*New* Reviews from Amazon Reader for LAND OF FALLING STARS
5.0 out of 5 stars An engrossing read, November 9, 2011
P. Elliott "Book Junkie" (Portsmouth) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Land of Falling Stars (Kindle Edition)
"Land of Falling Stars" is the story of a love triangle set against the background of the American Civil War.
Sophia is fixated on her fiancé, Jesse,and waits for his return, but doesn't know he is dead. When childhood friend, Gavin, arrives back from the war, Sophia is attracted to Gavin but confused by her love for Jesse. As events spiral out of her control she finds herself tricked and learns to hate the one man that truly loves her. Sophia has to lose everything, including her sight, before she can start to see the truth.
Diablo's strength lies in her characters who are believable and complex. I loved the tension between Sophia and Gavin, and the bitter-sweet love between them was very poignant. It's difficult not to enthuse about this book without giving the plot away, because there are so many memorable moments but each is key to the story. Needless to say I loved this book and look forward to discovering other books by the same author.
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BUY ON NOOK: http://bit.ly/nyDzns
BUY ON KINDLE: http://amzn.to/oqrFvd
Review from Hesperia Loves Books:
"Land of Falling Stars is a wonderful Historical Romance that captures the essence & traumatic experiences of the Civil War period beautifully. Author, Keta Diablo does a superb job of helping us travel back in time to the war-torn South with her superbly written & very detailed scenes.
Gavin, along with Sophie's dog, Ricochet, exude a fierceness that makes the book so worthwhile, and it leaves you feeling such satisfaction at what they accomplish. The secondary characters help round out the cast and added such an authentic aspect to the story. The ending was great, however, I wish that we would have seen more of Sophie & Gavin after they returned home. An Epilogue would have been wonderful and would have completed the book, IMO. So often in romance we get the angst & tumultuous road leading up to the HEA, which is great to turn the page, BUT I want to see them together too. If you love Historical Romance genre books then this should definitely go on your TBR list."
"Land of Falling Stars is a wonderful historical romance that takes place during the Civil War. This book is filled with so many different emotions. One moment you may be fanning yourself from their intense love making, the next moment might make you teary-eyed, and a little bit later you might find yourself thoroughly frustrated with these characters - but you'll love every minute of it. I wasn't quite expecting the book to end where it did, I wanted to know more. I don't know if there will be a sequel or not, but I would love to read more about these characters."
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"Diablo is one of my top finds from this year. Land Of Falling Stars is a awesome historical erotic romance set during the Civil War period. What I really like about Keta's story is how she balances out the plot with the hot and steamy sex. (Yes there's a lot of that going on). I think the way Gavin dealt with Sophia's blindness was admirable. This is the kind of event readers don't expect to find in a romance novel, but Keta made this work. I particularly loved the scenes with the gypsy clan, they were very descriptive. If you are looking for a new author to try and like historical romance...you have to give Keta Diablo a try!"
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Gavin has returned to Arbor Rose after a discharge from the Union army. In this scene, Sophia is crossing a field with Gavin in her line of vision. She’s tormented by the wild, crazy feelings for the man, feelings she’s suppressed for years.
Sophia hadn't run last night. With Gavin's noontime meal in the linen napkin she carried—cold chunks of rabbit, crusty sourdough bread, and wild raspberries—her emotions warred as she left the manor.
Arbor Rose languished in a verdant cradle of sea green. The rhododendrons flanking the front porch swayed beneath a balmy breeze and roses clung to her mother's trellises. Beyond the empty cotton and tobacco fields, unspoiled forests grew. Well, not wholly unspoiled. Too many army mounts had widened the narrow footpaths when the blue coats fled Fredericksburg and moved on to capture Richmond.
She spied Gavin in the distance ripping apart a dilapidated gate that had once corralled her father's champion bays. His recuperation had resulted in a battle of wills between them for days. Preferring rum and laudanum to the concoctions she forced down his throat―vile herbs he claimed weren't fit for a goat's consumption―Sophia had prevailed. He'd never been able to deny her whims, and she took full advantage of his weakness by using every ploy known to her, including pouting, pleading and perseverance.
