Lothaire is one character who Kresley’s fans had been anxious for to be the star of his own book. He made quite the splash in the last book, Dreams of a Dark Warrior and almost took over the story. Now Lothaire is the only character who not only has been given hard cover status (at $25.00 a pop) but the only title as the character’s name in this entire series. I recommend you go back and read all prior books before this one because you'll understand the world and why Lothaire acts the way he does. You also may end up hating Lothaire for what he does to the heroine, human, Elizabeth “Ellie” Peirce during the course of this story.
Lothaire is a very complicated character. You will either love him or hate him. The majority of the time I couldn’t stand him. He reminded me so much of another egotistical, cruel and harsh immortal man I fondly call Le Douche concerning Karen Marie Moning’s Jerricho Barrons from her immensely popular Fever series. I despise Barrons le Douche with everything I have inside of me. Lothaire for most of this book was channeling Le Douche and Kresley barely made him redeemable by the end. But Kresley is a very sly wench of an author and does something amazing based on her epilogues.
The epilogue to Lothaire is the best one she has written in all her IAD books. She gives us insight on the main character before they become this heartless, and in most cases, ruthless killer. The start of Lothaire shows Lothaire at eight years old and not yet a vampire. Lothaire will become a vampire by the time he’s in his early thirties, but as an eight year old he’s a typical boy who enjoys puzzles and adores his puppy. His mother is a proud queen of the Daci race, another type of vampire, and Lothaire is meant to take over the crown there and become the Daci king. Unfortunately his father is a cruel bastard who throws Lothaire and his mother, Ivana out into the snow.
And based on this small excerpt about the fate of Lothaire’s puppy, I teared up. This is something I never done while reading an epilogue. *shakes fist at Kresley*
“Lothaire’s puppy had followed him, wide-eyed and tripping over its own paws, panicked to catch up with him. While Lothaire stared in disbelief, Stefanovich (Lothaire’s father) had seized the dog by is scruff, snapping its back.”
This description stuck with me throughout the entire novel, showing what horrors Lothaire went through from his mother being raped and killed, to him being buried underground for 600 years, to being left alone and transforming into a vindictive, vengeful killer. Based on Lothaire’s love for his puppy and revenge for this mother, I kept that in back of mine and excused most of his behavior. And since Lothaire is thousands of years old, the way he reacts to things can be excused to a certain point.
Lothaire wants to rule every kingdom he can get his hand on in the Lore, as well as Dacia. In order to do that he needs an immortal bride. Her name is Saroya, a goddess who has been cursed and takes over human bodies. Lothaire meets Saroya, while in the body of the teenage, Ellie Peirce, who is poor white trash and lives with her family in the Appalachian Mountains. From that moment on, Lothaire comes to the conclusion that Saroya is his bride because of the way his body reacts to her. He will free Saroya from her mortal bonds and they’ll rule together. In order to do this, Lothaire must find a special ring that grants wishes. Until then, Lothaire wants Saroya to remain safe and treat the body she’s in as a temple. This is unfortunate for Ellie, who blacks out thanks to Saroya and ends up on death row because Saroya goes on a bloody rampage. Ellie is stuck in prison for five years, hoping she's given the needle because she feels her life has been destroyed. But Lothaire saves her right when she’s about to die by lethal injection and imprisons her in his penthouse in New York City.
Lothaire is cruel to Ellie because he thinks Saroya is his mate and only worthy of him. Ellie doesn’t cower in fear and refuses to be a victim, knowing she has less than a month until Lothaire is able to unlock the solution to breaking Saroya’s curse. Ellie is ready to go down in flames, but wants to enjoy herself before she's snuffed out by Lothaire. She drives him up the wall, by seducing him with her virgin, redneck temptress body Lothaire wants to eat up. Lothaire hasn’t had sex in thousands of years and since he’s mighty fine to look at, Ellie will use him and hopefully make him like her so he will forget Saroya.
It’s a battle of wills between Lothaire and Ellie and soon Lothaire is confused and annoyed because Ellie has broken through his defenses. She questions his reason for things, such as his endgame he’s obsessed in accomplishing. But after he does complete his endgame, he has nothing else to look forward to. And the times Saroya appears, he grows annoyed with her because he’s failing for Ellie. So is Ellie his bride or is Saroya? And if Ellie is his true bride, he loses everything because his oracle and his advisory and sometimes friend, the loopy and close to deranged Valkerie Nix, says he can only be king if he has Saroya as his bride.
Lothaire is an intense, character driven book about a battle of wits between two people who have nothing to lose. Ellie should be rocking a corner and twitching from everything she has endured. But her mind never breaks. She may just be my favorite Kresley heroine up to this point because she takes on Lothaire, the bad ass vampire king of old and is willing to get burned because it feels so good.
Watching Lothaire fall for Ellie is a riot. Lothaire comes across as adorable more than a few times, along with being a douche. The adorable times outweighed his douchey times, especially when he watches Ellie while he’s invisible and expects her to start crying when she can’t escape his penthouse. She doesn’t and Lothaire’s very analytical mind is thrown off center because half the time he can’t figure out what Ellie is going to do next. She keeps him on his toes and the law and order he has created is now in chaos. Lothaire has a bad case of OCD and Ellie is the only medication that can keep him sane.
Readers may have a big issue because Lothaire never really grovels and begs for Ellie’s forgiveness. He’s one stubborn SOB you want to shake. He also acts immature at certain points, sending Ellie his heart (literally) in a box because of something she did that hurt him. Her response is a big awesome FU back to him that will make you stand up and applaud. Ellie has balls and she’s not afraid to use them.
The foreplay and sex here could melt an egg on the hot pavement. Some of the best love scenes Kresley have written are here and they're all very naughty and OMG give me more! I feel as if Lothaire is Kresley's own endgame of sorts. She’s closing more than a few open plot lines while introducing new ones. We gain some big insight on Lothaire and Nix’s relationship that's a very tender one, as well as a big spoiler about Lothaire’s family. When we’re introduced to Lothaire’s brother on the last page, it totes of awesome because he’s one character whose story I’ve been waiting for since the very beginning, including his heroine who has never appeared on any page, but is the most tortured of any characters in this series.
I’ve said I many times before, I bow down at the altar of Kresley Cole. Even though I wanted to smack Lothaire more than a few times and I wished Ellie would have cut off a certain part of his anatomy for being mean to her, I was lost in this book and hungry for more. Lothaire is the ultimate feast for any reader and had me begging for more scraps.
Thank you Kresley for writing another entertaining book that has me anxious for the next one. I even forgive you for the way Lothaire’s puppy was disregarded, while I both cursed you, as well as sighed over everything you’ve written. Lothaire engaged me in ways I never expected. (Gallery)
Final Grade: A-
A few other Lothaire reviews:
A Bookworm's Heaven
Badass Book Reviews
Under the Covers