From the BLURB:
Her breathless kiss haunts him...
Bowen MacRieve of the Lykae clan was nearly destroyed when he lost the one woman meant for him. The ruthless warrior grew even colder, never taking another to his bed -- until a smoldering encounter with his enemy, Mariketa the Awaited, reawakens his darkest desires. When sinister forces unite against her, the Highlander finds himself using all his strength and skill to keep her alive.
His slow, hot touch is irresistible...
Temporarily stripped of her powers, Mari is forced to take refuge with her sworn adversary. It's rumored that no one can tempt Bowen's hardened heart, but soon passion burns between them. Though a future together is impossible, she fears he has no intention of letting her go.
No deed is too wicked for her seduction...
If they defeat the evil that surrounds them, can Mari deny Bowen when he demands her body and soul -- or will she risk everything for her fierce protector?
This is Kresley Cole’s third book in her ‘Immortals after dark’ series. We met Bowen MacRieve in the first book ‘A hunger like no other’ as Lachlain’s best friend and cousin still reeling after the death of his mate 180 years ago. Bowen and Mariketa both appeared in the second book ‘No rest for the wicked’ as players in the Hie (Amazing Race-style treasure hunt). ‘Wicked deeds on a winter’s night’ starts out by filling in the story-gaps of the second book by revisiting the Hie. The first half of the novel is set in Guatemala as Bowen, Mariketa and a handful of other Hie-players try to make their way out of the jungle.
Bowen has been a fascinating secondary character for 2 of Cole’s books now, and I was really happy to finally read his story. Before the book even begins you know that Bowen and Mariketa have a lot going against them – mainly Bowen’s still grieving over his dead mate (after 180 years!). So there is a real element of ‘will-they-or-won’t-they?’ because the emotional stakes are so high and seemingly insurmountable.
There is quite a bit of action in this book too – plenty of fights and near misses, and all set in an exotic (and dangerous) location. Cole is great at the edge-of-you-seat stuff and there’s plenty in ‘Wicked deeds’.
I was a bit conflicted about the character of Mariketa. She has an interesting background and history, and is made even more fascinating by the fact that she is the witches’ future leader. Except for the small problem of having no control over her powers and being an ‘underachiever’ (or as she calls herself, an ‘overfailer’). My problem was her similarities to Emmaline Troy (from ‘A hunger like no other’) – both are half fey (Emma is fey/vampire while Mariketa is fey/witch) and both women are contending with Alpha males who resent their attraction to the females. I felt like I’d read this story before between Emma and Lachlain.
Nevertheless, if there is one thing Kresley Cole excels at it’s steamy romance. Her sex scenes are fabulously sensual and her men are always yummy Alpha’s. Bowen is a great character – funny, cheeky, flirtatious but ultimately cautious about getting his heart broken again. Together Bowen and Mariketa make a great, funny couple;
She inwardly shook herself. “MacRieve, when I settle down it’s going to be with a male that has - oh, I don’t know - a sense of humor, or of modesty. How about a lack of scathing hatred toward witches? Maybe a zest for life? Too much to ask that he’s born in the same millennium?”
I love this series, it’s one guaranteed to please. Because the timelines between books are so close it can be a bit difficult to pick up where the action last left off – but Cole’s speedy pace means there’s never a dull moment.