Love Spell, February 2004, 5.99, 352 pp.
Ruling Comdar of Saura Arion rejects Shielder Jarek san Ranul's offer of Irridon. Instead, Arion loathingly barters for a mate among the outsiders. His Leor race is in trouble due to inbreeding among the small population and biologically minuscule fertile cycles of their females that if continues unabated means extinction in the near future. Thus Arion like others seeks a non Leor bride to produce hybrid offspring. He and his clan will rescue two Shielder colonies in trouble in exchange for a wife. This upsets the Shielder who detests the concept of bartering people as goods.
Because of her gift to see into the future, Jenna knows that she is destined to be sacrificed as a mate for the barbarous Leor warlord who apparently trades in human flesh. Jenna “volunteers” to mate with the beast. As they become acquainted through squabbling, they fall in love, but Jenna and Arion respectively has prejudicial notions about their mate that could supernova their relationship unless the positive qualities that they observe overcomes their biases.
The “Shadow” novels are some of the best romantic science fiction on the market today because the varying races that make up the Spangler universe seems so real. The latest terrific tale, SHADOW FIRES, is a great novel as the lead couple is a delightful dueling duo and the support cast enables the audience to learn more about their respective races. The story line is action packed on the two levels that of a science fiction thriller and an outer space romance with both blending brilliantly together. Catherine Spangler spangles once again with this superb stellar story.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner