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Touch of Darkness [Large Print] [Hardcover]

Christina Dodd
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 36.16 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Book Description

January 2008 Thorndike Core
Handsome, powerful Rurik Wilder holds the power to transform himself into a fierce bird of prey-a gift that's caused death and destruction.

At last he's offered the chance to redeem himself. Only one woman stands in his way-a beautiful writer determined to wreak revenge on the assassins who murdered her family. Assassins, it's been rumored, who have powers no human should ever possess...

--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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About the Author

Christina Dodd is a New York Times bestselling author whose novels have been translated into twelve languages. She lives in Washington with her husband and two dogs.
--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Exhilarating! Dec 26 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I found this book just as engrossing as the first in the series. . .Please do not read "Touch of Darkness" without first reading "Scent of Darkness". Both of these are well written, with very interesting characters and a good story line (fast paced). Definite attention grabers from first page to last. Can't wait for the other 2 books to come out. . .
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!! Aug. 28 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book was even better than the first in this series. I found the plot exciting and the characters more loveable. This is one of the must read's!!!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  45 reviews
26 of 34 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars better than the first one, but still pretty bad Sept. 9 2007
By duchess - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This review will contain spoilers, proceed at your own risk!!!

Touch of Darkness by Christina Dodd is the second book in her Darkness Chosen erotic fantasy series. I hated the first book, and would not have read the second except for having gotten them at the same time. (Believe me - they are both going straight into the donation bin!) I was surprised that this one, while still dumb, managed to be a lot better than the first. Not better enough that I will ever bother with the third or fourth (or however many more will come), but it was an improvement of sorts (not that that is saying a whole lot...).

This one deals with the second son of the family (human and hawk shapeshifter), Rurik Wilder, and his lover, Tasya Hunnicutt. At least in this one, they have already been lovers before the story begins, which is a definate improvement over the first book, where the entire unrealistic relationship between the hero and heroine grated on my nerves. And they have to work hard to find their holy object, unlike the first book where it just fell into their laps. But they still pause to have sex when being chased by evil shapeshifters who serve the devil, and in other inappropriate and downright stupid times. Come on - I know it is erotica - but does it have to be stupid????? And the part with the unexpected princess - spare me such a Mary Sue moment, please!

"Mary Sue" is a term used by science fiction and fantasy fans to denigrate extremely idealized and lucky female characters (who are often self-inserted avatars of the author, but do not need to be). A typical Mary Sue character is not only beautiful and kind and smart, but she is the best at everything she tries to be or do - whether she is the greatest warrior ever ALONG with being a scholar AND a powerful magic user AND a great musician, AND great in bed, etc. The heroine of this book does edge into Mary Sue territory, though there are many worse ones out there, especially in paranormal erotica and romance.

Speaking of which - there is a term for male Mary Sue - male Mary Sues are called Gary Stus. And Rurik is a classic Stu. Handsome, intelligent. Can turn into a hawk. Not just any fighter pilot, but the best in the whole US military. Someone who stopped terrorists from having atomic weapons. Great in bed. And when his military career is over, becomes a world class archaeologist. And he is still way too young to have spent the years of training and/or graduate school that would be required to be both a fighter pilot and an archaeologist who could be the leader of an important excavation.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it and have some fun Sept. 18 2007
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Every bit as much good fun as the first book in the series, the character development was even better here, especially with the periphrial characters. Even they reveal a nuance or depth of character that makes me wonder just when they will show up in the storyline again. Christina Dodd shows how consistent she can be in any genre.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Action, Suspense, Supernatural Shape-shifting and Romance... May 7 2008
By April - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Over a thousand years past, a man sells his soul and that of his descendants to the Devil in exchange for the ability to shape-change into a predator and gain power and wealth. The family, the Varinskis, based in the Ukraine, are now assassins and thugs for hire. One man went against tradition, marrying a gypsy girl against family rules, and leaves the family; moving to the American Pacific Northwest and changing his name to Wilder. His family of three sons and a daughter (true Varinskis only bear sons on their partners), fight to stay alive and now are trying to break the ancient curse to save the father's life and their immortal souls.

In this book (second in the series, but may be read alone), Rurik Wilder is returning to his archaeological dig in Scotland after visiting home and learning that he needs to find his true love and a sacred icon in order to try and break the curse on his family. He knows whom he loves, Tasya Hunnicutt, a feisty photographer, whom he had once had wild sex with, ending with her leaving him cold.

