Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Wicked Circle (Persephone Alcmedi, #5) by Linda Robertson

  • Title: Wicked Circle (Persephone Alcmedi)
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Urban Fantasy
  • Format: Paperback; 432 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; Original edition (December 27, 2011)
  • ISBN-10: 145164695X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451646955
  • Author's Website:

Some are born into it. Some aim to achieve it. Some will kill for it. 
And some will let it go to their head.

Johnny Newman is now one of the most powerful men in the world. A mere weeks ago the binding that held his power in check was broken. He's come into his full power and his full wolf, something he's never had to contend with before. The power's heady and heightens all his senses both human and beast. He's more aware of the link he shares with his pack mates and of the beast he harbors within. For he's not the only who's come into his power, the wolf that lurks inside him has also gotten a boost and it's threatening to take control.  

The Excelsior is the leader of VEIN, the Vampire Executive International Network. It is a position which wields power and was once offered to Menessos, but he refused it. When Heldridge Ellington reveals to the current Excelsior his suspicions that Menessos' Erus Veneficus is the Lustrata and is not being controlled by Menessos, but is, in fact, his Master, the Excelsior sees this as the perfect opportunity to try to acquire the Lustrata as his own personal pet. If he can control her he'll be able to use her power. Now Menessos' position is called into question. He may loose all, but if Seph is made to be the Excelsior's slave, even more will be lost. To get what he wants, however, the Excelsior will unleash three ancient vampires, the shabbubitum, that have been locked away for centuries to force Menessos to tell what he knows.


Wicked Circle is the fourth book in the Persephone Alcmedi series. I highly recommend reading the previous books prior to this one. We learn more about each of the three main characters and their world with each new book.  New powers are discovered, political structures revealed, and secrets are uncovered as the series unfolds.

In the Arcane Circle, Johnny got his powers back. Unfortunately his memories were lost. Magic has a price and yet to be revealed man who requested the binding of his powers sacrificed Johnny's memories to sustain the binding. With all the media attention given to Johnny being declared the Domn Lup someone from his past has finally come forward. We will finally find out about Johnny's past and his real name.

With Johnny coming into his powers and position and Seph still coming into her own the two are being torn in two different directions. Johnny has to deal with his pack and all the political maneuvering associated with being the Domn Lup while Seph is just attempting to figure out where she belongs and how to utilize her powers to their fullest. Additionally, Johnny will do something that will cause Seph to question whether she can truly trust him. Things may never be the same. Will their relationship be able to survive or will circumstances pull them apart? Only time will tell.

Meanwhile, Menessos has made it quite clear he wants Seph and has been slowly worming his way into her life. While Johnny seems to be gone most of the time, Menessos always seems to be around when she needs him. Granted a lot of the reasons she needs his aid can be traced back to him. Seph, however, still doesn't fully trust Menessos. He's a secretive and manipulative man and every time she starts warming to him she learns of something new which keeps her from fully trusting him. I'm not sure if it's just his nature or if there is something we still as yet don't know about him. Could he be the man behind Johnny's binding? I wonder....

The shabbubitum were pretty cool yet creepy and I love how Ms. Robertson created her own creature instead trying to redefine one to meet her requirements. I wish more authors did this. The redefining of supernatural beings is getting a little old. I won't go into too much detail about them because I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but I personally thought they were wickedly cool. :)

This book seems to mark a change of tone for the series. Things are getting more serious and intense and with it so do the responsibilities of each of the main characters. I can't help but wonder if that's why the book is written in alternating points of view between Persephone's and a third person narrative. I'm curious if this was done by the author to emphasize that Persephone is starting grow into her position and stand more on her own, or if it's a hint that there will be a divide among the three in the future?

Overall, I gave this one 4 1/2 out of 5 roses. I once again don't know what to make of Menessos. He's such a confusing character, but he is definitely growing on me. I find it interesting that whereas Johnny and Seph seem to be gaining power and responsibility Menessos seems to be prepared to relinquish it. I can't help but wonder if that's some sort of smoke screen for something up Menessos sleeve. He always seems to have a hidden agenda and never does anything that doesn't somehow gain him something in return. There is a lot of drama and restructuring of relationships in this book that I have to wonder if Seph and Johnny will be able to work things out. Especially since we keep seeing the following:
Lustrata walks,
unspoiled into the light.
Sickle in hand,
she stalks through the night
Wearing naught but her mark and silver blade.
The moonchild of ruin, she becomes Wolfsbane.
Wolfsbane? You've go to wonder.

 I'm not going to give this one a romance rating because there was just so little of it.

Order of the series:

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