by Kresley Cole
Release Date: January 10, 2012
Publisher: Pocket Books
Book #11 in the Immortals After Dark series
Number of Pages: 481
Paranormal Romance M/F
Ages 18 and up
CW: sexual assault, imprisonment
Read 7/17/21 to 7/19/21
All Fear The Enemy Of Old
Driven by his insatiable need for revenge, Lothaire, the Lore’s most ruthless vampire, plots to seize the Horde’s crown. But bloodlust and torture have left him on the brink of madness—until he finds Elizabeth Peirce, the key to his victory. He captures the unique young mortal, intending to offer up her very soul in exchange for power, yet Elizabeth soothes his tormented mind and awakens within him emotions Lothaire believed he could no longer experience.
A Deadly Force Dwells Within Her
Growing up in desperate poverty, Ellie Peirce yearned for a better life, never imagining she’d be convicted of murder—or that an evil immortal would abduct her from death row. But Lothaire is no savior, as he himself plans to sacrifice Ellie in one month’s time. And yet the vampire seems to ache for her touch, showering her with wealth and sexual pleasure. In a bid to save her soul, Ellie surrenders her body to the wicked vampire, while vowing to protect her heart.
Centuries Of Cold Indifference Shattered
Elizabeth tempts Lothaire beyond reason, as only his fated mate could. As the month draws to a close, he must choose between a millennia-old blood vendetta and his irresistible prisoner. Will Lothaire succumb to the miseries of his past…or risk everything for a future with her?
I’ve said before that I’m not under Lothaire’s thrall as many seem to be. But I was extremely curious to find out how Kresley Cole would make him a character I cared about. She has a knack for making me care for her previously despised characters, even if some aren’t fully redeemed. I enjoyed this story from the start, but Lothaire was still a hard sell for me.
Where Lothaire is problematic, Ellie is wonderful. She’s so strong and bold. She cares deeply for her family, first and foremost. She would do anything to protect them. Pay any personal cost to be sure they are safe and left alone. Of course, Lothaire uses this against her time and time again. To the point that it was really getting to be annoying. Not just for me, but also for Ellie. She may want to protect her family, but that doesn’t mean she’s willing to be a doormat.
The genius in this book is the author giving me a character to despise more than I disliked Lothaire. Soraya really got my goat. I hated her scenes because I hated her. I wanted Lothaire to hate her, too. While we know Lothaire to be The Enemy of Old and to be one that uses other to his own ends always, he becomes a bit of a pathetic being when it comes to Soroya. He has his reasons, but I wanted him to take a good look at what she was really doing to him. When he finally starts to see the truth, it may be too late.
Even though I was not rooting for Lothaire, I was rooting for Ellie to find her HEA. I was soon obvious that would have to be with Lothaire. They had such a great connection. As mad and confused as Ellie was at the situation, she still found a seed of sympathy for Lothaire. She tried so hard to be understanding of what he has been through in his very long life. Yet, every time I though Lothaire was going in the right direction, he would do something so aggressive it would put me off again. Two steps forward, one step back.
There is a lot that I can’t get into without giving spoilers. I will admit that there was definitely a point where I thought Lothaire had crossed the line into no man’s land. That he did things he would never be able to come back from when it came to Ellie. Not just in her eyes, but in his own. Then there is something that Ellie does to him that made me realize it was something that had to happen. As shocking as it all is, it had to happen in order for her to be able to get some sense of closure on the terrible things he did to her. I’m not saying he’s redeemed, I don’t think he ever will be. But he’s changed in some regards. He’s learned what it is to care more about someone else than himself and his crown.
In addition to the Ellie/Lothaire story, I was delighted that we got to see so much of Thad. That kid has really grown on me. There was also an interesting and much needed friendship that developed between Ellie and Hag and Thad. I was all for their odd trio.
As usual, just because there is a sort of closure in one arena of the lore doesn’t mean there weren’t a million more questions that have cropped up. The world of Kresley Cole’s Lore is deep and intricate and a great diversion from the real world.