Synopsis: In this bewitching novel, Shana Abe transports us to an exhilarating world of romance, adventure, and magic. Here, among northern England's misted hills, live a race of extraordinarily beautiful and sensual beings with the ability to shape-shift from human to dragon and back again. Now their secret - and their - survival is threatened by two forbidden lovers...and a passion that will break every boundary.
Dubbed the Smoke Thief for a series of daring jewel thefts, Clarissa Rue Hawthorne didn't expect the drakon leader himself to come to London dangling the tribe's most valuable jewel as bait: the Langford Diamond. But Christoff, the charismatic Marquess of Langford, had to catch Clarissa before anyone else did - or risk exposing the entire clan to the world of ordinary mortals. He never expected that the outcast halfling he pursued would have a proposition of her own to save the drakon - a proposition so dangerous, so tempting, that Christoff will find it impossible to resist: to join forces with her.
Not since Benedict Cumberbatch lent his voice to Smaug in The Hobbit films have dragons been so sexy. This book has it all: fantasy, adventure, romance - and, of course, dragons.
The story takes place in eighteenth century England where Clarissa Hawthorne is treated as an outcast among her Drakon tribe - simply because her father was a human. Faking her death at the age of seventeen, she escapes to London and uses her unique ability to become a successful jewel thief.
Unfortunately, the drakon do not take kindly to 'runners'. They are seen as a danger to the tribe and must be contained at all costs. That is why Christoff 'Kit' Langford, Alpha of the tribe, sees it as his personal duty to find Clarissa - and take her as his Alpha bride.
I love the way Shana Abe revealed the magical world of the drakon. The prologue reveals the origins of the drakon and is so beautifully written, that it reads like an enchanting fairy tale. I got goosebumps when I read it. The entire book is written with such vivid, descriptive language that the reader is immediately sucked into the world and fully immersed in it. After reading it, I had to remind myself that shape-shifting dragons weren't actually real. :(
The chemistry between the two main characters is explosive. It builds and it builds and when they finally get together it is hot. The library scene in particular - well, I won't spoil it but I will say this - be prepared to take a cold shower after.
This book is so much more than a romance novel - it is the beginning of a truly exquisite fantasy series and I cannot wait to read the other books in the series.