Marked by Passion
Forever, Feb 2009, $6.99
In San Francisco Gabrielle Sansouci Chin works as a bartender so she can eat while hoping her paintings will soon pay her way. However, when her father dies, Gabrielle has little time to grieve her loss as she inherited a role she does not want. She is the latest guardian of the ancient Chinese scroll of Earth that each generation Chin has past down to the next seemingly forever.
On the plus side is some neat new powers, but on the down side she has no idea how to use them even as her late father’s spirit keeps encouraging her to hang on as it will get easier. Gabe chooses to ignore her responsibility, which frustrates her late father. Meanwhile treasure-hunter Rhys Llewellyn wants the scroll, but Gabe so far has refused though his seduction and her pondering not having to deal any longer with the duty makes handing it over feel like nirvana. Still, when danger mounts, Gabe has no choice but to take charge of her task.
This engaging romantic urban fantasy stars a woman in total denial in spite of the evidence that she has no choice but to get involved. The story line is action-packed as Gabe eludes her responsibility and is fortunate the enemy fails at killing her and stealing the scroll. Still in spite of much of the story line focusing on her dodging her inherited duty as much as the villain, Gabe brings a freshness to the sub-genre as she fails to dive head first into the battle; instead choosing to hide her head in the sand. Fans will enjoy her escapades MARKED BY PASSION although the same spin is told too often losing some of the early briskness her refusal to participate brings to the plot.