Having read all previous installments in the Moonlight series I was eager to dive back into another shifter tale. Prince of Shadows takes us away from the usual cast of characters and moves from New Orleans to Lake Tahoe and the Clan of Terriot. There have been glimpses of this clan in the last several books. Silas MacCreedy the hero of Hunter of Shadows and his sister Brigit, the heroine of Betrayed by Shadows, are cousins to Kendra Terriot and their backstory is interwoven with hers. They make minor appearances here, but this is solely Kendra’s story and her journey to a happy ending.
The Clan Terriot is a brutal, messed up place where one man is king and everyone else lives in fear. Even the king’s sons. Bram Terriot has twelve sons by twelve different women, they have been raised in a competition for his affections and not as true brothers. Kendra Terriot is essentially a prisoner being forced to choose which one of the heirs she will mate with. Cale is the presumed heir, the hardest fighter and the only one of the king’s sons who is willing to do anything for Kendra. The three cousins and Cale started out as friends, but one blood soaked night changed everything. Now they see him as nothing more than his father remade.
Prince of Shadows is not a soft, pleasant love story. The Terriot family exists on violence and distrust. Kendra’s parents die in horrible ways and her mother’s rape is witnessed by both Cale and Kendra as children. Cale’s entire existence afterward is lived in brutality which is rained down on him by his own father. He comes across as cold at first, but then passionate and almost in desperate need of Kendra’s understanding and affection. He is most definitely confused and frustrated by his circumstances. On the surface he appears cruel, but as the story progresses it becomes clear that he really wants the best for his clan and he’s bound and determined that Kendra be the woman by his side. I think his confusion came from how to go about getting what he wanted. A childhood spent in that type of violence lasts into adulthood no matter how badly you want to be a good man, and Cale has been battling his way to the top for years.
Kendra is just as confused as her lover. She is innocent and has spent most of her life spirited away from the clan, but now that she is in their clutches and must choose a mate she really doesn’t know what to do. Her innocence and link to her parents is the only things of value she has and she guards them fiercely. Even after knowing Cale’s reasoning for his actions all through the years and after hearing his claims of faithfulness she almost always chooses to think the worst until the very end. They do have a passion for each other, but I got a little restless waiting for them to finally come together and bond completely. She has always thought that her cousin Silas might one day be her husband, and even in his absence he constantly comes between this couple. Even towards the end Kendra is still keeps giving Cale the impression that she’s choosing Silas over him. It got so frustrating that I didn’t think they would ever find a HEA.
While this wasn’t my favorite of the series, I still have mad love for the Moonlight series and am eagerly awaiting to see what comes next. My only hope is that Ms. Gideon is planning on bringing back Max and CeeCee. I’ve been missing them for the last several books and they will always be my favorite couple. Final grade- C+
“I’ve waited my whole life to have you here beside me. You’ve made the only dream I’ve ever had come true.”