World on Fire


Twice Tempted by Jeaniene Frost: A Review by Beta and Zee



So we FINALLY got our greedy little hands on Vlad’s next book. FINALLY. We aren’t patient Wenches, apparently! (NEWSFLASH!)

Just to clarify, Twice Tempted by Jeaniene Frost is the second book in the Night Prince series. After having read and loved the first one, Once Burned, we couldn’t wait for the next installment on the much anticipated release day!

What can we say, Ms. Frost wrote, delivered, and conquered... as always. Just when you thought you’d read it all and then some about the infamous Vlad the Impaler, she manages to give him a fresh perspective, a “new” life, as it were, that captivates you from the first page without seeming repetitive or tedious.


None of the same old crap!

Now, we don’t want to give away too much. If you’re reading this review, we’re assuming you’ve read Once Burned, which we have also reviewed, in case you want to get up to speed on the events in this series. And we’re trying to restrict ourselves to giving away only the details that you might learn either from the publisher's official book blurb, the first few chapters, or the teases used to tempt us before the book was released. But just to be safe, we’re warning you that there might be mild spoilers after the jump, so beware!

Let’s face it, Vlad owns every fiber of our being and wherever he goes, we go. So join us!




As always, Ms. Frost doesn’t beat around the bush, and the action starts pretty much instantly. We love that about her.

Leila’s motto.
Leila (who had made it to our lists of favorite female leads EVER after just ONE book!) wakes up after being kidnapped. Bound and gagged on a ship. Being the kick-ass chick she is, she calmly assesses her situation and does not freak the fuck out. We definitely have a bit of a girl crush on her.

The story kinda back tracks from there to four weeks earlier, and we find out how it got to that point.


We know Leila had realized a while back that she was falling in love with our somewhat... errr... difficult, badass vampire ― who, on more than one occasion, has let her know he’s not a man of those “three little words” and isn’t capable of love. What has changed is her willingness to accept this without a fight. Twice Tempted starts with her beginning to wonder whether she truly can live with that. And even though “dating Vlad had proved to be as passionate and tumultuous as the movies portrayed”, she is starting to feel like she might want more than what their relationship has to offer at this point, especially with Vlad being strangely distant (in her mind, since her powers have mysteriously disappeared).

Yes, Vlad...
Things between Vlad and Leila aren’t exactly peachy... at least not in her mind. Vlad doesn’t seem to share her concerns. (MEN!) At least not that we can tell. We gotta say, we sympathize with Leila. It must suck to be head-over-heels in love with someone you don’t fully understand. And Vlad seems to suffer from a common affliction, he can’t communicate. While we appreciate his grand gesture in the beginning... he could have at least prepared her mentally for it... in PRIVATE. A girl likes to know what she’s getting dolled up for, you know. And maybe explaining to her the logic (and gravity) behind the decision would have made her more... open to the offer. But thanks to his high handedness, and her (understandably) hurt feelings, not to mention feeling more than a little humiliated, she realizes their relationship might be at a stalemate, and that just isn’t good enough for her. So she leaves him.


Leila heads back home, to Marty and the circus life, to mend her broken heart and pride (and with Maximus as a bodyguard for the journey, thanks to Vlad). As luck would have it, a tragic “accident” destroys those plans, and it looks like someone is after her... once again.

Kidnapped and in danger again!

This is the point where the pace of the story really picks up, you find out why and how Leila ended up kidnapped on a ship, and you get to read more about just how kick ass she is!

We love how
“Twice Tempted” pretty much summarizes their relationship in this book. Vlad and Leila both state ultimatums to some extent. Vlad on how, if she left, he would never give her a second chance. And Leila on how, if he wouldn’t even consider a future for them, she would not come back to the castle. But neither can resist each other, or abide by those statements, for very long. And we LOVED that.

Leila DOES go back to the castle — alas, not for the reasons she would have liked, but Vlad has his questionable tactics. And Vlad DOES give her a second chance. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy for either of them.

