Cassandra Tate was a normal 18-year-old girl, a senior in high school. She was not the type of girl who was big on appearance. Her best friend, Elora, drives a beat up Dodge Neon and is really into the Goth look. She has black hair with red highlights, wears dark makeup and clothing, and has various piercings scattered throughout her body. A very opposite end of the spectrum from Cassie. Elora calls her mother Lisa because she does not like conventional titles. Her thoughts are that "we are all human beings who picked their noses as children in front of people without shame and then in secret as adults." And then one night while Cassie is helping her dad with some files at work, she stumbles upon a private meeting of the light elves. She had no idea elves even existed until then and when one sees a glimpse of her during the meeting, she takes off and locks herself into a room next to the conference room the elves had been in. Thinking she is safe she opens her eyes to Triktapic. Trik is a dark elf who is there to spy on the light elves. He is not just any dark elf, he is the dark elf king, Lorsan's assassin. And he is only about a thousand years old....But it doesn't matter what age they are. They are all very beautiful and handsome. Cassie and Trik immediately have a connection. Cassie doesn't really understand what's going on at first. She is falling all over herself for this elf guy who she knows nothing about. She can't even think straight. Trik knows what has just happened though. He has found his chosen, his lifelong mate, his one true love. The one thing he doesn't understand is why the Forest Lords would give him a human mate. It is very rare, but has happened in the past to at least one other. Explaining the whole thing about being a chosen is very difficult for Trik. Cassie feels like she has fallen head over heels for him, but is hesitant because Trik is a dark elf. He has done many bad things in his long life. Those very dark things he has done are hurtful to Cassie although she tries very hard to understand them. Meanwhile, Elora and her mother have to explain that they have known all along about the existence of elves. Lisa owns a new age type shop and she just happens to know the queen of the light elves, Syndra.
There is a law that all elves obey: "Humans are not to see the Elfin in their true form. They are not to know of our realm. If a human does see an Elfin in their true form their life is forfeit." And Cassie had seen the elves that night. She had seen through Trik's magic because she was his chosen. As a result, she had also seen the light elves. A chosen can see through the magic of the Elfin. After meeting Syndra, the queen and king understand why she had seen through the magic and no longer want to kill her. But there are so many other dangers to her. Trik has a hard time keeping her safe from everyone because she is human. He fears that Lorsan will come after her as well after he tells Cassie he will quit being the king's assassin. During a party thrown by the dark elf king and queen Cassie finds out that Trik had not told Lorsan he was quitting yet and she thinks he never intended to. After the party, she has to remover herself from the human realm to Syndra and Tamsin's palace (Tamsin is the light elf king) for her own safety from the dark elves. Lorsan has one of his elves meet Cassie outside of the light elf kingdom for coffee. The elf disguises herself as Elora and kidnaps Cassie. Lorsan starts studying the long term effects of Rapture, a drink they were making to give to humans at the casinos they own. Turns out it is highly addictive and brings out a whole new side to humans. If it is allowed to stay in the human world it will destroy their world. If Trik doesn't save Cassie, it will destroy him. And if he does not realize his true position, it could destroy the whole Elfin realm. No pressure...
I like this book so much I could read it several times. The bond between Trik and Cassie is crazy and so strong it causes physical pain to them both if they part ways any other way than amicable. We get married and divorced all the time. But the elves have a bond that lasts forever. And to them forever is a long time. Its also a long time to only want one person. That is why it seems so amazing to me. But the bond is not the only thing that makes this story good. Cassie's best friend, Elora, is pretty awesome herself. She has never met her father, and her mother still misses him terribly. And yet, they do just fine together. Elora can be one rough chick at times. She is fiercely protective of her friend. And in the end, she will give up everything to fight for her friend and for what is right.
Trik is an anomaly. It seems like he is pure evil until he meets Cassie. The more their relationship evolves, the more he starts to think about his actions and how they could affect her. She brings light into his very dark soul. Because of Cassie, Trik gets a second chance at the life he had before he was an assassin. The Forest Lords give him his memories back and make sure he gets the chance to make things right again. But the part where you find out who he truly is is a surprise! So read the book to find out more elf secrets!
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*image via Quinn Loftis (Amazon)
*quotes via Quinn Loftis (Elfin)