Favorite Quote: “You sure you weren’t too clever for him? Don’t get me wrong, I know he’s bright [...] but he is still just a man.”
Dragos Cuelebre desperately needs a vacation. After losing two of his staff to love, he has been working non stop. His mate decides to take matters into her own hands by leaving clues to a treasure hunt and soon he, Pia, and the peanut are heading towards the Bermuda Triangle for sun, sand, and treasure hunting. But nothing is ever easy for the King of the Wyrs. Between the peanut’s rapidly expanding powers and certain people who don’t want the treasure found…this vacation is turning into more work than imagined.
I adore Thea Harrison’s Elder Races series, especially when she devotes the storyline to Dragos Cuelebre. Drago’s Takes A Holiday is a fun filled sexy adventure with lots of passion, action, and humor as Dragos and the family try to catch some downtime after an exhausting year. I adore that Liam (the peanut) is an active participant in the story. Readers have waited a long time to see Drago’s interact with his son and the wait has been worth it. Some steamy sexy times, pirate sightings, and clues to series direction make this a must read addition to the series.
A good start to a YA shape shifter series. Personable characters and an interesting storyline though I would have liked it to be a little less focus o...moreA good start to a YA shape shifter series. Personable characters and an interesting storyline though I would have liked it to be a little less focus on the characters and more on the conflict. By the end, I knew the cast like the back of my hand but the conflicts surrounding them were still fuzzy. (less)
On Midnight Wings by Adrian Phoenix The Maker’s Songseries has always been a sword through the heart series for me to read. A dark noir urban fantasy;...moreOn Midnight Wings by Adrian Phoenix The Maker’s Song series has always been a sword through the heart series for me to read. A dark noir urban fantasy; this series both excites me and infuriates me. It’s rather like an intense soap opera, giving us hints towards the overall conclusion all the while leading us down a twisted path of deceit, betrayal, and deception. We are constantly embroiled in the past, present, and future throughout this series; never sure where we are going to end up. That is part of the charm yet also frustrating to a certain extent. Ms. Phoenix does not offer false platitudes nor does she toss in random plot elements to allow us a breather while she prepares for next assault upon our sense.
This series grabbed me from the first moment I met Dante Bastipe and his FBI agent, Heather Wallace. A romance filled with tragedy is born that opens a path to a destiny that could destroy the world. Poor Dante and Heather have been through some of the most dramatic emotionally heartbreaking scenes I have ever encountered in a fictional relationship. Frankly, it never ends for them. Book four, Etched In Bone, left me in a predicament. I’m at the point where I need some happiness or assurances of happiness for my couple because the books are depressing me.
On Midnight Wings picks up exactly where Etched In Bone ends. Heather and Dante were kidnapped and separated. Heather is taken to a mental institution to be “reprogrammed” and Dante wakes in a secret laboratory. His programming as a child by the Shadow Branch is beginning to falter, causing even more fractures in his psyche. A psyche that was only contained by his proximity to his anchor and lover, Heather. With her gone, Dante’s spiral into madness accelerates, further pushed by the torture and horrendous experiments being done on him. The past and present collide in Dante’s mind, leaving Dante in the midst of a continuously cycling psychotic breakdown the majority of the book.
Heather fares little better. Her father, tricked by the FBI, finds Heather and helps her escape though she turns the tables on him. Danger dogs her every step as she uses her bond to Dante to slowly make her way to him. As Heather fights her way to Dante and Dante fights the demons in his mind, Lucian and the rest of Dante’s crew search for them both as they fight their own battles against the ever increasing list of those who seek Dante for their own means.
This book frustrated me. One one hand, I love being back in this dark and sensual world that Phoenix has built. I adore the convoluted characters and the multi layered storylines. This series keeps you guessing as it repeatedly rips your heart out. My frustration comes from the fact that On Midnight Wings offers nothing new in way of advancement in the arc nor the romance. It feels like we are playing catch up; especially after the less than revealing previous installment. Plenty of gripping scenes and engaging dialogue from everyone involved and yet nothing is accomplished till the last few pages. The interaction between key characters is almost null. Add in the fact it took almost two years for this installment to release, I expected more.
I miss seeing Heather and Dante together. Their relationship and romance has become the cornerstone of the series and we have been long denied seeing them together without an ax over their heads. I enjoy anticipation and angst as much as the next reader but this continuous testing and emotional torment of our protagonists is beginning to wear thin. Watching Dante’s descent into madness is interesting, but nothing new. Watching Heather fight her way to Dante’s side is also interesting, but nothing new. It’s a regurgitating plot device that is seen repeatedly throughout this series. I honestly felt some of the constant stream of explanations could have been cut and Dante and Heather’s separation could have been chronicled into a few chapters; allowing them to come together early on and the story to advance.
I did enjoy the various scenes where we are given insight into certain long term characters’ agendas. Almost everyone you have ever met in this series makes an appearance in here, each one fighting their way towards Dante for reasons all their own. While I will continue reading this series as I have a heavy investment in the outcome, the dark overtones were extremely prevalent in here and unfortunately it lacked the intense action and subtle humor that normally helps to balance that darkness.
Review: Bound By Night by Larissa Ione Favorite Quote: “I should have been a relationship therapist or some shit.“
In a world where vampires are enslav...moreReview: Bound By Night by Larissa Ione Favorite Quote: “I should have been a relationship therapist or some shit.“
In a world where vampires are enslaved to humans, one woman and one man seek to right a terrible wrong and find a love worth dying for.
Nicole Martin hates vampires. As a child, she watched her family’s vampire slaves revolt and decimate her entire family right before her eyes. Taken out of the US as a child, Nicole is back and ready to take up the reins of her family’s company, Daedelus, as CEO. She plans to continue her work finding a cure for vampirism in hopes she can not only obliterate her memories of her past but also the entire bloodsucking vampire race.
Riker, a member of the renegade vampire clan, MoonBound, has waited years to exact revenge against the Martin for the deaths of his mate and friends. When Nicole Martin comes back to the states to take over her parents’ company as CEO, Riker sees the perfect opportunity to take his revenge and kidnaps Nicole in order to use her as a bargaining chip against a rival clan. Determined to make her pay for her family’s crime, he finds himself becoming obsessed with her instead.
Nicole led a fairly sheltered life overseas and had no idea of the atrocities her parents’ company committed against the vampires. Life with the MoonBound clan quickly disabuses Nicole of her prejudices and forces her to take a long hard look at her own crimes against them. Her disgust and shame forces her to use her in depth knowledge of vampire biology to help find cures to problems that plague the vampires. She also finds her attraction to Riker growing though Riker’s own prejudice against her and her family leaves her little doubt he does not return her feelings.
