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It is always hit or miss with me when a read a book by Anya Bast Let me tell you what I do like about her writing and then what I didn t like about this book Ms Bast if great at setting up background information that makes you love the heroes and hate the villians The female herione is strong and capable able to take down the bad guy without needing the aid of her lover Bast masterfully manipulates the plot with unexpected twists and set up information for sequels Her battle scenes as expertly described blow by blow The sex scenes are hot So, what don t I like Well, first of all I have difficulty keeping straight the names of her characters in this book They are too similiar Aileen, Aislinn, Emmaline What s up with that Next, the sex is so repetitive that I found myself skipping over the scenes because I was bored There was not enough good in this book to balance out the bad The villians were truly creepy and disturbing but, the good guys just were not good enough After book one in this series, I truly had my doubts about continuing but knew I would read the second book because I had a 4 for 3 deal and received the second book for free However, I will not be continuing with the series With all of the good points, it just was not good enough for me to continue Sorry Anya Personally, I see it as third in the Dark Magick paranormal series Cruel Enchantment is a cruel let down Most of this series has been badgod knows why I ve kept reading it Hope, I think I m giving up after this one Even her editor has given up The main storyline is intriguing and the possibilities for Cruel were good Bast must have been in a real hurry to finish this and her editor was in a coma It s a weird blend of fae and modern slang Pleasethe fae tinkle And what s with, Wow, what was in that drink I want the recipe Aeric has hated Emmaline for centuries and he gives up his revenge so easily Sure, I get that Aeric is a nice guy but couldn t Bast have written a little turmoil into this He barely gets through one scene before he gives up on his centuries old desire for revenge against Emmaline for the woman he loved Then there s Emmaline She s been doing this spy thing for centuries She s supposedly so good at it and she misses not supporting part of her strategy against a man she visibly despises for how incredibly evil he is A man who, if he discovered who she was, could wreak incredible destruction upon her and the fae Sure it makes an easy one off to make Gideon suspicious of her but it s not even the route he uses so what was the point other than to point up how stupid Emamline is other than to give the reader a salacious moment Almost every scene is rough and awkward or surface and without thought The building relationship between Emmaline and Aeric is so fake, it s gagging to read Their internal arguments are just so much whining please just let me finish this bloody book 3.5 Stars Over three hundred and sixty years ago, Emmaline Siobhan Keara Gallagher was a finely tuned weapon of the Seelie Summer Queen, an assassin of note and a scourge on the Unseelie She was also the fae who murdered Aileen, the woman Aeric O Malley had loved with a fierce devotion that burned brightly long centuries after her death Emmaline has been beyond Aeric s reach ever since, having fled Ireland before the fae were rounded up and imprisoned behind the walls of Piefferburg Aeric has kept the fire of his thirst for vengeance stoked hotter than those of his Blacksmith forge, intent on killing Emmaline at the first opportunity and praying to his gods daily for that opportunity.For over three hundred years, Emmaline has lived the life of spy and double agent as a free fae in the human world One of the founding members of the Humans for the Freedom of the Fae HFF organization, she s spent the last few years deep under cover as a loyal human Worshipful Observer for the Phaendir, the group most responsible for the fae s imprisonment Now she s on a quest for the HFF, one that will require her to enter Piefferburg, locate the Blacksmith, and secure his assistance He s the only fae capable of making the key that will unlock the enchanted box that is the resting place of the second piece of the bosca fadbh, a puzzle box that will unlock part of the Book of Bindings and allow for the fae to finally break free of their centuries long imprisonment.Emmaline needs the Blacksmith and the Blacksmith wants her dead by his own hand Not exactly the auspices of a great working relationship, but they will have to work together to pull off the daring acquisition of the second piece of the bosca fadbh without the Phaendir finding out about it With the memory of his dead love between them, however, Emmaline is aware that Aeric is far likely to kill her than help her, and if she can t convince him to trust her, their entire race may remain imprisoned forever.After a stellar series opener in Wicked Enchantment, Bast takes us back to the fae holding compound of Piefferburg and the courts of the Tuatha D Danann, the fanatical threat of the Phaendir, and the hope inherent in the search for the bosca fadbh Despite a strong, admirable heroine with a dark and