Fiction Vixen is pleased to welcome Laura Hunsaker today to review Chaos Burning by Lauren Dane. Take it away Laura!
In the second book of Lauren Dane’s Bound by Magick series, the threat from Heart of Darkness is back, in a big way. Lark is called in to help the Owen clan of witches deal with some missing witches, but she has no idea just how big this is going to get. Unfortunately, neither do the Owen witches.
Lark is picked up at the airport by the most rugged and handsome man she’s ever laid eyes on-but she recognizes two things. One, he’s not a man, he’s Other. And two, he’s not her normal type. So she never once thinks about anything more than her job. But Simon, on the other hand, is completely intrigued by Lark and her quirky sense of style. She dresses in thrift store finds and her hair is colored blue. For the time being, anyway. She tends to add colors to suit her mood. And Simon never stops to wonder why he wants to take care of her from that first instant. Maybe he should have-then she wouldn’t have snuck under his radar.
The two of them have a friends to lovers sort of thing going on, and it’s sweet, and sexy, and a little bit naughty. But the way Ms. Dane writes their story, the intricacies of falling for each other is woven in with the fact that Lark, quirky and pixie-like as she is, is a warrior, and has a job to do. Simon totally respects that, and for an alpha male, and a Lycian prince, that’s kind of cool. Oh sure, they butt heads a few times, but that’s to be expected. But what’s fantastic is Lark’s sense of self. She is badass and knows it, but she also knows she’s random, and quirky and a bit silly. And she owns it.
Simon is the total opposite of Lark. He’s very GQ. He takes more time to get ready than Lark. And he’s smooth and suave. My favorite passage is towards the end, but it shows their personalities so well:
“I’ve come to take you out to dinner before we head out on patrol.”
“We?” She stepped back and looked him up and down. “You’re dressed like a commando and you still have handkerchiefs. We’re an odd couple Simon. Just know that.”
“I may have to admit I like the bright pink in your hair. That’s a start isn’t it?
“Are those Gucci cargo pants?”
“No,” they were Dolce & Gabbana, but she didn’t need to know that.
“You’re dressed in designer black ops gear to do a patrol with me?”
The Big Bad they are fighting reminds me of the Nothing from the Never Ending Story-it’s like a giant roaring storm cloud that destroys all magic and people in its path. And Lark has to find a way to vanquish it, while at the same time making her own place in this new clan and dealing with a Lycian prince who wants her. Lauren Dane’s writing is spectacular. She is one of very few authors who can use the words “grannie panties” in a serious conversation and make it look effortless. The ending left me wanting the next book ASAP, and I absolutely recommend this book.