Caught between a rival vampire clan’s need for revenge and a human company who doesn’t want to give up their experiments, Nicole and Riker find themselves falling deeper for one another as their respective species begin taking steps towards war.
I am a huge fan of Larissa Ione’s Demonica and Lords Of Deliverance series. Both are dark, sensual, action packed, wickedly humorous paranormal romance series that offer a healthy balance of humor and angst in a supernatural setting. Her newest paranormal romance series, MoonBound Clan Vampire, introduces us to a brand new world filled with slave owning humans and their chattel-vampires. Steady pacing, engaging characters and bold plotlines slowly builds Bound By Night into an entertaining read. Ione’s use Native American legend on which to base her vampire lore is a unique and interesting aspect of the story. Quite a bit of time is spent on background information and building the arc, explaining the slavery issues and how each of our protagonists play into it. Though is makes for a somewhat slow beginning, once our heroine and hero get together, the action and pacing picks up considerably.
Our protagonists, Nicole and Riker, are both strong intelligent loyal individuals whose similarities in personality adds to the strong chemistry that exists between them from their first meeting. I liked that Nicole wasn’t a subdued female; scared and quiet when faced with possible death. Upon being kidnapped by Riker, she demands a dagger, stating that when she dies, it will be by her hand, not his. She takes command of her own destiny, isn’t afraid to fight for what she wants, and apologises when it is due. My only qualms with her was the fact she kept telling Riker to get over his guilt over his mates death. Yes, it’s been years but still…it’s hard to look into the face of the one you blame and admit to a romantic interest.
Riker is quite the sexy melodramatic alpha male. He’s a classic Ione hero. Strong, seductive, sarcastic, and a wee bit angsty. His guilt over failing to save his mate and friends during the Martin uprising eats at him constantly. He hates that he is attracted to Nicole and goes out of his way to be an arse to her at times, blaming her for everything. I found his loyalty to his clan and species admirable but he constant mixed signals towards Nicole tiring.
The romance is a classic enemies to lovers trope that develops well though the pace is slow and fraught with emotional angst. The attraction and chemistry strong but it takes time for our lovers to see past their own prejudices to the heart of the person before them. As always, Ione writes some incredibly hot sexy love scenes.
“You wondered why sex with a vampire was such a big deal. I’m going to show you.”Riker moved toward her, slowly, like a cat sneaking up on a bird.“Stamina.”He stepped closer.“Multiple orgasms.”Closer, and her mouth went dry.“Flexibility.”Closer. Her skin flushed hot.“Strength”Closer. Her stomach did a flip-flop.“The ability to sense heat so we know what parts of the body are the most sensitive at the right time.”Closer. A throbbing ache started low in her pelvis.“The ability to hear the slightest change in the tempo of your pulse so we know exactly how every stroke, kiss, and lick affects you.”Oh. Dear. Lord.
Some borrowing from the Demonica series in regards to the love making, but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment.
The secondary cast of characters are a personable lot whose individuality and actions throughout the book guarantees that their stories will be worth reading. I fell in love with Hunter, the leader of Clan MoonBound and Myne, Riker’s best friend. Both are alphas to the core whose diverse actions and witty commentary keep me laughing.
“I was born awesome.”
The ending is an intense, emotional mash up of action, deception, and betrayal as Ms. Ione resolves the main conflict but leaves enough open to promise we haven’t seen the last of Daedelus or the inter clan fighting. Bound By Night was a treat to read and looks to be the beginning of another winning series by Larissa Ione. Book two, Chained By Night, releases August 4, 2014.
As always, I enjoy the antics of Eve and Rourke as they balance marriage and murder in a futuristic world. While I liked this installment, I missed...more3.5
As always, I enjoy the antics of Eve and Rourke as they balance marriage and murder in a futuristic world. While I liked this installment, I missed the normal edginess that usually underlines it. As Eve and Rourke are now at a place where their demons are quiet and their marriage is happy; the plot overtook the book, at the expense of our protagonists and their lives. We spend so much time in the villains head, I found my attention wandered at times. Especially since we know from the beginning who the villain is and what his motivations are. The balance felt off.(less)
Favorite Quote: She’s died twice while protecting her city…and she’d do it again to save the people she loves.
Many fans including myself were not sure this particular book would come into existence after we were informed the series had been dropped by Meding’s publisher. I was pleased to see Meding decided to publish on her own and bring her fans book five-Requiem Of The Dead. Meding does a fabulous job of bringing readers up to speed with brief recaps from throughout the series and especially, book four, Wrong Side Of Dead.
Requiem Of The Dead picks up not long after Wrong Side Of Dead. One important aspect to remember about this series is that everything takes place in a relatively short time period. Only a few months go by between book one and now. Insane scientist William Thackery is dead though his experiments, Halfies (the goblin half breeds) are alive and well, multiplying at an unheard of rate. The Watchtower (an alliance group formed of supernatural clans and the hunters) is severely understaffed due to the vampire’s withdrawal of their support and the Assembly’s internal strife. Evy and Wyatt, along with various other enforcers and certain human allies are now responsible for protecting the entire city. When a rash of vicious goblin attacks begin to cripple the city, all clues circle back to Evy and her killing of the Goblin Queen in retaliation for her part in Evy’s torture and death.
As if Evy didn’t have enough on her plate, she is also trying to help Wyatt deal with his new half breed status, find some missing werewolf teens, and discover who has the cure for the vampire infection that is eradicating their race. Politics play hard and loose as Evy finds herself once again having to place her life on the line to save everything and everyone she loves.
I am a huge fan of Ms. Meding’s Dreg City series. A dark edgy Urban Fantasy filled with nail biting action, suspense, and intrigue. The originality of the world and it’s characters is what keeps me hooked in this series. The lines between good and evil are blurred; giving credence to knowledge that sometimes heroes and villains are only separated by a single action. Smooth writing, fast pacing, and engaging dialogue keeps you on your toes to the very end. A convoluted storyline engages us as we learn of the many supernatural factions and the human warriors who stand between them and us. Betrayal and redemption continue to be underlying themes as we watch our heroine navigate through her convoluted life.
