Spellbound Falls (Book 5)
After forty years of marriage, Rana Oceanus has
done the unthinkable and run away from her mighty, magical husband. Not
that she ran very far, having purchased a house in Spellbound Falls
right on the shore of the Bottomless Sea, where she intends to prepare
for the scariest battle of her life. The only flaw in her plan, however,
is that she is still very much in love with Titus...
deeply shaken that his wife really has left him--though he still can't
fathom why--Titus sets out to win her back. But when grand gestures of
his esteem don't seem to further his cause, he conjures up some of his
original courtship magic.
But his plan backfires when Titus
discovers that dealing with demons is far less threatening than the
little secret his very mortal wife has been keeping from him...
This was another fun trip to Spellbound Falls. I have loved Titus and Rana since their first appearance. Titus is the usual alpha male in god form, always certain that he is doing the right thing and determined that things go his way. Rana is his mortal wife of forty years, strong in her own right and very good at guiding Titus in the direction she feels is right for the situation. But now there's trouble in paradise as she has moved out of their home into one of her own, claiming she needs "a breath of fresh air".
Rana fell in love with Titus and married him when she was fifteen. She went from being protected and cared for by her father to being protected and cared for by Titus. She has decided that she needs some time on her own to see what she can do and experience without his help. She doesn't go far, just to a small cottage on the shore of the Bottomless Sea. She wants to stay close to her family and friends. Rana has come to love the community of Spellbound Falls and has gotten involved in several local projects. I loved seeing her hanging out with the ladies, being just another one of the group. In her current status with Titus she has let him know that she still loves him but that she feels he needs to start paying more attention to the little things in life not just mankind's big picture. Until he does that she's going to concentrate on her own wishes. I really loved seeing the two of them together. She obviously knows Titus very well and does a fantastic job of making him toe the line where her wishes are concerned. When he ignores her requests she shuts him down, leaving him wondering how he's going to get her to come home. There are several great scenes with her learning how to do things an ordinary woman of the time would do. Her driving lesson with Peg was fun, but also gave a glimpse of some trouble that is brewing in Spellbound Falls. I also loved the scene where she lends a hand as a waitress, taking orders and dealing with an obnoxious customer. Throughout the book her interactions with Titus show that her love for him is just as strong as it ever was but that she needs more from him than she has been getting lately. When Titus starts giving her the type of attention she has been craving from him she starts to have hope that things will be okay. When their boat race encounters supernatural problems the secret she's been keeping from him comes out and she has to deal with the consequences. I loved their trip through the woods and the rekindling of their closeness.
Titus is a man who is used to things going his way. He is stunned when Rana moves out and can't figure out why she has done it. He is determined to win her back and the story is full of his attempts to do so. He knows her very well after forty years together and makes some pretty bold attempts to show his feelings. When those attempts backfire on him he thinks back to when he was first courting her and changes the way he's doing things.. I loved that peek into their past and how it showed so much about who they are. There are also memories of their early marriage and the way that they supported each other as Titus cemented his position as a god and created the world of Atlantis. I really loved the way it showed how much Titus appreciated Rana and the perspective that she brought to their lives. Although he didn't understand why Rana had left I loved the way that he supported her in her desire to try new things and the ways he tried to make things easier for her. I loved her trip up the mountain in her new car and the reason for it (I sense this will be important in a future book) and the way that he helped her get back down the mountain without making a big deal about it. I loved the way he teased her into the boat race and his tactics during the race were fun to see. When the race came to an abrupt end I loved his protectiveness and the way he cared for her. I was really amused by the way he decided to imitate the highlanders he so often grumbles about as they walk their way back to civilization. It is during that trip that he opens up to Rana about the secret he has been keeping from her and his plans for their future. His love and regard for her is shown by this passage:
"I'm explaining that the transfer began that day. It won't be complete until I decide it is."
"And...and you've decided?"
She glared up at him. "What do you mean almost?"
"I'm waiting to hear the opinion of my most valued adviser and confident."
She went back to scowling at the ground. "Who?" she whispered.
He pulled her to a stop and gathered her in his arms again. "That would be my stubborn, opinionated, irreverent, lusty, terrible wife."
Also part of the book is the presence of a group of people who are attempting to bring a new god into existence. The magical people of Spellbound Falls are waiting to see if the new entity will be one of good or evil. I see this being a large part of a future book. There are also some new arrivals to the area - a doctor to work in the new women's clinic, a twelfth century highlander who will be the new police chief (that should be a trip!) and a female escapee from those people trying to raise a new god. There's a funny scene where Carolina goes into labor and the men deal with the idea of being in the labor room. I also love the concurrent scene where Titus lets Mac and the others in on his plans and their reaction to it. I'm really looking forward to the next book.
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