Today I am excited to share the fourth book in the Transplanted Tales series, EVER AFTER by Kate SeRine. It’s the 10-Year Anniversary of the Transplanted Tale series. Kensington and the author are celebrating with new covers, blog tours and giveaways. Today I will share my original review. Be sure to enter the giveaway before grabbing your copy!
A beautiful Robin Hood reconnects with her love Little John after transporting to the real world in this “paranormal romance filled with suspense” (SmexyBooks).
For centuries, Gideon Montrose has mourned the loss of his true love. Throwing himself into his work, he has served the King of Fairies without question—and, often, without mercy. So when the King orders him to apprehend a notorious thief, Gideon obeys. But this time, Gideon is on for a shock when he finally gets his hands on the beautiful culprit.
Arabella Locksley is none other than the spirited, unpredictable woman he knew back in Make Believe. As Robin Hood, Arabella stole from the rich and gave to the poor with Gideon—then known as Little John—by her side.
Believing that she had fallen to her death five hundred years ago, Gideon naturally has some questions. But Arabella has secrets she must keep even from him. Now Gideon faces an impossible choice: he must either betray the woman he once loved, or the king he’s bound to serve.
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*originally posted August 12, 2014
Each time I open up a new Transplanted Tale from Kate SeRine, I know I am in for a treat and Ever After was delightful and suspenseful. From the King of Fairies to Merlin, it was enchanting. We met Gideon Montrose in Along Came a Spider, and I like many wished for his story. SeRine gave him an excellent story and introduced Arabella Locksley “Robin Hood” What? You thought Robin Hood was a man?
Coffee Dates with Ever After:
First Date: Gideon Montrose serves the King of Fairies, and he is ordered to hunt down a thief who is stealing fairy dust. SeRine shares his back history and the loss of the woman he loved. Once again, I feel myself slipping into another Transplanted Tale. Someone is stealing fairy dust & King Arthur’s artifacts in the Here and Now. My spidey senses tingled and sure enough; our thief is Arabella Locksley, the love of Gideon’s life and Robin Hood of Make Believe. I love second chance romances don’t you?
Second date: Anger, lust, love, and fear are the emotions we encounter as they two entwine. I felt their connection and loved that Gideon heard her side of the story, despite feeling betrayed. This is second chance romance, and I am not sure everyone will connect, but I swallowed the pill and believed! They travel to see Merlin and learn more about who is stealing the artifacts and fairy dust. Robin is not innocent, but there is a lot she is holding back. Wait!- If she is the thief, will he turn her over to his king? We get a couple of hot, almost moments, but these two keep getting interrupted. Gideon has one week to turn over the thief and right now Arabella is his only suspect. Eeep!
Third date: Secrets, deception, lost artifacts and betrayal notch up the suspense. Our couple final reignites the old flame and ooh-la-la SeRine brings the heat. Robin Hood stole from the rich to give to the poor, and nothing has changed; someone else is involved, but who? With the aid of his friends, the Queens’ mirror, and Merlin himself, they need to solve the crime before the king demands justice. I loved seeing Trish, Nick, Nate, Lavender, Red and Seth again. Ooo, this last date was intense with battles, action, and one of our characters is in great peril. Will they get their happily ever after or will fate turn ugly? What? You thought I would tell you how my date ended? Nope, not even for chocolate truffles.
Ever After was a fun edition to the Transplant series, and I enjoyed the ride. While each of the books will work as standalone, you will miss out on some serious snark, romance, intense cases and Tale mischief. I highly recommend reading them in order!
Transplanted Tales Series
Better Watch Out (coming 2023)
Read an Excerpt
Excerpt from Ever After (Transplanted Tales #4)
“This was a mistake.”
“Well, I guess that’s the theme of our relationship,” I mumbled. “And I made the biggest mistake of all, believin’ y’ever cared for me.”
The sting of her open palm connecting with my cheek caught me off guard.
“Say what you want about the mistakes I’ve made,” she raged, her cheeks growing red with indignation. “There’s certainly no shortage of them. But don’t you ever question how much I loved you! By doing so you insult us both.”
I stared at her, literally struck mute.
When I didn’t speak, she swallowed a sob and turned away. “I have to go,” she called over her shoulder. “I’ve already stayed too long.” Her hurried steps carried her a few yards before I blew out a harsh sigh and let fly a stream of juicy curses, knowing I was a glutton for punishment even as I went after her.
“Arabella! Wait!” I grabbed her arm, bringing her to a stop but releasing her when the wounded look in her eyes cut me to the core. I put my hands on my hips, staring at my feet as I debated what to say, not willing to look her in the face, afraid that if I met the eyes I adored, I’d lose myself in them.
I’d never stopped loving her, had never stopped thinking about her. As ridiculous as it seemed, some part of me had always held out hope that she’d somehow miraculously return. And here she was, right before me. She said she didn’t know what had happened to her, what had kept her away . . . And I wanted to believe it. My long-broken heart whispered bitter words, telling me to walk away and never look back, that that part of my life was over.
But it was a lie. That part of my life would never be over. She’d filled my heart in a way no woman ever had or would again. And I wasn’t about to piss on that by turning her away when she clearly needed me.
“What trouble are y’in?” I asked, forcing my voice to be gentle.
“It’s my concern,” she said with a sniff, making me feel like an irredeemable jackass for bringing her to tears. “I didn’t come here to beg you to help me or to drag you into my mess. I just . . . I just wanted to see you again. I dream of you, of us, every night, Gideon. When I close my eyes, your face is all I see. I know you don’t believe me, but I did love you—I still do. I always will.”
I felt my chest tighten at her words, wanting so desperately to believe her. I risked raising my gaze to hers, gauging her sincerity. To my surprise, she actually seemed to be telling the truth.
Damn me to hell, but I was gonna fall for her all over again. Even though I was furious and hurting and knew with certainty that I was bound for heartache again, I was powerless to stop it. But she didn’t have to know that. And I’d make sure she didn’t. I’d managed to keep my emotions in check all these years, had learned to maintain the stoic silence that was required of my servitude to the king. I never imagined I’d need those skills to guard my heart. And when she left again—as she’d already admitted she would—I’d at least be able to maintain my dignity.
In the meantime, I couldn’t abandon her now any more than I could the day we’d met. What nobility remained a part of me forbade it. I’d be a friend to her. Just a friend. I owed it to what we’d once shared to at least try to accept that whatever had happened to her, whatever mysterious force had kept her from coming to me, she was here now. And she needed my help.
I smoothed my hand down her arm, drawing her closer, shoving aside all my feelings of anger and betrayal to focus on quieting the fear I saw in her eyes, on being the friend she needed me to be at this moment. “Tell me what’s happened to you, lass. Let me help you. I’ll talk to my king. I’ll do whatever I can. You know I will. Just tell me what you’ve done.”
The look she gave me was agonized, torn. Finally, she nodded and slipped her hand into mine, little sparks of desire firing off in my blood at the touch of her skin. “Let me show you.”
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I enjoyed this so much and am looking forward to Better Watch Out ! Any idea when in 2023 it’s coming? I’m so glad to have found this series through the rerelease!
It’s a holiday one, so October,
A Robin Hood retelling is a bit unexpected but sounds like such an entertaining read. I haven’t heard of this series but it looks like one I must investigate.
Eventually, I will get to this series. They’ve each sounded great when I see them posted about.
I’ve heard a lot about this series. I need to try it someday.