Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Cursed One by Ronda Thompson

Book Description:
Wed and widowed in one day, stunning socialite Amelia Sinclair's honeymoon is anything but typical. Then again, neither is Amelia - rebellious and impulsive, marrying Robert Collingsworth was the one sensible thing she ever did. Now he's dead and she must escape the vicious creatures stalking her - even if it means relying on a stranger. Well, maybe not a complete stranger. Amelia first glimpsed Gabriel Wulf years ago on the busy streets of London; since then he has haunted her dreams. But in the flesh, Gabriel is much more tantalizing than she ever dreamt, and much more complicated…

Gabriel Wulf, the strong one, the sensible one - the family, and the curse that plagues them, are his only priorities; there was little time for women and none for love. Now, he must protect an enticing beauty - and not just from the dangers that prowl the woods around them. Gabriel has secrets, dark ones he's sure Amelia must never know and could never understand. But she has already awakened his heart...and the beast within. Will Amelia be the key to his salvation, or the architect of her own demise?

Quickie Review:
This is the last of the Wild Wulfs series, which overall I found to be good if you like werewolf paranormals.  Unfortunately, Gabriel's story was my least favorite of the bunch about these werewolf brothers. 

The premise of The Cursed One is that on an estate nearby to the Wulf's country estate, strange doings are going on in the woods.  Gabriel's childhood friend, Robert has just gotten married and taken his bride to his home for their wedding night.  Yet, something terrible happens and he turns into a vicious monster - a werewolf and tries to attack and rape his new bride, Amelia.  Amelia is having none of this and escapes.  Conveniently, Gabriel happens to be passing by and hears the commotion going on at the nearby empty estate (all the servants have fled the house, except one who remained, a young girl).  Gabriel's comes to Amelia's rescue and kills "Robert."  But as we find out, it wasn't really Robert is was someone else who was able to take his form.  Robert is dead in the cellar.  Thus, Amelia, who happens to be Gabriel's sister's old school chum, is a widow on her wedding day.  She's not all that broken up about it for she has secretly had a thing for Gabriel for years.  They also share a passionate kiss upstairs after Gabriel kills the monster.  Little does she know about the Wulf family curse that turns them into werewolves when they fall in love and the moon is full.  Gabriel, Amelia and the young servant girl must fend off the monsters from the woods that are trying to attack them and invade the manor house.  Their mission:  to make it to the safety of Gabriel's home, which is unfortunately a few days away on foot.  Not an easy task.

Along the way, Gabriel and Amelia's growing attraction becomes stronger and stronger.  Without his control, he's giving off strong pheromones that are driving Amelia mad - she's dying to kiss him and be with him.  The feeling is mutual, but he fights it for he feels the beast in him gaining control and he's afraid he's not going to be able to stop himself from shifting into a wolf.  The other girl, who's name I can't remember plus I never trusted her anyway, is hiding a secret as well which comes out in the end. (I told you I didn't trust her.)  Will Gabriel's lust and growing love for Amelia turn him into a werewolf before her very eyes?  What will she do when she finds out he is like the very monsters they're running away from?

Overall this romance just didn't do much for me.  For one thing I didn't like Amelia at all.  Uh-oh.  That's a surefire way for me to not get into a book.  She was bratty and annoying and grated on me through the whole thing.  Of course, she grows up a lot over the course of time (a few days) when they are trudging around in the woods and avoiding monsters, yet I never warmed up to her at all.  Not one bit.  I don't know how Gabriel could even stand to be around her, much less fall in love with her!  By the end, she redeems herself and loses her pride and lah-dee-dah ways when all is revealed, but she'd already lost me by then.  She realizes that she loves Gabriel no matter what he is.  Ho-hum, same scenario as in the last two books.  Gabriel, for a hunky werewolf shifter was just boring.  His entire dilemma consisted of trying to overcome his illogical lust for this bratty annoying widow who is making the long trek to his family estate feel like it's taking an eternity!

To sum it up, there was nothing very memorable for me about this book and I only continued with it because it was the last in the series, which started out well.  I trudged through this one.  I still have to read a novella from an anthology that deals with one of the other brothers, but then I'm done!  If you like werewolf paranormals that take place during Regency times I recommend this series, but overall I found it uneven, but maybe you'll feel differently. 


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