This book, nay, this entire series, has been such a roller coaster thus far, and I for one love it.
I take notes as I read so that when it comes time t...moreThis book, nay, this entire series, has been such a roller coaster thus far, and I for one love it.
I take notes as I read so that when it comes time to write these reviews, I’ll (hopefully) be able to form somewhat coherent sentences. Yet, when I glance over my notes for this installment, I find that it’s mostly filled with expletives, excited exclamation points, quite a bit of angry underlining, and, well, even more colorful expletives. That, in turn, pretty much sums up my feelings in reading this book.
I will attempt to distill my wildly flailing emotions over this story into something readable, while still refraining from giving away too much in the way of actual storyline.
Here we go.
We open the story to find Cherry still dried out from her laudanum addiction thanks to her guardian turned tutor turned friend, Lord Ashmore. Unfortunately for her, this means she’s still not quite at her physical peak, nor does she have the opium to give her the false courage and bravado she’s relied on since she began her reckless career as a Collector.
Hawke is still help prisoner at the Menagerie, but the real question remains as always — is he a prisoner of the Veil because they truly have control over him, or because he chooses to remain under their thumb for reasons that are his own?
Cherry has a lot of amends to make — Communion, Zylphia, the younger Lord Compton, and even her old servants may have been marked by the Veil for her previous antics, and it is yet unknown as to which ones may prove to be allies and which ones may have decided that their own hides are more valuable than whatever previous loyalty they may have felt towards Cherry.
We very quickly find a familiar and terrifying face from Cherry’s past has become a major player in the Menagerie, and the Veil itself has expanded its territory with the help of the Ferrymen. Not only that, but their horrifying experiments on the people under their rule have created a new breed of fighter to do their dirty work.
With Cherry’s fall from grace both from society and from her position as Collector, she finds herself in a sort of a no man’s land, unable to move as freely as she used to, with none of the easy welcome she’s accustomed to either above or below London’s fog.
Hawke’s horrifying behavior the last time we saw him left Cherry hurt and confused, and, stubborn as ever, she’s still continuing to refuse to heed the warnings from coming from practically everyone involved with the situation, nor has she yet taken to heart Ashmore’s lessons on learning to walk before you run in regards to her newfound knowledge of alchemy.
I find that that’s all I can really say without giving away spoilers. Everything else that I had angrily underlined or followed by multiple exclamation points gave away a major plot point. I will say, however, that this was one hell of a ride, full of action, adventure, and emotional turmoil, and the very last thing in my notebook was yet another very colorful expletive, followed by several exclamation points. Infer from that what you will.
A very solid 5/5 Stars and I cannot WAIT to get my greedy little hands on the next (and I think final?) installment.(less)
Only thing I wasn't keen on was the whole bit where it seems priests have sex with other people...moreF*CK yes.
Now I want to go read the rest of the series.
Only thing I wasn't keen on was the whole bit where it seems priests have sex with other people as part of their priestly duties (my own personal hangup, oh well), but that wasn't dwelled upon, and was probably explained in earlier books.
Some readers may be a bit bothered by the fact the protagonists are "underage" for most of the book, but in their world, it obviously wasn't an issue, so it wasn't an issue for me either.
I'm not a hundred percent certain how I felt about this book. On one hand, I love the series, I loved the characters, and the chemistry was delightful...moreI'm not a hundred percent certain how I felt about this book. On one hand, I love the series, I loved the characters, and the chemistry was delightful. On the other, the whole supernatural element that came into play with the curse fell a bit flat for me, not due to the writing, but because I'm simply not in the mood for paranormal romance, even when the "paranormal" elements are so light.
I’ve long been a fan of forbidden romance, and though this had hints of a love triangle (which is not my usual fare), I thoroughly enjoyed the angst c...moreI’ve long been a fan of forbidden romance, and though this had hints of a love triangle (which is not my usual fare), I thoroughly enjoyed the angst caused by the fact that Aileen was a “fallen woman” and Blake was so determined to be proper and never cause a scandal due to his illegitimate status.
That’s not to mention the instant dislike/lust that they both found themselves in from the start, and the chemistry between them was delicious.
One thing that really stood out about this story for me was my discovery of just how much I dislike “time jumps”. You know, the ones where it’s “a week passed by…” type of thing? It led to far too much “telling” and not enough actually experiencing things through the eyes of the characters. While I understood the necessity of it, it still left a bad taste in my mouth.
That said, however, I enjoyed the unconventional (divorced) heroine, the forbidden romance, and the honorable-to-a-fault hero. The Aileen’s sister made me want to murder her on more than one occasion, and I can’t wait to read her story in the next installment of the series and see if another man does a better job of taming her.
There was another aspect of the story that I absolutely adored, though I fear that including it would be a spoiler, so I must only hint at it — the presence and storyline of Tara’s former love, Raury. I was very leery of reading it when the story began, but I was very pleased with the outcome.
Overall, this was a very enjoyable read — one that surprised me on many levels, and I will be following this series as it continues.
