Heart of the Dragon
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Product Description

Searching for her missing brother, Grace Carlyle never dreamed she would discover a secret world populated by mythological monsters--or find herself facing a sword-wielding being whose looks put mortal men to shame.

But there he was, Darius en Kragin, one of a race of shape-shifting warriors bound to guard the gates of Atlantis, and kill all travelers who strayed within its borders.

Now Grace's life was in his hands, and Darius had to choose between his centuries-old vow and the woman who had slipped beneath his defenses and stolen the heart of Atlantis's fiercest dragon.

Customer Reviews:

  • Pleasantly Surprised!
    "Heart of the Dragon"
    By
    Gena Showalter

    Grace Carlyle, frustrated by her boring, predictable job and lack of romance in her life sets out on a potentially dangerous mission to find her brother who disappeared into the Amazon Jungle on a research trip many weeks ago. After her guide steals from her and retreats into the Jungle Grace finds herself wandering, looking for the way out. Instead of getting out of the jungle however, she unknowingly heads deeper in, finally coming across a strange portal...the entrance to the Mythical world of Atlantis.

    Darius en Karigan Dragon Warlord of Atlantis feels Grace enter his world and runs to strike her down before she can bring peril to his homeland. Strangely drawn to her however, he finds he cannot bring himself to kill her like he has killed all the others who dared to venture into his homeland. After learning more about her Darius realizes that the city of Atlantis is in danger. Alex had not just gone missing, he is the subject of a conspiracy, a conspiracy to strip Atlantis of all its riches and murder its mythical inhabitants. Together, Darius and Grace must solve the mystery and save Atlantis from greed and deception.

    In the words of my fianc¨¦: "This book is horrible!" Personally, I find that to be a little harsh. I knew going in that "Heart of the Dragon" was a romantic fantasy, a genre that Showalter is famous for. That being said, I wasn't expecting much and ended up pleasantly surprised. The reading is quick and easy so it makes a good plane/beach read.

    "Heart of the Dragon" got better the more I read. If you aren't familiar with Showalter's style the first part of the book might make you want to roll your eyes a tad with the obvious clich¨¦s and overly fantastic style that many romance novelists have adopted in order to "engage" the reader from the first page. This is probably what made my fianc¨¦ laugh and make fun of me when I accidently left my book in the bathroom after a bubble bath. In any case, this is a definite "chick book" and should have it written on the cover in large, bold letters.

    Keeping all of that in mind, I honestly liked "Heat of the Dragon." It was pointedly less serious than the book I'd just finished, had lots of fun, mystery, romance, and just a sprinkling of danger which will undoubtedly lure me back to more works by Showalter. If you're skeptical of romance novels stay away, but if you need something fun, short, and slightly mindless, this is a good choice. "Heart of the Dragon" held my interest, and even though I had to wade through a river of melted cheese to get to the heart (no pun intended) of the story I sincerely enjoyed it and continue to be a Gena Showalter fan.

    3 ? stars.
    ...more info
  • Boring
    This was my first Showalter book and to me it read like a young adult book except for the sex. The dialog was juvenile (in my opinion) and I wasn't interested in either character. No depth. Darius came across as a grunting, snorting idiot who did nothing but give orders and threats. If there was supposed to be angst or guilt about what he felt he had to do, (I won't say what without giving what plot there was away) I couldn't feel it. Yawn. I had to force myself to finish the book....more info
  • Couldn't put it down!
    I read this author's Lords of the Underworld series and thought they were pretty good so I thought what the heck and bought the first 3 books of this Atlantis series. I just hope the 2nd and 3rd one are as good as the first. I really liked this book. It had humor, excitement, brooding male, good sex scenes. What more could I want in a romance novel. The hero, Darius, was my favorite part. The heroine, Grace, was spunky and had lots of humorous lines. My only criticism would be that when she is described in the book it doesn't conjure up images of attractiveness. Why does it seem that when the heroine is going to be less that beautiful does she have to have unruly curly hair, and red hair to boot. Oh well, that's just a tiny complaint in an otherwise great book.
    ...more info
  • Completely Forgettable
    After reading (and very much enjoying) Gena Showalter's "Lords of the Underworld" books, I was really looking forward to beginning this "Atlantis" series. However, Heart of the Dragon was a complete let-down.

