Trey McCree had a passionate affair with Sasha Armand in their youth, but at twenty-one, he discovered he was a Belador, an ancient race of warriors with supernatural powers, answering to a Celtic goddess. Once he realized the full implication of his heritage, he knew that to love Sasha could possibly endanger her life which was something he refused to do. Sworn to secrecy by his order, he simply said good-bye and walked out of her life, breaking her heart. He's never stopped loving her though, and every chance he got, he returned to Atlanta to make sure she was safe. Now, he's back in town searching for a magician who is helping the Beladors' sworn enemy, the Kujoo, and it looks like Sasha is looking for this guy too. When Trey and Sasha cross paths again after nine long years, the passion still burns hot between them, and Trey is shocked to find out that Sasha has some supernatural powers of her own. But before they can even entertain the idea of never saying good-bye again, they must first evade a Kujoo warrior and a horde of demons who are out to destroy them both.
Midnight Kiss Goodbye is a prequel novella to the Belador series which Dianna Love has mostly written along with her writing partner, Sherrilyn Kenyon. This first one, however, she wrote alone, and it was a fabulous read. I loved the world building, which to me, was a stand-out in the world of paranormal romance, because it was a little different than anything else I've ever read in the genre. In fact, I had a hard time sub-classifying it within the paranormal romance genre, because the Beladors essentially break the mold of known supernatural beings. They are super heroes of a sort, possessing a variety of powers. Some, such as telepathy and telekineses, seem to be common to all Beladors, while others are unique to the individual. I admit that at first, I was a tad confused when the author threw out names of characters or groups of people with little explanation, but as the story unfolded, everything became much clearer until I felt I had a good grasp on it all by the end. This was a very intriguing start to this new to me series.
I loved Trey and Sasha and felt they were perfectly suited to one another. I'm a huge fan of the reunion romance and this one was an excellently done example of this theme. They had been passionate lovers for a couple of years when they both were quite young, but when Trey discovered his destiny as a Belador and what all that would mean for Sasha as his mate, he couldn't bring himself to expose her to the danger. Instead, he walked away, breaking her heart, but every chance he got he had covertly returned to their hometown of Atlanta to make sure she was OK. I thought this was sweet and showed just how much he still loved her. This time when he returned, he couldn't help seeing her in person, because she'd gotten herself wrapped up in a very dangerous situation that he had been sent in to monitor. Of course, the old feelings resurfaced with a vengeance, leading to a passionate encounter.
Sasha is no slouch herself. She's a private investigator and a witch, but when she and Trey were together before, she didn't really know about or understand her powers. To say that he's surprised to find out she has powers too would be an understatement. Although Sasha initially comes off a little coldly toward Trey, which was understandable, she warms up pretty quickly, deciding she wants to fully experience her feelings for him again, even if it means him leaving her once more. I was so glad that Sasha didn't stay prickly, and most of all, I liked her intuitiveness in figuring out that Trey really did love her but was trying to protect her. Trey was a tender and skilled lover who set the pages on fire with Sasha, leaving me with no doubt that these two deeply loved and were meant for each other. It was a true romance in every sense of the word.
In addition to the Belador mythology, some of the Beladors, including Trey, as well as other supernatural beings, work for a covert government agency known as VIPER, combating supernatural threats. Between the two groups, there are several characters introduced in this novella, who will most likely go on to appear in future books of the series, including the Belador trio of Evalle, Tzader, and Quinn, who I gather are the three main characters. Based on the taste I got of them in this story, I thought they were pretty cool and can't wait to see more of them. The baddies aren't exactly defeated in this story either, just temporarily neutralized, so I look forward to seeing how things develop in that respect too. The final battle between them and the good guys was very well done and easy to envision despite the large number of characters on the canvas at once. Overall, Midnight Kiss Goodbye was a fabulous start to the Belador series that has captivated me and left me eager to continue with it to find out more about this engaging new group of paranormal beings. Midnight Kiss Goodbye can be found in the anthology Dead After Dark.
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