Author : KatieMacAlister
Publication: Leisure Books
Publication Date: 26 May 2009 (reprint)
Source: E-book owned by reviewer
Audience: Adult; Paranormal Romance
If Allie doesn't find a ghost soon, her short career as a "Summoner" with United Psychical Research Association will be a thing of the past, so naturally she is delighted to find what she thinks is the tortured spirit of a gorgeous, naked, wounded man. But the cranky spirit, who looks exactly like the dishy man who has been haunting Allie's dreams, doesn't need her help since he isn't a ghost, but rather Christian Dante, best-selling author of vampire romances and Moravian Dark One. Of course, Allie wants some answers from the arrogant and domineering Christian, but he is more interested in working out the exact nature of their relationship, since fate has chosen Allie as his "Beloved."
I read this second in the series hoping to hear more about the 900-year old Christian Dante, fictional author of the Dark Ones novels. I was not disappointed. The focus of the book is on Christian’s search for his Beloved. There is no smooth plot segue from the first book but eventually all becomes clear as Allegra comes into contact with Roxy and Joy, who are plotting to attract and reveal Christian’s Beloved by stalking a Dark Ones book release in London. Excellent plan because it works although not quite in the way they imagined. Christian is finessing a plan of his own to try and find a kidnapped Dark One, when Allegra stumbles upon him in a basement, and after ogling him in some less than salubrious circumstances, proceeds to try and Release him, thinking he is a ghost.
It all goes downhill from there, before it goes uphill. They agree to join forces to seek the kidnapped Dark One and find some real life ghosts, which involves attending a psychics convention where Allegra demonstrates her Summoning power and catches the eye of Guarda White, the sinister female head of the Association of Research mediums and Psychics Investigation Trust, otherwise known as ARMPIT. ARMPIT. Seriously. THIS is why I enjoy Katie MacAlister’s books – no-one does tongue-in-paranormal-cheek better!
What follows is a nicely crafted mystery involving multiple ghosts, Demonic manifestations and a little bit of time to *coughs* work out the Beloved issue. Christian does not believe Allegra is his Beloved. Allegra doesn’t know what to believe but doesn’t react well to Christian’s dominating personality. They are both insanely attracted to each other, and the sexual tension is finely wrought as the story progresses to its inevitable climax.
I really enjoyed this book because of the bringing in of numerous interesting supporting characters: Jem Hopkins, the surly teenager from old London who embraces his inner gangsta with a cockney twang ( “Bloody ‘ell, on’t no’un come ‘round me ‘ood and mess with’ me bloods,” Jem added in an odd, eighteenth-century ‘lower-class servant meets twenty-first century rapper’ dialect.) and Tirana (the low level demon who thinks the scariest thing to manifest as is Shirley Temple from her good ship Lollipop days) had me chortling out loud.
It was a wonderfully light holiday read and a good hook into the rest of the series.
Blysse’s Hot:Plot Ratio
This is not the book for you if you like your men sensitive and metrosexual. There was more plot than actual down and dirty hot but the hot that was there was well written and added to the development of the story arc.