Book Twenty-five of 2012: SANCTUARY by Beverly Barton

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War with their archrival, the evil Ansara clan, is unavoidable. For Mercy Raintree, a war means she must assume her position as guardian of the Sanctuary–the sacred Raintree home place deep in the Smoky Mountains. But doing so threatens to disclose her most prized secret–one Mercy has kept to herself for six years. As the solstice looms and the battle heats up, Dranir Judah Ansara gathers his forces, intending to wipe “every” Raintree from the face of the land. Including Mercy, whom he’s claimed as “his” to kill. Then he comes face-to-face with her–and with her daughter, Eve. Will Mercy’s closely guarded secret change not only the outcome of the battle–but also Judah’s own bitter heart?

Out of the three Raintree books, I had more enjoyment with SANCTUARY. A great indication would be the speed I read a book. I was done with this book within two or three days. For me, that’s pretty good.

I could relate with the characters better and I found the overall story entertaining. Sure, there was no fire mystery or murder mystery like the other two, but there was the unresolved sexual tension and denial of love that the other two were lacking. The main guy and gal had serious issues and it was refreshing to see some of those issues ironed out. By no means do I think they are going to have a complete happy ever after, but at least the book hinted at some believable resolution with their relationship.

The final battle scene that brings together the trilogy was awesome. I liked the imagery and the feeling of fighting. There hasn’t been a good fight scene that kept me going since, well, ASCEND by Amanda Hocking. And before that was THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, which I finished in its first week of being out. That says something there.

The only downside to the final fight scene was the deus ex machina feel. It was similar to Twilight’s and gave me a bad after taste. However, the main bad guy was killed and for that, it was by far a better resolution than the mentioned teen sensation.

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