Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Book Review Club: Warrior

by Zoe Archer
Zebra, 2010

The vicious attack Capt. Gabriel Huntley witnesses in a dark alley sparks a chain of events that will take him to the ends of the Earth and beyond - where what is real and what is imagined become terribly confused. And frankly, Huntley couldn't be more pleased. Intrigue, danger, and a beautiful woman in distress - just what he needs.

Raised thousands of miles from England, Thalia Burgess is no typical Victorian lady. A good thing, because a proper lady would have no hope of recovering the priceless magical artefact Thalia is after. Huntley's assistance might come in handy, though she has to keep him in the dark. But this distractingly handsome soldier isn't easy to deceive...

The first in the Blades of the Rose series, Warrior introduces us to a 19th century world where magic exists and two secret societies battle for control of it. The Heirs of Albion, the villains, want to corral the world's magic in order to use it for England's benefit, even if it means colonizing and enslaving less developed countries, like Mongolia where most of this story takes place. The Blades of the Rose work tirelessly to keep the Heirs from gaining control of the Sources of magic which exist all over the world. Thalia's father is a Blade of the Rose, but his leg is broken, so she embarks on the quest to save the Mongolian Source in his place, accompanied by the soldier who brought her father the message that the Heirs are on the move.

A word from the author:
You know how everyone tells aspiring authors to write the book of your heart? This is the book of my heart. Windswept steppes. Beautifully severe desert. Chases on horseback. Secret societies. Magic and adventure.

I couldn't say it any better. This is a really fun romance, with a strong heroine and a strong, sexy hero. Thalia is smart, brave and capable, thankfully not at all in the TSTL category. Gabriel is the perfect military hero: brave, honorable and determined to protect his lady at all costs. Well-written, adventurous and just generally well-done. Highly recommended.


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@Barrie Summy