Merchant Master by Alvania Scarborough

April 14th, 2015 kimbacaffeinate Review 57 Comments

14th Apr
Merchant Master by Alvania Scarborough
Merchant Master
by Alvania Scarborough
Published by: Self-published
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Suspense
Source: Author
Purchase: Amazon
Goodreads
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

They hold dangerous secrets… only trust holds the key. The healer. Cheyna’s empathic, healing talent makes her the perfect person to return to her birth world and recover an ancient artifact for her adoptive people. It was meant to be a simple mission, only everything goes wrong when a dangerously imposing, battle-scarred warrior kidnaps her.  The merchant master. Bastard-born Drakthe Fachion has an opportunity to found his own house and erase the stigma of his birth. All he has to do is reopen the Agora trade route. Unfortunately, he must enter a trade marriage with a healer to gain access. If that means kidnapping a complicated, stubborn woman and forcing her into an agreement, so be it.  The Agora Stronghold. A strange place where nothing is as it seems. As they make the treacherous journey, wariness is no match for the passion that slips past their defenses. But an unseen presence stalks them. Drakthe and Cheyna have no idea a psychic trap has been laid or that a deadly, generations-old secret that threatens two worlds is about to be unleashed.

This is the second book I have read by Alvania Scarborough and I love her writing style. Merchant Master is the first book in the Lost Colony series and once again, I found myself drawn into the world, the banter filled romance and suspenseful plot. This paranormal suspense with its fantasy vibe reminded me of Jayne Anne Krentz’s Arcane Society novels and her Harmony series writing as Jayne Castle. I adore discovering new authors whose work pushes limits and heightens my experience.

Five Caffeinated Reasons to snuggle up and devour the Merchant Master

  • The world: Alvania Scarborough creates a fascinating world with healers, psi energy, merchant traders, unusual wildlife and harsh environments. There are houses ruling this world as well as the social class. Which brings about arranged marriages, power plays, politics and more. Did you notice I said world? Yep this takes place on another world wrapping this paranormal romance in fantasy. We travel brutal deserts, visit villages and go deep into the unwelcoming jungle. It was brilliant.
  • The characters: Cheyna is a healer, raised by her adoptive parents off planet. She is given a mission and tasked to return to her birth world to recover an ancient artifact. I love quests and the whole Indian Jones vibe. Cheyna is spunky and resourceful. Things end up a disaster on her first day but she quickly recovers and begins a journey to meet the man arranged to wed her in a trade-marriage (a temporary marriage to helps both houses). In route, she is kidnapped and then the fun begins. Drakthe Fachion our kidnapper is bastard born and determined. He is well known as a merchant master for more than just his trading skills. He desperately wants his own house and if he can reopen, the Agora trade route he will be granted one. To do so he needs a healer as a trade-wife and Cheyna will do. Ooo, this man has no idea what he is getting into! Cheyna is not some meek woman and the negations, banter and hilarious conversations between them have sparks flying. I love these types of arrangement tropes. We all know how the best-laid plans never really go as planned.
  • The plot: Danger and a perilous journey begin as these two partner up. As they do they learn about the other and face down danger from the treacherous terrain and others. I loved watching their relationship develop, seeing them being to trust and discovering what they seek may not be exactly what they need. They find themselves unwittingly at the center of an old-secret and dispute for untapped power. Scarborough unraveled all of this for the reader in such a way that I was hooked. The story was tight and believable.  I was able to slip completely into this world. We get a solid, satisfying ending to this first story and I am looking forward to going back.
  • Genre blending: The paranormal elements were cool from Cheyna’s empathic, healing talent to rare stones that hold energy. Drakthe has an unusual talent but I will let you discover those secrets for yourself. The fantasy elements from the creative landscapes to other planets unfurled beautifully and the author gave us a panoramic view. If you like Jayne Anne Krentz’s Arcane Society novels and Harmony series you will thoroughly enjoy the elements in this novel. Scarborough weaves in twists, turns and revelations about these paranormal elements and characters.
  • The romance was delicious and I connected to both characters. Darkthe could be extremely focused on his quest and goals and Cheyna while equally focused on hers gave him balance. She brings humor, makes him think beyond his beliefs and the two create this wicked chemistry that made me giddy. The author brings some heat but this falls safely in the mid to mild-heat range. Her emphases are more on their emotions and their growing attraction. The way she weaves in playful humor was delicious and had me giggling aloud.

If you haven’t already guessed I loved Merchant Master. I love this genre-bending world and cannot wait for more Lost Colony books.

 

*Disclosure: I am working as a virtual assistant for this author, but it in no way influenced my review. If you are interested in reviewing Merchant Master, please see my Bloggers Wanted located in the menu bar to fill out form or shoot me an email.

About Alvania Scarborough

Alvania lives in the Rocky Mountains with the menagerie of pets that own her. She uses her love of the Old West and the possibilities of space to write stories about strong, sexy men and the women who are their equals.

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat... Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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57 Responses to “Merchant Master by Alvania Scarborough”

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Sweet, enjoy I really liked the world and quest..plus the banter between them

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Thanks Ro, I love when I stumble upon these type of books since it offers such a different read.

  1. Nick

    I really like the sound of the setting in this book, Kim and I’m fascinated by books that blend genres. That can either turn out to be epic, or it can become a failure. And it seems like with this book, it was the former. I love that the characters partner up too and the romance does sound delicious! You make a strong case for the book, so I’ll look it up! 🙂
    Lovely review!
    Nick recently posted…Review : Unrequited by Jen FrederickMy Profile

  2. Rosa

    Haven’t heard about this book before. I’m on a reading slump right now, so I need inspiration and this book seems like a great read. I may give it a try. Thanks for this lovely review!
    Rosa recently posted…Why do cats purr?My Profile

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Right, I read her first book and she blended genres and in this one I finally realized why I loved her writing so much.

  3. Ramona

    This author is new to me, Kimba, and she sounds awesome, so thanks for this review. I like that she created a new world, which comes with its own mythology. The fact that you connected with both characters is another reason to add this to my list. Another brilliant review 🙂
    Ramona recently posted…Zen Monday: Into The GardenMy Profile

  4. Tracy Terry

    Alas I’m put off any books that feature bare chested men on the cover so alas I’ll be giving this one a miss. Glad to hear you enjoyed it though, I know my sister-in-law is a big fan of this author.
    Tracy Terry recently posted…KEEP THE ENDS LOOSE.My Profile

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh no, I could cover him with a tunic. hehe. It is a shame because this isn’t smutty and has such an amazing storyline.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Thanks Heidi, i do too. Between the banter, world and fantasy elements I was smiling

    • kimbacaffeinate

      The world was fairly fleshed out, and we travel a very diverse landscape.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Agreed and I love them, so it was fun discovering an author who does it so well

    • kimbacaffeinate

      A lot of folks are saying that Michelle. I am glad I got you to take a closer look

  5. Lorna

    I can’t begin to tell you how good this sounds! Although I am not usually that fond of jungle settings. I don’t read Krentz’s books, but you say this is similar to her style? I think I will download a sample and see(I do that a lot)Thanks for a great review 🙂
    Lorna recently posted…Review: Dark Instincts by Suzanne WrightMy Profile

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