Munro resists all efforts by the warlocks to make his wolf appear until they bring him his fated mate, Kereny “Ren” Codrina. When she dies, Munro seeks a way to change time to find his mate again. Ren then finds herself kidnapped by Munro on her wedding day. But this human woman has no intention of surrendering to the immortal and instead seeks to find her way home.

OPINION: This was a wonderful book. Not my favorite in the series, but the exact book I needed today and the perfect book for Munro. After the break in the series for the last couple of years, I worried that Cole would not return to form. Instead, this book is on fire and the overarching story is still moving forward in amazing ways.

Munro has been foretold to have a harridan for a mate. And Ren is just lovely in this book. She is strong and independent and is not taking any guff from Munro from the moment they meet. The story begins with what readers of the IAD series already know and yet what happens immediately after might be the most heartbreaking scene in the series. In fact, this book was an emotional rollercoaster: ones I wept at, ones I wanted to read through spread fingers in anxiety, ones that made me laugh, and ones that were heart satisfying that I felt so warm and comforted.

Munro gains tremendous depth here. In comparison to Will, Munro seemed too nice, too perfect. This book so neatly sets out that Munro has his own scars from his past but also from his brother’s story. Feeling responsible for Will for years has taken its toll on Munro even as he seems the “happy” and “carefree” twin. Everything about Munro’s story with his mate push on Munro’s pain and weaknesses — which makes this book so good. I loved Munro as a character — especially as he interacts with other male characters who have shared parts of his journey.

I am so impressed with how Cole can write a story that is so of the world and yet feels fresh and new. In preparation for this book, I re-read the entire series and this book did not feel like any other in the series. That is why Cole is a master in this genre.

Readers of the series might wonder how and why the story is returning to this story after Sweet Ruin and Wicked Abyss and the Dacians books which seem to blow the IAD story out into a bigger universe. And the question also was — why give the preview of this story in MacRieve and then write a bunch of books in the middle. This book answers that question. Indeed, this book needs all of the prior books to make this story work. Nothing is wasted and it makes perfect sense that this book comes at this point in the overarching story. The revelations in this book also change and alter many of my expectations of where the stories of the characters are going. Good stuff!

Now to wait for the next book in the series.

WORTH MENTIONING: There are some good twists for fans of the series. To avoid spoilers, I won’t mention which characters make appearances, but enough do to make any fan happy.

CONNECTED BOOKS: MUNRO is the eighteenth book in the Immortals After Dark series. The romance here is self-contained but this series has an overarching storyline that cannot really be appreciated here. A reader should just start at the beginning or at least read MACRIEVE.

STAR RATING: I give this book 5 stars.



Review: MacRieve

Review: MacRieveMacRieve (Immortals After Dark, #14) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #14
Published by Gallery Books on July 2, 2013
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 384

Twisted and Painful and Dark But The Lykae is Also Cute

“You need to rebreak that bone. It didn’t set right.”

FINAL DECISION: The sad and painful journey of MacRieve to recover from his past where he discovers the mate he needs, treats her poorly and then realizes that she can help him heal. Chloe’s kickass personality was my favorite in this book.

THE STORY: Uilleam (“Will”) MacRieve is messed up. Tortured by his enemies, MacRieve has lost his Lykae instinct and he wants to die. The one thing that keeps him alive is the possibility of revenge. At this critical moment of his life, he meets his mate, Chloe Todd. Chloe is the mortal daughter of MacRieve’s enemy and is being auctioned off by the House of Witches. MacRieve’s instinct revives and tells him that he has to protect her. Things are complicated, however, because Chloe has secrets that even she doesn’t know that might send MacRieve from her forever.

OPINION: This is a journey through MacRieve’s past. As Nix tells him, he hasn’t healed from his past where he believes he caused the death of most of his family by his actions. His torture at the hands of the mortals has revived that pain and increased it. It’s sad that he meets Chloe and she seems to be able to help him heal, but then things go wrong.

MacRieve is brooding, dark, damaged and often times a serious jerk. He has some serious baggage that has haunted him for over nine hundred years. When he is charming, he is adorable. I also really liked the reversal of the normal Lykae story in this book. Here, MacRieve’s beast is often close to the surface and he learns to harness it through the book.

