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P.E.A.R.L

Reviews     
2003
The Paranoramal Excellence Award
for Romantic Literature

Copyright © 2000 - 2006 paranormalromance. All rights reserved.

PNR  would like to express their appreciation to all the writers of paranormal romance novels, and also to their editors and publishers, for their continuing support of the sub-genre.

We believe that paranormal elements add luster to our literature. P.E.A.R.L. is a readers choice award, recognizing treasures without measure in nine categories.

The pearls (and the votes) have been cast by the ParaNormal Romance subscribers. The following make up the string of matchless wonders that were voted to be the best of the paranormal romance sub-genre for 2003.

For P.E.A.R.L Eligibility
Nominating & Voting Procedures
Category Descriptions
see
Award

For a list of 2003 nominees,
see
Nominees

ANTHOLOGY


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Leisure Books
May 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0843951702


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Winner:

THE ONLY ONE

by Christine Feehan,
Susan Grant,
Susan Squires

They came from the darkest places: secluded monasteries, the Carpathian mountains, galaxies under siege. They were men with the blackest pasts -- warriors, vampire monks, leaders of armies -- but whose passions burned like dying stars. They had one purpose: to find those women who fulfilled them, completed them, and made them rage with a fire both holy and profane. They sought soul mates whose touch consumed them with desire, yet whose kisses refreshed like the coolest rain. And each man knew that for him there was only one true love --and in finding her he would find salvation.


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St. Martin's Press
November 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0312987625


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Honorable Mention:

MIDNIGHT PLEASURES

by Amanda Ashley,
Sherrilyn Kenyon,
Maggie Shayne,
Ronda Thompson

Darkfest by Amanda Ashley
The price of saving her dying mother is Channa's promise to spend a year at the castle of tormented nobleman, Lord Darkfest...to obey him as his servant or, as his secrets are revealed, to become his salvation. And her own.

Phantom Lover by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Haunted by recurring nightmares of terrifying beasts, Erin McDaniels is afraid to sleep-until a hero arrives in her dreams to save her...and makes erotic, incredible love to her. But can she find him again when she is awake?

Under Her Spell by Maggie Shayne
A consultant for a TV series about one gorgeous witch, "white witch" Melissa St. Cloud plans to make the show authentic. But once on the set she is pulled into the arms of a man who opens up a doorway to the darkside and chilling peril.

A Wulf's Curse by Ronda Thompson
Running away from an arranged marriage, Elise steals aboard a wagon in a traveling circus and finds herself in the bed of the Beast Master, Sterling Wulf, who is something other than he seems...and suddenly all Elise desires.

FANTASY/MAGICAL


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Berkley (Sensation)
June 2003
352 pages
ISBN: 0425190722


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HEART THIEF

by Robin D. Owens

Ruis Elder never asked for his unusual trait - the ability to neutalize other's psychic talents. Because of it, he has always been hated in his own homeland, destined to roam the harsh planet alone. But trouble finds him in front of the ruling Council - and face-to-face with the most beautiful woman he has ever seen. There's only one problem: Ailim is on the opposite side of the bench...

Ailim has never before felt such passion coursing through her as she feels in Ruis's presence. And she never thought she would - at least not with a man so far beneath her station, a man who does not even have psychic powers. But even on the planet Celta, love is blind to such details. Separately, Ailim and Ruis must forgo their old lives. But together the can take on the world...


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Love Spell
March 2003
320 pages
ISBN: 0505525372


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Honorable Mention:

SPELLBOUND IN SEATTLE

by Garthia Anderson

With enchanted blood on her carpet, a house full of Merlin-wannabes unable to clean it up, a petulant cat, and houseguests scheduled to arrive momentarily, Petra Field needs a miracle. She gets a wizard, a whole lot of unwanted sparks, and a man-sized hole in the middle of her living room—a hole into which her feline promptly disappears. Vorador hasn't felt so incompetent since his days as an untried sorcerer. The girl who leaps after her cat and into his arms causes his simplest spells to backfire—quite literally setting his hair ablaze. And though she claims to be no conjurer, he knows that he's never felt so bewitched, for Petra has a mesmerizing energy of her own: love.