Evy is a force to be reckoned with. She has learned the hard way what blind obedience can do and that colors every decision she makes from here on out. Ms. Meding has allowed her to grow within the storyline at a steady comfortable pace. Evy has accepted the body she now inhabits and her love for her former handler, Wyatt. Ms. Meding does a wonderful job of voicing Evy’s emotions for her boyfriend and the friends she had made along the way. Harsh betrayals by those she thought were friends left a vulnerability in Evy that she is still struggling to come to terms with. They were her family and she misses that security though she has begun to build another family unit filled with various human and supernatural entities. Courage and loyalty are her strongest points as she continuously tries to save a world that has done nothing but throw her to the wolves from day one. She’s not completely forgiving though. She will never trust those who betrayed her again and will show no mercy should they get in her way.
Wyatt, Evy’s ex-handler and current lover, has dealt admirably with the blows that continually strike Evy and him. Though their relationship is still feeling it’s way due to past events, they reach a sense of peace in here that offers a much needed break. They have more than earned it. Throughout the series Wyatt and Evy have both sacrificed much to be together. We see in here how Wyatt’s life has become much more complicated after being infected by a lupa-werewolf. Now considered a half breed, he finds himself an anomaly in a unknown long game. Regardless of his own issues though, he is a constant presence and we are left with no doubt where his loyalties lie.
There is a deep emotional aspect in here that began with book four and continues on in here. Evy is once again tested in ways that would destroy a lessor person yet she triumphs, not through supernatural means but through her strength and courageousness. One aspect of this series that never fails to astound me is the lack of fear Ms.Meding has in choosing to show the violence of an unsteady world and the huge risks she takes in regards to her characters. Chances are taken and while some bets pay off (within the story), others don’t and we are left to bear witness to the outcome. Some scenes in here take an emotional toil on your heart yet there is a ray of hope that lets you know things will continue to get better. I will say I missed Phin tremendously. He is such a large part of the series and Evy’s life. I’m looking forward to seeing him again soon.
The main conflict and events leading up to it’s climactic resolution are a stomach dropping rollercoaster ride of thrills and chills. There are some rough spots in here that had me jittery with nerves as I tried to figure out exactly how this would resolve itself. But Ms. Meding wondrous sleight of hand tricks allows us an acceptable outcome while leaving some issues open to ensure more exciting adventures for Evy and us are on the way.
Action, suspense, intrigue, and just the right amount of humor and romance makes Ms. Meding’s Dreg City series a must read for all noir urban fantasy aficionados.
Our story begins with the excavation of the Lugh’s Spear. An airship that was lost when the first colonist arrived on the planet. Jace Bayrum, a non nobleman, is working with the Raz and Del T’Elecampanes to excavate, catalog the discoveries, and share in the wealth. A loner and a bit of a player, his family history ensures that a heartmate is most definitely unwanted.
Glyssa Licorice is a second level librarian. Also a bit of a loner, she has lived her life sequestered in town and at her family’s public library. Having had an affair with Jace years ago, she knows he is her HeartMate but choose to let him go. She wants him to acknowledge their bond and come to her on his own. When Jace is hurt in an accident on the job, Glyssa feels it and decides the time has come to connect with her errant lover. She uses her connections to obtain a position on the site. She wants to use the excavation to help her achieve first librarian status by recording the historic event and maneuver Jace into accepting her as his HeartMate.
When Gyssa arrives, she is dismayed to find Jace remembers her but doesn’t want a HeartMate. He refuses to commit to her and soon they find themselves in a sexual relationship that only serves to further drive them apart. When Jace once again finds himself in a precarious position, he realizes that the only person he wants by his side is no longer there.
I’ve been a fan of Ms. Owens’s Celta’s HeartMates series since the beginning. A comfortable well written fantasy that brings to life a colony of settlers from Earth. Offering an intense and intriguing romance between two strong willed protagonists, usually intertwined with a subplot of suspense. I say usually because this particular installment failed on every level for me. Like the last two installments, this one started out with edgier storyline but the execution and development (both in story and character) stalls in the beginning and never recovers.
The protagonists are lackluster and boring. Both are loners and want their destinies to play out on their own terms therefore becoming angry when they each don’t act the way the other expects or wants. Our hero flat out rejects the heroine’s declarations of love but has no problem sleeping with her nor she with him. In fact, the heroine chooses to continue to have relations with him in hopes it will bind him to her. Nice. She continually talks of forcing him to bond with her (which she can do legally) but then slips her halo back on to reassure us she would never do that. Uh huh. The heroine pushes and prods the hero, not understanding why he doesn’t feel the same way she does. While this could have been an exciting battle of the wills, the conflict in reality is subpar. There is no chemistry between them. No romantic sparks. Their emotions are shallow, the complaints repetitive, and we never get to the meat of their issues till almost the very end of the story. They had a four day sexathon in which Glyssa knew Jace was her HeartMate but Jace firmly blocks that aspect of his heart. When Glyssa arrives at the excavation site, she is dismayed and shocked he doesn’t want to have a relationship with her. Never mind they haven’t seen each other in years. Never mind that they never have sat down and tried to get to know each other. Never mind that he is repeatedly and brutally frank in that he does not EVER want a HeartMate.
The mystery of the airship excavation and the deadly mishaps also fails. A lot of time is spent talking about the excavation and the work being done but we don’t see anything actually happen in present time. Too much time is spent on the business logistics which were frankly tedious and boring. I would have enjoyed getting a descriptive account of the inside of the ship and it’s contents as they are being discovered but that was not to be. The secondary characters introduced completely eclipse our main protagonists. We see some old friends, Camilla and her husband, Laev along with Raz and Del, who offer far more color and emotional entertainment then Jace and Glyssa. Even Glyssa’s sister has a better developed storyline then Glyssa and Jace and we see almost little to nothing from her.The often interesting power flair discoveries fall flat as we never really learn what our lovers’ flairs are. The world building is almost non existent and there is no arc evolution. There are the requisite FAMS whose exuberant personalities added humor to an otherwise dull story. It’s only at the very end do our main protagonists exhibit the rich emotions and flowing dialogue that I have come to expect from the series. By then though it’s too late. I have lost all interest in the characters and their future. This was a disappointment across the board for me and I can’t help but wonder if Ms. Owens is getting tired of her series.
Regardless of my lack of enjoyment, I will read the next in the series, if only to see if this was a one time fluke.
Favorite Quote: “I would have done as much for anyone. It just happened to be you.”
Elysian Fields picks up a few weeks after the events in River Road. Drusilla Jaco (DJ), is still recovering from the wounds she received battling an insane nymph. When she is called to the scene of a brutal murder, she discovers that a serial killer, known as the Axeman who terrorized New Orleans back in the early 1900’s, has come back from the dead to reign hell on the mortal realm. Further investigations reveal that an unknown necromancer summoned the Axeman and he is gunning for DJ. If DJ’s life wasn’t dangerous enough, she finds herself caught in the middle of a political disaster when the Elven Synod demands access to DJ for training purposes and a freak accident occurs that could spell the end of DJ’s career… and her life.
