When Naia is magically transported from our world to one depicted in a book she read, she must fight to understand unfamiliar dangers, her own unreliable powers, and the terrifying but alluring Shadow Knight bent on conquering it all.
The premise in BLACK MOON DRAW, by veteran indie author Lizzy Ford, is initially simple. Unassuming librarian Naia wallows in despair and self-pity after her fiancée leaves her for another woman just four days before her wedding. When she consoles herself by indulging in a night of wine and chocolate, she passes out and awakens to discover that she has arrived within the world of BLACK MOON DRAW, a fantasy novel by one of her favorite authors.
Dangers abound in this world, and Naia is thrust into the midst of them when its inhabitants declare her to be a battle-witch. First claimed by the Shadow Knight as the key to his victory, and then kidnapped by the Red Knight, Naia struggles to find her place in this odd realm that mixes hints of our real pop culture with the author’s own fascinating creations. At first, Naia denies her circumstances, certain that she is caught in a vivid dream. But as her confrontations with the Shadow Knight grow more personal, she is forced to admit her growing attraction to the dangerous knight. He needs her magic to save the world, but does he also need her for more than that?
The character interactions and fresh world building elements used by the author create a highly entertaining and satisfying read. The characterization and interactions between Naia and the Shadow Knight are some of the best parts of this book. Their relationship is complicated by the Knight’s pre-existing betrothal, Naia’s recent break-up, and her own insecurities and challenges. The book is sprinkled with humor, especially when the author uses pop culture references. For example, at one point the Shadow Knight tells Naia that they must visit the Lord of the Wings who is named Krodo. Naia bursts into fits of giggles, but cannot explain her hysterics to the knight.
Throughout BLACK MOON DRAW, the story flows at a satisfying pace in terms of both the fantasy aspects and the romance. While Naia makes reference to the character archetypes that she expects to find in a fantasy tale (The Hero, The Betrayer, The Villain), the truth of who turns out to play which roles is nicely unpredictable.
BLACK MOON DRAW offers fantasy with some spicy romance scenes amid a battle to save the world.