    The idea of dragons protecting Atlantis from the "surface dwellers" was intriguing - especially when you factor in all of the other paranormal creatures that live in the underwater city with the dragons. A third of the way through the book, though, I found myself completely bored with all of the characters. Darius, the "hero" of the story, was a bossy brute and spent 99% of his time thinking about sex or killing. Grace, his love interest, was so lacking in character that I had to look up her name again before writing this review - and I JUST finished reading the book last night!

    I was disappointed by the romance factor also. Mostly because it was nonexistent. When Darius and Grace first met, they went right for each other in a hot and heavy make out session. No matter that Darius was thinking about killing Grace, and Grace was thinking about escaping. From that point on, their relationship only progressed by each of them wanting sex even more. I never believed that their was any cause for either of them to feel love for the other.

    Also, there was a lot of information that the main characters somehow were aware of without any evidence of a conversation having occurred. I eventually started skimming through pages just to get to the end. Overall, this felt like a YA novel only with explicit sex scenes....more info
  • Good idea, but didn't work for me
    I had such expectations for this book, but unfortunately it did not deliver. Darius was intended to be this deadly assasin, a ruthless and extremely dangerous man/dragon and I just did not get that from his character AT ALL. He supposedly considers killing Grace, but author does not convey any sense of real danger or suspense. Even Grace herself was not too worried. They search for missing people while running out of time, but stop constantly to full around. And for 20 something virgin whose life (as well as the life of her brother) was in such danger-- all she really wants to do is have sex with Darius, how believable is that? In general, i dislike books when women can't "resist" the appeal of the hero, and throw themselves all over them despite any common sense. I also read "Jewel of Atlantis" by the same author and hated it, so this is it for me....more info
  • Disappointed in the first one!
    I loved Gena Showalters Lords of the Underworld. As a matter of fact I am going to get whole collection. However, this one was very disappointing. I liked the book towards the end because thats when they first started connecting but for the most part this is going to go on my top 10 worst books ever read. I feel like I wasted $8.00. In this economy $8.00 is $8.00. I hope the books following is better. Not sure that I will buy it!If anybody has read book 2 and think 3 let me know your thoughts....more info
  • From J. Kaye's Book Blog
    Darius en Kragin, a shape-shifter, is the Guardian of the Mist who protects the gates of Atlantis. He kills any traveler who has the misfortune of stumblingly upon their race. When Grace Carlyle shows up in the mist looking for her brother, he's unable to harm her. Not only that, he agrees to help Grace find him.

    Unbeknownst to Darius, part of Atlantis has been infiltrated and many of his people are dead. Grace holds the key to save Atlantis, but will she pay with her life?

    HEART OF THE DRAGON a nice beginning of a series that stands out from the norm. Even so, it isn't my favorite series by Gena Showalter. I came to know her writing through the Lord of the Underworld series and wowzers, what a series that is. It's a bit more darker compared to this series and a nice contrast.
    ...more info
  • Loved it! Great way to begin a new series
    This is the first book in the atlantis series and it is phenominal. I love the characthers. They are well developed together and individually Their interaction is funny and makes sense all the way through the novel. This is a great read and worth the money. My bet is you read it more than once. :)...more info
  • Heart of the Dragon
    Grace Carlyle, is a young adventuress in search of her missing archaeologist brother in the Amazon jungle. She stumbles upon Atlantis and it's Guardian, Darius. The romance develops from there. The chemistry between Darius and Grace is sizzling. The story was funny, passionate and fast moving. It has an Atlantis twist with some Greek mythology and also brings in other mythical creatures. I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the series....more info
  • A light Delight
    A quick light and easy read, this delightful book has the story of the Dragons of Atlantis and a human woman who stumbles into their world. ...more info
  • WOW WOW WOW - BEATHTAKING AND SUPER SEXY PARANORMAL!!!!
    Grace Carlyne's day if going from bad to worse! Having traveled to the Amazon forest from NYC in search for the missing brother, she has been bush-wacked by her guide and left to roam the forest! Oh, how she wants to believe that around the next foliage plant is the local Starbucks so she could get her mocha frappuchino!

