Hunky Indian were-tiger–sibling rivals continue to claw at the heart of their American lady love in this quest quartet’s penultimate doorstopper.
Devastated that the elder brother, Ren, walled off all memory of their passionate love and psychic attachment in the previous episode (he had his reasons), Kelsey embraces the sultry affections of Kishan. No sooner does she promise Kishan that he’s The One than Ren regains his memories, though, and, being jealous and controlling as well as still being her “blue eyed prince” and “dark Poseidon,” proceeds to screw the romantic conflict to agonizing levels. (So to speak: For all the steamy snogging, neither tiger prince still even gets to second base here.) Eventually Kelsey and company set off on a nautical quest for a magical Necklace that is the third of the goddess Durga’s four promised gifts and the next stage in removing the ancient curse that forces the two men to spend part of each day as big cats. Having thrown a kraken, a giant shark and no fewer than five dragons at her tempestuous trio, Houck trots in the malign sorcerer Lokesh for a climactic battle, and sets up the closer with a cliffhanger reversal of fortune. Lines such as, “It’s time for me to let myself love again,” and, “Ren’s love was an all-consuming fire, but Kishan was more like…a space heater,” are representative.
Hankies, cold showers and possibly a neck brace for all the emotional whiplash are recommended. (Paranormal romance. 13 & up)