Elysian Fields is the third book in Suzanne Johnson’s paranormal urban fantasy Sentinel Of New Orleans series. An action packed series that effectively bridges the supernatural with the mundane. Set in an alternate New Orleans, supernaturals intermingle with humans; though most humans aren’t conscious of this. The series is based on Drucilla Jaco, a junior wizard who stands as one of the sentinels charged with standing guard over the supernatural borders in New Orleans. Placed in her position through circumstance, DJ is still in the process of learning to control her powers. We recently learned of DJ’s elven heritage which is already causing her problems in the form of a magic staff that everyone wants but no one can touch until DJ’s death. The series follows her through her life as she investigates supernatural affairs and deals with the inevitable chaos that seems to mock her every step.
“ I’m a chaos junkie…”
I wasn’t impressed with the first book in this series, Royal Street. I adored the lush world building and overall premise, but the character development and revealing of the storyline was not a smooth transition. River Road more than made up for all that and I found myself engrossed in the second installment. Elysian Fields presented as a worthy follow up to River Road but failed to deliver for me. Elysian Fields places heavy emphasis back on the romance of the arc; a romance that seems to evolve sluggishly. The conflict suffers in my opinion as very interesting multiple storylines circle and intertwine, none able to fully develop or flesh out as we are stuck in a lackluster and unappealing love triangle. This was a huge mistake I felt that occurred in book one and I’m dismayed to see it happening again.
I was disappointed in this latest installment as I feel Ms. Johnson’s Sentinel series is an enjoyable urban fantasy. Humorous and suspenseful, it keeps you fully engaged. Her voice resonates throughout and I feel she is an immensely talented writer. There is a nice balance between the magic and the police procedural investigative means DJ uses to solve the mysteries. The world building continues to expand and evolve, giving us more insight into this world of magic in a modern, mortal setting. Supernatural entities coexist with humanity in a comfortable relationship.
Thought the first two installments seemed more conflict based, this installment most certainly revolves around the main character, DJ. DJ. has a lot on her plate this go around. A supernatural serial killer, her elven heritage, and a love triangle that I had hoped would resolve itself by now. Alex Warin, her former mentor and now partner, has been wth D.J. from the beginning. The sexual tension between them has burned bright for years though both of them fear the fall. Some steps are made that lead the reader to believe a choice has been made but DJ’s impetuousness puts it back into the unknown. Alex himself also has a problem with all the problems that seem to follow DJ.. His need for order and control is constantly tested by DJ.’s motto of ‘it’s better to ask for forgiveness later than permission first’ attitude.
“Did it ever occur to you to that you might want to talk to me before making a decision like that? Did it not even pass through your mind that you’re not the only one this affects? Jesus.”
This was another area that I felt failed in execution. In River Road, there was a remarkable growth and maturity to DJ’s character. In here, it’s as if she regresses. We see her once again making decisions on the fly which in turn backfire every single time. She suffers from what I call Scarlett O’Hara syndrome. She’ll think about it tomorrow. Everything will be addressed tomorrow. She does suffer a traumatic event that affects her both physically and mentally but I felt the plot element was merely placed in the book in order to being in yet another man wanting to warm DJ’s bed. Quince (Rand) Randolph. Though in a relationship with DJ’s best friend, Eugenia, his actions show a marked preference to DJ; much to her dismay. While DJ is physically attracted to Rand, (as with almost every man she meets), DJ feels there is something off with him and knows he’s not being honest with her. Certain scenes prove that later in the book and DJ learns the hard way that you should always go with your gut.
“I had never felt so violated [...] I’m never going to forgive you for this. Never.”
The main plot is an intriguing mixture of mystery, suspense, and supernatural what not but as I stated earlier, romance overshadows it and I felt we only get the bare bones of the storyline. The merging of the Axeman plot with various external factors makes for a huge OMG moment that foreshadows future problems for DJ. I’m looking forward to the exploration of that storyline. We meet quite a few interesting characters (good and evil) whose agendas will bear watching in the future. We also see quite a few old faces. DJ’s sexy and very dead admirer Jean Lafitte provides some humor and drama as DJ is forced once again to place herself in his debt. Out of all the characters, he is my favorite. His and DJ’s relationship is probably the most honest one she has. Charming, flirtatious, and occasionally smarmy, he has gradually proven himself to be a true friend that genuinely cares for DJ’s well being. Not to say he won’t use her for his own gain, but at least he’s honest in his duplicity. Their emotional bond is the strongest in this series and helps to balance the many uneasy romantic threads that wind their way through the storyline.
The ending is quite dramatic in it’s reveal. Action packed with decisions made that will reflect on DJ’s future both romantically and magically. All the loose threads are gathered and tied off, effectively solving the mystery but leaving an opening to assure us this isn’t the last we have seen of it. While I continue to enjoy Ms. Johnson’s writing, I can’t help but feel that the romance is being pushed with a heavy hand into this series and rather than elevating it, it’s slowly suffocating the overall appeal.
An enjoyable emotional novella between two lost souls whose physical transformations leave them feeling adrift and divorced from life. Slow in the beg...more
An enjoyable emotional novella between two lost souls whose physical transformations leave them feeling adrift and divorced from life. Slow in the beginning, Archer spends a great deal of time allowing our protagonists to develop a relationship at their own pace. A bit wordy, though the payoff is worth the wait. Quiet and sensual, this story glides along smoothly, picking up pace as our lovers begin to grow beyond the boundaries they've set for themselves. A climatic ending leaves the reader sighing from pleasure.
I do believe I will be looking into the first 4 of this series. (less)
Trish “Little Miss” Muffet has loved Nicky “Little Boy” Blue since she was snatched from Make Believe and sent to the Here and Now. But fate had different plans for the two of them and Trish resigned herself to crushing on him from afar. When she is attacked at a crime scene, she is shocked her rescuer is none other than Nicky. Nicky has been missing for two years after he was viciously attacked and his wife killed. Now a vigilante that goes by the moniker “the spider”, Nicky is taking down predators on his way to his ultimate target-Vlad Dracula-the man who ordered the hit on him and his wife. And he needs Trish’s help.
