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Friday, May 13, 2011

Captive of the Stars by Viola Grace

Captive of the Stars by Viola Grace
Hashka Chronicles 4
Publisher: Extasy Books
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (86 Pages)
Other: M/F
Rating: 4.5 Cherries
Reviewed by Holly

Nasha Fano has lived her adult life as the host of Ithena, red star of the northern sky. Refusing to believe that her deceased father sold her to Lord Kalowell she fights for her freedom and the survival of her people. Caught on the wrong side of the wall between her people and the invaders, Nasha is made a captive by the Lord who wanted the avatar of Ithena, but he has no idea that she is the very woman he seeks. Learning about him, his people, and the course of events that brought them together is humbling, but the star inside her will not come out to confront the other avatar or the star he holds. Frustrated, Nasha gives in to the last thing she wanted and embraces the power of his touch in hopes it will rouse the star within.

The Hashka Chronicles is Viola Grace’s most recent series, and I believe it is quickly becoming one of my favorite worlds to visit.

Nasha Fano is the avatar of Ithena, the red star of the northern sky. She is determined to avoid the man who ‘bought’ her from her father before his death, and when Lord Kalowell and his troops approach, Nasha is at the head of her small group of warriors, defending the keep to the end. When she is captured, she pretends to be a servant, and tries to escape and reach her people.

Thorn Kalowell is determined to find the avatar of Ithena, for it is the only way to satisfy his own inner star, and bring prosperity and peace to the people. He isn’t aware that the servant he has in chains is, in fact, the woman he seeks throughout the land.

When Nasha discovers that things aren’t as she was lead to believe, she gives in to Thorn, in hopes that her passion will draw Ithena to the surface so she can fulfill the promise she made to Eshkar; that when they each had the perfect avatar, they would join to create a child with the power of the stars. And although Ithena is a star, she has the same fears any female has, and isn’t sure she is ready for motherhood. Can Nasha and Thorn work through this, and find passion together? Will Nasha accept her destiny when she finds the truth is better than she could have hoped? Can Thorn break through the walls that Nasha has erected around her heart for a happy ever after?

This world of sentient stars and their chosen avatars is a fascinating place to visit, and Ms. Grace has the imagination to populate it with all kinds of delightful characters. I have enjoyed all of these, but this one is especially fun to read.

Nasha has known all her life that she is Ithena’s chosen, and she is a strong and determined woman. She seeks to protect her people and their way of life, and doesn’t realize that what she has been told isn’t the truth. She is a warrior as well, and leads her guards against unbeatable odds, knowing the chances are slim, but fighting for honor as much as anything else. I did enjoy watching how far she was willing to go to hide who she was, even when placed in chains to prevent escape.

Thorn Kalowell is not what he appears to be. He is a kind and generous leader, not the merciless warlord Nasha believes him to be. He is determined to find his destined mate, not knowing he already has her in his home. I enjoyed watching Thorn slowly unravel the mystery, and finally claim his mate once she is revealed.

There are some surprising twists here, especially the one about Ithena. I liked the idea that for once, the star was the one hesitating to join her mate, and that it was up to the avatars to lure her out to her proper place with Eshkar. I look forward to more adventures with Ms. Grace’s wonderful, blue skinned Hashka, and the growth of these worlds of fantasy and imagination.

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