Genre: fantasy romance
Cover: not as good as the first two, I don’t like that pose.
My name is Raine Benares. I'm a seeker. People hire me when they need something found. I'm not usually the one being sought. But that all changed when I found the Saghred, a soul-stealing stone of unlimited power -- and the bane of my existence. Now mages and madmen have me in their sights, not to mention demons . . .
An opened Hellgate leads to a demon infestation on the Isle of Mid, and while there's never an ideal time to face down demon hordes, it's hard to imagine a worse one. Already fighting the influence of the Saghred, Raine discovers she is also magically bonded to a dark mage and a white knight, two dangerous and powerful men on opposing sides -- and Raine's stuck in the middle.
But with demons pouring through the Hellgate, Raine can't afford to be distracted. Turns out, the demons want the key to unlock the Saghred. As a seeker, Raine should be able to find it first. As the axis of light and dark powers, she's a magical cataclysm waiting to happen . . .
Raine has to go into town for something she hates: shopping for new clothes. Her leathers have taken a severe beating recently, and she really needs some new ones. Her very fashionable cousin Phaelan is with her, and so is Vegard Rolfgar, a Conclave Guardian and her bodyguard. Phaelan tries to convince Raine to buy some colors instead of her usual black and brown, but Raine does not want to stand out in a crowd. This makes little sense according to Phaelan, as everybody already knows who she is and what she can do. But he enjoys being with her, as he is quickly bored and Raine is like a magnet for trouble.
Then Raine spots a bunch of naked blue creatures running in the street, attacking a mage. TO her surprise, she is the only one who sees them, but she will have to try to safe that mage! When she throws a stone against one of the creatures, he looses his magical cloak and Vegard immediately shoves her behind him. Demons! Of course Raine does not need his protection she is perfectly capable of fighting and defending herself, and of course killing the attackers. They were after something, and now they want her, or rather, the Saghred she is bonded with! When Vegard kicks up a dust storm all the demons become visible and they have a target. But the mage is killed before they can safe him, and a new bigger purple demon draws Raine into a chase to the square were all the students gather. There he will have his choices of prey and there is little Raine can do. Until Piaras and Talon used their spellsinging gifts to capture the demon and force him to let loose his prey: Piaras’ girlfriend and the archmagus’ granddaughter. Suddenly Tam is in Raine’s head and he teaches her what to do to the demon and capture him in an empty wine bottle. How can she use his powers? What has happened between them?
Someone has opened a Hellgate in town, and demons are searching the city for something. Who would be powerful enough to do that, and more importantly, how can they find it and close it again? The demon Queen wants to talk to Raine, and wants her to open the Saghred to free the Demon King who was devoured by it centuries ago. Raine has no idea how to do that, and with the acting archmagus breathing in her neck, wanting to lock her up for good, she will have to act fast. She has no intention to free the demon King, or Sarad Nukpana, who is still influencing people from his prison inside the Saghred. But if she could free her father, she would…
The Conclave Paladin and leader of the Guardian’s, Mychael Eiliesor, still wants to protect Raine and keep her safe but he finally acknowledges that he can’t. And now, thanks to the Saghred, she has bonded not only with her goblin friend Tam, who is a dark mage but also with Mychael, who is the strongest white mage there is. When this will be found out, it will be a deathsentence to all three of them, especially for Mychael…
Another action filled few days for Raine Benares and her friends and family. I enjoy this series very much and will read the next book soon. I just have to find out what happens next, especially now the three of them are magically bonded in what is the goblin equivalent of a marriage. Tam is goblin, Raine is Elf and so is Mychael. Raine has been attracted to them both, and at least now she doesn’t have to choose between them anymore. Breaking this bond will be very dangerous to all of them.
I was expecting more of Raine’s uncle, who has also come to town with three ships of his pirate armada to make sure the mages keep her safe and do what they can to break her free of the Saghred. He has only one small appearance.
I liked Raine’s new female friend, the new head of the demonology department. Professor Sora Niabi’s help is invaluable in fighting the demons, and her grad students certainly get a lot of real practice!
Of course Piaras and Talon play a role in this book, and I like how Piaras is growing up and into his considerable powers. He stands up for himself and refuses to stay safe while Raine could use his help finding the item the demons are after.
Carnadus Silvanus is still intent on becoming the new archmage, he wants Raine behind lock and key or rather dead, and Mychael removed as Paladin. And of course he wants to capture Piaras and give him as a present to the elves who would abuse his powers for their own gain. Tam is a goblin and he hates and despises goblins, as they have been more powerful than the Elves for centuries especially with the power of the Saghred behind them. Even saving his life twice doesn’t mean anything to Carnadus, and he will keep coming after them all.
But now a new player has come to town, a man from Raine's past, and while he is keeping Carnadus contained, Raine feels very much betrayed by him … So yes, bring on the next book!
© 2014 Reviews by Aurian