Chloe is one of my favorite heroines. MacRieve treats her poorly, but she doesn’t cower and whimper. She fights him. Her strength and determination allows her to survive MacRieve’s treatment of her. She also has to deal with some real surprises.

For fans of the series, Nix’s plans are revealed more here.

WORTH MENTIONING: This is the best epilogue but be prepared to be frustrated by having to wait.

CONNECTED BOOKS: MACRIEVE is the fourteenth book in the Immortals After Dark series. It can be read as a standalone although there is an overarching storyline for the series for which the reader needs to follow the various books.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.


Review: Lothaire

Review: LothaireLothaire (Immortals After Dark, #12) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #12
Published by Pocket on January 10, 2012
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 468

The Enemy of Old Meets His Match

“Lothaire the Enemy of Old had returned for her. Just as he’d promised.”

FINAL DECISION: Dark and macabre at times, this book fits one of the evil characters in the IAD universe. Lothaire’s mate is exactly not the woman he expected and that makes this so good.
THE STORY: Lothaire the Enemy of Old is an ancient ruthless vampire. The bastard son to the former king of the Horde, Lothaire has sworn to take over the Horde and also the kingdom from his mother’s family. Elizabeth “Ellie” Peirce is a mortal on death row and is possessed by what she terms a “demon”. Soroya an an ancient evil vampire ex-goddess and Lothaire believes that she is his mate. He intends on finding a way to exorcise Ellie and claim Soroya as his own. The complication is that the longer Lothaire is in the presence of Ellie and Saroya, the more he begins to fear that his mate might now be who he thinks it is.

OPINION: I love the struggle that Lothaire has in determining his mate. He treats Ellie terribly and one might expect that it is she who is his mate. Ellie is certainly not evil, but she isn’t a sweet, innocent miss either. Even better, she doesn’t really change Lothaire much — readers of the series can be assured that Lothaire doesn’t turn into Mr. Nice Guy, but rather controls his darkest impulses.

The story is very dramatic with sneaky and intriguing dilemmas and clever, dark solutions. Lothaire and Ellie have a very dark and dangerous journey to their happiness.

Lothaire’s mysterious past is revealed which once again adds understanding but not excuse to Lothaire’s behavior. There are big things here that effect all of the Lore.

WORTH MENTIONING: Lothaire rips out his own heart and sends it to Ellie. Weirdest courtship yet.

CONNECTED BOOKS: LOTHAIRE is the twelfth book in the Immortals After Dark series. It can be read as a standalone. It is better to read it as part of the series, however, because there is an overarching story and intricate relationships that are not really understandable to new readers.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.


Review: Dreams of a Dark Warrior

Review: Dreams of a Dark WarriorDreams of a Dark Warrior (Immortals After Dark, #11) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #11
Published by Pocket Books on February 15, 2011
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 512

Dark, Sexy Action Adventure Paranomal Romance

“Hear this tale, the legend of Aiden the Fierce and Reginlet the Radiant One, a pair of lovers both bound and cursed by fate.”

FINAL DECISION: Filled with action, suspense and a dark story, this book takes the idea of Regin’s true love returning and turns it upside down as he is reincarnated as a killer of immortals. I loved the drama and angst this added to the story.

THE STORY: A thousand years ago, Regin the Radiant, a Valkyrie, fell for Aiden the Fierce, a mortal warrior and berserker. Right after Regin and Aiden made love, he was killed. For a thousand years, Aiden has been reincarnated and cursed with dying as soon as he recalls the past. Aiden has been reincarnated again as Declan Chase, a brutal soldier and member of the Order whose mission it is to capture, study and kill immortals. Captured and tortured by Declan, Raiden is now thinking on how she can make him remember their past in order that he will die and help her and her friends escape.

OPINION: The twist of having Regin’s grand love return as an enemy gives this book an edge. Declan is not merely an enemy in name only. He tortures immortals — including Regin. He is broken and dark and irresistible. I liked that the book explains but doesn’t excuse Declan’s behavior. I especially liked the ultimate resolution of the drama of the series and the question of whether Declan would remember and thus die and continue the painful history that he and Regin share.

