08 September 2010

Review: Warrior, by Zoe Archer

Romance! A swoon-worthy hero! In Mongolia! With magic! And authentic cultural detail!

(Did I mention that this book takes place in Mongolia?)

Warrior is a Victorian-era romance with a big dose of magic and an even bigger dose of creativity. I'm not usually a fan of romance mixed with magic, unless it's set in a fantasy world. But Archer made me suspend my disbelief and enjoy every minute of it.

Being a shallow cover slut, I was initially drawn to the book by the amazing manly-man with the requisite firearm. The fact that it's set in Mongolia (a romance! set in Mongolia!) was extra-bonus goodness.

Happily, the setting is much more than window-dressing. Archer has done her homework and included convincing cultural detail in her story that goes far beyond "and, oh yes, this is romance set in an exotic locale." Even better, her Mongolian tribesmen function as real secondary characters, rather than as cardboard indigenous people with quaint customs.

This is true action-adventure romance. Our H/H are "on the road" (well, the steppe, and the Gobi Desert) throughout the entire book. The heroine is self-sufficient with nary a TSTL moment in some 300+ digital pages. The hero is deliciously jealous and protective, but never truly prevents the heroine from doing what she needs to do.

Plus, Warrior has one of the most delightful sex scenes (at an oasis no less!) that I've read in a long time.

I am looking forward to the next three books in the series and hope that Archer maintains the momentum she built with Warrior. As an archaeologist, I admit to a bit of trepidation concerning the second book, Scoundrel--the hero poses atop some Greek ruins with a shovel. I am crossing my fingers there's no looting by the good guys involved--that's worse than secret baby plots as far as I'm concerned. Book 3 is set in the wilds of Canada--yet another unusual locale for romance. And Book 4 features a hero of African descent.

Have I mentioned how proud I am be a romance reader?

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful review! I normally steer away from books with "magic" in them, being a science fiction romance fanatic, but you've totally sold me. I don't see a link, so I'll go track this one down. :)