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Four and a Half Book Rating

Curse of the Marhime by Dayana Knight
The Wild Rose Press, Black Rose
Contemporary, Paranormal
Full Length, spicy
Review by Snapdragon


A routine visit to the grocery store and a chance encounter with a psychic plunges Pita Sedgwick into a dark world of shape-shifting, magic, and Gypsy lore. Pita finds herself on a plane to Romania, seeking the answers to her mysterious birth and in search of her biological family. Fate intervenes in the form of handsome seatmate, Niko Ionesciu. Pita is sure she’s found love and her history. But as her innocent fact-finding mission spirals into a dangerous game of revenge and deceit with the Gypsy Matriarch, the psychic’s words come back to haunt her. Can she trust the people around her with her terrifying secret or will the search for her family end in the ultimate betrayal?

♥ ♥ ♥

‘Curse of the Marhime,’ blends a strange, almost magical aura to contemporary times.

Pita Sedgwick has no need of fortune-tellers, but the one that accosts her so adamantly in the grocery store fills her with questions and foreboding. In moments, her ho-hum life begins to change. Ominous symbols reach out from her mostly hidden past. There is no doubt she is being warned – and perhaps called – but why? From the first moments, Pita’s life is intriguing, and the tense aura that builds around her is inescapable

Rich, sensual descriptions fill this work – from admiring the beautiful Montana sunsets to scrambling through dark forests – and Pita’s experiences are incredibly real and in the present. The sounds of crickets and tree frogs fill the night…as if it is any ordinary night – but the darkness will swell with possibility, and somehow, you will know something more is to happen. The first sign – a wolf – is a foreshadowing readers will grasp in a sensory, not so much cognitive way. The evocative quality of events, and sometimes just circumstances in this story, are exceptional.

Curiosity drives Pita (and the reader) to the fortune teller. She can only tell Pita so much, but undeniably, she can point her to old Romanian traditions – and a tale that Pita must uncover. Malevolence washes through these pages, as Pita – genuine in friendship, kind and believing herself to be from perfectly ordinary parents – sets off on a quest. She must rely first on her friends, but also, heavily, on a very special guide.

Throughout, Pita has a valuable friends, unexpected guides… and the love of her life (And he truly is a dream lover: wonderful heroic, and so much more than merely human – but I refuse to give away the magic of this particular secret!) But, will her quest supersede all?

This is not entirely a dark, sinister tale.  There are some lighter moments, and certainly some wonderful, heartfelt and heartwarming moments: one of the most heart-wrenching is when Pita discovers the photographs of herself as a baby, with her family. She will remember the amazing blessing that her adoptive parents felt her to be. She will also feel that loss of family, and empathize with those who lost her.

In this unpredictable novel of love, desperation, and triumph, Dayana Knight has woven a thrilling and unpredictable tale. The pace is fast, descriptions clear, and the characters – even secondary characters – are wonderfully developed.

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Tue, Sep 16, 2008 at 1:36 PM
Your Name: Sonja
Your Comment: What a great review! Very nice.
Tue, Sep 16, 2008 at 2:16 PM
Your Name: Cathy M
Your Comment: Thanks for spot lighting this new author. The review piqued my interest about this story and after reading the excerpt, this sounds like a story that I would really enjoy.
Wed, Sep 17, 2008 at 9:15 AM
Your Name: David Hayes
Your Comment: I read the book, and I spent some time in Romania. Dayana has capture one of the many myths that are common to that country. If you want some chills with your thrills, pull up a cozy chair after dark and read this one.
Fri, Sep 19, 2008 at 9:31 PM
Your Name: Lisa McCaskill
Your Comment: Great Book!! I highly recommend this one.
Sun, Sep 21, 2008 at 9:29 AM
Your Name: Pamela Ridley
Your Comment: Way to go, Shar! I'm excited for you. Congratulations on the release and the great review. Looking forward to the sequel.
Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 11:54 PM
Your Name: JP
Your Comment: Sounds like an great read.

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