Reviewed by Marieke
TITLE: Stealing Dragon’s Heart
SERIES: A Lifting The Veil Story
AUTHOR: Susan Laine
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 240 pages
RELEASE DATE: March 2nd 2016
Notorious master thief Finn Grayson is hired to break into a high-class skyscraper in New Shanghai and steal a priceless artifact known as the Shard. But someone’s gotten to the Shard first—and the penthouse suite turns out to be a dragon’s lair.
Cameron Feilong, Guardian of the Earth Shard, is ancient enough to realize that he and his unbidden guest are being used like puppets on a string. Forming a shaky alliance is the only way for them to survive and to stop their ruthless foes.
Unfortunately, Finn and Cam seem to be forever one step behind. To learn more about their clandestine enemy, they travel together from walled Asian cities, barren tundras, and underwater temples to secret paranormal clubs and legendary elvish cities rising high in the trees or buried deep under glaciers. Finn and Cam must learn to trust each other before it’s too late, for bringing together the five Elemental Shards will spell the end of the world.
Finn is a master thief who’s hired to steal a shard of stone from a rich (good looking) man in New Shanghai. After the Veil has lifted everything has changed, including Asia. Finn is reluctant to go there after an incident that made him kind of a person non grata in New Shanghai. But he takes the job when they offer an ungodly amount of money.
When he successfully enters the penthouse, he’s mesmerized by all the treasures that are displayed there, until a spell makes him dance a jig like a string puppet. The rich man he tried to rob turns out to be a dragon shifter. Finn has been set up because the shard was stolen while the dragon was distracted by Finn and then he’s almost framed for murder, Finn’s murder. The true thief obviously hoped that the dragon would kill him.
Cameron is not just a dragon; he’s also a guardian for one of the elemental shards. There are five shards and someone is after them. Finn and Cameron form an alliance to find out who and get all the shards back, but it turns out to be very tricky. During the multiple trials and adventures, the two men bond and fall in love.
I’ve read every single book in this series so far and loved every one of them. This one is very different than the others though. First of all it’s longer, and secondly it’s way more complicated. But what strikes me as different the most is the way the story is set up. In Asia, with a LOT of Asian philosophy, language and history (either fantasy or real) it makes for an interesting read. But after a while I wished the author would’ve given us a little less background information and some more feelings. Not that there is a lack of emotions, I just happen to like as much of them as possible.
An opinion is very personal, but I’m going to try and be both opinionated as well as objective about this story. My opinion first; I loved the characters, the setting, the world-building and emotions. What I didn’t ‘love’ is how much poetry, proverbs, history and ‘zen sayings’ of Dalai Lama like people there were. It’s my personal preference that a book flows more, that the story continues rather than keeps getting interrupted by these bits of ‘information.’ Besides, Chinese is not a language I understand.
However, when I’m being objective I can see how amazingly the author has worked these sayings into the story. It gives it more of a classy feel, a higher standard. It’s great if you want to read something that’s not all fluff. (I happen to like fluff, sue me!) So yes, it’s a wonderful story, full of adventure and mystery, of angst and excitement. I have absolutely no regrets reading this, and I will keep reading this series.