“I don’t want to touch you, either.”
The words hit me like a slap, but before I could respond, he went on.
“No one feels like you do, so every brush of your skin is a cruel reminder of what I’ve lost. I can barely stand the sight of you because you’re more beautiful than I’ve allowed myself to remember.”
If Leila doesn’t want him,
there are MANY takers!

The Gist of Things


The back and forth between Vlad and Leila is truly wonderful to read. Ms. Frost is at her best in Twice Tempted. Leila is a heroine we can all relate to. One of our favorite things is her courage. In the face of everything. Even Vlad! She stands up for herself no matter what, and you can’t NOT admire that in a girl! She might be far from perfect, but then who IS perfect?!


Leila is a top-class heroine, and she matches Vlad in the stubborn department. She is fierce but sympathetic. She is determined and tries not to waste energy on guilt or self pity. She is brave and doesn’t let the fact that she’s “just” human (even though she isn’t really JUST human) get in the way of going after and catching whomever is trying to kill her or her loved ones, much to Vlad’s dismay, of course! He is not happy about her willingness to put herself in the line of fire, to take risks that could get her killed.

Vlad was at his HOTTEST and best in this installment. I mean... (I’m sorry, Barb!!!) I love Vlad more than Bones now! He has a way with words that seriously leaves me feeling more than a little hot and bothered. His powers are immensely impressive. His methods might be questionable to our modern sensibilities, but you know what? He gets shit done, protects his people (all of them), and has earned the loyalties of thousands. And he’s a man of his word. What’s not to love?!


He is FULL of surprises in this book, and if you think you can’t love him any more than you already do... he’ll prove you very, very wrong. He is still the fierce, stubborn, complex, and scary vampire whom we love, but we also have opportunities to reaffirm that there is much more to him than meets the eye. We get new glimpses into his dark and murky past that help us understand him better, and Leila discovers some of the reasons for his behavior in their relationship.

Leila’s sister, Gretchen... I really really can’t stand her at this point. I don’t unconditionally hate her. But she DESPERATELY needs a lesson in manners. It’s amazing to me how a calm, level-headed, respectful human being like Leila shares DNA with the rude, screaming banshee that is Gretchen. You’d think she’d grown up with apes really... flinging poo and insults at each other at dinner. It’s kinda like she’s a MORE annoying version of Cat’s mother. Except she seems bizarrely unperturbed by the whole vampire thing. Gretchen, thankfully, did have her moments in
Twice Tempted though, and we’re willing to see if there’s more to her.

Maximus... sigh. Maximus disappointed the hell out of us. We think everyone knows from our
Once Burned review how we felt about Maximus. But seriously.. dude... Click for spoiler: (+/-)

betraying your Sire, whom you have served loyally for CENTURIES, for a GIRL!? Really? I mean... We did not expect that from you. Ever. And then convincing said girl that you have a legitimate reason for betraying him. Way beneath you, man! Did not like! Whatever your reasons might have been.

Maximus... you need one of these.

This book DEFINITELY takes Vlad’s and Leila’s relationship to the next level. It requires work, like all things worth having. And PHEW! Is it a helluva journey. But they get there. And it is a beautiful thing to read. We wouldn’t want to spoil a second of that for you. But Beta does have one spoilery thing to say: Click for spoiler: (+/-)

This just needs to be said.... Dracula the Wedding Planner!!! I know I promised to never say that name again... but common! Priceless, and he makes it so swoon-worthy. And we are both MORE than a little upset that the fancy new bathroom is never going to be used!

Some Favorite Moments: (Mild Spoilers)


“I forgive you, but only because you said please.” Smartass, I thought. Then I groaned at the instant chorus of “Please!” mixed with cries for release from Vlad’s prisoners. No wonder he got so sick of the world.
“I’m only merciful to one person a day,” he threw over his shoulder. “As the saying goes, today isn’t your day, and tomorrow doesn’t look good, either.”


