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REVIEW

"This magical tale of love and courage will hold you spellbound!"

Debilitating stage fright puts Madeline Fairbanks' job as assistant to a deeply private mystery writer in jeopardy when she cannot even deliver a simple press release. In addition to her decided lack of style, this new flaw would spell the end of her employment. However her boss is willing to make a deal with her. If she can find and obtain an interview with her reclusive stepfather Cyrus Cromwell by St. John's Eve, he would agree to overlook her shortcomings and keep her on.

The decision is not an easy one. There is no love lost between Madeline and Cyrus, who had disappeared after his vocally talented wife had a mental breakdown on stage. Madeline was solely responsible for her mother's treatment now and really needed her job. Cyrus had been responsible for her mother's meteoric rise to stardom, and Madeline suspected, her decline as well. Cyrus the star maker was a dabbler in the dark arts. Once he had also encouraged Madeline's love for dance, that was until he'd discovered she'd been adopted. It was then that her fear of performing before others had taken root, and it had grown stronger with each attempt.

Madeline returns home to ponder her decision only to learn that her rent is about to be raised. Things couldn't get much worse. Reprieve comes in the form of Isis Montgomery's aunt Tildy (MORE THAN MAGIC), who asks her to house sit for her while she's away on a visit. She is told to expect and entertain a male house guest, a friend of Tildy's who she assumes will be an elderly bachelor. Instead she gets a visit from Zayne, the very sensual Minstrel of Kaf, who is searching for his zaniya. Madeline has learned from bitter experience not to trust musicians. She was ashamed at how often she'd mistaken interest in meeting her famous parents for something more personal.

Zayne is a Djinni and more. He is currently the sole Minstrel responsible for keeping the balance of harmony on Kaf. Yet lately some foreign power inside him was battling his Ma-at for control of his song, causing discord in the land. Zayne knows he must find his own balance or his world will succumb to chaos. He believes he knows what is needed. Although few of the Djinn actually bound themselves to a soul mate, every Minstrel before him had done so. Still he had never met a woman who inspired those feelings in him. He would do a divination to find his very own zaniya, the woman whose incredible voice would blend with his own and restore his balance and Kaf's. He is stunned when his destiny is revealed to be Madeline Fairbanks, a woman of Terra. How can this be? He had been warned by his mother never to have dealings with people of Terra. But she had died without giving him the reason for her hatred. He is told he will find Madeline in New Orleans, and approaches Tildy, the aunt of The Protector's zaniya, Isis, to help him find her. He arrives at her home to find Madeline there instead of Tildy, and is awed by her. In short order he is convinced that she is the one for him, but she cannot be persuaded to sing for him.

Zayne loses points right with Madeline off the bat when he uses a truth-speak spell on her to obtain information, but regains her trust with a promise never to use his ma-at on her unless she or his world was in danger. Madeline soon comes to see him for the admirable, multifaceted man he is and falls in love in spite of the fact that she believes it can't last. Madeline alone sees him as something more than the Minstrel and Zayne in turn loves her only for herself. He agrees to help her find Cyrus. He is determined to make the man pay for his crimes against Madeline and her mother, but becomes really confused when he hears Madeline's voice for the first time, singing alone in the shower. She could not carry a tune!

How could this woman who held his heart and soul in his hands not be his intended zaniya? His heart couldn't accept that even for Kaf. He would find another way to restore harmony on his world. Surprisingly just having Madeline by his side seems to tame the raging tumult inside of him. Somehow she did give him the balance he needed. He had not been wrong about her. When every lead to Cyrus fizzles, Zayne's wondrous music and song become the bait to draw the star maker out.

It is exactly the opportunity Cyrus has been waiting for. He had once hoped that Madeline's mother would draw a Djinni to Terra. He had been told that only one of her line could do so. However it was not Zayne's voice he coveted but his power. It seems he'd underestimated Madeline, but she could still be made useful.

What happens next is a tale of greed and of sacrifice, and ultimate courage. Both Madeline and Zayne will be forced to make grim choices. They will face their most terrible fears and find that there is nothing so awful as losing each other.

This story is one which any reader could relate to. Everyone has had to conquer fear at one time or another. Most often it is love that helps us find the courage to do so. The latter part of this tale frequently had me in tears as each lover searched their soul, and made critical sacrifices for the sake of their beloved. SPELLBOUND is a suspenseful, passionate tale, of love, compromise, forgiveness, and strength. Ms. Nance has crafted another truly romantic otherworldly romance. I highly recommend you read this book and each of its predecessors.

Copyright 2003

Reviewed by Leslie Tramposch
Posted May 5, 2003

SUMMARY

As the Minstrel of Kaf, Zayne kept the land of the djinn in harmony. Yet lately, raging desires and unquenchable yearnings were throwing his life into discord and wreaking havoc on his home. He needed a woman to restore balance to his life, a woman with whom he could blend his voice and his body. And according to his destiny, this soul mate could only be found in the strange land of Earth.

Madeline knew to expect a guest while house-sitting for her eccentric neighbor. However, she hadn't expected the man would be so sexy, so potent, so fascinated by the doorbell. Zayne may have been a disaster with modern amenities, but he certainly knew what made her tick. With one soul- stirring kiss, she saw colorful sparks dancing on the air. But Madeline wanted to make sure her handsome djinni wouldn't pull a disappearing act before she could allow herself to become utterly . . . Spellbound.

Read an Excerpt

 

Spellbound
(Djinn Series: Book 4)
by Kathleen Nance

Love Spell
June 1, 2003
Available: May 28, 2003
ISBN #0505524864
EAN #9780505524867
384 pages
Paperback
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Other Books by
Kathleen Nance

Gryphon Unleashed
Dragon Unmasked
Phoenix Unrisen
Jigsaw
Day of Fire
Enchantment
The Seeker
The Warrior
The Trickster
Paradise
More Than Magic
Wishes Come True


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