FUTURISTIC


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Love Spell
August 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0505525410


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Winner:

THE STAR PRINCESS

by Susan Grant

Ilana Hamilton isn't an adventurer like her pilot mother, or a diplomat like her do-right brother; she's a brash, fun- loving filmmaker who'd rather work behind the camera than be a "Star Princess" in front of it. Heiress or not, she's a perfectly normal, single woman...until Prince Ché Vedla crashes into her life.

With six months to choose a bride, the sexy royal wants to sow his wild oats. Ilana can't blame him—but fall for the guy herself? Not a chance! Hotshot pilot or no, Ché is too stuffy, too arrogant, and too old-fashioned. But when he sweeps her off her feet Ilana sees stars, and the higher he takes her the more she loves to fly. Only her heart asks where she will land.


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Berkley (Sensation)
June 2003
352 pages
ISBN: 0425190722


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Honorable Mention:

HEART THIEF

by Robin D. Owens

Ruis Elder never asked for his unusual trait - the ability to neutalize other's psychic talents. Because of it, he has always been hated in his own homeland, destined to roam the harsh planet alone. But trouble finds him in front of the ruling Council - and face-to-face with the most beautiful woman he has ever seen. There's only one problem: Ailim is on the opposite side of the bench...

Ailim has never before felt such passion coursing through her as she feels in Ruis's presence. And she never thought she would - at least not with a man so far beneath her station, a man who does not even have psychic powers. But even on the planet Celta, love is blind to such details. Separately, Ailim and Ruis must forgo their old lives. But together the can take on the world...

SCIENCE - FICTION


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Love Spell
May 2003
320 pages
ISBN:
0505525402


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Winner:

UNEARTHED

by C. J. Barry

Life on Earth was just getting interesting for Tess MacKenzie. She'd postponed her singing career to support the family business and after eight long years, she finally earned her chance to shine. Her band was hot, her songs were rocking and Tess was on her way to becoming a star.

Things were definitely looking up.

That is until Cohl Travers, alien extraordinaire, swoops out of the night sky and snatches her off her planet. When he says he desperately needs her voice for a dangerous cosmic mission and the fate of two planets hangs on her song, she figures one of them is in for some serious therapy. Tess soon finds herself up to her neck in smelly bad guys, a robot with a superiority complex, an ancient Amulet that could end her singing career permanently and a man who can burn her from the inside out.

Cohl Travers thought he was free and clear of his destiny to become the next ruler of his planet. But when the warring Trakas abduct his father and hold him hostage for the Amulet, Cohl is dragged back to a fate he does not want with a woman he cannot ignore.

Together, they might defeat the Trakas -- but what is Cohl supposed to do about the feelings that Tess has unearthed in him?


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Tor Books
March 2003
480 pages
ISBN:
0765304252


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Honorable Mention:

THE MOON'S SHADOW

by Catherine Asaro

At the age of seventeen the young nobleman named Jaibriol Qox became ruler of a vast galactic empire - and lost everything he had ever valued.

Born of a clandestine liaison between a renegade daughter of the Skolian Imperialate and a scion of the genetically engineered Eubian Traders, Jai Qox grew up in exile, unaware of the powers that coursed through his noble blood. In the waning days of the bloody Radiance War, which ravaged the galaxy, Jai was captured, and returned to the Traders to play a role as a puppet Emperor in their scheme to consolidate their domination of space.

Now Jai must walk a razor's edge, to seize the power that is his by birthright, without succumbing to its dark seduction, in order to avert a conflagration which threatens to engulf a thousand worlds.

SHAPE SHIFTER

Leisure Books
October 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0843950498


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Winner:

DARK MELODY

by Christine Feehan

Dayan, guitar player and singer in the band Dark Troubadours, recognizes his lifemate when telepathic widow Corinne Wentworth walks into the bar where he is singing. She has a heart condition that could end her life at any time, and she is also a target of the people who killed her husband. Dayan cannot turn her into a Carpathian until her daughter is born, but there is a question of whether it will be strong enough to withstand her transformation from human to Carpathian even if she does survive the pregnancy. It is a struggle to keep her alive, with several Carpathians joining Dayan to keep Corinne and her baby alive and safe.


