Title: Dark Lycan
Series: Dark Carpathian, Book 24
Author: Christine Feehan
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Sensuality Rating: Steamy
Source: review copy provided by publisher
Published: September 3, 2013 by Berkley Hardcover
Tatijana of the Dragonseekers spent centuries encased in ice with her sister, trapped in limbo between life and death, never speaking to a soul other than those who tormented her. Now, she has been freed from her frozen prison by an unknown descendent. Awakened in human form, Tatijana yearns to explore the modern world in which she now lives—a world with more mysteries than she is prepared for.
Fenris Dalka has returned to the Carpathian Mountains after a long absence to be with his brother. He is scarred by centuries of battle, and every hard-won victory. But the real reason for his return home could prove deadly if discovered by the wrong man—or woman. Upon his arrival, he is compelled by a beautiful and enigmatic stranger who carries the scent of fresh earth, of forest, of the night itself.
In time Tatijana and Fenris will discover all that unites them—their secrets and pasts, their predators, and the hot flush of passion that stirs their souls. Yet just as surely, seduced into the silvery darkness of a full-moon night, they’ll also discover everything ancient and evil that exists to destroy them.
Reviewed By: J9
In a Nutshell: Best recent installment of a series I was losing hope. This revived my interest and has me awaiting book 25.
The Set Up: Fenris isn’t like normal Carpathian men as he lives a secret life known only to his brother and the rogue vampires and lycans he hunts. He’s drawn home to the Carpathian Mountains where he meets Tatijana, a rare and powerful Dragonseeker Carpathian. Tatijana endured centuries of torment by her grandfather and is now learning of the modern world and the fight the Carpathian people have to survive. Fen and Tatijana share a bond neither expects nor can deny.
Why I Read this Book: After you read 23 books in one series, what’s another?
What I Liked: I fully expected this to be more of the same from this series and while it has similar elements, it has enough complexity to revive my interest in the series. Foremost is I really enjoyed the romance between Fen and Tatijana. Normally this series sets up a massive alpha-hero who beats his chest about taking care of his mate and a heroine who resists until she’s sexed outta her reluctance; this romance is more than that in my opinion. Fen doesn’t want Tatijana as a mate because he can’t ask her to share his secret life. Tatijana accepted her feelings and desires for Fen and made her own decision on the relationship. To me this added an honesty and emotional connection between the leads that I really hadn’t felt this series offered before. In previous couples the hero made token attempts at including the heroine in a fight but in this book Fen involves Tatijana and her sister in all aspects of the fight against rogue lycan and vampires: planning, execution, and clean up. Fen and Tatijana are one of the few series couples I believed loved each other for themselves and not just because they’re preordained “mates”. The eroticism is about the same as the others in this series but the emotional intimacy is much, much better, in my opinion as the leads share their inner feelings and fears more often than I remember in previous couples from the series.
What I Also Liked: I also really liked the inclusion of the lycans in this book. Fen and his brother Dimitri are connected to lycans in a different way than heroes in the other books. Series fans will enjoy this as it spices up a series’ plot that was getting stagnant with all the evil mage and rogue vampire fighting. I’ve been ready for something to progress in the world building and I got it in this book.
Fen’s brother, Dimitri, is a beloved character and his story arc with the young psychic, Skylar, progresses here. I gobbled up every mention of these two characters and just know their romance will live up to the hype.
Finally, I’m a sucker for revisiting previous couples and with 23 books, I had a lot of revisits in this book. Series readers like me will find it nice to catch up with Carpathian couples we know and their children. Newcomers will likely be overwhelmed but who would start at book 24 in a series anyway?
What I Didn’t Like: The action scenes and fights take for-ev-er! By the last fight scene when Fen, Tatijana and Dimitri were fighting the two master vampires/lycans I was skimming the fighting. I just got bored with all the bloody action gore and was ready to get on with the romance part of the book. This may just be me but I’ve felt this way in all the books in this series. Still it’s obviously not enough to prevent me from reading the next installments.
IMO: I surprised myself and enjoyed this book way more than I thought I would and can’t wait for book 25—and that’s saying something.