She came to wed his brother and stole the Dragon's heart...
To settle a feud, Dominique Beauchamp was resigned to wed in order to heal their injured lands. Offered in marriage by her brother to the lord of Drakewich, she came to take the d'Lucy name...but never counted on losing her heart to the brother of her betrothed - the Black Dragon.
Blaec d'Lucy mistrusted her from the beginning, believing her to be part of her brother's endless perfidy, but he was powerless to resist the fiery-haired vixen that rode so proudly into their midst. Their love was sealed... once upon a kiss.
©1993 Tanya Anne Crosby (P)2013 Tanya Anne Crosby
A good Medieval love story that's about Dominique, a clueless but beautiful, woman who is to be sacrificed at the marriage altar to Graeham an English Earl but as she rode into the Keep her eyes met his brother Blaec's eyes and it was an instant attraction but also one of dislike, mistrust, anger and denial.
The marriage was arranged by her villainous evil brother who had a hidden agenda of his own but Dominique thought it was to stop the family feuding and saw no wrong in her brother. Blaec knew he couldn't trust either of them but the pull of the attraction was just too strong.
Thoroughly enjoyable, emotional, tender, slow to build-up love story with betrayals, sex and secrets that'll test the bonds of family and love to it's limits. Blaec's Alpha character was well narrated especially, but so too were all the others.
Worth a credit? Really really enjoyed this non-stop listen so that's a YES and I will seek out any of her other books that's available with Audible.
I am a lover of books. I enjoy losing myself in a fabulous romance and great story plot.
This book was brought to life by the swoon-worthy, sultry, masculine voice of Braden Wright. OMG! I could listen to him read from an almanac! The narrator did an amazing job in bringing the masculine characters to life. He did ok with the female voices, but that's not a big deal…I could totally overlook that part. :-)
This book is for sure about an intriguing forbidden love, but it's also steeped heavily in FAMILY & most importantly sibling relationships. I became interested in the plot right away because I was so anxious, to see how this love story would unfold when you have very complicated feelings between the siblings.
Dominique Beauchamp is a total innocent and merely a pawn in the clutches of her brother, William Beauchamp. The problem is that she is unaware of how evil her brother is. She is also unaware of secret plans he has in store for her. She looks up to her brother and always gives him the benefit of the doubt, until it's a lost cause and all of his true intentions are brought to light.
The story of the upbringing of the d'Lucy brothers is rather tragic because both men are heavily impacted by how one brother, "the Dragon" was mistreated by their father. And, really it was just due to the fact that the society they lived in was ignorant and stupid in terms of their knowledge of fraternal twins. At the birth of the d'Lucy boys, they had different coloring and features (Blaec is dark-haired and Graeham is light-haired and blonde). So, the father believed that his wife had an affair and Blaec is another man's son. For this reason, Blaec was despised by his father and his birthright taken away. That mistreatment does not go unnoticed by the favored son, who is Graeham.
So….fast forward to adulthood and you have two brothers who love each other and will do anything to care for each other's welfare. So, imagine the internal conflict that tortures Blaec when he falls helplessly in love with Dominique, who is Graeham's betrothed!!! It was an arranged marriage to help bring peace and stability between the two waring families.
OK, regarding the Hero, let me say he is just delicious, smoldering, gorgeous and a real man! LOL…yes, Blaec d'Lucy, the Black Dragon of Drakewich is a warrior, he is sharp and never let's his guard down. He is also a shrewd business man. Overall, Blaec is definitely a strong, virile, masculine figure (my favorite). The part I love best is how he is drawn to Dominique and cannot fight his own will. I mean the man WANTS her, from the moment he lays eyes on her. I felt bad for the man because he is really tortured by his love for her. (of course, he doesn't know he's in love…he just feels this earth shattering force that pulls him to her like a giant magnet). And, I love it when the hero falls for the heroine first, as Blaec does for Dominique. Yet, Dominique definitely feels the attraction to Blaec, but being the innocent she is, she's just not as aware of the shear carnality and how inevitable their love is.
I really liked Dominique Beauchamp because she is a beautiful person, inside and out. She always wants to do the right thing and she is also caught up into this forbidden attraction to the "Black Dragon" that she tries to fight at first. When she gives in to the love, she is as smitten with "the Dragon" as he is with her.
