Favorite lines: ” “I’m sorry I couldn’t shave.” He kissed her finger. “Don’t be.” She smiled. ” I find I like whiskers.” “You won’t when you get whisker burns on your face.” He glanced down the lean length of her body. “And other places.” ” (p. 103)
The Paladins live to protect humans and their world from the Others crossing a thin barrier that separates their worlds.
When Paladin warrior Cullen Finley is given a note to throw across the barrier for his friend Barak, he begins to think about the Other woman he battled and decides to cross the barrier to give the note in person. He hopes the woman won’t kill him, but after their dance with blades he is willing to take the risk if it means he might see her again.
Lusahn has been left alone. The last member of her line and a sworn Guardian, she is duty bound to protect her world from the savage humans and traitors who try to flee to the other side. So it comes as a surprise to her when the Paladin warrior crosses the barrier and she doesn’t kill him.
She then finds herself taking him home with her and putting her life at risk for a few moments of shared time. She introduces her kids to him and begins to work on solving the mystery of the blue stones.
Ms. Morgan knows a good thing. Redeemed in Darkness is fourth book in the Paladin series. She has expanded from her first and second books and the Paladin warrior and human woman to using an Other man and human woman for book three and now in book four using an Other woman and Paladin man. Another major difference is the introduction of children and the setting change from the human world to that of the Other.
I couldn’t help but be reminded of attitudes toward racial mixing in the past as I read this book. I say that because it seems to be easy to fall for a person, while disliking a race. Cullen has fought the Others for so long that it is amazing he finds love with an Other. But not surprising that while he can accept her and the children, he has to work at accepting different Others. It’s not so easy to put aside his prejudices (that have been nursed by all surrounding him up to recent months prior to meeting Lusahn) even after finding love with one of their species.
Lusahn is a warrior equal to Cullen. She balances out her warrior lifestyle by doing domestic work, including picking up a family after finding herself alone. This works to balance her and round her character out, for not only is she a fighter, but a nurturer.
It was nice to see the book set in the Other’s world, too. There are so many possible questions about the Others that it’s great to see some of them addressed. I wondered if Ms. Morgan was going to allow the characters to stay in the Other’s world. It’s pretty clear from previous books that the world is dying and the Others are taking precious stone with them.
This book explores the idea of living amongst a group that’s different and that of racial mingling. It’s funny to me that only the Others seemed to care about the pairing of a Paladin and Other. It’s like having Romeo and Juliet with swords, a tragedy waiting to be solved. The repercussions to such a decision were gently explored in Dark Protector and I expect them to be dealt with in the next installment in February of 2009. There is also supposed to be a novella about Penn Sebastian in an anthology. (I think it’d be great if an Other man and Penn hooked up.) 🙂