"Very interesting look at the world of dragons!"
In the 1700's in England, the valley of Darkfrith holds
many secrets. The inhabitants of this valley live by a very
strict series of rules, rules they have lived by for
centuries. The strictest of these rules is no one is ever
allowed to live outside the valley, for the inhabitants are
different from the others. Faking her own drowning in a
river, Clarissa "Rue" did manage to escape, and now lives
in London. She has a household of her very own, with two
servants and a boy she rescued. Of course, her house has
been very specially repaired so not a hole or crack exists
The Council of Darkfrith knows this so called "Smoke Thief"
has to be a runner. It would be impossible for any one else
to Turn to smoke. Finally, their leader, the Marquess of
Langford, Christopher "Kit" has decided to use the clan's
most valuable possession, Herte, their huge diamond, as
bait to catch the thief, against the Council's objections.
Kit and some of his people are at the museum where they are
showing Herte, when he can sense the runner. And it's
female! When he finally puts his hands on her and is
distracted, a thief makes off with Herte and the runner
Turns and escapes him.
Kit manages to capture Rue and has determined to marry her.
As the alpha of his clan, it is his responsibility to marry
an alpha female. And a female with the ability to Turn
hasn't come along in a long, long time. Managing to get the
Council to agree to give Rue her freedom in exchange for
Herte and another runner, Kit is planning on keeping her
for his wife all along. Since there has been a deadline
set, the two of them Turn and fly to London as dragons. A
beautiful black male dragon and an equally handsome white
Having loved Kit since she was a child in Darkfirth, will
Rue be able to withstand his charm? Or will she succumb?
Will the two of them be able to find Herte? And the runner?
Will Rue attain her freedom? Or will she become Kit's wife?
THE SMOKE THIEF gives us an extremely different look at the
legend of the dragon. Shana Abe has once again outdone
herself with the very lyrical prose of her story. The type
of prose that just draws a reader in and holds them
enthralled throughout the story. We have two very alpha
main characters in this story. An alpha male, forced to
take over the leadership of his clan at a very young age
and doing a remarkable job of it. We also have a very
strong and determined female, as Rue managed to make her
way in the world of men also from a very young age and has
managed to do very well for herself. When these two alphas
meet, tempers and sparks fly! The attraction between Rue
and Kit is inescapable. Filled with the thrill of the
chase, a woman's fight for freedom and danger of discovery
around every corner, this is one book difficult to put
down. I highly recommend Shana Abe's THE SMOKE THIEF to all
lovers of not only fantasy and historical fiction, but
exceedingly well-written mysteries as well!
Posted October 26, 2005
reviewed for Hardcover edition - ISBN #0553804480 -
Reviewed by Chere Gruver
Posted November 17, 2006
For centuries they've lived in secret among northern
England's green and misted hills. Creatures of
extraordinary beauty, power, and sensuality, they possess
the ability to shape-shift from human to dragon and back
again. Now their secret--and their survival--is threatened
by a temptation that will break every boundary....
Dubbed the Smoke Thief, a daring jewel thief is
confounding the London police. His wealthy victims claim
the master burglar can walk through walls and vanish into
thin air. But Christoff, the charismatic Marquess of
Langford, knows the truth: the thief is no ordinary human
but a "runner" who's fled Darkfrith without
permission. As Alpha leader of the draŽkon, it's Kit's
duty to capture the fugitive before the secrets of the
tribe are revealed to mortals. But not even Kit suspects
that the Smoke Thief could be a woman.
Clarissa Rue Hawthorne knew her dangerous exploits would
attract the attention of the draŽkon. But she didn't
expect Christoff himself to come to London, dangling the
tribe's most valuable jewel--the Langford Diamond--as bait.
For as long as she could remember, Rue had lived the life
of a halfling--half draŽkon, half mortal--and an outcast in
both worlds. She'd always loved the handsome and willful
Kit from the only place it was safe: from afar. But now
she was no longer the shy, timid girl she'd once been. She
was the first woman capable of making the Turn in four
generations. So why did she still feel the same dizzying
sense of vulnerability whenever he was near?
From the moment he saw her, Kit knew that the alluring and
powerful beauty was every bit his Alpha equal and destined
to be his bride. And by the harsh laws of the draŽkon, Rue
knew that she was the property of the marquess. But they
will risk banishment and worse for a chance at something
greater. For now Rue is his
prisoner, the diamond has disappeared, and she's made the
kind of dangerous proposition a man like Kit cannot
resist....In this bewitching novel, Shana Abé transports
us into a world of exhilarating romance and magic.
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Fantasy, Historical, Shapeshifters, Dragons
Note: Originally released in hardcover.