Crystal Cove is book four in Lisa Kleypas’s contemporary romance series that each have a paranormal twist. Crystal Cove is perhaps the most paranormal of the series so far and Justine our heroine is a witch. We’ve met Justine before in books two and three of the series, in the books she had a biker boyfriend who she had broken up with in Crystal Cove. The previous three books have followed the love stories of the brothers and Crystal Cove breaks out from this opening the story to other characters in Friday Harbour.
Hotel owner Justine leaves a busy life and runs a successful business with her cousin Zoë (the heroine of Dream Lake), the one regret she has in life is that she’s never been in love. One night she places a spell to find out what is blocking her and realises that someone has places a geas on her to prevent her from ever falling in love. Breaking the geas isn’t easy and Justine knows there will be consequences.
Wealthy entrepreneur and games creator Jason Black has booked out the entirety of Justine’s hotel for business. As soon as Justine meets him she feels the instant attraction. But Justin has his own secret and he’s been looking for someone with Justine’s skills to help him resolve them.
Kleypas really portrays the chemistry between Justine and Jason, it sparks as soon as they meet each other and you immediately feel compelled to see where it is going. Crystal Cove is a hell of a lot sexier than the previous books of the series, a hell of a lot. Put it this way, I have lent the first three to my mother-in-law and I will deliberately not be mentioning I have this one! 😉 It even contains some mild BDSM, quite unusual Japanese BDSM actually.
The magical backdrop to this story was really quite interesting, I enjoyed the secret magical underground hidden in the little village. Justine’s friends that live in a lighthouse and how the elements reacted to magic. There were two different curses that affected Justine and a third that impacted Jason, and they certainly added a new twist to the romance.
While I did really like Jason as a hero and completely engaged with the love story. There was one betrayal in the story which I found very hard to take. Just like Justine, I did forgive Jason and it says something for the character and charisma that Kleypas had written. But quite frankly, he could be a total selfish arse at times.
Justine is one independent tough lady with a great work ethic and a really kind friend. We have scenes with her and Zoë in, but if you’re looking for flashes of characters from the rest of the series you’ll be disappointed. As I have mentioned I really like Kleypas’s writing style, it makes for easy reading and the romances are always satisfying. Crystal Cove was no exception and I will definitely be continuing with the series.
A really engaging romance, definitely sexier than the previous instalments and the hero and heroine have quite a bit of spark. It’s more of a contemporary romance with a paranormal twist, rather than a paranormal romance. A great series about friendships, love and a little bit of magic.
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Crystal Cove by Lisa Kleypas
(Friday Harbor #4)
Paranormal / Contemporary Romance
Piatkus Books (5 Feb 2013)
Paperback: 320 pages