Book 1 in the Shadowlands series
Author: Shona Husk
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Release date: October 1, 2011
Author's website: Shona Husk
Cursed by a Druid millennia ago, Roan lives a bleak existence in the Shadowlands, desperately trying to retain his soul and not succumb to the goblin horde.I became fascinated with this book after doing a blog post on unsexy paranormals. Yes you read that correctly. I listed goblins on that list so it was only natural that I wanted to read this book to read more on them. Roan has been cursed and lives his life as a goblin. The men he fought alongside him were also cursed and for thousands of years they have tried to find a way to break the curse. Only he and his brother remain and as they begin to slip into the madness of becoming a goblin forever, Roan is summoned by someone he never thought he would see again. Eliza once called on him a long time ago as a teen when she was in trouble and he came to her aid. The fairy tales that was once read to her when she was a child always fascinated her and when she found herself in a bad situation, she called on the goblin king for help. He came to her aid then and she never forgot the warrior that whisked her away from that moment. Now she's older and unhappy with the man she has agreed to marry. She calls on the goblin king once again to be taken away because she feels so desperate. When Roan answers the summons and realizes that Eliza was the girl he met so long ago, he feels a connection to her and almost feels human for a little while. He wants to hold onto that feeling and whisks Eliza away to the Shadowlands where he lives. He wants her to become his queen but it's not an easy task. Without breaking the curse, he will continue to slip into madness and soon will not resemble a human at all. Eliza is frightened at first but as she returns to her normal life she realizes that she cannot get Roan out of her mind. She would rather spend what little time Roan has left with him than to be miserable in a loveless marriage. As they try to find a way to break the curse, they must fight together to defeat the druid that placed the curse on Roan. The druid realizes that Eliza is the way to Roan's heart and will stop at nothing to make him suffer even more than what he already has.
When a beautiful human summons him to grant a wish, he sees a glimmer of hope. But will she ever agree to be his queen?
I enjoyed reading about the past and why Roan and his fellow warriors became cursed. The scenes in which Roan has flashbacks for the deaths of his friends was truly heartbreaking. It's equally sad when Roan and his brother Dai has glimpses of madness and realize that they may not have much time left. The research that Roan's brother Dai does is truly amazing and while most goblins collect gold, he collects artifacts as well as ancient scrolls in the hopes of finding something. The one character I had a problem connecting with was Eliza. Although she was being blackmailed by her fiancee Steven to marry him so that he could gain control of her father's company, I just felt that she could have done more than just deal with it all those years. She waited until right before she was to get married to grow a backbone. While I understand that it was because of her love for Roan that made her become a stronger person, I just didn't care as much for her part of the story. She also couldn't seem to make up her mind when it came to Roan. I get that he's a goblin and all, but she kept constantly thinking about him and calling him to her. There were a few times that I was happy that he didn't shop up. I mean this guy has got a serious problem to deal with and being at her beck and call was not at the top of his list. I really felt for him in those moments because he wanted her so badly and began to watch her from the shadow. She was the only thing that tied him to his human soul and I felt as if she abused what power she had over him.
I'm giving The Goblin King a rating of:
While I can't say that Roan has changed me into a goblin lover, I found the storyline to be interesting. I kept picturing Jason Momoa as Roan because he had dreads and while his goblin side didn't appeal to me, the human side did. *wink* I'm curious to see what will happen to his brother Dai whose character I would love to know more about so I'll be reading the next book when it's released.
Make sure you stop by the blog on Halloween (10/31) to read my Q&A with the author Shona Husk!
Other books in the series:
Summons, a Goblin King Prequel. Free on: Amazon, B&N