Title: The Wicked
Series: Elder Races, Book 5.5
Author: Thea Harrison
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Sensuality Rating: Sensual
Source: review copy provided by publisher
Published: July 2, 2013 by Samhain Publishing
For a librarian with a focus on rare magic books, Olivia’s new job is a dream come true. She has been hired as part of a team to help manage the safe transportation of the collection of books owned by the Vampyre sorceress Carling Severan. The fact that the library is located on a mysterious island in an Other land only heightens the adventure.
Head of security for the expedition, Sebastian Hale is tired of his rootless life of adventure and finds himself attracted to the calm, beautiful librarian. But he is living a personal nightmare. He has been hit with a curse that is slowly taking away his sight, and he doesn’t know if he will survive the results.
But the powerful feelings growing between them, along with Sebastian’s inner turmoil, take a backseat when they learn there is a traitor lurking among their expedition team. With Elder Races politics and a priceless library on the line, they’ll have to rely on each other to survive the experience.
Warning: When a librarian who likes to nest meets an owl Wyr who has always lived for adventure, their romance won’t just be fly-by-night…
Reviewed By: J9
In a Nutshell: Good novella in a series I adore with a simple, straightforward romance and series characters that I love to revisit.
The Set Up: Librarian Olivia has been hired as part of a team to transport magical books off an island. The head of security for the trip is Sebastian, a Wyr with a curse that is slowly stealing his eyesight. Olivia and Sebastian will have to rely on each other to get through this expedition alive.
Why I Read this Book: I’m an Elder Races fan and await each release.
What I Liked: Olivia and Sebastian are both likable characters with a straightforward drama-free romance. Given this is a novella, the couple admit their attraction and develop a relationship from there. It’s still as sexually intense as the other novellas and has decent emotional intimacy. Like the other novellas in this series, it knows its own length limitations and doesn’t attempt to do angst in 90 pages. I liked this honest romance and think other series readers will enjoy it too.
What I Also Liked: The Djinn Khalil and the Oracle, Grace, were my two favorite leads in this series and they play very important roles in this novella so I couldn’t be happier. Khalil’s daughter is also a secondary character and provides the levity the novella needs as well. Series fans will love their inclusion in this novella as I did.
The plot involving the magical books isn’t going to surprise anyone but it held my attention and provides the circumstances to keep Olivia and Sebastian together. I also like how this novella wraps a series plot involving Rune and Carling as the magical books are Carling’s.
What I Didn’t Like: If you’re not a series reader I suspect this review and this novella will likely lose you quickly. For me, part of my enjoyment of the series is that the novels and novellas build on each other to create this stellar world readers can’t wait to return to with lovely characters fighting together—but non-series fans will likely be lost with all the characters, politics and world building. Don’t try to pick up this series here but go back and enjoy it in order.
IMO: Series fans will enjoy this novella as I did and await the next.