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St. Martin's Press
December, 2003
400 pages
ISBN:
0312984839


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Honorable Mention:

DANCE WITH THE DEVIL

by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Zarek was born the unwanted son of a Greek slave and a Roman senator. Moments after his birth, his mother gave him to a servant with orders to kill the infant. The servant took mercy on the child and took him to his father who had no more use for the baby than his mother had so Zarek became the whipping boy of a noble Roman family.

No one knows how he died or why he traded his soul- he keeps it as a well-guarded secret. He trusts no one. He seldom interacts with other Dark-Hunters and when he does, it is always grudgingly and with the utmost disdain for them. 

Because of his steadfast denial to follow any orders (even those of Artemis) and his lack of regard for anyone other than himself, he is kept in isolation in Alaska where his activity is seriously limited and closely monitored. There are many who fear he will one day unleash his powers against the humans as well as the Daimons.

TIME TRAVEL



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Leisure Books
October 2002
346 pages
ISBN: 0843952059
ISBN: 0843950641


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Winner:

THE VERY VIRILE VIKING

by Sandra Hill

Magnus is a 10th century Viking farmer. Angela is a modern-day vineyard owner.

He has eleven bothersome children.
She yearns for just one child.

He takes a vow of celibacy...
Even though he is a very virile man

Uh-oh!
Let the Viking laughter begin!

Magnus Ericsson is a simple man. He loves the smell of fresh-turned dirt after springtime plowing. He loves the feel of a soft woman under him in the bed furs..when engaged in a different type of plowing. He loves the heft of a good sword in his fighting arm.

But, Holy Thor, what he does not relish is the bothersome brood of children he's been saddled with. Or the mysterious happenstance that strands him and his longship full of maddening offspring in a strange new land -- the kingdom of Holly Wood . Here is a place where the blazing sun seems to bake his already befuddled brain, where the folks think he is an act-whore (whatever that is), and the woman of his dreams -- a winemaker of all things -- fails to accept that he is her soul mate...a man of exceptional talents, not to mention...A VERY VIRILE VIKING.


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Berkley
September 2003
432 pages
ISBN:
0425192024


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Honorable Mention:

A GARDEN IN THE RAIN

by Lynn Kurland

Patrick MacLeod is haunted by his past, by events he had no control over and wishes desperately he could change. He hasn't the heart for love, nor the time for rescuing maidens in distress of their own making . . . until he sees a woman who touches his heart and stirs his soul . . . and makes him believe love might be possible after all.

For Madelyn Phillips, Scotland is the land of dreams, filled with magic, romance, and handsome Highland lords. Unfortunately, the reality of her dream vacation is no car, no luggage, and a pesky ex-fiancé determined to shadow her every move. She thinks her dreams are in vain . . . until she sees a man standing on a windswept moor, a Highlander full of secrets and longing, and Madelyn knows she has seen her destiny.

But the past isn't through with either of them, and it will take all the love each possesses to make their dreams come true . . .

EROTIC

Amber Quill Press
April 2003
117 pages
ISBN: 1592799361


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Winner:

THE BLOOD RUBY

by M. A. duBarry

When the ancient line of Dracolian princes falls in battle to an evil enemy, Quentin Moore is taken prisoner and sentenced to death by beheading. But when the mighty sword known as the Blood Ruby shatters at his neck, leaving his body intact and very much alive, Quentin is sent to the realm of the Sidhe—home of Lhiannan Sidhe, the beguiling Irish vampyre fairy. As prisoner, he is given one chance to redeem his soul and win back his castle, Dun Drac'ola. But in order to win his freedom, Quentin must live up to the legendary reputation of his ancestors—an ancient line of warriors known for their mastery of wielding the Blood Ruby. But in the realm of the Sidhe, the Blood Ruby is more than merely a weapon for the battlefield, it's also the symbol of the realm's highest sex magician. And in a world where courts are convened to guarantee the kingdom's women their sexual satisfaction, a man's fate rests solely in his ability to sate his bedmate. And the holder of the Blood Ruby must sate Lhiannan Sidhe. Can Quentin claim back that which is rightfully his?

