Published By: Kensington Books ~ Lyrical Press
Release Date: June 9th, 2015
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Fantasy/Urban Fantasy
The Gladium Province is on the verge of civil unrest as humans and Morgons, the dragon-hybrid race, clash once more. But amid disorder can also arise passion.
When the bodies of three human women are discovered in Morgon territory—with the DNA of several Morgon men on the victims—it’s just a matter of time before civil unrest hits the Province. But for ambitious reporter Moira Cade, it’s more than just a story, and it may mean risking her own life.
Descending into the dark underworld of Morgon society, Moira is paired with Kol Moonring, Captain of the Morgon Guard, for her protection. Fiercely independent, Moira bristles at his dominance, and defies his will at every turn. Yet resistance proves futile when passion flares between them, awakening powerful emotions within both, body and soul. But as the killings continue, can their fiery newfound bond survive an even greater evil—one that threatens all of humanity, Morgonkind, and Moira’s very soul?...
Having thoroughly enjoyed the Nightwing series I was excited when I saw that there would be a spin off series and was very curious to see what direction the Vale of Stars series and I must say that I was in no way disappointed. Waking the Dragon is a fun, sexy book with a good dose of action, intriguing characters (both the good and the bad ones) and a well written storyline that adds more depth to the world that was introduced in the Nightwing series and I was hooked from the very first page.
When we first meet Moira in the Nightwing series she is a timid fifteen year old but in Waking the Dragon she is a pretty damn ballsy twenty year old and I have to say that I really liked her. She’s intelligent, sassy and determined to live her life on her own terms, and though she does acknowledge that some things would be easier if she went along with her father’s plan, she’s happy with the choices she’s made. She is also quite fearless but not impetuous. She has a good head on her shoulders and doesn’t get stuck in the whole my way is the only way mindset. Kol Moonring was my favorite character from Windburn and I adored him in Waking the Dragon. He’s tall, dark and handsome and has got the whole stoic brooding thing down pat and yet he’s loyal to the bone, even if he’s a tad bit hard headed, but he’s a Morgon so all of the above traits are pretty much standard. So when Kol and Moira collide more than fireworks explode between them. At first they are definitely at odds, two headstrong and determined personalities going toe to toe, but as they have to be around each other more and more there are sweet, eye opening moments and you can see not only how hot their chemistry burns sexually but intellectually and emotionally.
The writing is strong and clean and the story moves at a steady pace with a good balance of action, suspense, humor and smexyness. I enjoyed how through the various twists and turns you not only get to the bottom of who is committing the murders, which were pretty gruesome, and the why of it all, which may have been even more gruesome than the actual murders and had me twitching, but also the beginning of what looks to be the overall story arc of the series as well as sets up smaller future plot lines that will involve the characters that we meet along the way. Of the new characters Valla has to be my favorite, but Keiran looks to have an interesting road ahead of him and I have a soft spot for Petrus, the resident historian, and hope he makes more appearances in both series.
If you’re asking yourself if you should read the Nightwing series before starting on Waking the Dragon, I personally think you should because many of the characters are in this book and you will have a better understanding of why certain relationships are the way that they are, BUT I will also say that Ms. Cross does a great job at explaining who they are and their backstories so you won’t be lost at all.
Overall: I love the world of the Morgonkind and Waking the Dragon is a great start to a new series. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next one in the series!
~ ARC provided by Kensington Books - Lyrical Press via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ~
Juliette calls lush, moss-laden Louisiana home where the landscape curls into her imagination, creating mystical settings for her stories. She has a B.A. in creative writing from Louisiana State University, a M.Ed. in gifted education, and was privileged to study under the award-winning author Ernest J. Gaines in grad school. Her love of mythology, legends, and art serve as constant inspiration for her works. From the moment she read JANE EYRE as a teenager, she fell in love with the Gothic romance--brooding characters, mysterious settings, persevering heroines, and dark, sexy heroes. Even then, she not only longed to read more novels set in Gothic worlds, she wanted to create her own.