Valley of Silence by Nora Roberts

Valley of Silence is the conclusion novel to Nora Roberts‘ Circle Trilogy. In this book the circle reaches the final showdown with Lilith the Vampire Queen and her army.

This book features the Love between the millennium years old vampire Cian and Moira soon to be the queen of  Geall. In this story Moira is proclaimed the rightful Queen of the kingdom by removal of the sword from the stone.Moira and Cian have been having feelings for each other since they first met in Morrigan’s Cross.  She’s intrigued by him, but he has done his best to intimidate and alienate her.They know that there’s no future together, in spite of that they decide to have their happiness in whatever little time they have.

Unlike the other couples of the other two books of the circle trilogy Cian and Moira have to make sacrifices on their part, for they are not a normal couple like Hoyt-Glenna and Larkin-Blair who are joined together by not only love but also their lives. But Cian and Moira cannot as 1 is the vampire and the other the queen.
Valley of Silence also focuses on the war that has been mentioned in the first two books, final battle involving the circle and the troops they were leading facing off against Lilith and her followers.

Valley of Silence focuses on a lot of things, the love between Cian and Moira, preparation of the war,courage, sacrifices for love and humanity, humor,the jest to live even at the time of pail. What i liked most was that Nora Roberts has shown that even monsters like Lilith are capable of love. All in all this book was the best in the series. While reading this book one gets so involved that the person actually feels the emotions of the characters.

The Crystal Skull by Manda Scott

The Crystal Skull by Manda Scott is an average Archaeological Thriller. Its not boring but the book doesn’t posses taut pacing, riveting action, or interesting characters. The story is based around the Mayan 2012 “end of the world” legend and about Mysterious crystal Skulls.

As a wedding gift, Kitt brings his new wife Stella to a cave where he believes Cedric Owen’s legendary crystal skull is located. But when they find the skull, their lives are endangered. Someone is willing to kill to get his hands on it. And supposedly the skull has a curse on it. Can Stella uncover the truth behind the skull and get the skull to its resting place before time runs out?

The book seems to be trying too hard to do too much. It is trying to be a mystery with fantasy and science fiction as well as archeology and history and astronomy. the story is too confusing and choppy to be cohesive and maintain depth. The characters have no history or development and their connections, when made, are tenuous. The heart of the story is human relationships and emotions. The lust for power, the strength of friendship, the crippling effect of jealousy, the bitterness of loss, and the blindness of preconception all play pivotal roles in the story and are reflected and enhanced by the sentient crystal skull. Good novel for those who like light suspense / mystery stories.