Key of Light
Nora Roberts
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Key of Light

Nora Roberts
352 pages
October 2003
rated 3 1/2 of 5 possible stars

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In a small Pennsylvania town, three young women - Mallory Price, Dana Steele and Zoe McCourt – all get a mysterious invitation to a cocktail reception at a luxurious but spooky old manor. Once there, they find that they’re all of an age and all in shaky financial situations. The enigmatic hosts proceed to tell them a tale of magic, sorcerers and sleeping beauties. They also make the women an irresistible offer – find the keys to a magical glass box in which the souls of three young demigoddesses have been locked, and get $25,000 to search for the keys -- plus a million dollars each if they succeed. Tempted beyond their misgivings, the women agree. Mallory’s turn comes first; she has twenty-eight days to find the key.

The three of them decide to collaborate and help each other through this task. They bring unique talents and perspectives to this search and, in the process, become fast friends. Mallory, an art enthusiast, meets Dana’s flirtatious journalist brother, Flynn, who proceeds to sweep her off her resistant feet. Flynn and his two friends lend a hand to the three women to help solve this puzzle. Very conveniently, they all fall for each other. But this story concentrates mainly on Mallory and Flynn and how they fight and love. The question is, will they decipher the labyrinthine puzzle before it’s too late?

Nora Roberts is generally famous for spinning complex, romantic and suspenseful tales. In this book, the first in the "Key" trilogy, she returns to her old haunt of supernatural and magical tales. The book begins in a typically stunning way, but from there alternately plods and frolics through a journey of love, romance, self-discovery and truth. Mallory and Flynn fall in love much too soon, but then an amusing-enough reversal of chase begins. The story also introduces two other sexy men who’ll undoubtedly star with the remaining two women in the forthcoming books. While the premise of this series is fantastic and engrossing, the tale of the discovery of the first key is not up to Roberts’ usual standards: it’s enchanting, but there’s nothing noteworthy about it.

© 2003 by Rashmi Srinivas for Curled Up With a Good Book

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