twisted past, a passionate, fiery hero with an axeand a plethora of other weapons to grind, and the return of several other well liked characters from the first book, I ended up being disappointed in this second book of the series when compared to the first.Dark, dangerous, and well balanced, Wicked Enchantment was a five star read for me, but several issues with plot and pacing and a couple of problems with dialogue tripped me up in this installment I was very put off by the first third of Cruel Enchantment, and found it laden with too many handy coincidences to be able to maintain my willing suspension of disbelief The premise of the book is fine, the concept of the plot was intriguing, but the way in which it was executed at the beginning robbed the story of its intensity and suspense and made the initial scenes between Emmaline and Aeric seem implausible and inorganic to me Perhaps if Aeric hadn t been so headily imagining Emmaline stepping into the fae prison that is Piefferburg and right into his clutches just moments before she actually does sofor the first time in her long life and after almost four hundred years freeI would have had an easier and forgiving time at the beginning Then, to compound my difficulty in swallowing that fortuitous happenstance, the two weeks in which Aeric holds Emmaline prisoner, threatening to kill her, trying to kill her, and getting roaring drunk to drown out his unwanted lust for her, pass in a muddled mess of disjointed and confusing pacing, timing, and impotent character action that by the end felt far like a few days than a couple of weeks I found it all rather bizarre, and not very threatening to Emmaline s tattered virtue, though Aeric s frayed ferocity took a beating.Before the slings and arrows start to fly, I have to say that after that awkward beginning there were several good things that start to happen with the story The book picked up and I started getting into it While it does lack much of the brilliant world building and creative description that set Wicked Enchantment so high in my estimation, and it wasn t as richly populated by secondary and ancillary characters and those plot threads that did include secondary characters I found to be ill conceived and predictable, as the case with David s thread , I started to really enjoy the evolution in the relationship between Emmaline and Aeric, and liked seeing some truth start to alter perception for both of them Admittedly, I was a little disturbed by Aeric s proclaimed passion for Aileen from the very beginning, given what you find out about her, but I thought Bast brought Aeric through his stages of character development with sensitivity and a sense of realism.I have no complaints about the two lead characters from a romantic standpoint I found them well suited to each other and strong in their own right They had a lovely array of scenes to further their relationship that were at turns poignant, tender, and sexy as hell And my pleasure with the book through the middle of the story was secure because of it And then the book went a little awry again towards the end.There was definitely tension and a hella creepy atmosphere generated by Emmaline s interactions with Brother Gideon, but just about everything else she s involved in on the human side of the wall was very perfunctorily covered and had some awkward transitions and jumps in the timeline I felt as if I was leapfrogging through the later part of the story at times That disconcerting lack of fluidity continued through to the end of the book, with a myriad of life and quest threatening plot threads popping up in seemingly random rapid fire, and just as rapidly being resolved with a minimum of development And the book s conclusion was extremely abrupt.For my tastes and strictly in my opinion, Cruel Enchantment didn t quite rise to the level of adept storytelling that I felt existed in the first book of the series, but there were parts I liked quite a lotjust as there were parts that made me struggle to like even a little The strongest and most fervent pleasure was in the character of Emmaline, who I greatly admired as a damaged, layered, and crafty heroine full of courage and determination, even in the face of crushing emotion and debilitating torment And I love the world that Bast has created for this series There are so many truly nifty things about it that I admire greatly I wish we had been allowed interaction with the various fantastical creatures of Piefferburg and with the familiar characters we met from the first book But that s just me being greedy.I was also pleased to note that the third book in the series, Dark Enchantment, is set for release on April 5, 2011 My adoration of Wicked Enchantment Dark Magick, Book 1 and the things that I enjoyed about Cruel Enchantment have assured that I will continue reading the series I just hope the next book is a little closer to the first in both style and substance Reviewed for One Good Book Deserves Another. Why did I wait so long to read this book I m not sure if it is the mindset I m in right now or if it s the writing, but this book just flat out did it for me Talk about hot alpha male Aeric is hot and pretty rough I was