Dark Skye – Immortals After Dark #15 – Kresley Cole

I don’t know which character I liked more in this book, Melanthe or Thronos. They were so different from each other but each was just as flawed…and I like flawed characters. I get sick of reading about heroic and ethical males and perfect virginal females who always want to do the right thing. Why do authors do that?

Melanthe is carefree hedonist while Thronos is a stickler for rules and order. While Melanthe enjoys wine, micro-minis and gold, Thronos believes in never imbibing, covering all body parts and living humbly. Okay, I think I like the Sorceri ways better than the Vrekener’s because the Vrekeners are way too extreme like Puritans but the Sorceri do get a little carried away with their fun and games.

Sorceri and Vrekeners are natural enemies. Vrekeners hunt and kill Sorceri who they think are evil and break the rules. There are a lot of evil Sorceri. They use their scythe-like weapons to drain the Sorceri of their powers and then kill them and take their children to their hidden Skye Territories to foster them.

Lanthe and Thronos met when Lanthe was nine and Thronos just a few years older in a field near her home. Lanthe’s parents were too busy doing sorcery and adoring their gold to pay attention to Lanthe or her older sister, Sabine, to notice that she had befriended a Vrekener. They were so neglectful that they forgot to provide food or clothing for their children so Lanthe had to go into the field below to eat dandelions and find berries. That is what she was doing when Thronos flew over.

Thronos instantly knew that Lanthe was his fated mate and they became best friends, albeit secret friends. He would take her flying with him and he taught her how to swim. They had a great time for four months…until tragedy struck.

One night, Sabine woke Lanthe and told her Vrekeners were in their home. They went to her parent’s room to warn them but it was too late. They had been beheaded by Throno’s father, the leader of the Vrekeners. Sabine used her sorcery power, weaving an illusion for the Vrekener’s worst nightmare. Sabine could read minds so she knew exactly what they feared. The leader fell to his knees and started scratching at his eyes. Sabine grabbed his scythe and chopped his head off along with a few others. Another Vrekener grabbed Sabine from behind and slit her throat. Thronos was in the room too and because Lanthe thought he had betrayed her by telling his father about them, she told him to jump from the window and not use his wings to save himself. Lanthe’s power was the power of persuasion. She could command anyone to do anything and they had to do it. She commanded her sister to live and she did even though she had lost too much blood. Lanthe and Sabine ran and never looked back.

Thronos had not been locked into his immortality yet so he was crippled for life. They said he wouldn’t walk or fly again but he did.

For 500 years, he pursued Lanthe to make her his mate but she always got away. She went on with her life, living it to the fullest which made him bitter…especially when she slept with other men. He couldn’t understand why she ran from him but accepted other lovers.

What Thronos didn’t know was that Lanthe and Sabine were being pursued by a wayward faction of Vrekeners out to kill them and any other Sorceri. In fact, a few times, they had killed Sabine but Lanthe commanded her to come back to life and she did. Once, one had dropped Sabine from the sky so Lanthe had to scoop up her brains and other time Sabine drowned after being thrown into a raging river. Lanthe believed Thronos had sent them after her.

In this book, Thronos abducts Lanthe while they are both escaping a mortal facility that imprisoned immortals and tortured them. As you can guess, he was a little bitter. He was able to overpower her because she still had the torque around her neck that kept her powers in check while his torque had been unlocked. Immortals are usually unable to hurt their mates without feeling pain themselves, if not physically then mentally. In many species, if one dies, the other follows soon afterwards. But Thronos wanted revenge for all the years he suffered while he thought Lanthe was living it up without him.

We know from previous books that Lanthe’s life was not always so wonderful.What Thronos and others saw was not the exact truth of things although Lanthe and Sabine liked for people to believe it to keep up their kickass reputations. In the Lore, any weakness will be used against you so keeping up appearances of being strong is key to staying alive. Thronos saw Lanthe and Sabine living in her brother Omort’s evil court, doing evil things and enjoying it all. They left and did evil deeds for Omort and returned to him. What was really happening was that Omort had total control of them. He made them drink a poison which would kill them if they didn’t return to get the antidote. But Lanthe did subscribe to the notion about living to the fullest degree and finding happiness where you could while you had the chance instead of wallowing in self-pity so she did find pleasure where she could and did have lovers. After all, Sorceri don’t have fated mates.

