Kiss The Flame by Christopher Rice ~★REVIEW★~

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In a standalone novella that combines the worlds of THE FLAME and his novel, THE SURRENDER GATE, New York Times bestselling author Christopher Rice returns you to a mysterious candle shop in the New Orleans French Quarter where the scents of passion provide the courage to embrace your heart’s desire.

Are some risks worth taking?

Laney Foley is the first woman from her hard working family to attend college. That’s why she can’t act on her powerful attraction to one of the gorgeous teaching assistants in her Introduction to Art History course. Getting involved with a man who has control over her final grade is just too risky. But ever since he first laid eyes on her, Michael Brouchard seems to think about little else but the two of them together. And it’s become harder for Laney to ignore his intelligence and his charm.

During a walk through the French Quarter, an intoxicating scent that reminds Laney of her not-so-secret admirer draws her into an elegant scented candle shop. The shop’s charming and mysterious owner seems to have stepped out of another time, and he offers Laney a gift that could break down the walls of her fear in a way that can only be described as magic. But will she accept it?

Light this flame at the scene of your greatest passion and all your desires will be yours… 

Lilliane Williams is a radiant, a supernatural being with the power to make your deepest sexual fantasy take shape around you with just a gentle press of her lips to yours. But her gifts came at a price. Decades ago, she set foot inside what she thought was an ordinary scented candle shop in the French Quarter. When she resisted the magical gift offered to her inside, Lilliane was endowed with eternal youth and startling supernatural powers, but the ability to experience and receive romantic love was removed from her forever. When Lilliane meets a young woman who seems poised to make the same mistake she did years before, she becomes determined to stop her, but that will mean revealing her truth to a stranger. Will Lilliane’s story provide Laney with the courage she needs to open her heart to the kind of true love only magic can reveal?


My question is: Where have I been that I’m only just now hearing about these anthologies?  For those of you as out of the loop as I am, 1001 Dark Nights is a collection of novellas/anthologies written by some of the most popular romance authors in the genre.

Kiss The Flame is a stand-alone novella and is a story within a story.  The enveloping story is a continuation of The Flame and The Surrender Gate.  The second story,  the romantic element, follows Laney and Michael, student and professor.  Their illicit attraction to each other puts Laney in a difficult position – risk losing her scholarship by having an affair with her professor, or risk losing Michael.  Faced with an impossible decision, Laney stumbles upon a quaint little candle shop, drawn by a scent that reminds her of Michael.  If she lights the candle, her greatest desire could be hers. But which desire?

Laney and Michael’s story was sweet but fairly predictable (it’s a romance novella, there’s an HEA).  I liked Michael. I liked his willingness to take a chance. To not wait until the moment was perfect because there never really is a perfect moment.  Laney has so much going on, I just wanted to shake her.  I was ecstatic when she finally pulled up her big girl panties and took a leap of faith. The love scene in the back of the car during a thunderstorm in the south was hawt, but I’ve sat in the back of a Kia Soul and there is not a lot of space back there, so kudos to them.

What I was really interested in, and is making me go read The Flame and The Surrender Gate, is the Bastion/Lillian/Desire Exchange storyline. Especially since that part of the story ended in a cliffhanger (damn you authors and your cliffhangers!!).

Who is Bastion? How did he come to be? What happens next?  Is it too late for Lillian to get her HEA?

These are the things I want to know.

So, my advice dear reader, is read Kiss The Flame, but read The Flame and The Surrender Gate first, so you don’t run into the same predicament I am in.


Christopher Rice HeadshotAbout Christopher Rice:

After publishing four New York Times bestselling thrillers by the age of 30 and being declared one of People Magazine’s Sexiest Men Alive, award-winning writer Christopher Rice became the first author to make his erotic romance debut part of the 1,001 DARK NIGHTS series. THE FLAME: A Desire Exchange Novella kicked off a steamy new series set in New Orleans, featuring magical candles and a sexy new breed of supernatural beings, The Radiants, who are devoted to helping heroes and heroines realize their heart’s desire. THE FLAME earned accolades from some of the biggest names in erotic romance and was quickly followed up by THE SURRENDER GATE: A Desire Exchange Novel, available from Evil Eye Concepts as a Blue Box Special. Aside from authoring eight works of dark suspense, Christopher is also the co-host and executive producer of a streaming Internet radio show he launched with his best friend, New York Times bestselling author Eric Shaw Quinn. Each Sunday at 8 PM ET/ 5 PM PT, THE DINNER PARTY SHOW WITH CHRISTOPHER RICE & ERIC SHAW QUINN brings you a new episode at

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