actually hoping he d make Emmaline pay for her supposed sins When he threatened to chain her to his bed and make her pay for the wrongs she committed against him, I melted Is this wrong The sex in this book it hot I mean, we are talking about I wish my spouse was awake so I could jump him hot The thing about fae stories, is that there is an inherent sexual sadistic side to their culture Ms Bast captures it in a way that makes me want bad bad things Even though Lars is a sadistic psychotic sociopath, he exude a certain sensuality that I m drawn too, like the moth to a flame Yes, I d be tortured and yes I d be dead, but I can t say no Yes, it s f ed up.Emmaline is a character I can get behind She s a strong female who does have some pretty terrible baggage She also interacts with other strong females well which is a plus in her favour The fact that she s good hearted deep down makes her very appealing to me Her strength, even when she s being beaten and tortured, it s admirable Since this isn t a BDSM book, I realize Ms Bast won t go into Emmaline s torture I m a bit disappointed in ways because well, I am a sadist and I kind of wanted to read about it Especially if she s also sexually tortured during her time with the Seelie Court The storyline is actually moving too slow for me At this point, an additional unknown force slightly piques my interest, but barely I m at the point where I don t really care if they are freed or not I just want to read about hot smexy scenes where an alpha male tops an alpha female Ms Bast does it so well The sexual tension has me dripping with anticipation I recommend this book to fae lovers who really just want some hot sexual tension with smexy rough sex. Enjoyable, capable, and strong heroine and hero Good action and sex scenes The villains are evil, love to hate them Good setup for the next book. Review brought to you by OBS staff member DeannereneeHere you have the two main characters Aeric who has been waiting to seek revenge on Emmaline who killed the love of his life over 300 years ago Emmaline has remained hidden for those 300 plus years trying to help find a way to free her people Emmaline, feels guilty everyday about the hurt she has caused Aeric.Finally Aeric gets his wish and Emmaline shows herself His first thought is to kill her but something stops him Instead, he holds her captive and treats her like garbage for a couple of weeks During that time he realizes the truth, as he knew it, might not be true at all He finds that he is developing feelings for Emmaline and Emmaline realizes her feelings have not diminished over the 300 years of hiding.I enjoyed both characters and their stories I found myself, a couple of times, wondering what Anya Bast was thinking when she wrote certain parts of this book I find her to be a creative writer but in her series she is not consistent I liked this book, but I felt no love for the book There were parts where I could not put the book down and other moments that I could care less if I finished it.Over all I would give the book 3 out of 5 stars and will read the next book in the series.http openbooksociety.com article an |Free Pdf ♪ Cruel Enchantment ♲ View Our Feature On Anya Bast S Cruel EnchantmentThe Dark Magick Series Continues From This New York Times Bestselling Author To Keep Her Fae Race From Being Eradicated, Emmaline Gallagher Must Retrieve An Object Of Fae Power From A Locked Ancient Box Only Aeric O Malley Has The Forging Skills To Create A Key But Will Their Tumultuous Past Stand In The Way All in all I have to say that while it was not completely terrible, I was rather disappointed with this one I did enjoy the first book in this series, despite the cheesy romance part of the story See my review of the first book in this series Unfortunately, many of the aspects of the story that I had liked in the first book were not as well done in this second installment of the series.Good points The initial worldbuilding was well done i.e in the previous novel of the series This was the strongest aspect of the book and is the strongest aspect of this series, IMHO It is the reason I have kept reading, anyhow The two main characters were likeable, in that they were both good people who had found themselves in difficult situations i.e Emmaline was lied to, tortured, and used by the Summer Queen, while Aeric fell in love with a woman who did not love him back and lied to him for many years.Bad points constructive criticism Unfortunately, I do have many things to point out here i In general, this book did not really add much to the previous one where the world building was concerned It would have been nice to have details about this universe ii The two main characters were likeable The romance between them felt forced and not really believable though while I could see why Aeric had wanted to kill her and while I could see why she had killed the woman he had been in love with, I was never clear on why these two characters fell for each other as opposed to, say, Santa and Mrs Claus The story did not establish in what way these characters were unique and just what, if anything, they had in common So the romance fell entirely flat for me The reason I never saw what