THE EMERALD LILY
The Vampire Blood series peaks in this fourth book, bringing the war of the Lilies versus Queen Morgrid to a dramatic conclusion. While this book may be read alone, it will spoil the earlier books in the series, so reading in order is a good idea. Cross has built a world of good and evil, blood and cruelty and the mysterious power of love. Mikhail is a worthy hero, focused, disciplined and dedicated to the higher good, but Mina steals the show. Her story is one of realizing and claiming feminine power, as Sleeping Beauty awakes in more than one sense of the word. Her clarity of character, her drive and purpose embody the word “regal,” and this queen slays. It’s tough to pull off a series climax, but The Emerald Lily delivers the plot, the politics and the edge-of-your-seat tension that this excellent series deserves. Though the beginning of this addition to the series drags a little, Cross' beautiful imagery more than makes up for it. A number of scenes will recall the classic Sleeping Beauty of childhood, but Cross flips and subverts them and makes them her own.
Princess Vilhelmina Dragomir has defied the evil Queen Morgrid, and was sentenced to a torturous vampiric coma of nightmare and starvation for her trouble. Powerful friends arrange for her escape, but the only way out of the bloodless sleep is by the blood kiss. Captain Mikhail Romanov will do everything he must to save her, but the indelible bond that forms when he gives her that kiss wreaks havoc on his duty and his mission to take down Morgrid. The most powerful kind of love is never convenient, but nothing else is strong enough to prevail over the evil threatening their world. (ENTANGLED, dl $3.99)