Trish doesn’t believe in Nicky’s renegade way of doling out justice, but she agrees Vlad needs taking down. As Trish and Nicky work together to capture the rogue vampire, the heat that has always simmered between them blazes into a smoldering inferno, but Nicky has no plans to remain in town after his job is done. With danger coming at them from all sides, Trish knows the only man who can save her is a prickly spider whose touch leaves her breathless. Can Little Miss Muffet convince Little Boy Blue to come sit on her tuffet with her or will fear of the unknown scare them both away?
When Nat from WickedLilPixie brought this book to my attention, all I could think of was, “Ugh, Once Upon A Time fanfic.” I did some investigating and saw I actually had the first two in the series on my ereader. After reading the blurb to book one, Red I was intrigued enough to give it a try. I devoured books one and two in one day and requested the third one ASAP. ReSine’s Transplanted series offers a unique look into the mythology of fairytales in this mixture of UF/PNR; twisting it all into a sexy dark funny story that kept me hooked. Though it has a bit of an OUAT feel to it in the overall premise, the similarities end there.
***MILD SPOILERS FROM PREVIOUS BOOKS AHEAD! PROCEED AT YOUR OWN RISK!***
Set in an alternative modern time, we learn in book one that Lavender Seelie, Cinderella’s fairy godmother, let her ego get the best of her and somehow managed to bring forth and trap certain fairy tale, nursery rhyme, and literary characters in our world. Unable to undo what she did, the characters rebuilt their lives and learned to survive in the Here and Now with the Ordinaries (humans). Each book focuses on one hero and heroine with a resolvable conflict and HEA ending. I wouldn’t recommend reading out of order, though. There is a continuing arc and characters and situations bleed over into each new installment.
Along Came A Spider is the 3rd installment of ReSine’s Transplanted series. Well-plotted and cast with strong and personable characters, Along Came A Spider is filled with taut suspense, delicious betrayal, dangerous antagonists, and a healthy dose of humor and romance. An engaging world that captured me from page one. A strongly character driven story, I love how ReSine expands on each character’s story, adding dimension and personality. For example, Snow White is a brothel owner after her prince divorces her and leaves her broke. The Three Little Pigs are shady house builders. Little Red Riding Hood is an enforcer/police officer for FMA-Fairytale Management Authority-a law enforcement agency. The Sandman is a drug pushing kingpin.
SeRine builds her world with a deft hand; achieving a nice balance between the story and her continuing evolving world. She introduces new characters and plot elements in a way that does not overburden the reader with unrealistic interpretation or facilitate the need for continuous explanations. The story is a perfect blending of seductive romance, non stop action, realistic main characters, secondary characters, and intriguing mystery. Well thought out and fast paced, it creates a satisfying arc of development for the main characters and culminates in two very different sort of conflicts – one that threatens the lives of Trish and Nicky and one that threatens their happily ever after.
I enjoyed getting to know Trish and Nicky better. We met them in previous books but this installment is one hundred percent their story. Trish is a coroner for FMA. Her special gift allows her to help solve cases involving murdered Tales. Nicky is a mob boss who uses loyalty and goodwill to keep his people happy and businesses successful. Both of them are intelligent, strong willed, and very independent yet with hidden vulnerabilities that makes them very loyal to their friends. They would both give their lives to save a friend. Trish is a bit girly girl but can more than hold her own when it comes to kicking arse and taking names. She and Nicky work well together. Having been given hints that they were attracted to one another from the beginning, their flirting and romance moves fast but at a realistic rate. No need to dance around, the chemistry is there and I like characters that act on it without playing unnecessary games. Their romance blends well with the plot lines, running smoothly underneath. Fantastic banter keeps the storyline moving at a brisk pace and injects livity into the drama surrounding them.
The secondary cast of characters are an eccentric and quirky bunch. We see old friends and meet some new friends. I enjoyed seeing what Red/Nate and Lavender/Seth are up to and where their relationships have taken them. Meeting Lavender’s family garners many laughs along with a few of Snow White’s skeevy dwarf doorman.
The main conflict wraps up nicely in a flurry of action and suspense. We are left with some interesting questions while setting up some new storylines. I was shocked by one particular event but liked the manner in which ReSine resolves it. All in all, Along Came A Spider is a satisfying read and I recommend this series to anyone who loves snark, humor, mystery, and steamy uncomplicated romance in their paranormal diet. I look forward to the next installment-title and release date to be announced.
Favorite Quote: “Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…”
In attempts to repair the friendship with her bff, Mallory Carmichael, Merit heads to Saul's Pizzeria for an impromptu dinner date with Mallory. When a series of bombs go off, shattering their peaceful dinner, Merit and Mallory go out to investigate and find themselves in the midst of a riot. Keep Chicago Clean, a new radical anti vampire group, has bombed a nearby blood manufacturing plant. As the group continues their attacks on random targets, including a vicious attack on the Grey House, Merit and Ethan begin to suspect there is a more insidious plot afoot. Merit knows deep down that McKetrick is behind it all but unable to prove it.
If that weren’t bad enough, the General Presidium is up to their old tricks when it announces they have blacklisted Cadogan House as punishment for withdrawing from the GP, Cadogan HOuse is now persona non grata and any house that acknowledges them will suffer their wrath. As tempers and emotions flare, the battle for Chicago has become personal and Merit knows the worse is yet to come.
Biting Bad, the eighth installment in Neill’s Chicagoland Vampire series, starts out with a bang as it reveals the plot elements of the story. Fast pacing and high charged energy keeps the story flowing nicely as we learn of the new challenges Merit, Ethan, and the rest of Cadogan House are now facing. The world building remains inviting as Neill builds a balance that embraces both the supernatural and the mundane and build upon it. While I enjoyed the overall storyline, there wasn’t much arc advancement. There are quite a few loose threads still waving in the wind. A large amount of the book revolves around Ethan and Merit. They have settled into a comfortable routine that shows us they are both committed to the relationship and in it for the long haul. Sexy chemistry still burns sharp between them and I enjoyed seeing them interact on a sweet emotional level without all the drama that has infected them throughout the series.
“I have eternal life, “ he said. “but you are my undying passion.”
The mystery and subsequent investigation was interesting and filled with action and suspense though I got a deja vu feeling at times. I felt a strong similarity to the events in House Rules in the setup and execution of the story. There is lots of action but the revealing is lowkey. Everything comes together to easily without much conflict. Certain sub plots seem to go nowhere, offering no boost or advancement of the storyline and I wondered at their significance. We receive some ambiguous clues to the future and I for one am interested in seeing what Neill will build with those clues. I would have more inclusion of Gabriel Keene and his prophecy. That thread seems to have stalled but I’m sure Neill has great plans for us and Merit regarding that.