these characters had in common was the fact that the book spent relatively little time on this Rather, we were treated to much lusting, some sex scenes, as well as various story aspects relating to the underlying arc of this series of novels There was some elaboration on Emmaline s history as an assassin for the Summer Queen, as well as on Aeric s relationship with Aileen i.e his dead lover and her death at Emmaline s hands There was never any despcription of what these characters might like to do together There were never any descriptions of whether they liked or disliked the same or different foods There were never any descriptions of whether or not they liked to play practical jokes There were never any descriptions of which if any books they liked What I am trying to say is that these people felt, even by the end of the book, rather generic It was therefore difficult to understand why Aeric, for instance, would have fallen for the woman who killed his lover as opposed to, say, Mother Theresa It also seems to me that two people in love would have some things in common, whether it is a passion for justice or a passion for obscure literary quotes, and this was never established anywhere in the book But then, this seems to be the problem of virtually every romance novel I have ever read, in that the romance is never believable rant iii The sex scenes were, once again, BORING As in the first book, there was a fair degree of manipulation of the female character s genitals by the male, which somehow brought her to innumerable orgams Yawn iv This book also featured many instances of plot elements coming out of nowhere out of left field In other words, in the last third of the book, it truly felt to me as though the author did not know where the plot was headed and simply decided to randomly insert facile plot elements One example of this was the fact that, after managing to obtain the all important magical key from Aeric and having made her way to Israel, the main female character and her friends were attacked rather suddenly by a female fae who did not want the fae to be set free because this would result in her being taken to the underworld to join the sluagh i.e special hell for fae who had killed other fae and who had somehow heard about the finding of the second piece of the magical device which would have a role in setting the fae free How she had heard of the find was never explained and this was the first time any such evil fae cropped up So, while I am obivously not against introducing new elements being introduced into a story, this development felt rather sudden as it suddenly appeared about a 2 3 of the way through the book with no prior warning Another example of this would be the way in which one particular Phaendir fellow suddenly became suspicious of her, right before she would have returned to the fae with the piece of magical device so crucial to their freedom this felt like a rather convenient coincidence, plot wise v A plot hole I also felt it was somewhat unrealistic that a woman who has spent centuries hiding who she is, and who had successfully infiltrated the sworn enemies of her people i.e she infiltrated the Phaendir would not consider the possibility that someone might at some point search her and or her possessions I therefore found it somewhat idiotic on her part to have had kept things with her i.e jewelry which were typical of a FAE woman I also found it rather idiotic that someone who had decided to infiltrate an enemy organization in this way would not have memorized her pretend family s history in case she was questioned about her background I mean, honestly How dumb was she, exactly vi I still wonder why there are only Celtic mostly Irish magical creatures Couldn t magic evolve anywhere else on earth, other than Ireland All right, there apparently were some Scottish and some Welsh fae But still What s up with that is confused by this somewhat sloppy aspect of world building So, as with the first book, this book contained a rather low quality romance novel The second part or thread of the novel, namely the adventure urban fantasy aspect, was not as well carried out in this book as in the first book in the series, particularly since it did not elaborate on or further detail the elements introduced in the first novel of the series see above for details.2 stars See my review of the first book in this series See my review of the third book in this series. This is the second installment in Dark Magick serie and I can say without a shadow of doubt that Ms Anya has rocked my world yet again with another awesome tale Emma is a woman with a lot of things not going her way Life has dealt her a pretty crappy hand, but I admire the woman she become She made the best of what she could with the cards that she was dealt Her parents died when she was around ten Leaving her to fin for herself Until the Summer Queen took her in Only it was not from the warmth of the Summer Queen s heart to do this The Summer Queen knows no warm and fuzzy feelings She is quiet the opposite to her title Anything but warm In the Seelie Court, the Summer Queen turned Emma into an assassin, her personal assassin The job Emma was created