Resenting the Hero
by Moira J. Moore
Review by Cathy Green
Ace Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 0441013880
Date: 28 February, 2006 List Price $7.50 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Unfortunately, rather than one of the quieter Sources, Mallorough is picked by Lord Shintaro Karish, a noble with an extremely flamboyant and rakish reputation. She is not thrilled but resolves to make the best of it, although she is not entirely successful at hiding her resentment at being paired with Karish. There are also some class issues involved, as Mallorough's family are middle class merchants and Karish's family are very prominent nobles. The pair are assigned to High Scape, a city so prone to disasters that seven bonded Pairs are assigned to it. So off they go to High Scape bickering all the way much like Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice. Of course, neither realizes how each is perceived by the other and much misunderstanding occurs as a result.
Once they get to High Scape, disaster strikes even more often than usual. Both Karish and Mallorough sense that the disasters may not be entirely natural and that some malevolent force may be behind them. However, before they can do anything about it, all the bonded Pairs save for themselves are struck down while fighting a disaster that required all seven Pairs to fight it at once. Most of the Pairs die outright, with only Mallorough and Karish left standing. It turns out Karish is no ordinary Source and is able to bring the other surviving Pair out of their coma, a fact he wants to keep secret.
Complicating matters even more, Karish's brother dies without a direct heir and Karish may have to accept the Dukedom. Karish is not happy about this and neither is Mallorough, since she will have to go with him due to the bonding. Karish being the heir apparent also results in much palace intrigue and he is attacked and eventually kidnapped, leaving Mallorough at loose ends. Not being happy with the progress of the local constabulary, she decides to set off to find him herself. At this point the already fast paced plot thickens and the various threads come together in a satisfying way. I won't say more for fear of giving away the ending, other than I recommend the book.