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REVIEW

"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 in it.

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 female dragon.

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 - Sept. 2005

Reviewed by Chere Gruver
Posted November 17, 2006

SUMMARY

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.

Read an Excerpt

 

The Smoke Thief
(Drakon Trilogy: Book 1)
by Shana Abe

Bantam
September 1, 2006
Available: September 26, 2006
ISBN #0553588044
EAN #9780553588040
352 pages
Paperback (reprint)
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Other Books by
Shana Abe

The Sweetest Dark
The Time Weaver
The Treasure Keeper
Queen of Dragons
The Dream Thief
The Last Mermaid


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