This book is action packed and filled with characters both old and new. This book is most closely connected with DEMON FROM THE DARK which overlaps this book in content and in time.

WORTH MENTIONING: Oh Lothaire, he’s a really dark, bad and sexy dude.

CONNECTED BOOKS: DREAMS OF A DARK WARRIOR is the eleventh book in the Immortals After Dark series. It can be read a standalone but there is an overarching storyline in the series about the coming Accession, an epic battle between immortals.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.


Review: Demon from the Dark

Review: Demon from the DarkDemon from the Dark (Immortals After Dark, #10) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #10
Published by Pocket Books on August 24, 2010
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 384

Dark, Rich and Super Sexy

“Those who betray me do it only once.”

FINAL DECISION: I love stories with tortured men and Malkom has been tortured throughout his life. He meets Carrow and his sweetness and innocence — even while he is offering her ghoul heads as courtship tokens — is lovely.

THE STORY: Carrow Graie aka Carrow the Incarcerated is a witch and a party girl whose magic originates from the good feelings of others. Her joy, however, hides a pained heart. Rejected by her parents, Carrow desperately wants to gain their attention. In the midst of her personal strife, Carrow is captured by a human group experimenting on members of the Lore. Carrow is offered freedom if she agrees to help capture a vemon (vampire demon) named Malkom Slaine. Malkom is a demon outcast who was unwillingly poisoned by vampire blood. He now lives alone desiring revenge. When Carrow appears, he realizes that he has finally found his mate. Malkom has killed everyone who has betrayed him. What will he do when he realizes that Carrow has as well?

OPINION: Both Carrow and Malkom have sad pasts. The tension and drama where Carrow betrays Malkom ripped my heart out. Malkom is immediately such a good and sweet man who hasn’t had a life that has allowed him to show that side of himself. As he accepts Carrow as his own and courts her in his awkward and often mistaken way, he charms the reader and ultimately Carrow herself. These two seem likely doomed from the moment they meet. I also liked the caveman/city girl relationship these two have at first where they do not communicate well.

Cole once again perfectly melds the relationship between Carrow and Malkom with a plot that advances the overarching storyline of the series. While big things happen here, both old and new characters appear, the story never loses focus on the relationship of Carrow and Malkom and the question of whether a man who has been betrayed by everyone can love the woman who also betrays him.

WORTH MENTIONING: This book sets up the next round of books.

CONNECTED BOOKS: DEMON FROM THE DARK is the tenth book in the Immortals After Dark series. This book can be read as a standalone although new readersr should be aware that there is an overarching story of the series.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.


Review: Pleasure of a Dark Prince

Review: Pleasure of a Dark PrincePleasure of a Dark Prince (Immortals After Dark, #9) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #9
Published by Pocket Books on February 16, 2010
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 431

Darker Story Than Others In the Series

FINAL DECISION: This story is a darker than others in the series. I also thought that there were dark secrets that Lucia was keeping that ended up putting both her and Garreth at risk at the end of the book. I was disappointed that the drama of this book turned so much on Lucia keeping a secret that she should have revealed.

THE STORY: Lucia the Huntress (a Valkyrie) is an amazing archer and has a dark and secretive past. When the Lykae (werewolf) Garreth MacRieve scents Lucia, he recognizes her as his mate. Lucia has sworn an oath of celibacy and tries to avoid the determined Garreth. Garreth spends his time watching and protecting Lucia from a distance until she goes on a journey to confront her past and save the future.

OPINION: There was so much that I liked about this book but I did not like it as much as others in the series. My biggest complaint is that it depended so much on Lucia keeping the secret of her past. She doesn’t disclose it until it is too late and Lucia and Garreth almost die because of it. I slowly became annoyed by her continued determination to keep her secrets even when it obviously was necessary to disclose.

Despite this, I really liked these characters. I thought that Lucia was an intriguing character because she funneled her powerlessness into being powerful and yet fair and thoughtful. I felt for her painful past and the fact that she has to confront her pain again and again. Garreth is a sweetheart. I’m a fan of these “wolfy” characters. Affectionate, determined to bring joy and pleasure to their mates in all ways. I loved how he cares for Lucia even in the face of her determination to reject him.

This was a good book but not one of my favorites of the series.