His expression was nothing short of ferocious, and if his gaze grew any hotter, I’d burn beneath it. “You’ve never had angry sex. I’m about to show you what you’ve been missing.” {snip}

A chuckle vibrated against my mouth before he flung me to the floor and ripped off my skirt with one hard swipe.“Looks like we’re having angry sex after all.”




Vlad made a sound too harsh to be a growl. “You won’t be satisfied until you’ve brought me to my knees, is that it?”



Or what Vlad’s trying to say.

“I despise flowery speech since those who use it are usually guilty of the worst betrayals later. That and the type of life I’ve lived have made me incapable of saying the pretty words you deserve to hear, yet if I made you a vampire, you’d feel my emotions as clearly as I hear your thoughts now.”




“Vlad, it’s . . .”
“You’re supposed to use it, not compose sonnets about it.”



“The next time you’re tempted to overuse your powers, remember this,” he went on in that same steely tone. “I will bring you back by any means necessary, so if you value your humanity, don’t do that again.”
“As for why you did it,” he said, voice lower and throatier, “we’ll discuss that once you’ve recovered.”
Excuse us while we pick our jaws up off the floor
and compose ourselves.


“When I tie you up, I’ll use silk, and I’ll leave your hands free because I love to feel them on my skin.”





In Conclusion


Twice Tempted is all kinds of awesome. It’s darker, more intense, with some nice plot twists. It has explosions, murder, mystery, witchcraft, betrayal, new characters to love and hate, and revelations that you will not see coming. One can only hope some characters find redemption *crossing fingers*, while others meet a fiery doom!

We got a lot of humor, banter, and angst, and a whole lot of swoon-worthy Vlad scenes that just made our knees weak. Moments that made us scream, “You go girl!” to Leila. Scenes that made our adrenaline spike like we were in the midst of a fast-paced action movie! There were points where we felt like we were running through train stations and tunnels along side the characters, at a break-neck speed, with our lives hanging in the balance! THAT is the magic of Jeaniene Frost’s story telling, and we HATE that we have to wait for the next (and final) installment in this epic trilogy!

No. We. Don’t.

These Wenches rate it:


Comments

  1. I loved Laila in this book. She left him even though she loves him. And when she has to come back she doesn't let her love for him to cloud her judgement. Just because she loves him she wont be a pushover and indulge his whims.

    :) :)

    Vlad was awesome, I loved how he didn't think she was actually going to leave him. And how he made her a toilette...true love = toilette <3 Bless!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, Laila was awesome in this book!! I loved her.

      And Vlad, sigh... and swoon... yeah he was awesome. I so wish I could have been in his head when he realized she was actually going to leave him... and wasn't planning on coming back. :)
      The toilette thing.. I KNOW! I was all "awwwwwww you gave her a toilet!? How cute is that!" :D

      Delete
  2. *sigh* Vlad. I love that guy so much. Not more than Bones, but holy geez it's a super close second. For all that he was an ass in the first part of the book, he really made up for it later, didn't he? That wedding!!!!! Unreal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah *sigh* Vlad indeed. And that wedding was so, so unreal. I loved it.

      Delete
  3. I love your review, gals! Maybe I'm a little biased because I agree with every word of it. ;-)

    I was a little perturbed at Leila and Vlad's situation for the first third or so of the book, but after that I couldn't put it down!! Lots of fun!! I'm not about to ditch Bones for Vlad, but he has moved way up my list.... Looking forward very eagerly to the next book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Kathi, so glad you loved it!! And I totally agree with you! But I honestly don't know where I would place Vlad vs. Bones or vice versa :)

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  4. YOU USED THE DOUCHEBAG JAR!!! This officially qualifies for the best review ever.

    I love Vlad. I am very very near to loving him more than Bones also. Had it not been for the overload of feels that was Touch & Geaux with Ty & Zane, I would still be reveling in Vlad's awesomeness. I am definitely going to go back to OB & TT when I'm done with Sookie.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL thank you Anne! High five to Zee for that one! :D

      We'll keep Vlad company and revel in his awesomeness until you go back to OB & TT... then we'll share all the awesomeness with you :)

      Delete

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