Thronos was not kind to Lanthe during their journey. He called her “harlot” and berated her for how he thought she lived her life with all her sins or what he called “offendments”. She just laughed at his stuffy ways and did not feel shame at all. She let him believe what he wanted about her. I laughed so hard at one part in the book where she told him he should have written to her instead of stalking her. He tells her, “What should I have written? Dear Harlot, rumor has it that you are very happy with your new life in Rothkalina with your beloved brother Omort. I hear that you have all the gold you could ever want, and I know how much you always enjoyed a good blood orgy. Well done, Melanthe! By the way, would you like to meet for a rational discussion about our future?”

Instead of denying it, she said, “Well, I did have a lot of gold.”

Do not strangle her!

This was an excellent book, filled with adventure and sexually frustrated characters. I related to these characters so much and wanted them to end up together even though odds were way against them.

This book didn’t have a lot of background plots going on except showing a little about what was going on with Nix, the soothsayer who seems to be manipulating all of the events in this series but I can’t say anything here lest it ruin the book.

After the epilogue of the last book, I thought this book would have been about Munro, a Lykae and twin brother to the protagonist of the previous book but instead, Kresley Cole skipped to Lanthe and Throno’s story. That epilogue indicated that the there is a greater threat coming to the Lore than just the war between the Vertas and the Pravus. Vertas being the good guys and Pravus being the evil guys.

I’m off to read the next book in the series.

Dark Skye – Immortals After Dark – Kresley Cole

I could NOT put this book down. I did nothing else but read this book. I had to force myself to take bathroom breaks.

I kept laughing and when my boyfriend would look over at me with one of his eyebrows cocked in question, I would try to explain but gave up. It took too long and that took me away from my book.

Once again, Kresley took me into her complicated world of The Lore and made me laugh, cry and get angry at times.

We, the readers, have met the Thronos and Melanthe before but never really got an in depth look into their personal stories.

Melanthe is a care-free and gold loving sorceress known and the Queen of Persuasion. She is having difficulties with her gifts which have been a little wonky. Lanthe has looked for love with all the wrong men and in all the wrong places. She loves her sister and her friends dearly and has been chased and almost killed by Vrekeners throughout her life. Vrekeners actually killed her sister, Sabine several times but Lanthe used her gift to persuade her sister to come back to life. She used part of Sabine’s smashed skull to scoop up her brains and put them back in her head once when a Vrekener dropped her from way up in the sky just for kicks.

Thronos is almost the opposite of Melanthe. He is bitter and has been taught as a Vrekener that all sorceri is wrong. Vrekeners are a solemn, judgmental and self-righteous people. They are the anti-fun compared to the sorceri. Thronos is angry that Melanthe is his fated mate and he has chased after her for 500 years to be with her. He is unable to take another woman or be with one because Melanthe is his fated mate. He has had to live with the knowledge that she as a sorceress has been able to have lovers because she is not bound by the fated mate business.

As children Melanthe and Thronos were secret friends even though their families were enemies. One night, Thronos’ family killed her mother and father and tried to take Lanthe and her sister, Sabine, into their custody. They do not want to be take to Skye, the home of the Vrekeners because they know that the Vrekeners live solemn almost pious lives and take all sorceri gifts away from the Sorceri living there. Sabine manages to kill Thronos father. Lanthe, believing that Thronos betrayed her uses her ability to persuade Thronos to jump out of the window without using his wings to what she thought would be his death but he somehow survived it, scarred and broken.

This book starts out on the island where the Order has imprisoned immortals. Thronos captured Lanthe after the prisoner broke free. All of the Pravus (team evil) collars, which kept their powers at bay have been unlocked and taken off thanks to La Dorada’s powers. Most of the Vertes (team good) still wear their collars. Somehow, Thronos’ collar was unlocked—probably due to his not so good thoughts about Melanthe when La Dorada was releasing collars. She probably thought he was evil. So, Thronos has his powers but Lanthe does not. The island isin chaos and a very dangerous place for the Vertes.

One of my favorite parts in the book was while Thronos had Lanthe flying with her arguing about communication and when he tells her there was no way to get in touch with her when she was with her brother Omort, she tells him he could have sent a letter. As readers, we know that her life was hell living at Omort’s court but Thronos has no clue and believes she was there of her own free will. He says,

“What should I have written?

Dear Harlot,

Rumor has it that you are very happy with your life in Rothkalina with your beloved brother Omort. I hear that you have all the gold you could ever want, and I know how much you always enjoyed a good blood orgy. Well done, Melanthe. By the way, would you like to meet for a rational discussion of our future?”

“Well, I did have a lot of gold”      

Don’t strangle her.

They manage to get her collar off and go through a few realms, thanks to Lanthe’s unreliable sorceri talents. Through their journeys, they learn the real stories behind each of their lives and that some, if not most, of what they believed about the other was untrue.

I cheered them on all the way to the end.