WORTH MENTIONING: By the time this book ends, there are big things afoot.

CONNECTED BOOKS: PLEASURE OF A DARK PRINCE is the ninth book in the Immortals After Dark series. It can be read as a standalone but readers should be aware that these books build upon one another regarding an overarching storyline. I think the books are better read in order.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4 stars.

UPDATE: (4/17/19) Re-read:  I’ve updated my rating to 4.5 stars. While on the original read, I was seriously annoyed by Lucia’s decision not to reveal her secrets to Garrick, on my re-read, I saw this issue as more nuanced. Lucia fears that Garrick will make decisions that are wrong and upset Lucia’s mission. And even Garrick admits that she is right. I still think that Lucia’s decision to be so secretive causes more problems, but I liked this couple much more on the re-read.



Review: Deep Kiss of Winter

Review: Deep Kiss of WinterDeep Kiss of Winter (Includes: Immortals After Dark, #8; Alien Huntress, #3.5) by Gena Showalter, Kresley Cole
Published by Pocket Books on December 28, 2010
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 520

Loved the Kresley Cole Novella

DEEP KISS OF WINTER is a winter themed book composed of two long novellas.

UNTOUCHABLE by Kresley Cole: This novella is the eighth book in the Immortals After Dark series. Daniela the Ice Maiden is a Valkyrie and the Rightful Queen of the Icere the Fey of the Frozen North. She is a reluctant because the touch of any person other than those from her homeland create terrible pain for both her and the man. Murdoch Wroth is a vampire soldier who was a rake in his human life and is one vampire who doesn’t want to find his Bride (the one woman who can make the vampire’s heart beat again). Of course, Daniela is Murdoch’s Bride and the two begin a contentious difficult on again off again relationship.

I thought this was a great holiday story. It begins at the beginning of the series and then follows the entirety of the series. It ends with the four vampire brothers and their brides. I enjoyed this replay of the series from a different viewpoint. The other part I really enjoyed was the difficult relationship between Daniela and Murdoch because of her touching issues. I liked that the book did not brush that issue aside. These two have a long difficult road to travel for their happiness and I appreciated the complexity and breadth of the story. Rating: 4.25 stars.

TEMPT ME ETERNALLY by Gena Showalter: The story of Aleaha Love a shapeshifter who has taken the identity of Macy Briggs, who is a cop with alien investigations. She ends up going out on a mission for the first time. She encounters Breean Nu, a golden skinned warrior who has come to planet with his men trying to find a new home. When he sees Aleaha, he has an attraction to her and decides that he doesn’t want to let her go. He takes her captive.

This was the first thing I have read by Showalter and I thought the story was strange and interesting, but I didn’t feel the connection between the characters. I believe the story is part of a series and perhaps it would be better if I had read those books first. I did find the shifting heroine to be intriguing and I wish I knew more about her. Rating: 2 stars.


Review: The Warlord Wants Forever

Review: The Warlord Wants ForeverThe Warlord Wants Forever (Immortals After Dark #1) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #1
Published by Pocket Books on November 22, 2011
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 192

Fresh, Humorous, Sexy and Intriguing

FINAL DECISION: Immediately intriguing, this book begins the Immortals After Dark series by seamlessly introducing a new world and keeping the focus on the relationship between the main characters — all in just over 150 pages.

THE STORY: Nicholai Worth is a vampire general who is searching for his Bride — the woman who can make his heart beat and bring him into his full power. He ends up finding Myst the Coveted, a Valkyrie who taunts him leaving him unfulfilled for five years. When he finally catches up with her, he intends to make her pay for his torment.

OPINION: Many times a first book in a paranormal series will suffer because of the needed time to introduce the world it inhabits — not with WARLORD WANTS FOREVER. The focus here remains on the characters of Nicolai and Myst. They have a seriously combative relationship and their “cross-species” romance is something that must be navigated carefully. A true Romeo and Juliet type story, these two have the world against them and yet are destined to be together. I loved that these two are both warriors and respect one another in the end.

WORTH MENTIONING: These are some sexy unearthly characters.

CONNECTED BOOKS: WARLORD WANTS FOREVER is the first book in the Immortals After Dark series.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4 stars.


