Series: The Cousins O'Dwyer

Friends to Lovers with an Evil Twist! Audio Review of Shadow Spell by Nora Roberts

Posted October 30, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | | 2 Comments

Friends to Lovers with an Evil Twist! Audio Review of Shadow Spell by Nora RobertsShadow Spell by Nora Roberts
Series: The Cousins O'Dwyer #2
Narrator: Alan Smyth
Published by Brilliance Audio on March 25, 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Paranormal Romance
Format: Audiobook
Length: 11 hours, 20 minutes
Source: Purchased
Audio | Goodreads

With the legends and lore of Ireland running through his blood, falconer Connor O’Dwyer is proud to call County Mayo home. It’s where his sister, Branna, lives and works, where his cousin, Iona, has found true love, and where his childhood friends form a circle that can’t be broken…

A circle that is about to be stretched out of shape—by a long-awaited kiss.

Meara Quinn is Branna’s best friend, a sister in all but blood. Her and Connor’s paths cross almost daily, as Connor takes tourists on hawk walks and Meara guides them on horseback across the lush countryside. She has the eyes of a gypsy and the body of a goddess…things Connor has always taken for granted—until his brush with death propels them into a quick, hot tangle.

Plenty of women have found their way to Connor’s bed, but none to his heart until now. Frustratingly, Meara is okay with just the heat, afraid to lose herself—and their friendship—to something more. But soon, Connor will see the full force and fury of what runs in his blood. And he will need his family and friends around him when his past rolls in like the fog, threatening an end to all he loves…

ROMANCE paranormal magical

As with the first story in this trilogy, Dark Witch, it begins in the past with the three children of the first dark witch, Sorcha. I love this aspect as it’s entrenched in the underlying mythology. Each time we learn a little bit more about Cabhan, the dark sorcerer, which helps the six friends figure out a way to defeat him.

Connor’s my favorite of all the characters. His breezy, fun-loving spirit is infectious and endears him to friends and family. He’s the kind of guy that is popular with the ladies but doesn’t leave a trail of broken hearts. They all seem to know it’s just for fun. Even with Meara, who he’s known all his life, their friendship has never wavered.

After a particularly nasty encounter with Cahban, Connor and Meara’s relationship takes a turn toward romance. Both are a bit unnerved but Meara especially so. Abandoned by her father, she’s pretty resistant to starting something with Connor. Him? Not so much. It’s a nice, new direction for him.

The strength of this story, however, is the friendship of the six. Some of the best moments are when they’re all together. This is a familiar theme of Nora’s trilogies, especially to me now as I recently finished the Sign of Seven series.

I have mixed feelings about the narration. Alan Smyth’s Irish accent certainly helped keep me in the setting, especially during the scenes with Sorcha’s children. However, I couldn’t distinguish any of the male characters from one another. When you’re reading Nora’s stories, particularly where there’s dialogue, the transitions don’t always bear the character names. It’s not an issue when reading print or eBooks but it was a huge one for me with this performance. I struggled knowing who was talking.

Bottom line, it’s an enjoyable friends to lovers romance with a strong and interesting underlying mythology. I welcome the final chapter of the trilogy and already bought the audiobook, which is narrated by the fabulous Susan Ericksen!


Listen to a clip!

About Nora Roberts

Nora Roberts was born in Silver Spring, Maryland, the youngest of five children. She married young and settled in Keedysville, Maryland where she worked briefly as a legal secretary. After her sons were born she stayed home and tried every craft that came along. A blizzard in February 1979 forced her hand to try another creative outlet. She was snowed in with a three and six year old.

Born into a family of readers, Nora had never known a time that she wasn’t reading or making up stories. During the now-famous blizzard, she pulled out a pencil and notebook and began to write down one of those stories. It was there that a career was born. Several manuscripts and rejections later, her first book, Irish Thoroughbred, was published by Silhouette in 1981.

Nora met her second husband, Bruce Wilder, when she hired him to build bookshelves. They were married in July 1985. Since that time, they’ve expanded their home, traveled the world and opened a bookstore together.

Through the years, Nora has always been surrounded by men. Not only was she the youngest in her family, but she was also the only girl. She has raised two sons. Having spent her life surrounded by men, Ms. Roberts has a fairly good view of the workings of the male mind, which is a constant delight to her readers. It was, she’s been quoted as saying, a choice between figuring men out or running away screaming.

Nora is a member of several writers groups and has won countless awards from her colleagues and the publishing industry. Recently The New Yorker called her “America’s favorite novelist.”

Review: Dark Witch by Nora Roberts

Review: Dark Witch by Nora Roberts

Posted November 12, 2013 by Jonetta in Book Review | 9 Comments

      The set up Iona Sheehan risks everything when she quits her job, sells everything she owns and moves from Baltimore, Maryland to County Mayo, Ireland, her ancestral homeland. She seeks out her cousins, Branna, a Dark Witch, and Connor O’Dwyer, that her grandmother has told her so much about, determined to find that connection she’s craved all her life. Iona gets more than she ever hoped for when her cousins embrace her and help her get a job with their friend Boyle McGrath, doing what she loves…caring for and riding horses.   The issues The story begins with the medieval tale of Sorcha, the first Dark Witch, who took on Cabhan, an evil sorcerer. She passed her powers to her three children […]