Rating: 4.25 stars
Buy Link: Amazon | All Romance
Warlock Quinn Fairmont found lust and love with the not-quite human Cade Mairston. Quinn will do anything to protect Cade and what they have together. When a witch’s coven finds a dangerous and rare Book of Shadows, Quinn wants it. He wants it for his collection, but also to glean any information about the spells and to assist with the hunt for the Witchfinder. The book in question is being guarded by Valensia, the head of the witches, and also Quinn’s former lover, who has still not gotten over Quinn moving on.
The Book of Shadows is only one of Quinn’s issues as there is an uprising in the Warlock Council, challenging to overthrow Quinn as Grand Master. From every angle there is someone looking to harm Quinn as well as Cade. Cade, who still has to come to terms with his Fey side. Cade, who knows virtually nothing about the water sprites that Quinn must blindly rely on to save the man he loves.
Double Alchemy: Climax is the follow up novel to Double Alchemy. The book picks up shortly after the first and Quinn and Cade are happily living and loving together. It is great to catch up with Quinn and Cade again as their attraction is still magical. They are building a life together, but are still able to maintain their own identities. Quinn, however, is still holding back all kinds of secrets from Cade. Quinn still has the weight of the Warlock world on his shoulders, but Cade is his home, his lifeline, his love who brings him peace. Cade is slowly learning that Quinn has to take on all kinds of roles as Grand Master and sometimes the lines of morality are blurred. Cade definitely knows how to handle Quinn in whatever mood Quinn may be in and it’s the pull between the two of them that really makes the story.
The first order of business is finding the Witchfinder General who disappeared in the first novel. This involves Quinn visiting his feisty former lover, Valensia. Valensia is part Fey and she enhances this side of herself to continually try to attract Quinn. Quinn has to constantly fortify himself against the Fey attraction, which creates some challenges for him and Cade. Valensia eventually becomes an ally, which further causes discord among some of the Warlock Council who still seek to overthrow Quinn.
When the confrontation with the Witchfinder General arrives, the culmination sort of sneaks up on us. Quinn and his most powerful council surround the General with magic that is not much more than appropriately timed chants and energy bursts. For such unique characters, their magical abilities were not as dynamic.
The second half of the book shifts and there is finally a little more focus on Cade and his Fey side. I was waiting for more on this since the first book and it is not mentioned really until the second half of Climax. It still is a matter of telling us more than showing us as Cade says he and Quinn have found out a little more about his abilities, but we are not told what they found out. It all comes into play when a tragic event forces Quinn to rely on the water sprites to possibly save Cade when Quinn is unable to. This was a great scene with Quinn completely coming apart as we truly see how much Cade means to him and how Quinn has really come to depend on Cade to center him and love him. But, when Cade finally makes direct contact with the water sprites, we are told about it after the fact in a more general way. I was really missing out on more of this dynamic from the story.
Taliesin, Quinn’s Withinnier, takes a smaller role in this book. He is a unique character and there was not a lot of the story devoted to him. There was a time when he was out of touch with Quinn and the reasoning finally given was he was dealing with issues in his time period. The story line is not developed further than that and it is unclear why that was brought in at all. Also, once again, those closest to Quinn are one step ahead of him, even tricking him, as we learn Taliesin performed a one time memory swipe on Quinn. As with the first book, I had a hard time understanding why Quinn remained one step behind at times.
The character of Cooper did not seem to fit into the rest of the story. I get he was there to keep a connection to the modern world and to cause jealousy between Quinn and Cade, but his character was very flat and was seemingly just inserted in. He showed up quickly, tried to touch Cade whenever he could, and then just as quickly he was gone.
Having thoroughly enjoyed the first book, I really did enjoy catching up with Quinn and Cade again, although this book did not enchant me as much as the first one. It’s the relationship and dynamics between Quinn and Cade that interests me the most and this book was heavily plot driven. They still do have time to plan their future and their relationship is strong and solid with the air of magical romance still visible by the end. If you enjoyed Double Alchemy, then you will certainly want to catch up with Quinn and Cade again in Climax.