    Instead she falls into a cave - which leads her through a portal to the legendary city of Atlantis. She discovers the narrations in the journal her brother has sent her, are real! Upon arriving at this portal (as there are more than one) she is greeted by Darius en Kragin, Guardian and leader to his people - shape shifting Dragons.

    He has never faltered in his duty through the centuries - he has killed without mercy any traveler that has stumbled through the portal to protect not only his race - but all the inhabitants of Atlantis from the humans that dwell on the surface. When he sees Grace - he hesitates. He can't bring himself to kill her - after he has noticed the medallion that hangs from her neck.

    Darius brings her into his palace and locks her in his rooms. He needs to know how and why this mortal woman (albeit an incredibly sexy and juicy morsel of a woman) is in possession of the dragon medallion - what is more worrisome is that the necklace belongs to his tutor and mentor.

    When Grace escapes and returns to her world - Darius is forced to go up to the surface to seek her out. Darius' time is short - he cant stay on the surface long or he will die.

    As he finds Grace - they both discover an evil plot to infiltrate Atlantis and his mentor and many dragons have been killed in the skirmish. Fighting his growing attraction for Grace, Darius realizes the grave danger that his world is in and now he has to figure out a way how to save the day.

    I had no idea that this book was so unique and that Showalter's writing talent was so incredible! Darius and Grace's story is fantastic! She has crafted an unbelievable subterranean world inhabited by surreal creatures - this is a paranormal extravaganza! It has shape-shifting dragons, vampires, nymphs and evil humans! With terrific sexually charged scenes, a concoction of erotica and X-files and a hero and heroine to die for - you will devour this one and race to the store for the rest

    OKAY - SO NOW WHICH OF THE DRAGONS DO I GET TO PICK???


    ...more info
  • Spicy, and exciting!!! Great Combo!!
    Hmm..what to say about another one of my favorite author's novels...LOVED IT! I got into the lords of the underworld series, and was at a loss of what to read, (read everything else) so, I was rifling through the internet pages, and stunbled across this book. Read it, and I could NOT put it down!
    I loved it. It was full of loyalty, love. It was a great novel, and I would recommend it to anyone who loves Gena Showalter's Books. AWESOME!!! :):) ...more info
  • Not As Great As I Hoped
    Extra crispy love story but a little soggy when it comes to the plot. Now don't get me wrong, I love alternate beauty meets the beast/sexy dragon shape shifter as much as any other girl but I found major flaws when it came to the main characters. Grace, our spunky heroin needed to get her priorities striate. She's searching for her lost brother and yet through out the book it seems all she wants to do is get laid. How could anyone think about sex when their only brother has disappeared? It kind of bothered me how one minute she's a proud, sassy, resourceful female and then the next she turns into a weak lovesick puppy who lust over a man who pretty much tells her `I`m going to do what I want to you when I want whether you like it or not.' and she answers by saying `Well okay'. Come on, show some dignity girl!
    And then there's Darius, your average tragic hero. For three hundred years he shows no emotions whatsoever then suddenly in walks Grace then BAM! He's angry, sad, smiles and gets a hard-on all within the first five minutes of seeing her! Where's the development? The suspense? I know 90% of paranormal romance novels center around sex but come on! Give them a little time to develop their relationship first. By chapter four they were already all over each other so by the time their big love scenes came around the reward wasn't as gratifying as it should of been.
    ...more info
  • No Help At All
    I thought the idea of this book was really unique, but when it came to the actual story, certain things were a little off. Actually, just one thing was off and that was the heroine. In fact, I wouldn't really even call her a heroine because she kind of missed the whole being a hero part. She didn't really do anything. She just kept making everything worse. For example, when she's trying to get information about her brother and tells Darius to "leave the questioning to her", she failed terribly. While reading, I was thinking to myself, "why are asking these questions. These questions aren't going to get you anywhere." Eventually Darius has to take over for her and get the information they needed. After reading the scene I felt like her questioning was just a waste of time. Of course later Darius makes a comment on how proud he was with her in that situation and that she did well. I thought to myself "you're a liar, you just want to get in her pants."...more info
  • Great concept, bad execution
    Grace travels to Brazil to catch up with her archeologist brother Alex, and gets lost. Her dragon necklace leads her into a cave that leads into Alantis. There, she meets Darius, a guardian dragon sworn to kill any traveler that comes into the cave. They fall in love, there is a bit of conflict with Alex, his boss, and some vampires, and that is about it. Most of this book was monologue about how much Grace wanted Darius or vice versa. There wasn't enough action to keep me from skimming through most of it. With all of the skipping around I was still able to understand the plot completely. There was entirely too much filler here for my liking. I enjoy Gena Showalter's Lords of the Underworld, and I thought there would be the same sort of mythology here that there were in those, but that is not the case. Only part of the story was set in Atlantis. In fact, so little of the story was about Atlantis, I fail to see why the series even carries that label. Overall, this was a boring love story between two flat, uninteresting characters. ...more info
  • Boring conflict
    I read the description for this - dragons, vampires, Atlantis - and I was hooked into buying it. I'm sorry I did.

