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Monday, July 12, 2010

Revelation: de La Vega Cats by Lauren Dane

Revelation: de La Vega Cats by Lauren Dane
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (165 pgs)
Other: M/F
Rating: 5 cherries
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

He has the one thing she never thought she deserved. A place to belong…

De La Vega Cats, Book 2

At long last, Kendra Kellogg has found her sister—but she’s no closer to filling the gaps in her past. The magick that brought them together makes them targets for dark mages intent on finishing what started with their mother’s murder.

As if her life wasn’t chaotic enough, in barrels the one thing she doesn’t expect, Max de La Vega. He’s six-and-a-half-feet of cocoa-brown alpha male. He’s strong, intelligent, sexy and intense. Everything she’d wanted in a man. And he scares the hell out of her. Still healing from a disastrous past relationship, she wonders if she’ll ever have that kind of forever.

The next in line to run his jaguar jamboree, Max is unused to hearing “no”. Once he knows what he wants, he assumes he’ll get it. And he wants Kendra. She deserves happiness and it’s his mission to give it to her.

When dark mages attempt to steal her magickal energy, Max’s cat agrees with the man—Kendra is his to protect and he will stop at nothing to keep her safe. She can push him away as hard as she likes, he’s not going anywhere.

Get ready for an exciting romance when betrayal brings together unlikely lovers as they battle unknown foes and love flourishes in spite of it all.

This book picks up where Trinity leaves off but this book about Kendra and Max stands on its own easily. The strength of the relationship between the two of them kept me flipping the pages because I was never sure quite which way the characters would go.

As I’ve come to expect from Ms. Dane, the writing is tight, the dialogue brisk and true to character, and the emotional connections between the primary characters and the supporting cast is lush and well-fleshed-out. I enjoy a book series where the author incorporates some of the previous players. It makes it more life-like and gives a reader a feeling of community. It also helps ensure a feeling of commitment to the main characters. I wanted Kendra and Max to get together and be happy because there is a lot of mysterious unhappy being thrown at them.

Kendra is a witch. She’s pretty powerful but she’s also realized something very important. The form that she practices isn’t the only right one. There are other ways and she’s pioneer enough, brave enough and more than angry enough to step up to the plate and force the issue. Too many people are getting hurt and those people are her family. Kendra is also very aware of Max. My favorite thing about her is her unwillingness to play coy; neither does she waffle about her feelings for Maximillian. There is no internal baggage of that type to bog the story down. It was a treat to have them come together without overt drama because their acting as one certainly has benefits beyond the bedroom. And in that, Ms. Dane has created a literary art form when she writes her love scenes. There’s never a one that is gratuitous or unnecessary. I could feel the emotional connection between the two get stronger every time they mated. And the biting really does it for me. If there’s a shifter, there should be some love bites and the author deliciously delivered.

Max is a leader through and through. I enjoyed his pursuit of Kendra and his protective instincts toward her sister, Renee. Max is strong on the outside and a kitty for Kendra on the inside. I adore those kinds of differences in heroes. Another thing I liked about Max is his willingness to take on responsibility even when it ends up forcing him to make hard choices that have repercussions beyond his immediate circumstances. It’s harsh and necessary. I respected Max as a character and he totally had me on his side when he showed his respect for Kendra - by how he treated her and stood by her. That doesn’t mean he didn’t make some typical guy mistakes. I liked him despite them, his character is that good.

The conflict is sort of a continuation of what started in Trinity – in that Kendra and Renee’s father and step-mother are more evil than anyone suspected. And where before only the two women were targeted, in Revelation, the reader finds out that the forces of evil are more widespread and diabolical then they or this reader ever anticipated. Great suspense and drama throughout.

I highly recommend Revelation for all paranormal fans, fans of Ms. Dane or lovers of romantic suspense. There is so much to offer a reader in this book; it was hard for me to focus on only a few facets of this well told tale. And it’s not over. The ending let me know that Ms. Dane has a lot more to say about the machinations of the evil that plagues these fascinating people and the roles the de La Vega men will play in fighting it. I can hardly wait for the next book.

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