Saturday, August 22, 2009

REVIEW: "The Highwayman", Michele Hauf, Silhouette Nocturne July 2009

WORKING ON: Desire Deep Blue, paranormal short. Very. Slow. Going.

READING: I've just popped a new Goodreads widget down there. I've decided to go with Goodreads. Their mobile site is far better than Shelfari's. If you're on Goodreads, hook up with me!

FEELING: Good. Sparky offered to take me out for dinner. I declined (kids are sick), but loved the notion.

LAST SONG: Freak Me, by Silk. I used to love that song. Now, I'm my thirties it makes me feel a bit grotty. Sigh. Middle-age me.


A while back, on the eHQ boards, I made some wonderfully witty comment about the differing covers on the Nocturne novels (It went something like, "I like the American ones waaaayyy better..."), and Michele Hauf made a comment about the thinness of the Aussie Nocs and the weenyness of the writing. She'd seen one - she'd like to see more.

Me, being one of those people that jumps first and thinks later, offered to mail Kiss Me Deadly over to her when it came out. Deal.

In return, she'd mail me a new one of hers. Cool. Ditto deal.

When the package arrived in the post, with not one, but THREE Michele Hauf books - I plotzed. Right there at the post office. Embarassing, I realised later...

All signed, by Michele and in the case of Faeries Gone Wild, the other authors as well.

I tell ya. Ms Hauf is doing nothing to pour cold water on my author fan crush.

So, first I read The Highwayman because I have a thing for the cover. It's very yum.

Here's the Goodreads blurb:

Max Fitzroy, the legendary Highwayman, had slain scores of demons with a razorlike whip and a burning need for revenge. Now, to rid himself of the demon inside him—who'd cursed him with immortality and stolen all sensual pleasures—Max needed a witch's familiar, the one creature he'd made a career of killing.
But the Highwayman wasn't prepared for the familiar named Aby. The sleek and sexy conduit to the demon world saw past his swirling shadow as easily as he scaled the walls she'd erected to protect herself. Max needed Aby to grant him his freedom, and then he needed to slay her. But how could he destroy the only creature he'd desired in centuries?

Outside review I stole from Michele's website:

"With dangerous encounters, a myriad of paranormal beings and even some subtle humor, THE HIGHWAYMAN is an enchanting love story packed with riveting adventures." —

And another one:

"Ms. Hauf shares a compelling tale of demons, witchcraft, and the strength of love. The Highwayman is a well-told and fast-moving adventure as romance unfolds between two strong, but lonely, adversaries. I’m so looking forward to Severo’s story in book two of the Wicked Games series. Moon Kissed is due to hit shelves on September 1, 2009." — Darque Reviews

Emmeline's TAKE:

Anyone who has read here knows I have a Hauf thing. And now I have a bigger thing.

I adored this story - The characters had depth, were true to form and completely likeable. Hauf has a wonderful way of linking characters, names, background, premise, conflict and storyline so that the story is a seamless read.

The backstory is complex, and if you've read some other Hauf stuff, you'll recognise it. Not that you need to read other stories to get this one.

It also has a few nice flashback scenes that are well-placed.

Character motivations are real, never forced and particularly in the case of Aby, refreshing.

I am also consistently in awe of Hauf's dialogue. It flows beautifully. We're of an age, so I wonder why mine sounds like a four year old talking to an imaginary friend. Heh... I imagine it's practice.
I read it in a sitting. Which, I think, is high praise for an author.

If you like a bit of action, paranormal fiends, tension and hot love, grab this one - I was quite happy to buy it just for the guy on the cover!

Thanks again to Michele for mailing it over - lucky for me, sometimes the jump firsts pay off... :)

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I love some other people's stuff, and if I use your stuff, I try to tell everyone that it's not my stuff - it's someone else's stuff. But, if I have used some of your copyrighted stuff here and you would like me to remove your stuff, let me know.... It's all for non-commerical use...