Winterblaze (Darkest London #3)
by Kristen Callihan
by Kristen Callihan
Publication date: 26 Feb 2013 by Grand Central Publishing
Category: Adult Paranormal Historical Romance
Keywords: Paranormal, romance, gothic, marriage, historical
Format: Mass market paperback, eBook
Source: e-ARC received from Netgalley
Link to synopsis
*This review may contain spoilers for previous books in the series.*
Kristen Callihan has quickly become one of my favorite romance authors. With compelling characters, intricate plots, passionate romance, and the backdrop of a London full of mystery and dangerous creatures, each book in her Darkest London series only seems to get better. Winterblaze is no exception and Win and Poppy are my favorite couple yet.
Winterblaze is the story of Poppy, the eldest Ellis sister, and her husband Winston, who have been married for fourteen years. At the end of the last book, Win was brutally attacked by a werewolf and discovers that Poppy is Mother, a paranormal and also the head of a clandestine organization dedicated to keeping supernatural creatures a secret from humans. Feeling betrayed and confused, Win has leaves Poppy to sort out his feelings. While Win is on holiday in Paris, a new threat arises and Poppy must find Win and defeat this threat before it destroys them both.
My first impressions of Win and Poppy from the previous books were not necessarily positive. Poppy always seemed a bit stern and humorless to me while Win came off as a serious, straight-laced police detective. But I was so wrong about the both of them. In Winterblaze, we really get to see their true personalities and there is much more to them than I thought. Poppy is definitely still an overprotective older sister but it’s born out of a deep love for her family. Though she doesn’t always make the right decisions concerning them, she does what she believes is in their best interests. She is also a fighter and extremely intelligent. Win is also extremely smart and not as proper as he seems. He has a love of danger and a dark side to him that we haven’t seen before.
While I loved these two individually, they are even better as a couple. Winterblaze is a different type or romance novel because it’s about two people who have already been married for fourteen years. Win and Poppy have grown apart and this book is also rediscovering each other and falling in love again. Each of them has been hiding something from the other and, as they slowly learn to trust each other again, their bond grows even deeper. I loved that, to the outside world, they are seen a certain way but with each other, they could be their true selves. Only Win is allowed to see Poppy’s soft, sensual side and is privy to her most vulnerable moments. And only with Poppy can Win divulge his darkest secrets and let out his more playful side. They don’t stifle each other and it’s together that they are at their best.
But their journey isn’t an easy one. There is a lot of anger at first and they both know how to hurt each other. They are two people deeply in love who have grown apart and it’s heartbreaking at times.
And if you think being a married couple would be boring in the bedroom, think again. This may be Kristen Callihan’s hottest book yet! Win and Poppy are estranged at the beginning of the book and the sexual tension between the two is intense. I was dying for them to get together and when they finally do – wow. I never thought that calling someone “wife” would be sexy but Win makes it sound deliciously sweet and debauched at the same time. Be prepared to swoon.
This is definitely my favorite book of the series so far. Poppy and Win are fantastic characters and I could not help falling in love with them. I can’t think of a better matched pair. This may be Callihan’s most personal and emotional story yet. If you enjoyed the previous books in the series, I think you’ll love this one. There’s also a small teaser for Jack and Mary’s book included. These two have been circling each other for a while now and I can’t wait to read their story!
*I received this book free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.