I loved it when the two came together and stopped fighting the attraction for one another. Their love story was so good, that it left me wanting more for them. I wanted to see more scenes in which there is relief in their relationship. But, don't get me wrong, when "The Dragon" and Dominique are together, it's just beautiful and for a moment all of the stars line up for them as they bask in their realization of love.
The events that lead to the HEA are great! The resolution of the story lies in how a brother will sacrifice everything to see his twin happy and duly honored. In contrast, the evil brother gets his just reward. I have already re-read this book a few times….just wanted more….
WISHLIST (Quite frankly these are the things I found lacking….)
1) Even though I was happy for Graeham d'Lucy HEA in the end as he found a passionate love for himself, as a reader I would have preferred to have more scenes between the Hero & Heroine. I supposed I loved The BLACK DRAGON & Dominique so much that I just wanted more….
2) OK, the fact that there was no epilogue is almost unforgivable!!! Yes, the story ends with Dominique securely settled in the embrace of her gorgeous Hero, Blaec, but my goodness!!!--Couldn't the author have been a little more thoughtful of the readers??? :-(
I would have loved to have gotten a glimpse into their future…ugh!-Such a missed opportunity.
3) Also, there was a bit too much of the internal conversation going on whenever the Hero and Heroine faced each other. They thought too much….lol. At first I thought OMG, they must look so weird with all of this "thinking" and very little action going on each time they face each other. Also, I wish the author would have used better descriptors for Dominique instead of always saying "she cried out." It seemed like the poor girl was always "crying out" for something. I thought that was reflective of a writing issue, instead of a character flaw.
If it weren't for these three "wish list" items, I would have given the book 5 STARS.
Author and narrator were new to me, but I found them both exceptionally talented.
The story takes place in medieval England, during the reign of King Stephen, 1135-1154, when people believed if nonidentical twins were born it was a sign that someone else had sired one of them. This led to Blaec's father treating him like a bastard, and although he was the Earl's first born son, his father left the Earldom to his brother Grahaem.
Due to his father's ill treatment Blaec became a hardened warrior, called the Black Dragon, with the reputation of being an invincible demon. But despite the old Earl's rejection of Blaec the brothers had a warm, loving relationship. Blaec, strong and heroic, was determined to protect his younger brother at all costs.
To settle a land feud of long standing, Dominique Beauchamp was offered in marriage, by her impoverished brother, to Grahaem, the wealthy lord of Drakewich. Resigned to wed in order to heal their injured lands, she never counted on losing her heart to the brother of her betrothed--the Black Dragon.
Braden Wright's performance makes a good story even better.
I highly recommend "Once Upon a Kiss".
The pacing was perfect. The sensual scenes were definitely hot!
Loved the narrator's performance...a crisp and "audibly deliciously" read...his tone and voice pulled me into the story from the very beginning and kept me there until the end.
Historical romance junkie. Who doesn't love romance?
I enjoyed this story. There were a lot of twists and turns that made it a bit unpredictable. A nice change from the usual love story. It's not as steamy as some love stories so if your not into that you will really enjoy.
As wonderful as Braden Wright was bringing the hero to life, overall, this book would have been better narrated by someone else.
His voice as the hero's could not have been done as well in my head.
This story would translate well into a movie.
The best of this audiobook is a hot hero with a super sexy voice. Braden Wright reading as Blaec D'lucy was delicious. Blaec is strong, capable and attractive and his relationship with his brother is so touching. The story line is interesting and fairly believable. The heroine, Dominique, is sweet but rather silly and dumb and I don't think she is good at conversing with the hero. Her dialog and dealings with Blaec are awkward and uncomfortable, like watching a clumsy, young girl trying to seem cool around an older boy she has a crush on and failing miserably everytime. It was cringeworthy and took away from the story. While Braden Wright narrating made for the best part of this audiobook: an incredibly sexy hero, sadly, the rest of his voices made for the worst part. Most of the characters sound slow, silly or just plain ridiculous. Possibly if someone else had read for Dominique I wouldn't have thought her so dumb. Even Blaec's brother, Graham, should have sounded somewhat attractive but his voice made him seem weak. I honestly don't know if I could sit through this story again simply because most of the characters sound ridiculous to listen to.
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