Title: The Goblin King
Author: Shona Husk
Release Date: October 1st, 2011
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Cursed by a Druid millennia ago, Roan lives a bleak existence in the Shadowlands, desperately trying to retain his soul and not succumb to the goblin horde. When a beautiful human summons him to grant a wish, he sees a glimmer of hope. But will she ever agree to be his queen?
Summary from Goodreads.com
My Review: I have read a lot of paranormal romance since starting my blog; it is actually a genre I did not know about until I became a blogger. How I did not know about this amazing genre I have no idea, but I am loving it now and making up for lost time, hehe! I have read about vampires, werewolves, shifters and even unicorns, but I have never read a story about a Goblin King as the hero. The only Goblin King I know of is Jareth, from The Labyrinth and he was not exactly the nicest guy, but I still loved him anyway. You remind me of the babe, what babe? The babe with the power, what power? Okay, I am stopping, but that song is in my head now, lol. Needless to say, the idea that a Goblin King could be a redeemable character is what lead to my decision to want to read this book.
While reading, I enjoyed the magical world that Shona created for us, but the part of the story that resonated with me the most was the character development with both Roan and Eliza. He is a man that was cursed thousands of years ago and living in a limbo state. He is not a full man anymore, but has not given into the goblin curse either, which leaves him unsure of himself and in a state of constant depression. The other factor that adds to his guilty conscience is the other men that were cursed with him. When Roan was cursed, a few of his men stood with him and fell into the Shadowlands too. One by one they have all given into the goblin mentality and turned. The only one left with Roan is Dai, and they are both fading fast. Roan hates that he has not been able to help any of them and break the curse. When we first meet him in this book, he has basically given up and is counting down the days until he succumbs and becomes a goblin himself. The only bright light in his world is Eliza. Roan is summoned to her one night and quickly realizes that this is not the first time he met her. Their past encounter comes rushing back to him and she gives him the one thing her craves, hope. Eliza is pivotal to the changes that take place with Roan, she fights him at first, but soon realizes that she does not want him to give into the curse. They come to rely on each other and both come out stronger. Roan ignites a fire in Eliza that fuels her to take a hard look at her life and realize she is not happy with what she sees. Eliza recognizes her inner strength and takes control of her life again. While Roan, allows hope to seep into his heart and desires life again, instead of his own demise.
They were not too many secondary characters in The Goblin King, but I did love Dai. He is very close to becoming a goblin, but his sarcastic nature is what endeared him to me. He also has a love of books and a large collection that he has acquired over the years he has spent in the Shadowland. One that he mentions by name that made me laugh was Harry Potter. That’s right, he is on the last book and does not want to turn before he finds out the fate of Harry. Didn’t see that coming, but it was another fun character trait that made me like Dai even more. I am hoping we are going to see more from him in future books and see where his story has led him.
At times when reading paranormal romance, the physical relationship can come on so strong that it feels rushed and wrong. In The Goblin King, the relationship between Roan and Eliza felt sincere and was really sweet. They do have a past that helped connect them on more than just a physical level and I appreciated that. It does take some time for them to realize that it is not just lust they are feeling, but I felt the connection they had from the beginning. It was hard at first for me to imagine a man on the verge of becoming a goblin being tender, but that is exactly how Roan is with Eliza. She is so precious to him and their love leaped off the page.
The pacing of this book is also very interesting. It starts out a little slower and I was not sure if I was going to be able to stay engaged, but Shona quickly picked up the pace and I was caught off guard with how engrossed I was. The story has a slow build, but those last hundred pages grabbed onto me and would not let me go until I reached the end.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book and Shona’s take on goblin lore. I read on Shona’s webpage that she has two more books coming out in this series and I am eager to see where she takes us next.
FTC: Thank you to the publisher for sending me this ARC to read and review.