Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Pagan Stone

The Pagan Stone
By Nora Roberts (Author's Website)
Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
Published on December 2008
(Mass paperback edition)
ISBN-13: 978-0-515-14466-6
322 pages

Chapter One, First Paragraph: The dream woke him at dawn, and that was a pisser. From experience, Gage knew it would be useless to try to find sleep again with images of blurning blood in his brain. The closer it got to July, the closer it got to the Seven, the more vivid and vicious the dreams. He'd rather be awake and doing than struggling with nightmares.

In the first book of The Sign of Seven Trilogy, evil has befallen Hawkins Hollow. All hell breaks loose every seven years, on the seventh day of the seventh month. Why? Because three young boys–Caleb, Fox, and Gage–who share the same birth dates and time decides to perform a certain ritual at the Pagan Stone on their tenth birthday. They cut their wrist, mixed their blood and made an oath; thus, unleashing something evil, as well as good. Each of the boys are given certain powers. Circumstances also bring three women–Quinn, Layla, and Cybil–together to Hawkins Hollow. Their births, too, have some connection with what happened at Hawkins and the each of the woman possesses skills that matches the men. Together they form an important team, with absolute determination to end the recurring problem once and for all.

The first book romantically links Caleb and Quinn and in the second, Fox and Layla. While the first book gives an introduction of what happened hundreds of years ago, the second book gets the ball rolling: the nightmare is about to begin. The focus is on Fox O’Dell, a lawyer with the ability to read minds. Coincidentally, Layla shares the same ability. Together, Fox and Layla are to use their ability to connect and fight evil, but it is not that easy because Fox and Layla set barriers for themselves.

Now, the third book is my favourite. This time, it is Gage Turner and Cybil Kinski's highlight. Both are able to 'see' and both saw lots of visions. And they are frightening ones. Once again, I enjoy the signature Nora Roberts dialogues and I like seeing these two kick each other's backside for the fun of it. Things are getting intense as evil gets stronger. Because this is the third book and the concluding one, I must not reveal too much of the story. What does it take to end the horrible recurring episode once and for all?

Love, family, friendship, teamwork, faith: All are essential ingredients in this installment. For fans of Nora Roberts, you know how it is. Good plot; great romance. Warning, though, there are tarot readings involved in the story and as usual getting-into-each-other's-pants-before-marriage, so that might put off readers who are averse to these. Having said that (although I personally disagree with these actions), such relationships in her books always end up with great outcome. Go figure.

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