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book cover Limecello’s review of Kiss of a Demon King (Immortals After Dark, Book 6) by Kresley Cole
Paranormal romance released by Pocket on 20 Jan 09

This is the sixth book in Kresley Cole’s series Immortals After Dark, and I enjoyed it very much. I coveted Rydstrom’s book, and I think his story fit him perfectly. I also neglected all sorts of other things I was supposed to be doing in order to read this book. In fact, I’ve been in a massive reading funk, but still read Kiss of a Demon King – which should give you some indication as to how much I liked it. So you should read it too, if you haven’t already done so. 😉

I have to admit, the beginning of the book, and even about the first third were just “good” not great in my opinion- yet I couldn’t put the book down because I wanted to know what happened next. I also gradually became more and more invested in the story. I’ve always had a soft sport for Rydstrom – I mean, who wouldn’t feel sympathy for a king who has been trying to reclaim his throne for centuries? And while Sabine isn’t exactly lovable at first, she’s something like a cute, but repressed (in terms of affection) kitten with enormous[ly] sharp claws. (She grew on me.)

Sabine, the Queen of Illusions, is on the side of evil. There’s a lot of uncertainty when it comes to Sabine – not just because of her magical powers. Sabine herself is a mix of contradictions and facades, much like the illusions she weaves. It helps to know what motivates her, and controls her, which really makes her more likable.

I have to admit, while I didn’t initially love her personality, I respected her. And it’s always a good thing to have a strong heroine  – especially one that is an equal to the hero. Sabine truly is a character that has been shaped by her circumstances, but rather than getting mopey about it or shrinking into herself, she takes on the world. You have to admire that. And really, Sabine isn’t as bad as everyone thinks. Though I like that she revels in the fear and dislike she inspires.

Rydstrom is also a contradiction, but in a different way. He’s also the quintessential good guy. Rydstrom’s personality is the opposite of what you would expect it to be considering his appearance and physical attributes. However, I really liked that Ms. Cole had Rystrom really let go in Kiss of a Demon King. (And after comporting himself so nicely for the past five centuries, I’d say he was entitled to some bad behavior.)

I loved that Rydstrom was so conflicted. (I’m sadistic that way.) It was amusing how appalled he was by his own behavior, and surprisingly, it didn’t bother me that he continued on in the same manner to reach his goals. Tenacity is something else I admire. (And the way Ms. Cole wrote it, Rydstrom isn’t being a hypocrite- he’s just shocked by his own behavior and out of character responses.)

For Rydstrom and Sabine, it really is a case of opposites attract. While at the core they’re both good, the way they approach life and their priorities differ vastly. It is incredibly entertaining watching them get to know each other, and reading about one trying to understand the other’s motives. And you know, the first half or so of the book is a sexual battle of wills, which is always fun. First we have Sabine taunting Rydstrom, complete with a dungeon and chains. Then Rydstrom takes his turn with a whole new reason for bondage – and his torture/revengs, while twisted, is a bit sweeter, as part of his purpose is to get to know Sabine.

Are you intrigued yet? Because you should be! As I said, I really like the Immortals After Dark series. In fact, I’ve enjoyed the series so much I’ve felt compelled to discuss each and every book. While I can’t stand long series, I have to admit I eagerly anticipate the next IAD story. *Faint* I just went to Ms. Cole’s site to check. We’ve got a long wait – next is A Deep Kiss of Winter, which is only a novella, and it comes out November ’09. It is Murdoch (yay!) and Daniela’s story. And the next full length novel, Pleasure of a Dark Prince will be released January, 2010. So if you haven’t read the six previous books, you’ve got time to catch up.

LimecelloGrade: A

Read reviews, excerpts, and other information on this series by following its tag.

His obsession: the enchantress who surrenders her body, but not her heart.
After Sabine, the Queen of Illusions, lures and traps Rydstrom Woede in her lair, the ruthless warrior fights to resist her seduction.But his fierce demon nature lusts for her delicate body and won’t be denied. Even as Rydstrom plots to escape, he still intends to claim Sabine as his own—on his terms.
Her downfall: the battle-scarred demon who vows to keep her at all costs.
When Rydstrom breaks free, her abducts Sabine, turning the tables. Now she’s the one struggling to resist his delicious torment. With each relentless encounter, Sabine hungers more for her merciless adversary.
They were never supposed to want each other this much…
If they can defeat the sinister enemy that stands between them, will Sabine make the ultimate sacrifice to save her demon? Or will the proud king lay down his crown and arms to keep his sorceress?
Read an excerpt here.

Other books in the series:

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… and Book CoverNot That Innocent, a new anthology with by Kresley Cole, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Gena Showalter, and Sharie Kohler, coming 21 Jul 09.