She's No Faerie Princess
I have a soft spot for fairy tales. I guess I’ve been a sucker for them since I was a kid being tucked in at night with a couple of Grimm’s classics for bedtime fare. So, combining fairy tales and steamy romance is always a winner in my book.
And, as the title implies, She’s No Faerie Princess is a fairy tale. A grown-up fairy tale, but, nonetheless, a story of mystery, magic, love, and lust. And, let’s face it, even those tamer Disney versions of fairy tales with all the good bits written out still have plenty of love. The original fairy tales, the really good ones anyway, were positively drenched in unrequited love, mad passion, and star-crossed couples.
Warren’s story begins simply enough. Princess Fiona of the Seelie (aka really high-class fairies) decides that life at court of her aunt, Queen Mab, is just too much for her and decides to take a vacation. The exotic locale that Princess Fi decides on is none other than New York City. And, like any runaway princess, she dons her maid’s finery (at least a Goth version of it) and heads off to the Big Apple for a douse of raucous rock, nightlife, and maybe a little clandestine romance. The only problem is that the minute the Princess steps into the “real world” she’s beset by a demon. Fiona summons the last few drops of magic she has to slow the beast, but she knows that its only a matter of time before it has her in its slavering claws. Lucky for Fiona that a super-hot werewolf is patrolling Central Park and this furry knight-errant is more than willing to save a Princess.
It turns out that the werewolf, Tobias Walker of the Silverback Clan, has been ordered along with his other pack members to keep the city safe. Humans and the Others (shapeshifters, vampires, and a miscellaneous mix of magic users including Fiona’s dashing, but deadly Uncle) are negotiating a truce. The wolves figure that making sure the city is safe for regular folks is just good policy while negotiations are underway. And, Tobias sees the presence of the demon as an attempt to stall or even derail the peace talks completely. After all, no one has seen an unbound demon on earth in a very long time and in Faerie not since the Great War. Lucky for Tobias and his clan, the Seelie are natural born demon-hunters. Too bad poor Fiona has never seen a demon — still she’s sure she’ll be able to figure out all the important bits. And, it’s not like she really has a choice anyway. The veil that divides the mortal and the fae has been shut and Fiona has no way home, unless, of course, she and Tobias can find out who shut the door and summoned a few demons for good measure. But, can a faerie princess and werewolf on the prowl find out who is behind the threat before the fragile peace between humans and everyone else is destroyed…or before someone is killed? And, can they keep their paws off each other while they’re doing it?
She’s No Faerie Princess certainly delivers in the romance and sultry heat departments. Fiona and Tobias’ attraction is undeniably hot and filled with great tension. Although Fiona can be a little flighty at times and is a complete fashionista (and, hey, what princess isn’t?), she has a vulnerable side that softens her vanity and superiority. Tobias can be domineering and a little hard-edged, but its forgivable since he is so devoted to Fiona and his family. Over all this is a strong read, a witty romantic fantasy with just a bit of darkness.
My only complaint, really, is the convenient wrap-up of Fiona and Tobias’ different age spans even though Tobias’ mortality added a good deal of depth and a wistful side to their romance. This quibble aside, this is a well-told tale with more than enough romance, mystery, skin and sin. If you’re looking for a story to heat up those long, cold winter nights — you’ve found it. Good work, Ms. Warren!