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Dance of the Gods: Book Two of the Circle Trilogy    by Nora Roberts order for
Dance of the Gods
by Nora Roberts
Order:  USA  Can
Jove, 2006 (2006)
Hardcover, Paperback, Audio, CD
* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

United in their life and death quest to defeat vampire queen Lilith, the Circle of Six is once again pushed to their limits of endurance, both physically and emotionally. None more than Blair Murphy, the hereditary vampire slayer whose deadly vocation precludes forming lasting relationships. She's well aware that any sort of attachments could prove deadly for both parties. Even so, confirmed loner Blair can't deny her growing attraction to Geallian warrior and shape shifter, Larkin. Determined to do everything in her power to ignore the hold the handsome and easy going man is beginning to establish on her heart, Blair decides the only solution is to throw herself even more fully into her training - and that of her fellow warriors.

The rest of her time she spends eradicating marauding vampires, as well as devising and mounting reconnaissance missions into Lilith's vast underground lair in an attempt to gauge the strength of her forces - and perhaps even deal the vampire queen a lethal blow before the time prophesied for their upcoming battle. But when Larkin almost loses his life carrying out a solo scouting mission, she finally understands that Morrigan's prophesy encompasses much more than just the coming together of six singularly skilled warriors. When the time comes for the Six to pass through the stone circle and step back in time to the enchanted land of Geall, Blair and Larkin vow that they will face their final battle as one - and live or die together.

Nora Roberts has crafted a fine second installment in Dance of the Gods as she brings her six protagonists ever closer to their ultimate quest. Blair often comes across as something of a carbon copy of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in her mindset, actions and tactical conversations. But her interaction and inevitable attraction to Larkin is vintage Roberts, and often filled with humour as the laid back and charming shape shifter slowly and adroitly convinces the serious and dedicated vampire slayer how empty and dark her life would be without someone to love, and to seize the moment - to her very last breath. Roberts also shines in her portrayal of megalomaniac Lilith and her provocative and often disturbing relationship with her lover, Lora - and her made son, Davey, whose lust for blood and human carnage already surpasses that of his mother.

Dance of the Gods is a gritty and chilling treat, a nicely balanced paranormal romance, and also a wonderful lead-in to the soon-to-be-released final installment, Valley of Silence.

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