Saddened and bewildered by the changes in him, Sophia spent hours trying to sort it out. This included her torrid feelings for the man. A hard-edged restlessness and a cauldron of violence steeped beneath his cool exterior. She'd studied him gazing out her window with the knowledge that whatever haunted him lay miles beyond the borders of Arbor Rose. Pain dwelt in his eyes, so deep, not even she could penetrate it.
With every step she took, Sophia drank in every inch of that hard body. His shirt, a discard from Rolf's generous collection, lay draped over a fence post, revealing the bulging muscles of his chest. Her brother's castoff tan trousers clung to his powerful legs and narrow waist. His long hair, tied with a leather strap at the nape, afforded her a full view of the intense blue eyes and magnificent mouth. A day's stubble etched his jaw line above the tanned skin, which, in the harsh light of day, still lacked a healthy, vibrant hue.
The pulse at the hollow of her throat took on a strange cadence when his smoky gaze licked over her. She drew a deep breath, but it stuck in her dry throat. No matter how many times she told herself it wasn't possible, she couldn't rein in her wild attraction to the man. She spent the better part of the day convincing her dazed brain Jesse would return and the crazy feelings she held for Gavin would evaporate like a mist rolling out to sea. She loved Jesse, not Gavin.
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SET-UP AND EXCERPT:
Haunted by dreams and visions of his childhood friend, Jesse, Gavin struggles over his feelings for Sophia. When she arrives at the entry of his bedchamber, he warns her there is no turning back if she steps into the room.
Unable to dispel the haunting visions of Sophia, Gavin tossed and turned. He was cursed, condemned. Rising from bed for the hundredth time, he looked out the window. His side ached, his head throbbed, and his brain had journeyed south hours ago. Jesse's face floated before him. Blood seeped from corner of his pale lips. ‘Take care of her, Gavin. Promise me.’ Gavin slammed his eyes shut and willed the image to leave. Trapped between Sophia and anguish, he stood on a precipice overlooking Hell. He should have died on the battlefield like Billy said.
The floorboards in the hallway creaked and then the door to the room opened. Sophia stood under the archway, her slender body drenched in pale beams of moonlight.
She wrung her hands, her small toes pointed inward. "I-I came to check on your wound." Glancing at Ricochet, she mumbled under her breath, "Defector."
Gavin clenched his fists, fighting back an image of her crying the day he left for the war. Here she stood again, and he wanted to put his fist through the wall.
Arrested by her beauty, long moments passed until he found his tongue. "You didn't come to see about my wound." Another timeless moment crept by. "You should know, unless you leave, things will never be the same between us. There's no going back."
She took a step toward him.
"If you're looking for prettified words, you won't hear them from me. I'm not Jesse."
"You never were."
His resolve to stay clear of her evaporated. He strode toward her, grabbed her by the wrist, and pulled her hard against him. Her eyes flew open and a startled gasp left her lips.
"You should be afraid, Sophia, you don't know what you've started."
"Gavin," she whimpered and rested her head against his chest. "I can't fight it anymore." She lifted her head and searched his eyes. "I don't know what's happening, I don't care." A tear slid down her cheek. "I want you, I need you."
That ruined him. He swept her into his arms, carried her to the bed and knelt over her with his knees straddling her hips. He gave a command to Ricochet and the dog slithered from the bed. His mouth came down on hers, rough and demanding. He moved on to her neck and shoulders, smothering her with desperate, urgent kisses amidst her sobs.
He stopped and looked at her. "Last chance, Sophia."
She shook her head and closed her eyes. Thank God. He didn't know what he'd do if she changed her mind now. He grabbed her nightshirt and ripped it down the middle, sending the buttons flying through the air. Her eyes snapped open and she placed a hand against his chest. "Gavin?"
He drew a deep breath. He had to get a hold of his emotions. He couldn't take her hard and rough despite his insatiable hunger. Not the first time. Whatever had pitched him into the ashen waters of despair—the war, Jesse, his love for her—it wasn't her fault.
"I'm not the same man who left to fight in this godforsaken war." His voice broke under the strain. "Things happened. I saw and did things you could never understand."
She slid her hand from his chest and touched his cheek. "It's all right, Gavin. I know―"
"You don't know, Sophia, and if you did, you'd hate me."
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