for, she excelled in it Excelling so well that she pissed off than a few people.One of those people being Aeric the Blacksmith of the Unseelie Court He wields weapons laced with his magick for all of his life A man Emma fell in love with since the day she laid eyes on him way back when Emma knew that his heart belonged to Aileen, but she still cared for him Aeric was the type of man to give one hundred percent He did nothing half ass It was all or nothing for him and his love to Aileen was just that He gave her everything Even though he has a few doubts in the back of his mind about her and her past He overlooked them and loved her for all she was worth But one day that all changed, with one arrow Aeric s world was turned upside downThree hundred odd years have passed Emma now lives among the humans On the outside of the walls of Piefferburg Her cause now changed no longer an assassin Now she is working with an organization for Human for the Freedom of the Fae HFF Trying to free the fae Her mission to go back inside the gates of Piefferburg and get a key made Simple enough right Wrong, the only person that can make the key the Blacksmith Three hundred years and she still loved him and Aeric still hated her.This couple rocked my world Emma is a woman who made me very proud She owned up to her mistakes, she knew that her past would always follow her, condemn her She knew that the mission was important that herself She was willing to give up all that she has left for the better cause of the fae people, her people It was amazing to take the journey with Emma through her true past and her present To see the things she had to endure that no one else ever knew to become the woman was today The events and occurrences from Emma s past would have broke a regular person, broke them so hard they probably would not have survived it But she did And Aeric was a man on a mission of destruction By all means, he wanted Emma dead for taking what was his But when he learns of all of Emma s past secrets, strips her bear and goes beyond the glamour, he sees the true Emma The one who is afraid, whose heart is bigger than most, who s soul is in need of healing.Can two wrongs makes a right Can one forgive and forget the past Is it truly that easy to walk away and let go of all the strings that bind you to that past What happens when you don t want the past to be forgotten But what happens when you learn that things are not really what they seem Can love truly be blind and over come all This story is truly a hate love relationship There was no simple solution to this story If you want to read a vanilla kinda story, do not pick this up However, if you want a book that will make you pray for love, hope to be forgiven, dream to live another day then please read this one But be warned with every side, there is the side you don t want to know about The side where there is pleasure in the pain inflicted on others, by the hands of others Ms Anya gives you a story complete with the things that nightmares are made out of This is not a story to scare you, no this is a story to see all the dynamics of what powerful people are capable of doing.The story building is absolutely phenomenal Ms Anya leaves nothing out to the imagination when it comes to describing the world of the fae She holds no barred when it comes to making sure you know your surroundings, you know the people and you know their land You know it as your own backyard The relationships, Ms Anya, gives you the hero and heroine s story But what I truly enjoy is that Ms Anya keeps the family friends together in this series Each book is about a different hero heroine but the group as a whole is still brought forward If you have not indulged into the world of The Dark Magick, I insist that you do This is an awesome series that Ms Anya has created Bringing light to two people who would have never come together if it were not for the greatest cause of their people Their love and devotion for what they believe in shines through With these two people the truth was always what was important Emma and Aeric well come with me on this journey and find out for yourself just what a kick ass heroine and a bad ass blacksmith can accomplish together I promise you a ride all the way to the end Ms Anya did a fan flipping tastic job at creating another stealer of a book The world she enveloped me in was all I could have imagined and It was breathtaking as it was heartbreaking It was pain, while there was pleasure It was soul shattering as it was soul searching This book was truly a Cruel Enchantment of piece of work Ms Anya wonderful job Simply spell bounding Emma was the Queen s assassin for the Seelie court and she killed Aeric s love When she returns to have Aeric make a key to unlock another piece of the bosca fadbh Aeric finds her and locks her up while deciding how she will suffer only she isn t the monster he expected her to be and there s to the story than he knew The majority of the Unseelie Court and many in the Seelie court want to kill her Brother Gideon has the hots for her, we learn about his plans and are introduced to the HFF outside of Piefferburg A lot going on, some things are predictable but still a good read.