Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Shadow Queen-Bertrice Small

The Shadow Queen
Bertrice Small
Harlequin HQN, Apr 2009, $13.95
ISBN: 9780373773688

No woman has ever ruled the Kingdom of Terah. However, when the monarch Magnus Hauk dies in an accident, his son is not old enough to rule. Thus his mom the faerie Queen Lara will serve as a secret regent until her offspring can formally run the nation.

To assist THE SHADOW QUEEN as she guides her son is her trusted friend Prince Kaliq at a time Terah is threatened by powerful enemies emboldened by the lack of a strong king. However, Lara’s efforts to protect her children go astray when their adversary Jonah the Lord High Ruler beguiles her daughter and her twin sons openly fight leaving the kingdom divided and consequently increasingly weakened. The only thing working for Lara is her reciprocated love with loyal Kaliq.

The fifth Hetar erotic romantic fantasy is an exciting tale as Lara star of the first book is the prime focus again; which enables the audience to see how far she has come and to a degree fallen. The story line is fast-paced from the onset as the heroine realizes she can only protect her children so far, but as adults they will make poor judgments that she can do little about. The romantic subplot is hot and engaging, but also intrudes in some ways on the primary theme of what she must sacrifice to save the next generation, her kingdom, and ultimately two worlds. Fans of the series will relish THE SHADOW QUEEN while spellbound newcomers will seek the previous entries (see THE SORCERESS OF BELLMAIR, THE TWILIGHT LORD, A DISTANT TOMORROW and LARA).

Harriet Klausner

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