Really had to ponder the number of stars for this one. I read it in 2 days at a breakneck pace! I enjoyed the world building and political structure oReally had to ponder the number of stars for this one. I read it in 2 days at a breakneck pace! I enjoyed the world building and political structure of their world, I found Cat's powers, and their consequences, fascinating and intriguing. I LOVED all of the Greek mythology and the God's interactions in Cat's life.
What I dislike though is Stockholm syndrome stories unless they are done REALLY REALLY well. This one did better than most at it - Cat CONSTANTLY reminded her captors/friends/team members that they did in fact ABDUCT HER, kept her magically tied up, and then bound to them. She had no issue telling others that they abducted her and never sugar coated it. That part was great! It forced the characters to continuously evaluate their relationships and actions.
Cat was pretty great - she was snarky, blunt, very aware of her power and abilities, no-nonsense, and just badass. She also had one hell of fucked up childhood, so her fears and mentality were pretty understandable. Plus her magic, and her connections to the Gods were awesome!! Griffin was alright - he was strong, direct, had good ideas for running the country, took a genuine interest in people's lives, and was a loyal and loving brother and friend. Of course he also abducts people... The other team members - Flynn, Kato, and Carven were pretty fantastic. They had genuine personalities, loyal, and fiercely devoted to those they care about. Of course they also helped Griffin abduct a woman...
That's my problem with these books - it's not just the character that has to learn to forgive and fall in love with the heroes, but the readers as well. Sometimes writers are able to accomplish this. Other times they can't. In this case Bouchet did a pretty good damn job of it! I adored Flynn and Kato by the end, Carver made me laugh, and Griffin proved himself to be a loving and loyal hero who totally recognized Cat's abilities and appreciated her for herself. Although his penchant for deciding things for him and Cat without ever discussing anything with Cat had me wanting to slap him silly.
Gotta say too, the whole thing reminded me a lot of Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels series. A badass and powerful women, in a magic fueled world, who falls in love with a major alpha, and whose parent threatens everything in their lives and wants them dead. Of and the female lead almost dies 2-4 times per book! LOL!
So in the end I enjoyed it! Will definitely read book 2 to learn more about Cat's past and it will undoubtedly affect their future, and I seriously need more Flynn and Kato! ...more
I typically love stories of female characters masquerading as male characters to survive, prove themselves, and just generally kick ass! And having juI typically love stories of female characters masquerading as male characters to survive, prove themselves, and just generally kick ass! And having just read the Alanna series by Tamora Pierce, where the main character chooses this path, it was awesome to counter it with a story where the female character is forced to walk this path to survive.
Overall I really enjoyed this book! So much more than I even expected to, and a lot of that was due to 1 reason…the sheer overwhelming amount of lying in this book! LOL! So many times the numerous lies necessary to maintain an alternant identity are glossed over, but this book acknowledges what a complete liar Mariko is over and over and over again and I loved it! Okami never misses an opportunity to let Mariko know that her lies are recognized for what they are. He may not have known the truth, but he knew what he was being given was a load of shit! HA!
Also, the backstories on the main characters and several secondary characters were really well done. I am so hungry to learn more about a number of the members of The Black Clan because their personalities shown so bright. And the family dynamics from the time period were fascinating and believable. They lead to so many situations, confrontations, and twists in this book, that just contemplating the dynamics of one of the families is highly complex, so having multiple families storylines woven together made for a really rich tapestry of characters and plots.
Sometimes I did feel the action sequences were a bit difficult to follow along…I mean it’s kinda hard to imagine people fighting with katanas and mystical powers without a visual aid, but it didn’t really detract from the story at all.
So yeah…so happy to read a YA book whose rich pages totally justify the gorgeous cover art. I definitely want to read book 2! ...more