    The hero is a guardian of Atlantis; the heroine is a human wondering around trying to find her brother. She stumbles into Atlantis, meets the hero, love at first sight, but! He's got to kill her because she found out the secret that Atlantis exists.

    That's the conflict - he's got to do his duty and protect the secret. But I know that since it is a romance novel, he's not going to do it. The hero killing the heroine doesn't scream happy ending. The plot goes on and on, his dueling emotions drag out until I want to smack him. Then finally, three quarters the way through the book, he decides he can't do it. What a shocker, let me tell you.

    The worldbuilding, the setting, the imaginative story were all wonderful. The conflict between the hero and the heroine ruined all that....more info
  • Sounded great, didn't read that way
    The first few chapters I was hooked, then things went south. The sub-story line is in-depth maybe too in-depth. Seeing how this is the first in the Atlantis series I didn't feel like it did a good job of explaining a whole lot. I understood the main characters (hero and heroine), but the rest of Atlantis was just a mish-mosh of total confusion. So many species were explained, it was confusing, and the Dragon guardian in the Mist (it was a little corny). Truefully the whole book was a little corny. I did like the heroine; in fact I liked her more then the Hero. She was realistic at least. Unfortunately the whole book was lacking in real substance and felt like it was thrown together. The descriptions were lacking in every detail. Its not a real show case for the writer, if you want to see her best work check out the Lords of the Underworld series ( now that's substance). ...more info
  • Wish I had my own Dragon King!
    This was a great story!.. Darius was the epitome of tall, macho, scaly and handsome!(smile)..He was a fierce warrior and an army to bat! Grace was just the woman he needed for that balance to complete him as a what...family dragon man..lol..
    Im now getting ready to start on my next story Jewel of Atlantis..Im sure it will be just as good! and when I've finished all four..I'll let you all know which was my favorite! Happy Reading!...more info
  • wasn't what i was expecting????
    i love dragon stories... but this story felt flat. as another reviewer stated i guessed the whole plot before getting through the whole book. now don't get me wrong there are many stories in which i know whats going to happen next but i happily keep turning the page bc the story is just that good. but this one wasn't even close. i liked the atlantis premis and dragons being keepers of atlantis etc.. it was missing something.

    if you're looking for a really good dragon romance try g.a. aiken love her dragons.. you can sink your teeth into!!...more info
  • Pleasantly Surprised how much I loved this book!
    WOW!!! What a great book, I really truly, loved it! I am so surprised that it was as well written as it was and that the character development and steamy love scenes were as good as they were. Two thumps up. This is a great read for any paranormal romance reader.....enjoy!...more info