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Posted December 31, 2013
Interesting Mix of Historical Romance and Paranormal Mystery
I received a complimentary copy of this book as a part of a book tour in exchange for a fair and honest review. I rated it 3.5 out of 5 Stars.
A cross mixture of paranormal mystery and historical romance, Sunrise Over Brasov, the third book in the Moldavian Moon series by Stephanie Burkhart, has interesting characters and a solid mystery. Set during the mid-1850’s, after the Gypsy people of Romania had been set free, Ms. Burkhart’s story deals with the rise of a new breed of werewolf, one who can control the change instead of being forced into it by either witchcraft or the moon, and the struggle to determine who will control them. . While I have not read the previous two books in the series, I was able to read this book on its own.
Unaware of her own history, Rosa Getzi has been living at Poiana Brasov and assisting Clement, a werewolf, and Cassandra, a witch, with their studies of the supernatural. When a man breaks into her room at night and demands she accompany him into the woods, she’s reluctant to follow him until he begins to tell her about her past and of how her family has been trying to locate her. While she’s not comfortable trusting a stranger, he seems very familiar to her and his kisses ignite her passions.
Breaking into Poina Brasov to free the woman he loves, Prince Michael Sigmarigen is disheartened when she doesn’t recognize him and doesn’t know her real identity. Determined to reunite her with her family, and improve on their previous relationship, Michael is able to convince Rosa into escaping the castle with him. Rejoining Caroline, his sister in law, and Darius, a Vampire prince, they are able to make their escape. They are also unknowingly being followed by Rickard, a friend of Rosa’s also imprisoned at Poiana Brasov, who has some startling paranormal abilities and who refuses to be left behind.
While Michael and Rosa have to work through the issues of her past, they also find themselves drawn into solving the mystery of how Rickard is able to control his shape shifting abilities; he’s the first werewolf they’ve encountered who is not tied to the moon’s phases. Something that Clement and Cassandra were determined to discover before he escaped with Michael and Rosa. Ms. Burkhart’s world building is very interesting and I liked how she deals with all of the characters who make an appearance.
Will Michael and Rosa be able to forge a true and strong relationship once Rosa’s memories are recovered? Will Rickard be able to help them get rid of the curse that affects their families? You’ll have to read Sunrise Over Brasov to find out. While I was able to read this book by itself, I do recommend that you read the rest of the series to get a better understanding of the history of the characters and the mystery they end up working to resolve. I’m pretty sure I would have enjoyed this more if I had read the previous books first.
Posted August 13, 2013
Reviewed by Scott Albert for Readers' Favorite
Moldavian Moon Book Three: Sunrise Over Brasov is the next installment by the prolific author, Stephanie Burkhart. This author is a member of the Romance Writers of America, a Political Science graduate, a U.S. Army veteran, and an LAPD 911 dispatcher. Her wealth of education and experience as well as her writing ability, which includes publishing a children’s book and other similar short and long fiction, really sets this author and her work apart from the crowd. This 254 page paranormal romance takes off where the previous book ended. Prince Michael Sigmaringen faces challenges that will test his character as well as his love for Rosa. These challenges will force him to take a hard look at himself, his family, and the lupine curse that seems to surround him.
With historic sites like Romania, Carpathia, and Transylvania in the 1800s, the mood and tone of the story is set.
Burkhart does a wonderful job of satisfying her audience with dramatic imagery and emotional detail. Her creative voice lends a historic authenticity which only adds to the dramatic tension of this story. I had a hard time “catching up” as I did not read the earlier stories and came in confused. A small map would also be a good idea for upcoming novels. It was hard to figure out the rules and character motivations.
This is not a stand-alone novel. However, there is something for everyone as Rickard has an ability that Clement wants and Rosa and her magic are the key. Forbidden love finds the witch, Rosa, and Prince Michael in an age-old struggle to be together as family and enemies try to keep them apart. If you love witches, vampires, and werewolves, written in a more classic way, you will love this romantic paranormal novel.
Posted July 19, 2013
Sunrise over Brasov is paranormal romance at its best.
In the story, the feral wolf-human Clement and his witch Cassandra have kidnapped Rosa Getzi together with Rickard, another wolf-human who can control his lupine nature, and have kept them in Clement's castle at Poiana Brasov, with the idea of learning the blood composition of Rickard, as Clement wishes to be able to control his nature like Rickard does by somehow succeeding to get a blood transfusion from Rickard. To do that, Rosa's knowledge and white magic is needed.
The two captives, however, are not harmed and are given daily doses of anise to forget their past, and they both do, so much so that when Prince Michael Sigmaringen shows up to rescue Rosa, his beloved, Rosa does not recall who he is. The prince, aided by his sister-in-law Caroline and the vampire prince Darius, manages to rescue Rosa and Rickard. The group is chased by Clement, but they escape with little bloodshed and arrive at the vampire fortress, but before they can leave the vampire fortress, Clement plans an attack to get Rosa and Rickard back.
It is up to the reader to find out the answers to these questions: Will Clement succeed or find his demise? Will Rosa and Rickard regain their memories, and if they do, to what degree? Will Rosa and Michael Sigmaringen find happiness, despite the bad feelings between their families (as established in the earlier books in the series)?
Although Sunrise over Brasov is the third book in the Moldavian Moon series, it stands convincingly on its own as a separate and complete story apart from the other books in the series. The earlier books serve as this story's historical background, which the author refers to and explains in detail wherever the story necessitates it, so that a reader can understand and enjoy the plot in its entirety.
This is a breath of fresh air because it is quite different from the many other books that come in series written by other authors, where the ending of a book stands as if unfinished and leaves the reader disappointed.
I have read the earlier books in Moldavian Moon series, and as a credit to the skill of this author, each book stands alone, and for every book, the romance or any other give and take occurs in between different primary and secondary characters.
This author's mastery also shows itself in the perfect choices of words in descriptions, making the reader visualize the settings well. Moreover, the descriptions are skillfully inserted into the action, without long expository sections.
Even though this is a mixed genre book, each character is unique and well developed, and suspense and tension is always there in one form or another until the end.