Engaging secondary characters and sustainable relationships remains a strong aspect in the overall enjoyment of this series. The dialogue remains sharp and witty, keeping you laughing at the most inappropriate times.
“Latte, half caf, extra hot, double foam, two shots, soy milk.” “I’m not really sure how I can follow that.”
Old and new enemies come into play as Merit and Ethan work on discovering the GP’s real agenda towards them and figure out who is targeting their kind. We see many old friends and get a small intimate looks at how their lives are progressing. Mallory is slowly becoming a strong presence again and I like that she and Merit are rebuilding their friendship. Neill makes a major concession regarding Mallory that bodes interesting for the future. Catcher plays a major role in this installment and I’m glad to see him and Mallory making progress in their relationship.
The ending wraps up this storyline, leaving a few open threads and a small cliffhanger to lead us into book nine, Wild Things, set to release Feb 2013. Regardless of some innocuous problems, I enjoyed Biting Bad. This series remains a dark humorous Urban Fantasy/PNR with plenty of action, romance, and snark. This is not a standalone though and I do not recommend starting the series here. This is a convoluted series that builds upon itself with each new book. The arc is long reaching with minor recapping.
**There will be two Chicagoland Vampire novellas released before Wild Things.**
A virus is sweeping the nation, pitting man against man. When a small group of people find themselves at the same abandoned farm house, their fates become intertwined and their survival depends on one another. A woman looking for her daughters, a man trying to protect his only child, and a teenager and her friends trying to survive all find themselves pushed to the brink and forced to do things to that will either make them stronger…or destroy them in the end.
I’m going to tell you all a secret. I’m not a huge fan of Zombie genre or post apocalyptic books. The whole “eating your face” off and surviving the end of the world scenarios just don’t do it for me. Luckily for me though, while McGuire’s Red Hill is a zombie apocalyptic novel, it is more character driven and the focus is narrowed to the emotional and mental journeys our protagonists face.
Red Hill is told by three characters. Nathan, a father whose disagreeable wife leaves him the day of the outbreak. Scarlett, a divorcee whose so tired of being strong finds herself with untapped reserves when she can’t find her children. Miranda, a teenager who is struggling to make it to their father’s ranch-Red Hill. Though one would think a story told by three protagonists would become confusing, McGuire uses a deft hand in merging each voice, creating an evenly maintained engaging flow of conversation and action. Some chapters run concurrent, allowing us to see certain situations from multiple viewpoints. Steady pacing and a well written engaging story keeps the readers attention as we tag along with our characters into the unknown.
The story reveals itself slowly, introducing our characters and their back stories against the backdrop of pandemonium. No one is sure exactly what is happening as the news reports are frantic with half truths and pieces of information. As the hospitals fill, people begins to panic and chaos reigns. It’s always interesting to read about these scenarios and wonder how you would react in the face of something like this. Would you stay cool and focused or would you panic? Will you be a hero and help your fellow man or will you look out only for yourself? McGuire addresses this and more in the development of her characters dialogue and actions. One aspect I enjoyed was the honesty McGuire forces into her characters. While everyone would love to be hero and act above the board, we can’t negate the everyday emotions that make up our humanity. Love, lust, fear, anger, and selfishness exist and will always be a prevalent force no matter the situation we are in.
“You shouldn’t have let her go,” I snapped. “Everyone we love is out there.” Nathan’s worried eyes softened as he looked down at his daughter. “How could I argue with her when I would do the same?”
Romance isn’t the focus, a strong undercurrent of love flows through the story. Family takes on new definitions as these people begin to form attachment bonds with one another. McGuire examines new and old relationships and the causes and effects behind them. How realistic is it to cling to relationships that existed before the outbreak? How long do you grieve for those you loss during the outbreak? Each person in here experiences a loss and the emotional toll manifests in each of them differently. What makes one relationship more important than another during these unsure times? Attraction runs rampant through here but the reasons for each go further than just the basic human need of protection and procreation. We have to ask ourselves…is it the beginning of love or just the effects of their situation? Our characters are forced to acknowledge and answer these questions and more as the situation at Red Hill becomes more volatile.
The ending is bittersweet as some see their prayers are answered and others see their dreams crushed. Though it isn’t necessarily a traditional happy ending, it’s a respectable one and it keeps in sync with the premise story. Red Hill isn’t your typical zombie story but it’s engaging narrative is sure to appeal to both horror and contemporary fans alike.
Review: Mirror, Mirror J.D. Robb, Mary Blayney, Elaine Fox, Mary Kay McComas, R.C.Ryan Taken By Death (In Death #37.5) by J.D. RobbEve Dallas has her...moreReview: Mirror, Mirror J.D. Robb, Mary Blayney, Elaine Fox, Mary Kay McComas, R.C.Ryan Taken By Death (In Death #37.5) by J.D. RobbEve Dallas has her hands full when a wicked witch kidnaps a set of twins and Eve needs to find them before time runs out. A small niblet from J.D. Robb’s fantastic long running scifi fantasy In Death series. Paranormal suspense thrills and chills as Robb takes a page from the classic tale Hansel and Gretel and spins her own tale of murder, madness, and mayhem. A winner across the board.
If Wishes Were Horses by Mary BlayneyThis delightful historical romance gives us a heroine whose penchant for trouble has her trying every bed and chair in this playful twist on Goldilocks and the Three Bears. When her exploration leads her to the bed that’s just right, she’ll need to deal with the bear who isn’t too happy to find someone’s been sleeping in his bed. Fun and romantic, Blayney shows us that waiting for the perfect fit can indeed make your wishes come true.
Beauty, Sleeping by Elaine FoxWhen a young inconsiderate man falls victim to the family curse, he will have plenty of time to think about his life and the choices he has made. When given the chance for redemption, his waking will depend on him. Elaine Fox beings us a sweet and unique retelling of Sleeping Beauty. Romantic and heartfelt, the story blazes with love, humor, and ends with a well earned lesson in morality.
The Christmas Comet by Mary Kay McComasThe spirit of giving is large in the heart of one young woman who risks everything to ensure her charges have the basic necessities to sustain them through tough times. Love, hope, and joy resonates through this modern tale that borrows from both The Little Matchstick Girl and The Star Money.
Stroke Of Midnight by R.C. RyanA young woman discovers more than her heritage when she travels to Ireland to research her past. Shades of Cinderella trim this delightful tale as once again the princess must stand up against her evil stepmother to fight for the love of her Prince Charming. A strong heroine and delicious hero makes this retelling a fun romantic read.
