Her dreams had warned Mishella Kirkland of his coming, and those same dreams had driven her far from home. But the handsome man who claimed she needed protection was hardly the terrifying creature Mishella had conjured up in her anguished night thoughts. In fact, the man who stood before her was dangerously alluring… Raphael Dalton spoke of an unbreakable bond between them, a centuries-old love that had drawn him to protect Mishella from an unspeakable fate. Mishella’s very soul cried out to believe this captivating stranger. But was he truly her guardian, come to watch over her, or was he her greatest threat?
Portrait artist Mishella (Shelly) Kirkland has been having a recurring dream starring a certain mystery man. Now this very man, Raphael Dalton, stands before her, claiming she is in danger. He also reveals to her that they have a centuries-old bond between them -- dating back to the Spanish Inquisition -- that compels him to protect her.
Mishella is unsure whether to trust him or not, but her defenses weaken some when she discovers they both share the power to heal with touch. Raphael theorizes that they both came into it accidentally, the power originating from a demon who hated to see it used for good. Mishella is tempted to use her healing touch to hopefully cure her step-sister, Stacey, who is battling multiple myeloma, but Mishella's prophetic dreams have warned her that using her power will bring evil to her door. Is Raphael this source of evil, or is he honestly there to help?
So let's just get this out of the way: This book was originally published back in 1995. Raphael, the perceived "hero" in this story (though Raye leaves enough doubt about his intentions to keep the reader curious til the end) is HILARIOUSLY 90s. I encourage readers to embrace that -- for sheer entertainment value -- rather than knock it. Half the fun in this story is snickering at the image of this long-haired guy, clad in jean-on-jean (bottoms and jacket) combo complete with white tee, telling Shelly things like "if you need me, you can reach me on my car phone".... I know, brace yourself for the heart flutters! LOL. So yes, incredibly dated by today's standards.... but if you can get around that / have fun with it, there's actually a decently entertaining paranormal style romance here ---- good vs evil, demons vs mortal, all that.
Raye's writing here is consistently compelling, even with the cheeze factor, you want to know how these two turn out. The dialogue is fun, if at times momentarily a tad silly. Plus, every so often the story flicks over to 15th century Spain to give little clues as to the origin of the gift of healing these two share... so we get historical fiction to boot! As far as how the sexy times scenes go, the first one I found pretty laughable (I kept picturing something like a Whitesnake video), even for a paranormal romance (or especially for a paranormal romance?)... I guess we're all a little awkward the first go round LOL... but after that, the few next times were respectably written.