Malcolm of Dunroch is a newly chosen Master, a novice to his extraordinary--and dangerous--powers. But he has already broken his vows--and a young woman's death is on his hands. Malcolm is determined to fight his darkest desires, denying himself all pleasure...until fate sends him another Innocent, the beautiful bookseller Claire Camden.
Since her mother's murder, Claire has done everything possible to make a safe, secure life for herself in a city where danger lurks on every street corner, especially in the dark of night. But nothing can prepare her for the powerful and sexual medieval warrior who sweeps her back into his time--a treacherous, frightening world where the hunters and the hunted are one and the same. Claire needs Malcolm to survive, yet she must somehow keep the dangerously seductive Master at arm's length. For Malcolm's soul is at stake--and fulfilling his desires could prove fatal....
Bestselling author Joyce kicks off her Masters of Time series with a master's skill, instantly elevating her to the top ranks of the ever-growing list of paranormal romance authors. Her strong, smart heroine, Claire Camden, is a woman damaged by the violent deaths of her mother and cousin; her life revolves around her dreams, her beloved bookstore and her efforts to keep safe. Those efforts prove less than successful when her apartment is invaded one night by a band of warriors from the past who make strange, threatening demands. Soon, Claire is catapulted into 15th-century Scotland (a land she happens to have studied for years) with the help of a handsome medieval warrior named Malcolm. Malcolm is a Master, charged with protecting Innocents (a group that includes Claire), but he hides a secret that could lose him his soul. His quest is to defeat the evil Moray and retain the safety of his land and people; of course, unbeknownst to Claire, he can't do that without her. Steeped in action and sensuality, populated by sexy warriors and strong women, graced with lush details and a captivating story, this title may not set a new standard in the paranormal/time-travel romance genre, but it certainly qualifies as a superlative example. (May) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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1 . This was a good read! I liked the steamy scenes and how it got right to the point.
Posted September 02, 2011 by Angela , Sapulpagreat
April 30, 2007
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Excerpt from Dark Seduction by Brenda Joyce
Claire was afraid of the dark.
It was dark now--and something had just thudded downstairs.
She stood absolutely still in the bedroom that was above her bookstore. Claire sold old and rare books and manuscripts, as well as the occasional used but rare tome, and because of the quarter-of-a-million-dollar inventory she kept downstairs, she had a state-of-the-art security system, a Taser and a gun. She knew she hadn't left a window open, as it was sweltering in the city in July, and she would never leave a window open anyway. It was too dangerous. Crime was out of control in the city. Last month, her neighbor, a wannabe model, had been murdered, and although the police weren't saying so, she suspected it had been a pleasure crime. She strained to hear, debating getting her Beretta from her bedside drawer.
But she heard nothing now.As she stood there, clad in a pair of cotton candy-striped boxers and a thin ribbed tank top, her bedroom looking as if a tornado had cycled through it, the stray cat that had appeared earlier that day wandered in from the hall outside. She was flooded with relief. The cat had knocked something over! She shouldn't have suspected the worst-- after all, her motion-detection sensors hadn't gone off--but even after all these years, she hated being alone at night.
Terrified, the child crouched by the door, as a dark, deathly shadow drifted by.
Claire scowled at the handsome black cat, refusing to allow a single thought of her mother's long-ago murder to invade her consciousness now. "You! I shouldn't have fed you, now, should I?"
Purring, the cat slithered between her ankles, rubbing sensually there.
Claire scooped him up, the first time she had done so, holding him tightly to her chest. "Rascal," she whispered. "I need a dog, not a cat, but if I didn't know that someone was missing you, I'd keep you."
The cheeky creature actually licked her face.
Claire wiped her chin, dropping the cat to the floor, knowing she'd have to post some Found notices in her Tribeca neighborhood before she left for the airport tomorrow. She was in the midst of packing for a long-overdue vacation. Tomorrow, she was bound for Edinburgh, and on Friday she would be driving across the Highlands. This time, her first stop would be the starkly beautiful island of Mull.
Excitement filled her. The cat had made himself comfortable on her bed, and Claire stepped away to return to her packing. She went to her antique bureau, purchased on a previous trip abroad in Lisbon. She traveled extensively for her business. Smiling as she tossed her dark auburn hair over her shoulder, she pulled out a pile of tanks and tees. She was twenty-eight years old, soon to be twenty-nine, and she ran an extraordinarily successful business, with half of it conducted on the Internet. Since graduating from Princeton with a master's degree in medieval European history, she'd taken exactly two personal vacations. Her first had been to London with a tour of Cornwall and Wales. At the last minute a friend had told her she had to spend a few days in Scotland, and even though she was not a creature of impulse--Claire liked to be in control--she had changed her itinerary the day before departing to do so. The moment she had passed Berwickupon-Tweed, an odd excitement had filled her. She had instantly loved Scotland.
It had almost been like coming home.
She'd given herself the standard tour that time--Dunbar, Edinburgh, Stirling, Iona and Perth. But she had known she would come back to explore the Highlands. Their stark majesty and rugged desolation called out to her in a way she had never before experienced. Two years ago, she had returned, spending ten days in the north and northwest. On her last day, she had discovered the small, craggy, beautiful island of Mull.
She had traveled to Duart on the sound of Mull, the seat of the Maclean lairds for many centuries past. An intense need to explore and discover the history of the area had overcome her, but wandering through the castle hadn't satisfied her at all. Just before leaving the island, she had stumbled across a charming bed-and-breakfast in Malcolm's Point, and she had been directed to Dunroch by its owners. She had been told Dunroch was seat of the Macleans of south Mull and Coll and that the current laird remained in residence, although he was rarely seen. He was a recluse, they said, and unwed, a terrible shame. Like most aristocrats, financial reasons forced him to open the grounds and a few rooms to the public.