The Book Gourmet

Book reviews à la bookworm...The good, the bad, and everything in between.

 

 

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The Dark Highlander by Karen Marie Moning

The Dark Highlander - Karen Marie Moning

In 1521, Dageus MacKeltar makes the choice that will forever change him...And his destiny. To save his beloved twin brother, and ensure Drustan has a future with the woman he loves, Dageus breaks the sacred MacKeltar vow of never using the stones at Ban Drochaid for personal reasons, and travels back in time, unleashing an ancient evil lurking between the dimensions.

With a ticking time bomb inside him, Dageus travels to twenty-first century Manhattan, hoping to find anything in the ancient tomes that might prevent him from turning dark and unleashing the evil inside him onto the world.

Then Chloe Zanders, lover of antiquities, walks into his life—well, more accurately, crawls underneath his bed—and he knows she's the one. Mine, his mind whispers, and he's willing to do anything to keep her. But first, they must fight to free him...


This, this is what I'm looking for in my romance novels. This, exactly this. This emotional rollercoaster-ish mix of drama, angst, danger, suspense, mystical and mythical elements, a pinch of magic, a story of love that would defy anything, scorching hot sex, and an alpha male oozing bad boy from his every pore.

Dageus is one of my favorite, if not the favorite, tortured hero of all time. Because you cannot get more tortured than what this guy went through. Living with thirteen bad consciences constantly battering against his honor and code, chipping away his every defense day after day, and still he endured, and suffered, and tried to do anything in his power not to go full-on evil, tried everything to make things right, and was willing to do anything, anything, even making the ultimate sacrifice, for those he loved.
It doesn't get better than this. Sex-on-legs bad boy with a heart of mushy gold, a protective streak a mile wide, and a code of honor and resolve of steel. It's always a pleasure, and an emotional effort reading his story.

But despite the fact he left everything behind, his time, his clan, even his twin brother, Dageus doesn't have to suffer alone. Fate has smiled upon him and given him a glimmer of hope in his darkest hour—his mate, Chloe.
She was the antithesis of him. A quirky, nerdy, self-conscious, self-deprecating virgin, yet with an unquenchable thirst of knowledge and a fascination and undying love of Celtic antiques. Since her hero was Celtic also an antique, what more could she want.
Unfortunately, on this re-read, I've discovered a little tidbit about her that quite bothered me. In a few scenes, she came across as quite selfish and self-absorbed. It seemed everything was about her, how she loved antiques, how she wanted to spend time reading all the texts in the Keltar library, how she wanted to know everything, yet refused to know the most important part of it all...What was wrong with her man and how she could help him.
Compared to Dageus selflessness, especially in the big climax of the story, this "difference" between them was rather glaring.

Still, I'm willing to overlook such hiccups since the story is so wonderful. Wrought with emotion and drama, filled with family reunions and old friends...And yes, because Dageus is the hero. The most perfect, tortured, lovable hero.