In this second novel of the fanciful Sisters of the Sun trilogy, middle Fyne sister Juliet is kidnapped by the Emperor's men--only to be rescued by a man whose animal instincts tell him he's found the only woman to call his own. Original.
In the second volume in Jones's paranormal Fyne sisters trilogy (after The Sun Witch), middle sister Juliet learns to embrace her magical powers and attempts to break a curse that has shadowed her family for generations-a curse that dictates that any man they love will die by the age of 30. Eldest sister Isadora learned this the hard way when her husband died, and Sophie, the youngest, currently dreads the approach of her husband's 30th birthday. Brittle and reserved Juliet's recurrent nightmares of violent sexual encounters, meanwhile, have only reinforced her impulse to avoid men. But soon after the emperor's men kidnap Juliet, a man named Ryn steals her away from her abductors, claiming she is his intended wife. Initially horrified, especially after she learns that Ryn shape-shifts when the moon is full, Juliet soon comes to lust after and love this wild wolf/man. Though her transformation from quiet "seer" to queen of a unique group of beings will enthrall readers, the heavy focus on plot keeps Juliet a distanced and undeveloped heroine emotionally. Overall, this lushly imaginative novel suffers from too broad a focus, offering only cursory coverage of even the most climactic events in the lives of each sister. Agent, Richard Curtis. (May) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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May 02, 2005
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Excerpt from The Moon Witch by Linda Winstead Jones
JULIET SQUIRMED IN her bed, awake long past the hour when she normally fell asleep. The back of her neck prickled. She reached beneath her loose braid and rubbed vigorously, but still the sensation did not entirely subside. Something was wrong; she just couldn't determine exactly what that something was.
For the past three days she'd been unusually restless, pacing when she should be sitting, and snapping at Isadora over the smallest disagreements. That just wasn't like her. For the past three nights when she'd gone to bed, she'd tossed and turned for a long while, unable to get comfortable. When sleep did come, it was filled with vivid and odd dreams she could not decipher. In some of the dreams there was heat and blood. Her heart pounded hard and fast, and a sea of faces swarmed too closely around her. She could never tell when or where she was, and when she woke, she remembered none of the faces.
In addition to the dreams that made no sense, she'd been having an old nightmare for the past two weeks. It had been months since she'd had that dream from which she always woke in a cold sweat, the nightmare that had made her swear years ago that she would never lie with a man.
Her psychic ability was all but useless where her own life was concerned. Juliet could see the past and the future of a complete stranger, but she never knew what tomorrow would bring for her. She hadn't even been able to find her favorite hairclip when it had come up missing. Still, she knew in her heart that the nightmare was more than a fear. It was a premonition. And for the past fourteen nights she had suffered with that nightmare every night.
The dream always started pleasantly enough. The sensation of being taken into a man's embrace was nice. That closeness warmed her to the depths of her soul and caused her insides to do strange things. At the pit of her being she burned and fluttered, and in the shelter of the surprisingly strong arms she realized that there was something wonderful waiting for her and the man who held her.
But that realization of something good to come soon changed, and pain came without warning. It came with agony and blood. The arms that had held her so tenderly changed, a man held her down so that she could not move, and claws tore her flesh. She always saw the claws and knew what was coming, but she couldn't scream, not even as they ripped into her body.