Zumaya Pub. (Extasy Books)
May 2003
eBook
ISBN: 1894942566


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Honorable Mention:

BEFORE NIGHT FALLS

by Jeya Jenson

Rachel Marks is forced to close her small book store due to the opening of the new Warren mall that has driven her out of business. Debt ridden and needing to make some fast money, she goes to work as a waitress at the local hot spot- -Mystique, a gothic themed nightclub, owned by the mysterious Devon Carnavorn.

Immediately drawn into Devon's circle of admirers, Rachel is flattered and pleased that her handsome boss finds her attractive. They quickly become lovers. However, as she falls deeper in love with Devon, Rachel finds herself drawn into a demonic world of psychic vampires called the "Kynn" who prey on humans and their sexual energies to keep themselves young. Devon plans to bring Rachel across, inducting her into his clan and making her his mate.

Is Rachel strong enough to deny her predatory lover, or will she succumb to his seductive call--and his offer of immortality?

NOVELLA / SHORT STORY

Leisure Books
May 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0843951702


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Winner:

"Dark Descent "
THE ONLY ONE

by Christine Feehan

Dark Descent isthe story of Joie Sanders, a bodyguard and Traian Trigovise, an ancient hunter, meeting after a battle in a deep cave filled with mystery and wonder. Set in the Carpathian Mountains, Joie, with her brother and sister go caving and come across the ancient warrior beset upon by several vampires. They have no choice but to throw their lot in with the hunter and do their best to escape with their lives from the underground labyrinth filled with ancient traps left behind by a powerful race.
~ synopsis courtesy of Christine's website



Buy it now!

St. Martin's Press
November 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0312987625


Read the reviews

Honorable Mention:

"Phantom Lover"
MIDNIGHT PLEASURES

by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Haunted by recurring nightmares of terrifying beasts, Erin McDaniels is afraid to sleep-until a hero arrives in her dreams to save her...and makes erotic, incredible love to her. But can she find him again when she is awake?

BEST OVERALL PARANORMAL

Leisure Books
October 2003
384 pages
ISBN: 0843950498


Read the Reviews

Winner:

DARK MELODY

by Christine Feehan

Dayan, guitar player and singer in the band Dark Troubadours, recognizes his lifemate when telepathic widow Corinne Wentworth walks into the bar where he is singing. She has a heart condition that could end her life at any time, and she is also a target of the people who killed her husband. Dayan cannot turn her into a Carpathian until her daughter is born, but there is a question of whether it will be strong enough to withstand her transformation from human to Carpathian even if she does survive the pregnancy. It is a struggle to keep her alive, with several Carpathians joining Dayan to keep Corinne and her baby alive and safe.


Buy it now!

St. Martin's Press
December, 2003
400 pages
ISBN:
0312984839


Read the Reviews

Honorable Mention:

DANCE WITH THE DEVIL

by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Zarek was born the unwanted son of a Greek slave and a Roman senator. Moments after his birth, his mother gave him to a servant with orders to kill the infant. The servant took mercy on the child and took him to his father who had no more use for the baby than his mother had so Zarek became the whipping boy of a noble Roman family.

No one knows how he died or why he traded his soul- he keeps it as a well-guarded secret. He trusts no one. He seldom interacts with other Dark-Hunters and when he does, it is always grudgingly and with the utmost disdain for them. 

Because of his steadfast denial to follow any orders (even those of Artemis) and his lack of regard for anyone other than himself, he is kept in isolation in Alaska where his activity is seriously limited and closely monitored. There are many who fear he will one day unleash his powers against the humans as well as the Daimons.

NEW AUTHOR



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Winner:

JANET CHAPMAN

Debut Novel
CHARMING THE HIGHLANDER
Pocket Books
February 2003
400 pages

ISBN: 0743453069

A feisty beauty tempted by a bold highlander's touch...

When a plane crash strands brilliant scientist Grace Sutter on an icy mountaintop in Maine, she finds herself alone in the wilderness with the only other surviving passenger - Greylen MacKeage, a sexy, medieval warrior who's been tossed through time to find the woman's he's destined to love. Forced together to survive the harsh, wintry landscape, neither expects the fierce passion that flares between them. But Grace is not used to letting her heart take control, and Greylen will settle for nothing less than her heart's surrender...


P.E.A.R.L
Copyright © 2000 - 2006 paranormalromance. All rights reserved.


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