Saturday, January 4, 2014

Heart of Stone-Christine Warren

Heart of Stone Christine Warren St. Martin’s, Dec 31 2013, $7.99 ISBN 9781250012654 After the quarterly Vancouver Art and History Museum fundraising gala at the Georgia House, docent Ella Harrow begins to leave alone when very important third generation financial supporter Patrick Stanley assaults her. Using her psychic power, she stops the angry creep until her boss Beatrice Boucher arrives preventing him from further attacks. As Ella leaves by herself, she lectures the “Sir Arthur Conan Doyle” gargoyle statue that she loves to look at for not repelling evil; as is his mission. The statue comes to life confusing Kees of the Guild of Wardens that an untrained human awakened him from his ages-long hibernation and stunning Ella who wonders when she will awaken from her sleep. Kees informs Ella that his adversaries, the lethal seven demons of the Dark, must be returning. He further explains this means he needs his team so the bewildered museum employee and the gargoyle search for them. During their quest with their malevolent enemies in pursuit, each feels a deep attraction growing in intensity; which makes no sense to unemotional Kees, but very understandable to romantic Ella who loved him when he had a Heart of Stone. Christine Warren starts her new paranormal romance series with a rousing first act that sets the boundaries of this engaging urban fantasy. Kees is a terrific hero who took pride in his totally logical thought-process (much more than Mr. Spock), but this arising finds him in alien territory fighting his unwanted yet wanted feelings of desire. He is the catalyst that changes Ella from an anti-social loner who relishes artifacts not people into a caring courageous warrior. Heart of Stone is a strong opening tale. Harriet Klausner

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