Published Date: September 1st, 2005
Finished Date: June 26th, 2011
Publishers: HQN Books
Series: Atlantis book 1
Blurb from Goodreads: Searching for her missing brother, Grace Carlyle never dreamed she would discover a secret world populated by mythological monsters--or find herself facing a sword-wielding being whose looks put mortal men to shame.
But there he was, Darius en Kragin, one of a race of shape-shifting warriors bound to guard the gates of Atlantis, and kill all travelers who strayed within its borders.
Now Grace's life was in his hands, and Darius had to choose between his centuries-old vow and the woman who had slipped beneath his defenses and stolen the heart of Atlantis's fiercest dragon. --------------------------------------------------------------------------
My Review: This book was a pure whine-fest. The plot was horrendously predictable, and the heroine is a major whiner, and a B with an ITCH. Seriously, what the hell is wrong with her? She's like those anorexic, cheerleader whiner-babies that is totally unsatisfied with her life. And don't get me started on the male protagonist. He was an emotional wreck when he saw her, all "i should kill you but i cant cause i get all tingly with this insta-love shit that i still dont want to acknowledge is love thing". Dont get me wrong, im more than fine with insta-loves(what's not to love and all right?), but you've got to build and elaborate it, not just go straight into the face sucking. And so it was downright draggy and uneventful that i stopped reading quite soon after i picked the book up.
Here's how far i got: Darius shed any and all emotions he might have had way back ago after seeing his family get killed and having had his first kill(who was a totally innocent person who just so happen to have stumbled upon the entrance to Atlantis). Grace is a starved, lost girl in the Amazon jungle with a rifle in hand, and who has no qualms using it whatsoever(really? yeah because you go around shooting guys in their asses everyday in your very unfulfilling life like you just did earlier in the book right? totally understandable). She isnt happy with her life(have i said that already?), and is out being an adrenaline junkie when her tour guide, of sorts, bolted on her, taking with him all her supplies including food and the makeshift shelter. She stumbles upon this whole bunch of human-like apes which is a rip off of the funny baboon scene in Tarzan, and all of a sudden, this weird dragon necklace that her brother gave her started glowing and tugging her to this cave. She wandered further into the cave and got transported to Atlantis where she meets Darius at the cave entrance/exit. Both of them gets these lusty feelings INSTANTLY and omg..Yeah and so Darius managed to bring her to his private chambers in his palace(yes he is the king of the palace) and they knocked it off with lots of french kissing.
I stopped there. Cause it was filled in between with SOO much inner whining and draggy parts that i literally rolled my eyes(and i dont do that often cause i have a manly rep to protect ok..)and closed the book and was like, ah f*ck..this is a hell of a disappointment(sorry for the language. I think long term reading Hellion's reviews and the f word is flowing out of me like nobody's business). Because i had such high expections for this book which had an effing lot of plot potential. And i say effing lot cause apparently im a sucker for cool, reclusive, high-flying/status guys who fall for that one special, mortal girl with spirit. And Showalter is a rather renowned author with a hell lot of books to decorate her biography(ok awkward phrasing, but you get what i mean).
The female protagonist, Grace Carlyle, isnt endearing, at all. She's really like a crazy, wild and unappreciative brat who keeps getting into trouble and looking for hot sex(yes it was explicitly stated), and i dont get the lovey dovey chemistry that should be there(and this love or lust at first sight is hardly an acceptable excuse), like in Firelight by Sophie Jordan, that one i loved, and craved for more, but this one is just pushing it.
The male protagonist was ok...........weird, cool, but not ideal(maybe my impression was sullen-ed from all those repetitive "should i?but i shouldnt..Should i?but i shouldnt..SHOULD I?" oh god just effing make a freaking decision. My first impression of him wasnt bad tho..it just went down a steady steep decline as i progressed further into the book. but just freaking MOVE ON, dude. i should too..sigh.) There werent many side characters other than Darius' underlings. But they didnt really shine all that much..And especially with their rebellious, disrespectful attitude, it totally destroyed Darius' image as a commanding and well-respected king.
To sum it all up and tho i cant help repeating myself: Whiny. Draggy. Uneventful. Disliked female protagonist. Unendearing male protagonist(maybe just a little huh, not so unendearing). Not much plot building. Not much chemistry in the relationship. Appallingly predictable plot. Bad book. Did not even reach a quarter of the book. Painful reading process. And i repeat PAINFUL.