Heart of the Flame – Dragon Chalice Series – Lara Adrian writing as Tina St. John

Book 2

I could not wait for this book to end. I was so bored that I kept looking at the bottom of my Kindle to see how much further I had to go to get to the end but that really didn’t help since I had bought the boxed set of three and the meter was going off the next story in the book too. My Kindle is weird. Sometimes, it shows how many hours are left in a book based on how fast I read. Sometimes, it shows how many minutes are left in a chapter and sometimes it just shows what percent of the book I have read. It changes on its own and I have no idea how to fix it. Anyway, I kept looking down to see how far I had read because the story just did not hold my interest. The first book was a lot better than this one. Let’s see if I can explain
It starts off okay with Kenrick of Clairmont visiting the ruins of his friend’s castle in Cornwall. His friend, Randwulf of Greycliff was one of Kenrick’s Templar brethren before Kenrick left the order. Kenrick had given him something to hide for him and was killed along with his wife and young son because of it by Silas de Mortaine’s men. Silas de Mortaine, we know from the last book, is a powerful and evil man who leads an army of shifters and will do anything to find the three remaining Dragon Chalices because he wants more power and it is said to give the holder immortality. He already has one. Braedon, Kenrick’s brother-in-law, found the Chalice of Life aka Avosaar but no one besides Braedon, Ariana (Kenrick’s sister) and Kenrick know that they have it. While Kenrick is outside in the small burial plot looking to see if the object (the author doesn’t say what the object is…only that it is a key to finding the next chalice) is still hidden within a tombstone, he sees a woman watching him but she runs off into the chapel but when he looks all he finds in a small red fox hiding in a cabinet. It runs away when he opens the door. This is where I think that the woman is a shifter.
When the author introduces Haven, she is outside in the rain injured, filthy, and exhausted. She is flashes of memory of what happened to Randwulf and his family but they are jumbled and she cannot remember what actually happened. She is so thirsty and hears water nearby so she starts running towards it with the last of her strength but falls and rips open the wound on her shoulder.
Kenrick sees her fall just before she would have gone off the cliff into the ocean far below from a window inside Randwulf’s home. He rescues her and digs the tip of a dagger out from her wound which was causing the wound to be infected and giving her a raging fever. Upon closer inspection he sees it is a blade from one of Silas de Mortaine’s minions. He then wants to save her to question her to see what she knows about the deaths of his friend and his family. He takes her to Clairmont.
I thought the book would continue on its interesting path but it just became stagnant from this point on. Everything happens so slowly. I think the author was trying to build a friendship between Haven and Ariana but she spent too much time on it. Haven wakes up not knowing who she is and not remembering anything but flashes of what happened at Greycliff. Kenrick, who I think is a big jerk throughout the book, keeps trying to get information from Haven. A romance buds between Kenrick and Haven which was the only thing happening fast, almost too fast—one minute they share a passionate kiss and the next they are in bed together. It is medieval times. Sex is thought of as a no-no but they just easily slip in bed like it is no big deal. If I was reading the book right, this happened within days of the rescue. Anyway, I kept waiting for the book to get to the part where Haven discovers she is a shifter or regains her memory because it was getting a little tedious that she still didn’t remember. We finally found out that the object hidden in the tombstone was some sort of stamp or metal key. I don’t know why it was such a big secret. It could have been disclosed at the beginning of the book because there was no point in keeping it from the reader.
Most of the action happens at the end of the book. There is a ton of information thrown at us at once. It is hard to process.
One of the villains in this story is Draec le Nantres. He is working for Silas de Mortaine but has his own agenda and is trying to get the Dragon Chalice for himself unbeknownst to his employer. I know he betrayed Braedon and almost got him killed but I can’t help thinking he has a good reason behind it all and I keep hoping that he is really a good guy. I was even hoping that the next book would be about him but after peeking, I see it is about Randwulf of Greycliff. Oops, I guess that is a spoiler.
Since, I bought the set of books; I am going on to read the third and final book. Let’s hope the third one is better than this one.
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