My Forbidden Desire by Carolyn Jewel
Series: My Immortals #2
Published by Forever on June 1, 2009
Genres: Erotic, PNR, Romance
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Alexandrine Marit is a witch in mortal danger. An evil mage craves the powerful, mysterious talisman that supplies her magic, and the only person who can keep her safe is a dark and dangerous fiend called Xia. With his fierce animosity toward witches, he's hardly the ideal bodyguard. Yet as days turn into nights, she can't deny the white-hot passion between them.
DESIRE AND TEMPTATION
Xia hates witches. They enslave and mercilessly kill his kind. But he's been ordered to protect Alexandrine, who, to his surprise, has a spirit he admires and a body he longs to possess. With the mage and his henchmen closing in, Alexandrine and her protector must trust the passion that can unite them...or risk losing everything to the enemies who can destroy them both.
My Immortals #2!
In glomming the My Immortals series, I have my favorites (of course). I’m thinking that My Forbidden Desire isn’t really one of my favorites although it is a very good and entertaining read.
I think the biggest issues for me was that I never 100% warmed up to Xia, the moody bastard. Or Alexandrine. But I do like them together – they fit each other.
That had always been his problem. He had a low-key mood and a pissed-off mood and no moods in between.
In reading My Forbidden Desire, I’ve noticed that the worldbuilding isn’t quite as in-depth as I’d prefer. It feels as if there are small threads of the plot that don’t quite make it to page – or are never really explored. The plot thread I’m hunting for in this book is communication: how do the magekind communicate with each other and how do the untrained, discarded “street witches” learn about the trained magekind? That’s an important question for me, especially relating to My Forbidden Desire. The entire meet-cute/plot arc of My Forbidden Desire hinges on Alexandrine contacting Álvaro Magellan (from My Wicked Enemy) regarding a talisman she’d found. Alexandrine knew Magellan was a mage who used antiquities as a front and she wanted to use the request for more details regarding the talisman as a way “in” to the mage life. Or something like that. This (unadvised) contact snowballs and now the magekind know 1) Alexandrine has a talisman, 2) the talisman is real and 3) Alexandrine has no real magic – making her a perfect target for any magekind wanting additional powers (read: all of them).
Most of the romantic tension in My Forbidden Desire stems from Xia and his issues. Xia was betrayed by a witch, leading him to become mageheld by Rasmus Kessler – Alexandrine’s biological father. Xia is full of anger, hate and confusion after being kept as a slave for a lifetime.
Xia rolled his shoulders and stopped at the sink to wash his hands and face. It felt good to fight with complete freedom. Without the aching, bone-deep pain of compulsion. Without hatred burning through him. The difference unsettled him. Until now, he’d not realized, not completely, how alien his freedom was to him. Talk about messed up. He’d done nothing but dream about freedom, and now that he had it, he didn’t know how to live. In a sick way, he was grateful to be babysitting Harsh’s sister, because it gave him something to think about besides what he was supposed to do with his freedom now that it belonged to him again.
Xia hates witches. He is also sexually attracted to witches/magekind – like all fiends. I’m sure the juxtaposition of being sexually attracted to something/someone you hate didn’t sweeten Xia’s disposition any. Ms Jewel has a similar situation between Wallace and Palla in Dead Drop – so I was starting to think that maybe this hate/want/lust thing was a hallmark of the series. I realized that it wasn’t quite the same, however. Xia hates the magekind, especially witches and especially Rasmus Kessler’s daughter. It’s mostly an impersonal, general hate (with the exception of Rasmus, who he wants to kill). Wallace and Palla actually disliked each other – a very personal and specific emotion.
From the first night that Alexandrine and Xia had to spend together – fighting off attacks on Alexandrine’s life – Xia and Alexandrine were very attracted to each other. It’s been scientifically proven that shared experiences involving large amounts of adrenaline can cause people to become closer, to fall in love. Xia and Alexandrine have to endure multiple heart-racing incidents almost from the moment that they meet: [multiple] Attacks on Alexandrine’s life by magehelds as well the unstable talisman that started the entire situation. I can totally believe in the relationship between Xia and Alexandrine: they are very alike for all of their differences and once Xia got over his (well earned) prejudice and fear.
“When one of the free kin finds a talisman, we take it back if we can. And we crack it open. They have no body, so we give whoever it was our bodies.” His tongue came out and touched his lower lip. “It’s never easy to assimilate with what’s left. It’s impossible to know its condition until it’s too late. But if we live through it, we honor the one whose body died. Their magic lives in us. With us.”
Xia and Alexandrine both had pretty difficult lives and it was so enjoyable watching them fumble through their issues to finally come together.