Luck of the Dragon (Entangled Covet) by Susannah Scott
Publication Date: June 24, 2013
Reviewed by: Reading In Pajamas/ Cori
Rated: 4 Stars
Luciana de Luca has a PhD in sass and gemology–and a problem. Her twin brother’s gambling debts have gotten out of hand, and a mob enforcer is blackmailing her to rob the latest, greatest mega-casino on the Strip. Although Lucy has worked her whole life to get away from her family’s grifter past, to save her brother, she dons three-inch heels and a sluts-r-us dress and struts into Alec’s Gerald’s casino, determined to put her long-forgotten thieving ways to the test again.
Alec Gerald, a shape-shifting dragon, has built the Crown Jewel casino to provide sanctuary for his people amongst the flash and awe of Las Vegas. Unfortunately, the sexy little thief trying to rob his gem exhibit turns out to be his mate, and he must woo her before he loses his dragon form forever. With enemies in every corner, and the all-important mating ceremony looming, Alec and Lucy must learn to trust each other, before time runs out for Alec and the rest of the dragons.
I love books with dragons! I’ve always rooted for the dragon over the white knight. I’d rather have the dragon! This was a gripping story! Alec, the Black Dragon, created a haven for dragons in Las Vegas. Dragons can hide in plain view and the audience thinks it’s an illusion and part of the show. A lot of the dragons are in danger of losing their dragon if they don’t find their mate and no dragon has ever found their mate in a human. When Luciana steps into Alec’s casino he is surprised to discover his mate is human. Alec has hired Luciana to appraise his gem collection and Gio, a local criminal, is blackmailing her into helping him steal the gems by threatening her brother who is in debt due to a gambling addiction. Alec has to convince Luciana he’s the one for her while trying to stop his gems from being stolen, and protecting Luciana from whatever trouble she is in. I loved the characters and the plot was gripping. The author set up the ending to leave room for a series and I’m looking forward to reading the next book. Luck of the Dragon is a fun and romantic paranormal read!
*A review copy was provided by Entangled Publishing in exchange for an honest review.
© 2013 Susannah Scott
Lucy’s head pounded right between her eyebrows. She pulled in a deliberate breath, held it, and blew it out. The action made her cleavage look downright Betty Boopish.
Good Lord. What was she doing here?
She was Luciana De Luca, Ph.D—the world-renowned gemologist—casing a hundred-million-dollar joint like it was an unprotected street vendor…
She surveyed the crowd outside the Crown Jewel Casino, waiting for the promised grand opening welcome from Alec Gerald. The crowd was typical Vegas eclectic. Show girls with nipple pasties stood next to grannies in jogging pants and comfy bingo shoes. Families held hands with their kids next to decked-out call girls and high-rollers.
Lucy moved her trained eye over the wrists, necks, and ears of the well-plumed assemblage and picked out the authentic jewels from the fakes. There were a few nice stones. A reasonable haul could be made from the crowd alone, but then Gino, the mob’s enforcer and number one creep, wasn’t interested in ordinary jewelry.
“Ladies and gentlemen.” A barrel-chested emcee wielded a microphone from the elevated stage about fifty feet to her left. “Welcome to the grand opening of the Crown Jewel Casino, where your greatest fears can become your greatest pleasures.” The call girls giggled, and the moms and dads glanced at each other and pulled their kids closer.
“It is my pleasure to introduce you to the legend, the casino maker, the King of Las Vegas…Mr. Aleeee-eeec Gerrr-aaaald!”
The crowd members swiveled their heads, scanning for the first sign of the Casino King. A low drum roll began, picking up speed until it seemed the drummer’s arms would give out. But the stage remained empty. The King of Las Vegas was late to his own party.
Miss Manners would have a conniption.
Suddenly, the scent of burning embers swirled over the courtyard and the wind settled, blowing Lucy’s loose hair around her face. A ground-vibrating roar followed, making every human eye search the sky for the source.
What was it?
Lucy’s well-honed survival instincts went on high alert just as a large SUV-sized black object careened through the air and landed on the raised stage with a thud.
Grannies, kids, and call girls hit the ground screaming.
Heart pounding, Lucy crouched with the crowd. The acrid scent of smoldering intensified. Pounding from the stage rattled Lucy’s eardrums. Whatever had landed there was moving and alive. On the platform, clawed feet stomped, and the creature’s matte black skin stretched over powerful muscles and bones. Black wings unfurled across the stage, and the animal roared again at the crowd, baring razor-sharp white fangs.
Holy Mary, Joseph, and Peter. A freakin’ dragon.
Suddenly, a burst of smoke covered the dragon, and the creature disappeared.
A dark-haired man in an elegant tuxedo stepped through the gray fog and approached the microphone. “I am Alec Gerald.” His voice was deep, and his accent was hard to place but suggested the upper class. “I’d like to welcome you to my newest casino, the Crown Jewel.” Gerald spread an open palm to the frightened crowd. “I hope you enjoyed our first show of the evening.” He gave a devious, knowing smile. “It was all just a costume. Don’t be frightened.”
After a few seconds, the stunned audience stood and broke into applause and catcalls.
Gerald obviously liked games.
Lucy stood, glaring at the casino owner. She had researched him, of course, studying his athletic image in hundreds of Internet pictures. The man was good-looking, apparently brilliant, and ruthless in his business deals. Watching the mesmerized crowd lean toward the stage, she had to admit he had that something else too—the showmanship of a champion con man—a magnetism she knew could draw people like lemmings off a cliff.
The man was flat-out people-genic.