Mirror, Mirror is a fun romantic anthology that offers a moden twist on classic fairy tales, brought to you through five distinctly different but equally entertaining voices.
Gena Showalter is the Queen of deliciously dark paranormal romances that blends outrageous humor, eccentric characters, and sexy, crazy plots to produ...moreGena Showalter is the Queen of deliciously dark paranormal romances that blends outrageous humor, eccentric characters, and sexy, crazy plots to produce addictive stories you won’t want to put down. Her characters are delightfully flawed and contain a sense of realism that has you thinking, “I know someone like that.” Multiple storylines will keep you in stitches as fast paced action and smoking hot love scenes keeps this wildly popular and successful series more than capable of delivering the goods.
Kane, the vessel for the demon Disaster, has escaped from hell with the help of a fellow prisoner, Josephina. Now, he has to go back to hell to get her out and Kane isn't looking forward to that. Broken from his time spent there, his lovely rescuer only makes his demon stronger and Kane wants Disaster gone.
Josephina, a royal fae princess, is being hunted by her family who wants her to suffer for her birth. Set in a Cinderella style format, Kane and Josephina (Tink) find themselves having to navigate the treacherous world of the fae while struggling with the passion that threatens to overwhelm them. Plenty of LOTU show up offering unwanted help and advice. William plays a large part in this installment and we are given clues to future LOTU storylines. (less)
Who's afraid of the big bad wolf? Not Lavender, Cinderella's fairy godmother and the reason certain fairy tale and literary characters were ripped fro...moreWho's afraid of the big bad wolf? Not Lavender, Cinderella's fairy godmother and the reason certain fairy tale and literary characters were ripped from Make Believe to be trapped in the Here and Now. When Lavender burns down Cindy's and Prince Charming's house after writing a ripping expose on Prince Charming's illegal activities, she feels it's for the best if she leaves town and lies low for awhile. Red (little red riding hood and good friend) sends Lavender to the Refuge and Seth. Seth doesn't need another person depending on him; especially after what happened the last time. But Seth understands the need to regroup and lets Lavender stay with him. When a series of Tales are murdered and covered in ritualistic style carvings, Lavender knows the carvings are only used by fairies such as herself. Bent on finding out who or what is trying to frame her for the murders, Lavender finds herself battling a vicious killer for her life and the life of all Tales.
The Better To KNow You is book two in Kate SeRine's UF series-Transplanted Tales. A dark, sexy series filled with wild action, dark suspense, and some wicked humor. You'll never look at fairy tale characters quite the same after reading. (less)
I've tried to write this review 5 times and goodreads won't save it. I give up. I enjoyed this book immensely. Engaging characters and a well plotted...moreI've tried to write this review 5 times and goodreads won't save it. I give up. I enjoyed this book immensely. Engaging characters and a well plotted storyline hooked me to the end. Adored the heroine. I did wish hero would have grovelled a bit more and they would have made up earlier to facilitate more sexy times. Regardless, I enjoyed this new world and look forward to the second installment. (less)
Favorite Quote: “A smart man would keep his mouth shut. I wasn’t always a smart man.”
In Low Town, where elves, fairies, trolls, werewolves, vampires and other manners of supernatural life are happily walking among humanity, everything has its price. Gage Powell just wants to run his tattoo parlor and live a quiet fuss free life with his girlfriend, but Gage has learned that the warlocks and witches who command the Ivory Towers are never going to leave him in peace. Gage was allowed to leave the towers only if he never used his magic for anything but self defense. However, circumstances cause Gage to break this rule time and time again.
Now, Gage is back and neck deep in trouble. Gage has managed to indebt himself and his employee Bronx to the dark elf mob boss, Reave. Reave has discovered Gage’s big secret and demands Gage’s help in exchange for not selling him out to the highest bidder. When Gage has problems with Reave’s latest request, Gage rebels, causing a chain reaction that leads Reave to include someone from Gage’s past in his plan to bring down the Towers. Now the Towers are after Gage, figuring his sacrifice is enough to quell any uprisings. But Gage isn’t one to hide when the going gets tough. With the help of some surprising allies, Gage finds himself once again having to make the choice between himself and the world.
Reluctant heroes are a favorite trope of mine and Gage Powell is the ultimate reluctant hero. The sole proprietor of the Asylum Tattoo Parlor and magical tattoo artist, Gage is forced to live under strict conditions. A former apprentice warlock who didn’t agree with the cruel indicts of the warlock/witch community, he escaped that world only to find himself under a death sentence. His life is contingent upon his promise to never use his magic in any shape or form except for self defense. As Gage struggles to remain under their radar, his altruistic nature often places him on the path of no return. He has a strong moral compass. He will fight to his last breath (which he proved in Angel’s Ink) to keep his friends and the world safe from injustice.
Dead Man’s Deal is the second installment in Ms. Drake’s Asylum Tales series. Similar to Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden series, Ms. Drake pens an interesting story revolving around Gage Powell, a warlock whose life choices has left him persona non grata in the wizarding world. Fast pacing keeps the story moving at a brisk pace as Drake continues to expand upon her modern magical world and the characters inhibiting it. Plenty of action and mystery will keep you guessing as Gage once again finds himself stuck between saving himself or saving his friends.
“It’s amazing what we will do for love.”
Gage is an interesting protagonist. Somewhat of a loner, his time spent in the Tower taught him not to form lasting attachments to anyone. Yet he has managed in spite of that to gather a group of friends who mean the world to him. He has to keep a low profile yet is constantly placing his life on the line. As a former warlock, he feels responsible for the horrors the Ivory Towers have inflicted on the human and supernatural world. He has absorbed their crimes and seeks to make amends in the best ways he can.
“Despite my pretty claims of leaving the Towers and turning my back on that lot, I was still a warlock. If we went to war, I wouldn’t side with the Towers, but what could one warlock-in-training do against them? And would the rest of the world even welcome my help if we went to war?”
Though we are only in the second installment, I found Gage more open both emotionally and mentally. We are given a deeper look at his pain and suffering from his childhood and the vulnerabilities he carries inside of him. I also enjoyed the continuing romance between him and Trixie. It’s not emotional soul sucker that manipulates the reader into making it more then it is. They are stable, secure and it remains a small subplot, even when Gage makes a magnanimous gesture to insure Trixie remains out of the Summer King’s hands.
