Guest Review: Enchanted Palette by Brigit Zahara

Posted November 11, 2010 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Judith‘s review of Enchanted Palette by Brigit Zahara.

Still grieving over the loss of her fiance, Randi has lost her srtistic focus and even her will to paint. That is, until an ancient palette opens the door to an incredible world of adventure on the other side of the canvas. Transported into paradise, Randi’s desire to love and be loved is awakened by soul twins Zak and Adrian–half-vampire, half-shapeshifter, polar-opposite spirit siblings who were once a single tortured man. They are equally enticing–Zak’s pure soul and bright spirit over against Adrian’s primitive passion and brooding mystery.

For Randi, it is hard to say which is hotter–a slow, sensual union with the virginal Zak or a pulse-punding, explosive tryst with the dark and dangerous Adrian. But one thing is certain: when all three get together, the result is quite simply out of this world.

What would it be like to be standing in front of an artistic masterpiece one moment only to be then physically drawn into that painting and live in the world that makes up that reality? That’s exactly what happened to Randi–a hurting and wounded soul, still grieving over the loss of her life’s love, wanting a return of the joy and comfort she received from her painting, and coming to believe that her days of artistic expression are over. It would appear that Randi’s muse has departed permanently. Yet she strives on, hoping that somehow, in the sheer force of the activity of painting, that the spark will re-ignite and she can once again really feel. Even when seeking to tranfer the beauty of a re-occurring dream to the canvas, Randi’s inspiration is dead, right along with the man she loved. She is now prepared to sell her house and her studio and move on with something else in her life. Through the magic of an ancient artist’s palette, Randi finds herself in the forest of her own creating, wandering and wondering, bemused and bewildered. She is overwhelmed when she meets a beautiful unicorn, a mythical animal she didn’t believe existed, followed by an attack of a huge, feral wolf–little realizing that perhaps the images of her own tatoo have come to life. She hasn’t had time to put it all together. Their story moves on from here.

This paranormal, fantasy tale is, in many ways, metaphorical of actual human experience. Wanting love and being given a chance to love someone unconditionally is the dream most humans find is driving our desire to find that soul mate many believe is waiting for each person. In Randi’s case that soul mate was the two sides of a single person, one who had been cursed by an evil sorceress and imprisoned in this magical hidden world. It is a metaphor that points up the truth that in each individual, most especially that person who is most significant in our lives, there are two sides to that personality–not just the one we are most comfortable with. And as in Randi’s story, discovering those polar opposites can be uncomfortable and force each of us to stretch those emotional comfort zones we protect so zealously and which often need to be nudged and prodded to allow new realities to intrude. And do we not discover the deepest levels of involvement with the one we love when we are willing to take a “leap of faith” into the unknown, previously unexplored depths of human interaction, whether on a spiritual or an emotional plane?

So this is a novella that is beautifully told, that introduces readers to a mythical and fantasy world of beauty beyond one’s wildest dreams, that is the stuff of which fairy tales are made. In the midst of this world are two gorgeous men who are needing the love of a good woman, one who is willing to accept them for who they are and who is able, in that acceptance, to give her whole heart. Even in this fantasy world there is depth of character and each individual in the story has strengths that have grown to maturity under the stress of the unendurable. It is a romantic tale that is sure to please the heart and stoke the inner emotional fires.

It think fantasy/paranormal/romance readers should really put this novella on their “to be read” list and enter into a beautiful world of love, friendship, and the erotic. This is one of the good ones, folks. Don’t miss it. I give this story a 4.25 out of 5.

This book is available from Ellora’s Cave. You can buy it here in e-format.

You can read more from Judith at Dr. J’s Book Place.

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