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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Stone’s Release



The Stone’s Release by Kerry A. Jones
Publisher: Black Lyon Publishing
Genre: Paranormal
Length: Full
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 5 Books
Review by Dandelion

Seven centuries fell aside with her summons.

“Where are you?” With the woman’s three elusive, filmy words, Lord Stefan Ashworth is broken free from a centuries-old punishment. Cursed with the rest of an elite medieval army called the Quinguard, the gypsy king and healer has been turned to stone by night—a fate he did nothing to earn. Traveling from an Italian cathedral on the Mediterranean around the world to find the source of the woman’s voice, Ash is set to discover the truest meaning of gypsy magic.

But was he her soulmate—or a trick of the ritual?

Physicist Bailey Valo has always lived on the fine fringes where science and religion meet. Torn with grief over the disappearance of her twin sister and her own role in the possible death of her sister’s lover, she turns to a solution she might never have considered before. A spell. A ritual. A cry from her heart. And when a golden-eyed god of a man appears on her doorstep in the middle of nowhere, dreams and myth are about to become her reality.

I have been anxiously awaiting the release of this second installment in the Quinguard Immortals series, and I’m thrilled to say that The Stone’s Release met all my expectations and then some. The Quinguard, five noble warriors joined together centuries ago, have been cursed and banished to a fate worse than death in the seven hundred years since their capture. In this second story of the series, Ash is the second of the five to be rescued by his mortal soul mate, the beautiful and mystically gifted quantum physicist Bailey Valo. Though Bailey is at first skeptical of this gorgeous man with the fanciful tale of turning to stone, Ash’s story soon wins her over. Then it’s only a matter of time before these two are drawn together in passion.

The stakes are high, however, and Ash and Bailey must outrun and outwit the evil Brookhaven, who will do anything to keep the Quinguard from reuniting. From beginning to end, this story keeps the reader on edge, as Brookhaven is powerful enough to destroy anyone who crosses his path.

Ms. Jones writes with such a lyrical touch, it is impossible not to fall in love with her characters. The various settings of the story, whether a coffee shop in Boston, a rustic ranch in Oregon, or a convent in Italy, are rich and sumptuous in detail. The characters, both major and minor, become so familiar that you will feel as though you’ve known them all your life. When Julen, Sofia, Zell, and Luc -- all central characters from Cast in Stone -- reappear to help Ash and Bailey, I cheered. And if occasionally the dialogue falls into the awkward vernacular of the present, it does little to mar the overall effect of the romance.

This story of soul mates, of the power of two people to find and rescue ach other despite time and circumstance, is sure to win your heart. The connection this author creates between her hero and heroine is magical: “She rolled over to face him, and they remained still that way for moments and moments. If it were possible to live a lifetime’s worth of love in one gaze, he thought, they had succeeded.”

If you haven’t yet discovered the Quinguard Immortals series, you’re missing out, whether you’re a fan of paranormal-fantasy romance or not. While The Stone’s Release can stand on its own, it’s worth it to start with the first in this series, Cast in Stone. Then prepare yourself for a wonderful read that will sweep you away and remind you what true love is really all about. Bravo to Ms. Jones for another tremendous romance!

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