Tasya, he finds, is at the dig in order to take photos... but also for secret motives of her own. When she was a child her parents were killed by the Varinskis and she hopes to find something in this tomb that will help in her revenge. Rurik, of course, has his secrets, such as being able to shape-change to a hawk and that he is related to the very people Tasya hates. He, too, hopes to find something in the tomb.

When the Varinskis arrive and blow the tomb up, Tasya and Rurik are on the run, on a suspenseful trip to evade death from a family of professional killers with super-natural powers. And they are all on a search for the same treasures for different reasons.

I happen to like my romances with plenty of plot and back-story, and this book had lots of all of that. And of course lots of sparks fly from Rurik and Tasya's hot but difficult relationship. I liked that they had some real problems to solve for the story and for their relationship. If you like a bit of "Bourne Identity" suspense along with your sizzling sex scenes, along with some paranormal shape-shifting, this book is for you.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Could have been better Jan. 17 2012
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Summary:
Rurik thinks he has finally found what he has spent years looking for, the Icon that can save his family. According to all of his research as an archeologist it all points to this one grave site in Scotland. When treasure chest is found while he is back home in Washington, he rushes to the grave site, only to find it swarming with reporters and the Photo Journalist Tasya... They shared one night of bliss, when she left him in the middle of the night while he was sleeping. Didn't she know that she is His!?! Tasya is so close to getting the proof she needs that the Varinskis are the rappers, murders, mercenaries they have been accused of but never brought to trial.. All she needs is the Varinski family icon that should be in this grave. When Rurik removes the treasure chest from the ruins and opens the chest both Rurik and Tasya are holding their breath in expectation, only to come up with jewels but no icon. Both in the early morning light end up back at the dig, unknowingly looking for the same thing for different reasons. While they are working they are prematurely interrupted by... Varinskis. Both Tasya and Rurik think that the Varinskis have finally caught up with them, but when they start setting charges Rurik realizes that they are going to blow the grave site and everything in it, including Rurik and Tasya. While they were running the tunnel caved in on Rurik and Tasya, but by the grace of God, Rurik manages to free them, but now they are on the run. Time, memories, secrets and Varinskis are not on their side and they will probably not escape this alive and with the Icon.

Review:
This book didn't quite have the same heat and sizzle as the first book, it kind of starts off slow and doesn't seem to really get going until about a third of the way through. Rurik is not quite as intense as his brothers an in fact made a pact with himself to not embrace his inner bird and has not taken flight in over 5 years, until his and Tasya's life depended on it. Now in this book we do see more Varinski action. It's like they realized that they underestimated the Wilders and start sending men in force. And the situation looks pretty dire for Tasya and Rurik and you will probably shed a few tears, I know I teared up. Rurik is more likable than his brother and his feelings for Tasya don't feel as forced as they did with Jasha and Anne, it just lacked some of the intensity I thought Rurik would have being a Wilder. Tasya, is a lot stronger of a character than Anne was, she is fiercely independent and a world traveler as well as on some countries persona non grata lists for her photo journalism. She is a female that kicks butt and doesn't lack for a self esteem and you find out a cool twist with Tasya towards the end.

Rating:
3.5 moons
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Touch of Darkness - A Joyfully Recommended Title!! Sept. 2 2007
By MNix - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Archeologist Rurik Wilder is tall, strong, devilishly handsome and more formidable than he appears. Rurik can change into a powerful bird of prey, but this ability has brought about death and sorrow. Now Rurik has been given the chance to redeem himself and help his family break a centuries old pact with the devil.

Blocking his path to redemption is the beautiful Tasya Hunnicutt. Tasya is determined to expose the assassins that murdered her parents. In seeking revenge, Tasya risks not just her life but Rurik's as well. The assassins Tasya aims to defeat are said to have special powers. Powers that are evilly inhuman.

I have been all wiggly waiting for book two in the Darkness Chosen series, Touch of Darkness. Thankfully, I didn't have very long to wait. I have been drooling in anticipation of Rurik. And Rurik is sooo drool worthy. He is smart, gorgeous and bad to the bone. I couldn't ask for more!

Christina Dodd's Touch of Darkness is as sexy, exciting and romantic as the first book in this series, Scent of Darkness. The utter foulness of the adversaries and the struggle against them will put readers on the edge of their seats. The passionate romance between Rurik and Tasya will leave readers breathless. The longing for the third book in this series will fill readers with anxious anticipation.

Annmarie
Reviewed for Joyfully Reviewed
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