A strong personable cast continues to provide us with an eclectic mixture of good and evil personas. A group whose intentions are well hidden behind a devious mask of indifference, greed, and self interest. Drake is slowly drawing out their intentions through the arc, leaving Gage struggling to expose their true motivations. From Gage’s unsympathetic warden, Gideon, to a mercenary collector of magical properties, Gage is learning he has allies in the most unusual places. But Gage’s greatest asset continues to be his friends. Though Gage feels he doesn’t have many in his corner, he has more power guarding his back then he ever imagined.
Tears still streaked his cheeks, but there was a coldness in his eyes that made me glad he was on my side. “We will end this.”
I still have concerns with the overwhelming amount of conflict surrounding Gage. It’s hard to stay focused at times with the onslaught of new and recurring situations. I also can’t help but wonder why more aren’t stepping up to the plate in a visible manner to combat those in the Towers.
Dry humor and wit is sprinkled throughout the book as we learn more about Sophia’s state of being and meet some new friends. As stated earlier, there is a plethora of subplots in here that continuously cascade over you. As the story progresses, I feel Drake does a better job in this installment of tying them all together in a manner that makes sense. The world building is expanded upon and more background information about Gage’s childhood and the inhabitants of the Ivory Towers is given. The ending wraps up the main conflict nicely, leaving us with the next book’s storyline and faint feelings of dismay and hope mixed together.
Regardless of any misgivings, Jocelynn Drake’s newest Urban Fantasy series continues to be a whirlwind of action, intrigue, and suspense with a strong base of hope, love, and humor to keep readers firmly engaged in this adventure. I look forward to book three, title and release date to be announced.
I adore this series with it's dark violent premise and seemingly un repentant characters. Getting to see Terrible's crush on Chess from his POV is...more4.5
I adore this series with it's dark violent premise and seemingly un repentant characters. Getting to see Terrible's crush on Chess from his POV is a treat indeed and only wets my appetite for the next installment in the series. (less)
A short but informative look at the events of Crimson Frost from Logan's POV.
Favorite Quote: “Tell her I’m sorry. Again.”
Spartan Frost is a light novella that falls between Crimson Frost and Midnight Frost and addresses the events from the hero’s POV, Logan Quinn.
In Crimson Frost, Logan was possessed by Loki and tried to kill his girlfriend, Gwen Frost. Guilt over his behavior and fear that Loki may once again possess him has sent Logan running from the academy and Gwen.
I enjoyed seeing what happened in the last few pages of Crimson Frost through Logan’s eyes. The entire series is told from Gwen’s POV so it was interesting to get Logan’s thoughts and feelings. Logan spends most of the book thinking about Gwen, giving us answers as to why he left without even saying good bye, and texting his friend Oliver to keep tabs on Gwen and get updates. He also uses the time to repair his relationship with his father, with whom he’ been at odds with for most of his life. While I enjoyed the novella over all, it isn’t much more than a brief look into Logan’s emotional state.. Those who follow the series will enjoy this brief interlude but it’s not a necessary component in advancing the arc of this series. I was a little confused as to why Gwen was on the cover. I would have preferred seeing Logan as it was his story.
Seven Kinds Of Hell (Fangborn #1) by Dana Cameron Urban Fantasy March 12, 2013 Publisher: 47 North
Reviewed by Tori
Archaeologist Zoe Miller has been running from a haunting secret her whole life. But when her cousin is abducted by a vicious Russian kidnapper, Zoe is left with only one option: to reveal herself. Unknown to even her closest friends, Zoe is not entirely human. She’s a werewolf and a daughter of the Fangborn, a secretive race of werewolves, vampires, and oracles embroiled in an ancient war against evil. To rescue her cousin, Zoe will be forced to renew family ties and pit her own supernatural abilities against the dark and nefarious foe. The hunt brings Zoe to the edge of her limits, and with the fate of humanity and the Fangborn in the balance, life will be decided by an artifact of world-ending power. (Goodreads)
Seven Kinds Of Hell is my genre preference for reading.The excerpt alone demanded I jump right on this Urban Fantasy when it was offered up to me for review. An archaeologist who finds herself a pawn in supernatural politics, involving a questionable family she never knew about? My kind of book. Or so I thought. Frankly, this was the most confusing and staid book I ever read. I found the character development stunted and overwhelmed by the continuous and massive world building and storyline set up. There are multiple storylines swirling around each other which only added to my confusion. This book is all about the set up. This is unfortunate because I wasn’t able to connect with the characters or the main plotlines.
Our heroine, Zoe Miller, is a fledgling archaeologist. Her mother, on her deathbed, gives her one piece of final advice. The same advice she had been giving Zoe all her life. Stay away from your father’s family. Hide, stay low, never reveal yourself, and run if found. When Zoe’s mom passes, that choice is taken from Zoe and her father’s family comes after her. Zoe has no idea what she is but we soon learn she is part Fangborn. She is a born werewolf, but with an extra something that everyone wants to control. The storyline revolves around the fact that Zoe was kept in the dark all her life about her genetics and family so we learn as she does.
Zoe is pulled head first into the Fangborn world when her friend is kidnapped and his release is contingent on her finding certain relics. Relics that could save or end humanity. As Zoe struggles to find the relics to bargain for her friends release, we see help from friends and foes alike. Zoe comes off strong and human. She isn’t a super hero and she learns from her mistakes. All the characters seem strong and had great potential, yet I never felt more than the surface of them was scratched. What I felt and what I think the author wanted me to feel never happened.
I liked the world building concerning the Fangborn and how they came into existence. I have always enjoyed mythology and the story has it in spades. The Fangborn are secretive race of supernaturals; vampires, shifters, etc…. Referred to as Pandora’s Orphans, they came into being after Pandora’s box was opened. They are the hope that came after the evil was released. Cameron inhibits them with unique powers that twist the usual offerings. Vampires don’t drink blood, they drink the evil in people. I also enjoyed Zoe’s “powers” though her seeming disinterest in her other half felt odd.
What kept me from enjoying the book was the lack of development and connection between the world building and the characters. Zoe is hit hard, repeatedly throughout the book by various factions yet the explanations for all this happening is given in the form of a history and educational lesson. A is happening because of B and C which is because of D, E, and F. There is no real emotion behind the explanations. The writing is strong and the storylines are interesting but the interactions between the two main components are dry and uninspiring. It casts a pall on the entire story because the telling of it is so matter of fact. I have been told there were four small short stories previously released about this world and I wonder if reading them first may have served to integrate me into this world better.
The resolution is fast paced and wraps up some of the plotlines though the ending leaves us with a bit of a cliffhanger. While I’m sure many urban fantasy enthusiasts will enjoy this full length new world introduction, I find it’s just not the world for me.