Review: Eternity’s Mark by Maeve Greyson

26 Mar

Eternity’s Mark by Maeve Greyson
Kennsington (April 1, 2012)
Trade: $14; ebook: $11.99
ISBN: 9780758273390

Favorite Lines: “Taggert’s attitude kept her plenty warm. There wasn’t any reason for him to be a jerk. He still owed her explanations. ” Well, apparently, you weren’t all that wild about kissing me anyway. I don’t remember anything about you pushing the advantage.”

Taggart rolled his eyes and held up a warning hand. “Oh, no! I am not taking that bait. Many a man down through the centuries has met his downfall by following that line of conversation with a woman.”” (p. 96, ARC)

A sexy Scot. A mystical inheritance. What could go wrong?

Veterinarian Hannah MacPherson knows better than to believe in love at first—or any—sight. True, being swept away by Taggart de Gaelson to the vast Scottish castle she’s mysteriously inherited is uber-romantic. The legacy is totally legitimate, and its messenger is big, broad-shouldered, and smokin’ in more ways than one . . .

Too bad Taggart forgot to mention that Hannah’s also a Guardian of magical dragons called the Draecna. And as Hannah’s sworn otherworldly protector, Taggart is honor-bound not to lay a hand on her, no matter how close he gets. . .

But turning duty into pleasure is just too tempting. And for Hannah, mastering her powers and saving two worlds from evil will be way easier than showing one hardheaded warrior that breaking all the rules means they are eternally made for each other . . .

Eternity’s Mark is a paranormal romance that mainly takes place in the human world, but at one point shifts to an alternate land where dragons and magic live. It’s filled with ancient creatures and evil beings, as well as loveable dragons and a man with a Scottish burr. Taggart is a man’s man in search of the guardian who can protect the Scottish castle which is home to a few dragons and a portal to the magical land of Erastaed. As he says:

“I am Taggart de Gaelson, eldest son of the Royal House of Cair Orlandis. I am seven hundred and seventy-seven years old and I come from another reality. I come from Erastaed, from the world on the other side of the portal of Taroc Na Mor, ancestral home to the race of teh sacred Draecna. I am chosen protector from the Guild of Barac’Nairn, watchers over the blessed guardian.”–p. 97

Hannah (lucky woman) is the “blessed guardian” Taggart mentions. She is also a widow determined to never love and lose again. With Taggart’s help she begins to soften and let the magic of Scotland heal her. Sounds pretty sedate, right? Well, it’s not. Once in Scotland things begin to get a little dark. A villain wants the ultimate power and he sees the heroine as his tool to getting it. He will use Taggart’s past as a means to grab hold of Taggart’s future. He is pure evil. The things he is capable of are shiver worthy.

I was having a good time reading this book up until things began to get dirty and the pacing of the story increased. Toward the end characters begin to die. Characters that I liked. Okay, let me clarify that. Characters who I got to know and laughed at were killed off page and WHAM! I’m told so-and-so is dead. WTF!!! Then the evil villain and his henchman are dealt with in such a mundane manner that I had to re-read it. Seriously? That’s all it took to off the big bad of this book? The man who was ultimate darkness was destroyed that easily? Most of this happens in the final chapter, along with a final shock which made me want to throw my book across the room. I’m dying to tell you what, but it’d ruin the story for you.

My enjoyment of Eternity’s Mark nosedived as matters were cleanly and simply resolved. I felt like the author decided it was time to end the book, took a look at all the open plot lines and said “I’m done” and chopped the lifelines of those plots. It was abrupt and jarring. Had matters been handled differently, such as the author showing me characters being killed instead of letting me infer “oh, it’s war and people die,” I would have enjoyed the book more.  The final page and a half left me in incredulity, and not in a good way.

While three fourths of Eternity’s Mark was excellent and exciting, the ending felt forced and put a damper on my enjoyment of the story. The hard work Greyson invested in making me get to know and care for characters evaporated with the forced conclusion of the book. Instead of being happy and content when I finished reading the book I was angry with the author for introducing me to vivid characters only to dispose of them in such an arbitrary fashion.


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