Author: Megan Derr
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Genre: MM Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
In the aftermath of destroying two powerful syndicates and joining league with the last person he expected, all Ken wants is a chance to catch his breath, and maybe regain the attention of the man who said he wanted Ken as more than just a Steward but now seems to have lost interest. But every other day brings a new crop of people wanting to kill them, and it’s only a matter of time before they succeed.
All Amr wants is time—time to move his clan and settle them into their new home, time with the dragon he never thought he’d own, and most of all he wants time for his Steward, to see the man rest and recover and stop getting himself almost killed every week. He wouldn’t mind a chance to rekindle their fragile relationship either.
Diamond wants a life that feels worth living. The one he left behind wasn’t all that great, but it beat waking up to the nasty results of a curse that should have killed him and working as a hitman for the Cambry Syndicate. Then he goes to fetch someone for his boss, and gets dragged even deeper into the strange paranormal world he’s still learning to call home…
Shield of the Dragon is the sixth book in the Dance with the Devil series by Megan Derr. This book picks up about a month after Sword of the King ended and revolves around three main characters: Diamond, Ken, and Amr.
Ken and Amr’s story starts where we left them at the end of Sword of the King, with both of them trying to deal with the drastic changes in their lives. Amr is dealing with the ramifications of bonding with the Pendragon Cam and becoming a prince, while also moving his clan to America. Ken is dealing with the violence directed at the clan from rival clans and syndicates, as well as the chilly reception he has received from other members of Clan Mordred. Due to some misunderstandings and Ken’s feelings of inadequacy their personal relationship has not progressed as either of them would have liked. Thankfully, they do talk to each other early on so we don’t suffer through miscommunication problems for the whole book.
Diamond is a new character who survived a Snow White curse, something that’s supposedly impossible. The curse did change him, though. Not only did it change his physical appearance, it turned his blood into poison and it brutally introduced him to the magical world where the only place to offer him help is the Cambry Syndicate, where he works as an assassin.
Fans of the series will be happy to see familiar faces among the secondary characters, including a few that were a delightful surprise. It was good to catch up with Ken and Amr, and I enjoyed seeing their story move along. I didn’t enjoy Diamond’s story as much, primarily because I don’t find the cold-hearted-assassin-who-is-actually-a-good-person character type very believable, but it was interesting and he was vital to resolving the plot.
On the whole this was an interesting and enjoyable read. As usual, Megan Derr brought a unique world to vivid life and with it came a cast of interesting characters. While the story is told from three different points of view, it is always immediately obvious whose POV it is. There were a few problems with the book, though. One of the biggest problems I had was that, while this book was consistent with itself, there were a few inconsistences with previous books in the series. For example, at the end of Sword of the King it was said that Clan Mordred was still cursed, but in this book the curse seems to have been lifted. And while I think the story wrapped up well, the end was a little convenient and a little anticlimactic.
If you have read Sword of the King and were creeped out by the dragons, I can say that this book was much less creepy, though it was still a little concerning. No one sat down to explain how dragons Aren’t Really People, but the dragons were still treated like well-loved pets who could take human form, which allowed them to talk sometimes and have sex a lot. If this dynamic creeped you out before, this book might not be for you.
On the whole I would recommend this book to fans of the Dance with the Devil series, and I would recommend the series to everyone who enjoys erotic fantasy. While I think this book and Sword of the King are the weakest books in the series, they are extremely unique and still worth reading.
Warnings: This book contains several hot ménage scenes as well as two sex scenes involving a woman.
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