Review: Kiss of a Demon King

Review: Kiss of a Demon KingKiss of a Demon King (Immortals After Dark, #7) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #7
Published by Pocket Books on January 20, 2009
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 417

Good Boy Attracted to a Bad Girl

“Rydstrom was known as upstanding and good, Sabine as treacherous and evil.”

FINAL DECISION: This intriguing story of a good king who has been really tired with being good and having people defer to him finds his mate in a wicked woman who is on the side of evil.

THE STORY: Rydstrom Woede lost his kingdom nine hundred years ago and has spent those years plotting to get it back. Just when he discovers the existence of a sword that can kill his “unkillable” usurper (that story is told in DARK DESIRES AFTER DUSK), Rydstrom is abducted by Sabine, Sorceress of Illusions, a wicked woman who is half sister to the usurper and working with him. Sabine intends on seducing Rydstrom and becoming pregnant with his heir in order to cement control of Rydstrom’s kingdom.

OPINION: What I found most intriguing about this book is the story that begins as a good man and a wicked woman and yet the attraction between the two demonstrates that the good boy has a bad side and the bad girl can also be sympathetic and gentle. The complexity of these characters was refreshing because the book doesn’t have a cop out that Sabine has actually been a good person all along. Her bad acts are explained and can be understood but are not diminished as being bad acts. This book moves beyond the bad/good dichotomy and allows itself to dwell in shades of grey which makes the character more vibrant, more real and more interesting.

WORTH MENTIONING: This book takes place concurrently with the previous book and fills in the gaps of what was happening in Cade’s book since this book is from Rydstrom’s perspective.

CONNECTED BOOKS: KISS OF A DEMON KING is the seventh book in the Immortals After Dark series. This book can be read as a standalone but is better read as part of the series. At least a reader should read the story of Rydstrom’s brother DARK DESIRES AFTER DUSK which occurs concurrently with this book.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.


Review: Dark Desires After Dusk

Review: Dark Desires After DuskDark Desires After Dusk (Immortals After Dark, #6) by Kresley Cole
Series: Immortals After Dark #6
Published by Pocket Books on May 20, 2008
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 388

Immortals Road Trip with a Dark Undertone

“She equaled the crown he’d worked for nine hundred years to reclaim — the unyielding pursuit that had given him a reason to go on living. All he had to do was use and betray the woman he’d waited just as long to possess.”

FINAL DECISION: This book has a fun and sexy roadtrip between Cade and Holly. I loved how Holly was introduced to the Lore, but the book has an underlying dark side as Cade lies to Holly and is willing to sacrifice her and their possible relationship in order to assuage his guilt.

THE STORY: Cadeon Woede is a rage demon and known as the Kingmaker — although he lost his brother his kingdom. Cade has felt that guilt for nine centuries and has been determined to rectify that mistake. He’s offered an opportunity to obtain a sword that will help his brother kill the usurper. All Cade has to do is find the “Vessel” (a female who will bear a child that will be ultimate good or evil) and turn her over. Cade discovers that the vessel is the woman who is his mate. Cade has been watching Holly Ashwin for a year but her humanity has kept him from claiming her. When it turns out that she is the vessel, Cade knows that he will have to lie and trick Holly and sacrifice her in order to rectify his error.

OPINION: A fun and sexy roadtrip of self-discovery for Holly, this book has a dark side. I loved so much about this book — the fun banter and relationship between Holly and Cade, Holly’s neurotic tendencies and her discovery of her true nature, Cade demon sexiness. Boy is this book hot! Having Holly be a human with no knowledge of the Lore allowed the education of her to substitute in the narrative for the reader and thus permitted exposition of some of the important events of the overarching series. Her inexperience also allows for great comedy as she discovers the Lore.

My disappointment with this book is that I didn’t feel that Cade groveled enough after the lies he told Holly. She forgives him too quickly for my tastes. This book is good and a great addition to the series.

WORTH MENTIONING: This book takes places at the same time as KISS OF A DEMON KING which follows.

CONNECTED BOOKS: DARK DESIRES AFTER DARK is the sixth book in the Immortals After Dark series. This book can be read as a standalone although it is better as part of the series since there is an overarching story.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.