Series: Order of the Sicari
Author: Monica Burns
Read copy: Paperback
Published: September 7, 2010
The half-angel, half-demon face that telepathic Lysander sees in the mirror is a reminder of the monster he must keep hidden to avoid expulsion from an order of assassins. His dreams of ancient Rome hint at a destiny with a woman he loves, but can never have.
When the gifted healer Phaedra travels to Rome in search of a legendary artifact, she works alongside a man who once rejected her love and healing touch. But her dreams of Ancient Rome tell of an irreversible and possibly dangerous future. For the distant past and present are about to collide-with the one man she is destined to love.
Oh, yes. Yes, baby. Now we’re talking. Because this was a huge improvement from Assassin's Honor. Especially in the heroine department. Because I liked Phaedra. Very much. Sure, she had her moments – first when she believed Lysander’s lies and didn’t press the issue further, and second when she discovered what he kept from her and without thinking decided she couldn’t trust him. Yes, she changed her mind pretty quickly, thanks to her friends’ intervention, but that little lapse shouldn’t have been there.
Well, it doesn’t matter now, because this one was one heck of a story. Angst, baby, angst galore, drama, a little lighter on the action as the previous one, but what it had to offer was “da bomb”, smokin’ hot when it needed to be, sexy, bittersweet, and a lot angsty. Did I mention that? I usually don’t like my books so rife with angst, but Ms. Burns made it work in this one.
And all thanks to the one, the only, Lysander Condellarie. Boy, what a package. Hot and sexy as hell, eye-patch, scars and all. A protective streak a mile wide, loads of self-punishment, doubt, and guilt. And a whole lot of love for one woman. Angst personified, and I loved every minute of it. He was an idiot to push her away, but this reader could understand and sympathize, he was still an idiot one year ago but you could see he was wavering, and when Phae finally decided to take matters into her own hands and give him a push, this reader sighed in relief. Then there was another heart-wrenching couple of pages when he suffered for being an idiot in the beginning and not telling her (which would’ve resulted in the same treatment and they all knew it), some more suffering in the end when…Yes, there was a lot of suffering going on around in this book, but it was “good” suffering, don’t fret.
And there was an interesting side story – and possibly a glimpse into a future one – involving a Sicari Lord and the Prima Pilus, but I’m not saying more and risking spoiling it for those who haven’t read it yet.
The only problem this book had were the flashbacks in form of dreams. Sure, they were an intricate part of the plot, but they slowed the pacing down too much, and the only interesting part was the end of “history”.
And, yet again, the Sicari language bothered me. Sorry.
So, not 5 stars for this one but a solid B+.