Title: CONJURING DESTINY
Author: Brooklyn Ann
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Brides of Prophecy
Book Source: Author
Back Cover Copy:
Famous rock star, Xochitl Leonine, has dreamt of a world with two moons where a black cloaked man beckons her. One Halloween night, she meets the mysterious stranger of her dreams… literally… and their shared dance becomes a rendezvous in a place of endless night.
Zareth Amotken has no idea how important Xochitl’s heavy metal band is to her. As an immortal sorcerer, he doesn’t care. He has one goal: to find the prophesied savior of his world. Her voice holds the power to bring back his world’s vanished sun.
Xochitl’s compassion urges her to help in any way she can. Yet learning the mysteries of her past causes conflict with her future in music. Her destiny in his world and her obligations to her band pull her in opposite directions. How can she long for one while the other is so dire?
As Zareth introduces her to his people and teaches her to control her powers, she aches for his enchanting kiss. Zareth tries to resist, for their passion will unleash serious consequences, both political and magical.
As the time to fulfill her destiny draws closer, she must choose between her heart, her duty, and her friends. The wrong choice could ruin everything.
I loved this book so hard. I’ve been following the Brides of Prophecy series since the beginning, and if you haven’t read them yet, you should go fix that. They’re fun, sexy, fantastic stories with a new take on vampires, elves, magic, and other fun critters you’ll see along the way. However, I think you could jump in with this book, and not lose too much. There are hints at events and a brief mention of previous characters, but this feels very much like it can stand on its own.
On that note, in this third installment, we finally get Xochitl’s story. I hardly know where to begin!
Xochitl is the lead singer of a metal band–you might notice Brooklyn Ann has a thing for those in her other books–who knows she doesn’t fit in. She can conjure purple fireballs at will (“Oooh! Dem special effects!” her fans and bandmates think) and has never felt completely at home around humans. Bullied and harassed when she was young, she formed a core group of friends who all happened to have musical talent. Thus, the band Rage of Angels was born.
When she meets the intriguing sorcerer, Zareth, he whisks her away to another world locked in a state where they are cursed with a blanket of darkness over the land, never to see the sun–until the prophesied Lioness of Light (guess who) unleashes her mighty roar.
As the one destined to end that eternal night, Xotchil does an admirable job of tackling every new challenge thrown in her path. Her relationship with Zareth, though it may have started in dreams, progresses into a sweet, sensual romance that is both sexy and believable. It’s also quite fascinating how there are unexpected consequences to their actions, and this leads into Ann showing her writing chops as she deftly introduces new cultures and beliefs along the way.
That is probably the one thing I liked best about this story. Aside from being about the romance, there was a great deal to be seen about this new world and how the people in it lived. They were not just there for story support, there were actual challenges and politics involved which delved beyond more than just surface fantasy magic wand-waving.
The villain, Stephan/Steve, seems like an incompetent jerk on the surface, but by the end of the book he becomes far more of a threat than I would have credited given his bumbling attempts to capture Xochitl earlier. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I will say that it is deeply satisfying to finally see him get his comeuppance.
Brooklyn Ann has created a rich, fascinating new world in this story, and I am excited to see where she takes it from here.