Theirs For the Night (Book 1)
This short novella is intended to introduce the reader to the characters of the Thalanian Dynasty, a freebie so that readers are hooked enough to buy the full-length follow-up novel. (Full disclosure: It worked on me.) The events within are sexy and steamy, and I enjoyed Meg as a realistic character with life conflicts that are all too familiar in our current world.
The male characters, on the other hand… I enjoyed them individually and together, and we’re shown enough of their relationship to make their interactions with Meg believable. However, a few missing details let me down. For example, Theo and Galen read as 100% American to me, and at no point is their perfect American English ever explained (as far as we can tell from Meg’s point of view, neither man even has an accent).
So, be warned that this is a one-off with no real closure. However, it is perfectly enjoyable as a stand-alone.
Forever Theirs (Book 2)
Based on the free short story offered as a teaser to this world, I was hooked enough to buy the next book to see where it all went. Once again, the three main heroes were pretty solid. Theo and Galen are true to the core characters they represent, and their history is hinted at just enough to make their mutual attraction to Meg understandable. Even more understandable is Meg herself, who is recognizable as a modern grad student struggling financially but portrays some lovely characterization twists that make her more than a walking cliché.
Amid some truly excellent steamy bits, it’s easy to go along for the ride. However, we’re never really shown why Meg fits so perfectly with Theo and Galen. The chemistry between them works, but beyond that, the reader is mostly just told how great the relationship is and why it should continue. I’m going to need a bit more than that.
Unfortunately, the book is not made up of merely three people exploring a relationship. Theo is the Crown Prince of a fictional European country, albeit a small one, and Galen is supporting his attempts to end his exile and reclaim his throne. Beyond that, however, the world-building starts to fall apart. Theo and Galen are indistinguishable from rich American men.
Overall, the plot supports the romantic arc(s). But I wish as much time and effort had been spent on the plot as the sexual escapades.
Theirs Ever After (Book 3)
The political drama and intrigue of this continuation to the Thalanian Dynasty series work – if it took place in a tiny, isolated medieval kingdom rather than the present day. I had so many questions about the world-building of this country. I honestly finished the book just to see whether any would get resolved rather than any interest in the actual plot of the story.
Where was the international intrigue of a royal triad? Why was there no conversation about one of them being an American? Why does the default language of a tiny (southern?) (eastern?) European country appear to be English, since there’s never any mention of a language barrier on Meg’s part? And those are only the top of the list.
Perhaps I’m too tough on this book since my “home” genre is speculative fiction, where these issues of the greater world need to be addressed as much as the primary plot. After all, I had no complaints about the drama within the triad. Balancing any relationship takes work and hits bumps, which increases exponentially when you add a third person and a king to the mix.
If you really, really love Meg, Theo, and Galen, this book is worth finishing up the trilogy. But if you know you’re picky about things outside the relationship aspect of the storytelling in your romantic thrillers, it might be better to give this book a pass.
Their Second Chance (Book #3.5)
I appreciated the characters of Noemi and Isaac, so I took a chance on their story despite my complaints about the previous books in this series.
The story itself, before the epilogue, is a solid 5 stars. Each character is well-developed within the space constraints of a short novella, their encounter is sexy and dramatic, and the resolution at the end is both unexpected and utterly charming.
But that epilogue, though. Tonally and thematically, it doesn’t match the rest of the piece. I’m not sure why it was included, and I’m honestly bummed that it knocked my otherwise great enjoyment of this story down a star.