As a fan of the first book of the series, I was a little taken aback whe...moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
As a fan of the first book of the series, I was a little taken aback when the story began in a much different manner than the previous one. It wasn’t long, however, before I settled comfortably back into the world Ms. Altenburg has created. I found myself once again drawn in by the intriguing concept of a futuristic world that operates much like the Old West, due to the presence (and then sudden absence) of Immortals who wrought havoc on the lives of the mortals living within their boundaries, as well as the inner struggles of the characters as they learn to move past previous prejudices and fears in order to trust, and later, love.
We’re immediately thrust into the outer edges of the world as man knows it, where women are seen as property, and powerful and corrupt men take every opportunity to abuse their power. Raven, having physically defended herself against the unwanted sexual advances of her evil step-father, Justice, is about to be burned at the stake as a “test” to prove to the villagers that she is in fact demon-spawn — if she burns, she’s innocent. Blade, an outsider who once was an assassin for the Goddesses before they abandoned this realm, is traveling through her village, and thinks only to end her suffering by offering her a swift and merciful death.
The situation quickly spirals into something neither could have expected, and they form an uneasy alliance; Blade with his distrust of anyone associated with demon-kind due to both his own history as an assassin, and his horrific experience of being partially eaten alive during a demon attack years prior, and Raven with her fear of her own demon allure and her determination to avenge both her mother’s death and her own abuse at the hands of Justice.
Overall, I loved it. There was plenty of action, both for the lovers and fighters of the world, and the world that Ms. Altenburg has created continues to capture the imagination. I do think that this one stands fairly well on its own without having read the first book, but I do suggest reading them in order simply because I enjoyed both books equally.
Recommended for fans of reluctant heroes, alluring heroines, and of finding justice on one’s own terms.
Expected Release Date: September 3, 2013 Publisher: Macmillan Imprint: St....moreThis is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.
Expected Release Date: September 3, 2013 Publisher: Macmillan Imprint: St. Martin’s Press Author’s Website: http://sherrilynkenyon.com My Source for This Book: Amazon Part of a Series: Yes, Book 23, Dark-Hunter Series Series Best Read In Order: Yes Steam Level: Steamy Pet Peeves: Torture Porn Favorite Tropes: Physically Imperfect or Scarred
Despite my discomfort and disgust at not only the explicit details of Styxx’s ordeals but also the sheer volume of incidents (which in the end cost the book a half-star in the rating), I still found myself thoroughly enjoying this one, which I admit, surprised me. I was very hesitant to even read this, because of my experience with the author’s penchant for torture porn as well as my relative dislike of the last two novels in the Dark-Hunter series.
I always have a problem rating the newer Sherrilyn Kenyon books because to me, they very often cross the line of creating a sympathetic, tortured protagonist (usually the hero) and instead fall firmly into the realm of torture porn, which is just not my thing.
I ran into this in Born of Silence (the League Series), in Acheron, and again in this book.
While all of the Very Bad Things that happen to Styxx as a youth do indeed make him a sympathetic character, I think it also does him the disservice of making him fairly unbelievable in the idea that he could still be humble and selfless to the point that he should be nominated for Sainthood.
Though I tried to take the forward from the author to heart, where she says (I paraphrase) that sometimes horrible things happening to someone can make them a horrible person, so can it instead make their inner strength and goodness shine. To me, though, so much happened to Styxx that it simply made it very difficult for me to believe that his Inner Good Guy would have survived.
That said, I have to say that Bethany was the perfect counter-balance to all of the very explicit horrible things that Styxx was put through.
I think that (view spoiler)[having Bethany and Styxx meet and fall in love in his relative youth, rather than making having him meet her and falling in love thousands of years after the abuse that he went through (hide spoiler)] made it much more believable that he would have had the inner strength to get through everything he was subjected to.
(view spoiler)[I was, however, very thankful that Ms. Kenyon found a way around Bethany being reincarnated. (hide spoiler)] That’s a trope I struggled with in an earlier book from this series, and was thrilled that it wasn’t an issue in this one.
As a bit of a side note, I would not recommend this book to those not already familiar with the series. I think it would be okay for those who had for whatever reason skipped Acheron, but once the book reached modern times, it moves very quickly with a lot of characters and events that you really need to be familiar with beforehand, else you could easily become hopelessly lost.
That said, for any fan of the original Dark-Hunter series, and definitely for fans of Acheron, I can say with all confidence that this is a must-read.
A very solid 4/5 Stars["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Not my favorite from Amanda Quick, but still entertaining. As with all of Ms. Quick/Krentz/Castle's books, it was very... light. I've read all but a f...moreNot my favorite from Amanda Quick, but still entertaining. As with all of Ms. Quick/Krentz/Castle's books, it was very... light. I've read all but a few books from this author (which is saying something -- I know there's over 80 of them, probably more), and one thing I've always been able to count on would be that they're easy reading. There's excitement, danger, and a touch of steam, and makes a great pool-side read.