Isobel MacInnes is an archeology student. She’s strong-willed and determined and she’s a rising star with a bright future in archeology ahead of her when she touches an old box that has been handed down by chieftains for centuries and is transported to 13th century Scotland. Here is alpha male, Iain, clan leader who takes an immediate, protective liking to Isobel.
Isobel’s aggressive nature is not unusual in the 21st century but in Iain’s time it is quite unusual, but Iain seems to have great respect for a woman who can match his intensity. They are, they realize, soulmates. But in a cruel twist, shortly after recognizing that they are meant to be together, Isobel is whisked away once again, centuries earlier, now in Pictish-era Scotland.
Here, Isobel meets Velloc, a Pict chieftain; an alpha male; and her new soulmate. It will take some time, but she will manage to get back (forward in time) to see Iain again, who will help her to understand a few things about that box that has helped her time travel, as well as a few important things about herself.
It’s okay to have more than one soulmate, right?
I don’t read very much paranormal romance (probably for good reason), but I recognize Kat Bastion’s name as a popular writer in the genre. In general, I did find the writing to be very well done. The character of Isobel was especially well defined and even though Iain and Velloc were the same type of character, there was enough distinction between the two to make them unique.
There were a number of times that I rolled my eyes while reading this and thought very strongly that this was ‘Mary Sue’ fiction. For those not familiar with the term, Wikipedia describes it as: “A Mary Sue is a type of fictional character, usually a young woman, who is portrayed as unrealistically free of weaknesses. Originating in fan fiction, a Mary Sue is often an author’s idealized self-insertion.”
“Unrealistically free of weaknesses?” Yes. And also the one woman two ‘top-dog’ males are madly in love with. The first wants her so badly that he’ll ignore his lustful desire and treat her with respect (this leader from the 1200’s) and will only have sex with her with her permission, and then he’ll be tender and caring and ready to cuddle afterward. Yes, really.
I referred to this as a paranormal romance and time-travel maybe isn’t what most people would consider ‘paranormal.’ But there’s something here that most definitely is, and that something while hinted at in only the barest of ways, doesn’t show up until maybe two-thirds of the way through the book. I really didn’t care for the deus ex machina moment.
There is some sex here. Really steamy, described in detail, sex. If the main character here was male and the sex scenes were exactly the same, this would be classified as either sleaze or porn. But since the main character is female, it’s romance. Or erotic romance, at least.
Looking for a good book? Forged in Dreams and Magick by Kat Bastion wasn’t a bad read, other than the eye-roll moments. For a self-published author, this is certainly at the top of the genre, and I would consider reading another Kat Bastion book at some point.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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Forged in Dreams and Magick
author: Kat Bastion
series: Highland Legends #1
publisher: Kat Bastion
paperback, 338 pages