by Marty Kindall Chester
Published April 9th 2012 by Carina Press
As the Romans storm the last stronghold of Dacia, Princess Ademeni awaits her fate. Taken as a slave, she is deposited into General Marcus Cordovis’s home as a gift.
Driven to avenge her family, Ademeni plots to kill her captor and escape. Though not the cruel victor she expects, Marcus keeps her too close to make escape easy-so close that Ademeni is soon tormented by an unbidden, traitorous attraction. In a moment of weakness, a passionate kiss almost undoes them both.
But the handsome, widowed general has another surprise for Ademeni: a young daughter. Marcus dares ask Ademeni to help him bridge the gap between him and his little girl. And now, Ademeni is growing too fond of those she is supposed to despise. As Marcus prepares for the triumphal march and the opening of the gladiatorial games-where captives of her homeland will be sacrificed-Ademeni readies for her own battle-between revenge and love.
~ Goodreads Blurb
This is going to be a quickie review. You gotta admit it sounds awesome, right, “quickie review”? lol. Moving on.
I was really into reading this because I love Roman Empire historicals, plus this one involved Dacia, and since Dacians are my ancestors I was totally hooked. Plus I’ve read a couple of fun Roman Empire historicals from Carina so far so I was sure I’d have fun. And I did.
The settings were historical enough, there was historical truth to the story (including the Decebalus thing – shivers), the personality of Ademeni (trivia perhaps, but in Romanian “a ademeni” is a verb and it means “to lure in”, so that name was really cool xD) was pretty Dacian, proud and brave and fun. The Roman general was cool too, but somehow I expected more from him, more intensity perhaps. I was cool with him, but I’m just a sucker for more badass dudes, especially in historicals. The whole taking slaves from prisoners of war is an area that I have a guilty pleasure in reading about, but that’s just me and my power play fangirling. The title sort of made me think there’d be more power play, honestly, but reading it I can say there’s not much of it going on in fact. Aside from Ademeni having to perform as a Roman house slave, in the pair they’re equals pretty much.
Anyways, the characters were interesting and I liked Ademeni’s personality.
The story had a lot of potential and it went really good for about the first half. What happened is from somewhere around the half to the end I felt like the romance angle was somehow skimmed over. I loved the plot by large, and events were put together in a lovely pace, alert without rushing you. But the romance seemed to be skimmed over from a point on, I would have loved to feel more of it going on until the end. Don’t get me wrong, the story was nice, the characters were fun, the settings were believable and everything, but the sizzle that the Ademeni and Marcus pair had up to a point died down for me. If it hadn’t been in there much at all it would have been another thing, but to get a taste and then to not get any more of it…*sigh* I felt somehow deprived nearer the end there.
All in all this was a lovely read, but I lost the spark for it somewhere around the 3/4 point. I didn’t lose interest, but I lost the spark. Give it a try though if you’re into Roman Empire romance, it’s cool.