Joint Review – Serpent’s Kiss by Thea Harrison

Serpent's Kiss
Publisher: Penguin
Publish Date: Out Now
How we got this book: From the Publisher

“In the latest Novel of the Elder Races, a Queen on the brink of sanity has no one to rely on except the Wyr warrior whose conviction is every bit as strong as his passion…
In order to save his friend’s life, Wyr sentinel Rune Ainissesthai made a bargain with Vampyre Queen Carling—without knowing what she would ask from him in return. But when Rune attempts to make good on his debt, he finds a woman on the edge.
Recently, Carling’s Power has become erratic, forcing her followers to flee in fear. Despite the danger, Rune is drawn to the ailing Queen and decides to help her find a cure for the serpent’s kiss—the vampyric disease that’s killing her.
With their desire for each other escalating just as quickly as Carling’s instability spirals out of control, the sentinel and the Queen will have to rely on each other if they have any hope of surviving the serpent’s kiss…”

This blurb came from the author’s website here.

If you were to take a look at the various posts on this blog that involve the name “Thea Harrison” Guest Post, October Must Haves, Interview, Storm’s Heart Review, August Must Haves, BlogFest 2011, Dragon Bound Review, and finally May Must Haves you might think that we could potentially be fangirls. Well you just might be correct *grin*. MinnChica and I are excited to add to the list with this review of Serpent’s Kiss.

Minn – I loved this book. LOVED. And the biggest reason why was because of Rune. All I have to say is that I would totally leave my husband for him. He is sexy, loves to play World of Warcraft, admittedly will stop for directions, not afraid to talk about his feelings, will go back in time and risk everything to save the woman he loves. *melt* Add to that the fact that he is a total bad-ass, BFF’s with one of the most power creatures in the world, and one of the oldest members of the Elder Race…

E – Rune is just such a hero. Throughout the book it became evident that he had a soft spot for women, children and pets. His first instinct was to rescue people not to destroy them. At first I wondered if that was left over from the tragic incidents in Storm’s Heart but as I continued reading it became evident that while he didn’t have any problems with violence it would always be targeted. His intelligence, drive and determination certainly explained why he had become Dragos’ First. I wonder what Dragos will do if he continues to lose his sentinels. Rune struck me as the type of Alpha hero that has the perfect balance between protectiveness and understanding that women have their strengths and can take care of things themselves. I really enjoyed how he withstood everything Carling threw at him in her frustration and fury yet he was extremely careful to never harm her.

Minn – Yes, he was so careful with Carling, so doting on her. It was like watching a muscular alpha man take care of a baby. Just had me wanting to melt. But I was a little worried going into this story… Carling didn’t exactly come across as heroine material in the last story. However, I did end up really enjoying her as the story went on. Where she came across as a hard-core beotch in the last book, she was now a lot softer and more reserved. There were times when I wanted her to fight more for her future, it seemed as if she was so willing to just give up and die. I expected more from her, more fight, more struggle, more something. Especially after everything she went through in her life.

E – Carling was quite a contradiction; ruthless and caring, scientific and emotional, heartless and protective, fury personified and tender. I really enjoyed her complexity. After reading Storm’s Heart I had my doubts about her likeability as a heroine and Ms Harrison blew me away with her characterization skill. Without going into spoiler territory I enjoyed catching the glimpses of how Carling came to be and her motivations.

Minn – Oh I couldn’t agree more! I think all the scenes with Carling growing up, coming into her own, and how she became shaped into the woman she became were some of my favorite moments. This book surprised me with the bouncing back and forth between story lines — the present and in the past. While I usually get really annoyed and flustered and have a hard time following, I found each time Rune went back in time, I loved it. I loved watching how he was able to shape the past, shape Carling into the strong and independent woman she turned out to be.

E – As much as I enjoyed the scenes from the past, and like Nic I usually don’t like that technique, it was two scenes in the present timeline that ended up being my favorite. I feel they showcase first Rune and then Carling just perfectly. The first demonstrates just how determined, powerful and yet aware of his strength Rune is. It starts when Carling panics at the thought that through Rune’s actions she could lose enough pieces of herself that she would cease to exist and decides to get away from Rune. When she can’t escape him on her island she decides on impulse to leave and Rune stops her until she calms down and they can discuss what caused the panic. Carling was attempting to use all of her skill and power against Rune and yet he never harmed her.

My second favorite scene is when Carling and Rune have decided to leave the island so she goes deep into the forest to say farewell to the creatures that live there. We never find out exactly what those creatures were just that they needed protection, Carling provided that and that she cared very deeply about them. I hope she is able to return to their sanctuary and that they play a rule in a future book.

Minn – Oh I loved the little creatures! And yeah, Carling was so caring and thoughtful with the. For me, there wasn’t much I didn’t like about the book. As always, I felt as if Harrison kept the story moving quickly, the plot was fun to read and opened up so much more to the world. My only issue was with Carling and her lack of wanting to fight. Other than that… I gobbled this book up and didn’t want to put it down!

E – The only thing that bothered me a bit was the situation with Julian. After all of his scheming, I wanted him to receive some form of just punishment and lose some of his power. He broke some laws and also acted against his progenitor. Bad Julian!!!

Minn – I am anxiously awaiting the next book in the series. I loved the glimpses we got to see of Khalil and Grace, I can’t wait to read more of their story, see how things play out between them, especially after knowing how they meet. I think Harrison is absolutely rocking with this series, and I know the next will be just as amazing! Regarding Serpent’s Kiss, all in all I loved the story. Sure there were moments I wanted more from Carling, but overall I loved everything about this story. Maybe because I love Rune so much…. I give Serpent’s Kiss an A-

E – These are truly random so please forgive my mental wanderings. Lol. I wonder when Dragos is going to learn that going in all hot and heavy won’t help him keep his sentinels or even his friends. I am also very curious about the Djinn and what else we might see from him in the future. I enjoyed how she worked the Oracle and time travel in since she managed it without confusing me. As some of you might have seen me complaining on twitter I enjoyed reading this book so much I was late to work, missed breakfast and didn’t manage to pack my lunch. I give Serpent’s Kiss an A-

Links to purchase:
Kindle eBook | Amazon Book | BN Nook | BN Book

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