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The allure of love triangles

tiger's destinyWho can withstand the drama brought about by a love triangle?  It makes for good stories.  Romeo or Paris?  Team Jacob or Team Edward? Even Hunger Games got in on it by offering us  Peeta, the muscled baker or Gayle, the hunting stud of District 12.

In Tiger’s Destiny, the love triangle between Kelsey, Ren and Kishan continues.

Tiger’s Destiny is the fourth and last book (See correction below) in the Tiger’s Curse series by Colleen Houck.  The first three books are (1) Tiger’s Curse; (2) Tiger’s Quest; and (3) Tiger’s Voyage.

It all began hundreds of years ago when an evil sorcerer trapped two Indian princes, Ren and Kishan Rajaram, in tiger forms.  The brothers had no way of knowing if the curse could be broken and lived for centuries as tigers until a young girl from Oregon embraced her destiny and saved them.  As Kelsey accomplishes various tasks, the tiger curse allows the princes to return to their human forms for short periods of time.  It goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway), that the princes are as handsome as you would imagine young Indian warriors to be.

To break the curse, Kelsey and the two tigers embark on a quest that takes them into the world of myth that exists side by side with our world.  They encounter dragons, large serpents, and phoenixes.  The author does a great job of bringing ancient myths and stories to life.  From heart pounding journeys under the sea to visiting the City of Light in the center of the earth, there is a lot of colorful imagery that makes it really fun to read.  This is one of my favorite aspects of the series.

Really Evil Villains Are Boring

A weak link in the series is the uber-villain, Lokesh, who is also uber-boring.  He is ugly, his desire for power encompasses centuries,  and his leering eye is set on Kelsey.  Yawn.

Angsty heroines

Maybe it’s me, but I’m a little tired of young, angsty heroines whose entire world is deciding which boy they are really in love with.  Kelsey’s vulnerabilities seemed too contrived which took away from the character’s authenticity (orphan with separation issues).  There is one part when she throws a tantrum because she’s jealous of the goddess Durga. Finally, some real emotion!  I wish there was more.

It wasn’t all bad. 

No, it wasn’t bad at all, really.  I quite enjoyed it.  I can understand and even appreciate (to a certain extent) the loveliness of melancholy angst.

When Ren and Kishan aren’t vying for Kelsey’s attentions, they are saving her from Lokesh’s deadly charms or dangerous creatures like the rakshasa (vampire-like creatures who also eat flesh).  Tiger’s Destiny reveals which prince Kelsey ultimately chooses.  The ending was appropriately emotional, and I found myself crying at the end. If you like happy endings (and I do love them), adventure and romance, you’ll enjoy Tiger’s Destiny.

[Edited on Jan 27, 2013 to add: I need to correct my earlier statement that this is the last book. Thank you, careful readers, for bringing this to my attention.  In fact, a fifth book is slated to come out called Tiger’s Dream. ]

Have you read any of the books in Tiger’s Curse?