Title: Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night
Author: Kresley Cole
Review number: 17
Stand alone or series: Book three of Immortals After Dark series
Summary: Her breathless kiss haunts him…
Bowen MacRieve of the Lykae clan was nearly destroyed when he lost the one woman meant for him. The ruthless warrior grew even colder, never taking another to his bed — until a smoldering encounter with his enemy, Mariketa the Awaited, reawakens his darkest desires. When sinister forces unite against her, the Highlander finds himself using all his strength and skill to keep her alive.
His slow, hot touch is irresistible…
Temporarily stripped of her powers, Mari is forced to take refuge with her sworn adversary. It’s rumored that no one can tempt Bowen’s hardened heart, but soon passion burns between them. Though a future together is impossible, she fears he has no intention of letting her go.
No deed is too wicked for her seduction…
If they defeat the evil that surrounds them, can Mari deny Bowen when he demands her body and soul — or will she risk everything for her fierce protector?
Why did I read the book: It should be clear by now that I am completely obsessed with these books.
Previously on the immortal after darks series: It is the Hie and Bowen MacRevie is the Werewolf who lost his one true Mate, Mariah, two centuries ago and is determined to have her back. He is one of the finalists but ends up losing to Sebastian and Kaderin. Last time we see him he is left in the underground cave where immortals go to die, without an eye, an arm, part of his face and without a hope in the world. He is not regenerating as werewolves do because earlier in the competition he entrapped Mariketa the Awaited, a Witch, who managed to curse him out of his immortality.
This book begins by taking us back to the first days of the Hie to the Guatemalan tomb where Bowen entraps Mariketa and we discover that before doing so they had quite of a heated moment down there, fuelled by the fact that Bowen has feelings for another female after two centuries of feeling nothing. You see, a werewolf has only one Mate during his immortal lifetime– only one female who is supposed to be his to protect, to provide for, to love and the only one who can have his children. His fled him in terror on a new moon night when a werewolf has no control of his bestial side and ended up dead in front of him. He has never recovered, not only because he must face eternity alone but also because of his guilt and shame for who he is.
For the past two hundred years he hasn’t so much as looked at a female but all of a sudden he is taken with lust for Mariketa. He thinks that as a witch she has bewitched him into having feelings for her and that is one of the reasons why he entrapped her – for revenge.
Cut to two weeks later and he is rescued by his cousin Lachlain and by the Vampire Sebastian only to learn that Mariketa and the others never left the tomb and he is the only one that knows where it is located. Not only that, he also discovers that Mariketa is not an immortal, her transition has not yet happened and her chances are therefore, dim. It turns out that the tomb was not empty, there are evil beings down there. This is not good news for him as she is the only one who can lift the curse and restore his immortality.
So he goes back to rescue her and his Instinct tells him yet again that she is his Mate. He is now more than desperate for her to lift that curse as well. For one, he hates witches; they were responsible for family’s death. And also, he can not bear the guilt of wanting someone else other than his Mate. What he doesn’t know is that Mariketa, even though is rumoured to be the most powerful witch ever, is still too young and has not mastered her skills –it is very unlikely that she managed to do such a powerful spell.
They are now furious with each other but stuck together in the middle of the Guatemalan jungle and they must get to safety pronto: her coven has threatened war if he doesn’t deliver her back safely and the full moon is coming. And they bicker and they fight like any romance couple that deserve some respect until he eventually starts to think that she may be Mariah’s reincarnate. And once he makes that decision , once he decides he wants her, he becomes the epitome of the alpha male and on their way through the jungle towards civilisation he lets the Instinct guide him and becomes what he is supposed to be: her guardian and protector. He cares for her, he hunts for her, protects and threatens any male that comes near her: at one point he tells her that he wants to tear this other bloke’s throat and put it at her feet. Le sigh. This alpha male thing is definitely growing on me.
But as any good alpha male he is stubborn and does some stupid stupid things that end up hurting Mariketa – but she will not take it. Like for instance, after their first night of amazing sex he calls her Mariah . My first reaction was to mumble to myself :”nooooo, he did not!” That is, after all, a big no-no in the world of romance. But do you think she turned around and cried? Nope. She puts a sleeping spell on him and leaves him behind with a hilarious note:
The name is MariKETA.
Go to hell,
the WITCH, doing a creepy spell somewhere right now. “
Of course, he goes after her and after some grovelling they manage to find a truce until something else happens. There are a lot of things that can keep them apart – starting with the fact that Mariketa refuses to be second best and pushes him to make a decision or that he does not want her to do magic but she will have none of that. She has a destiny and she WILL live it.
Nothing is simple, or black and white. They both have issues to work out. There are the undertones of a beauty and the beast story – he cannot control the Beast inside no more than he can control the moon cycles. So when it is a new moon night and she is taken by the guerrilla he goes apeshit and completely annihilates anyone and anything in its way to save her. That was a gruesome example of what he was capable of and it scared the hell out of Mari and yet he knows what he is and there is suffering and a need to control the beast when around her. By now Mariketa is halfway through falling in love with him and so I am.
It was great to see Bowen warming up to life again. After spending some time with Mariketa he starts to rethink his relationship with Mariah: did he really love her or the fact that she was his mate mattered more to him because he always wanted a family? It made my heart tons of good to see Bowen after almost two hundred years of suffering and misery to finally feel happiness and contentment again.
As much as I loved the other two instalments , I love this one even more. For this has the most basic romantic story – you know the type, the cute, heart warming story that makes you melt and go awwww more times than you can count.
In the end it was absolutely romance perfection because both characters were equally measured, equally powerful. They met in equal grounds and the love story was even more believable because it went past the Born to Mate thing, don’t want to spoil if she was or not his Mate but the fact is, it doesn’t matter. His choice was made before the truth even came out. And now I want to tear my heart out and put it down at Bowen’s feet – ladies and gentlemen, I have a new favourite for my desert island companion.
Mrs Cole: Signed, Sealed , Delivered, I am yours.
Notable quotes/parts: When they were walking through the jungle and Bowen starts to let his playful side come out. And they talk and they play and it’s so cute. And there is this one conversation where she asks him about 5 things that he likes and all of them are connected to her like the colour of her eyes or that his favourite place in the world is where she is. She tells him that they can’t be all about her and he simply replies: why not whilst internally he thinks She is the only good thing I have got. Completely. And. Utterly .Aw. Worthy.
Additional Thoughts: Mariketa is a sorcerer who can walk to other dimensions through mirrors . Kresley Cole says she got the idea out of a poem which Mariketa repeats every time she needs to talk to her reflection:
The Witch in the Glass
By Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt
“My mother says I must not pass
Too near that glass;
She is afraid that I will see
A little witch that looks like me,
With a red, red mouth to whisper low
The very thing I should not know!”
“Alack for all your mother’s care!
A bird of the air,
A wistful wind, or (I suppose
Sent by some hapless boy) a rose,
With breath too sweet, will whisper low
The very thing you should not know!”
Verdict: A Desert Island keeper. Loved everything about it. I even liked the cover. I also may need intervention.
Rate: 8. Bowen has been catapulted to my top 5 heroes’ list. I just haven’t decided which one is out yet.
Reading next: My Lady Notorious by Jo Beverley