“I knew I was in trouble as soon as I saw the obituary. The fact that it had my name on it was sort of a clue.” - Cassie Palmer
The first time I read that sentence of Touch the Dark I was hooked. Many years, and many rereads later, that line gets me every time. Well, that and one of the single most unique stories—Ok series—that I have had the pleasure of reading in the Urban Fantasy genre. (Also fond memories of being the first book that I waited for the book store employees to put out on the shelf on the release date.) Touch the Dark is one of my favorite blends of magic from Greek mythology to voodoo, satyrs to haunted jewelry, magical warded tattoos to the coolest vampire feeding styles ever! Let's be honest Touch the Dark—basically the whole Cassandra Palmer series—is all kinds of messed-up-totally-awesome-fun-with fantasy and mythology.
The most important part is how totally awesome the time travel plays into the storyline. A lot of time traveling books can over play it to the point where it's boring, or so tedious that it actually doesn’t fit into the story. Cassie also has the gift of Sybil, those able to see into the past and future. Again another thing that rarely gets used well enough in paranormal books. Usually meaning authors use it so heavily it kills the book. Chance is one of the few authors that can use time traveling and foresight so magically! The best part is when Cassie changes the time line and the ripples are immediately seen. Things can have amazing and horrible ramifications.
Touch of Dark does suffer from some bad pacing, but it's not distracting enough to take away from the book. (At least for me.) This book is ambitious, and I have no disillusions on how hard it had to be for Chance to find her rhythm. There's a lot of history here—literally—and in the way of back story. This world is rich. From Cassie's tragic past, to pretty much every character that steps onto the page. It was fun playing guess the famous people. From the man in the iron mask to Eve herself. I have mad respect to any author who would have Jack the Reaper and Shakespeare on the same counsel! Chance does a beautiful job giving enough information to make readers love her characters, but not entering into information overload.
Cassie is one of my favorite characters! It's strange that readers who don't like her say she's whiny, but her humor is simple sarcasm. Which a lot of characters within the Urban Fantasy genre utilize. That humor never failed to make me laugh and put a content smile on my face. Cassie is a character that I'd love to be friends with in real life. She’s a tough independent woman who does what she needs to do to protect said independence. Despite the tragedies of her life she still remains compassionate when she needs to and is smart enough to know when to step in. Unlike many characters in the genre she can muddle with politics of the world. Though she may not be so handy with weapons. She's a different kind of hero. But I still have mad respect for her.
Really I don't think I can fully do this book, or series justice, with words. It's a fantastic blend of a little bit of everything. It's sexy and humorous, reminding me why I love long haired male vampires so much. The time travel here is a great example of why there is a niche in the genre for that kind of thing. Because when it's done right it is: Freaking. Amazing. Not to mention that world history just got a lot more interesting with Chance’s fun twists. The best part is how great all the characters are. Billy Joe is one of my favorite ghosts. Come on who doesn't love an Irish cowboy who's gambling issues led him to an early grave? Mircea is one of the top 10 hot vamps of the genre in my book. And now I know that Chance has the skills to take a character that I actually had hoped would die while reading Touch the Dark—Pritkin—and make me totally-fan-girl-cray-cray later in the series. It's refreshing to have an author who can develop characters as the series progresses. This is a wonderful series to invest in. Even if the first book doesn't blow you away, like it did for me, the next books only get better.
Sexual Content: Sex and sexual humor, clearly an adult title.
3/5- Adored it, just a few minor details held it back.
Whenever a reader picks up a paranormal book the biggest hope is to get a diverse world, interesting characters, and unique mythology. Witchling deliv...moreWhenever a reader picks up a paranormal book the biggest hope is to get a diverse world, interesting characters, and unique mythology. Witchling delivers. The series focuses on the three D'Artigo sisters Camille, Delilah, and Menolly. Each one as different from their looks to personalities. It's refreshing to have a series focus on sisterly love—nothing too gooey. The girls are OIA (Otherworld Intelligence Agency) agents sent earth side since their track record isn't all that great. The girls are half sidhe and half human, causing their magic to go haywire and get them in all kinds of trouble. Camille is the witch, Delilah, the house cat shifter, and Menolly the vampire.
Each book is told by a sister, starting with the oldest Camille. Camille is a required taste, coming off completely self absorbed. When she's in the middle of a demonic crisis she takes time to buy some lingerie. She's a buxom bombshell, she knows it and she flaunts it! She owns her sexuality and I love it. There's a lot of layers to Galenorn's characters and they have to be peeled back. Especially when a simple murder of an OIA agent turns into an end of the world scenario. A demon, Shadow Wing, is gathering Spirit Seals to merge the Subterranean realms, Otherworld, and Earth together. Many characters have to step up to the plate.
There's the full blooded human Chase, who comes off as a perv and slowly redeems himself. One of Camille's lovers is Trillian a Svartan, "dark elf", he's a cocky ass—which is what a guy has to be to be with Camille and handle her. Like Camille I don't love him, I grow to appreciate him. Morio enters the stage, a dark and mysterious Fox Demon and things get heated up! Then Smoky the dragon, with a kind streak, pops up and he turns into a powerful ally—and man. Lot's of man candy! Don't worry it's not all about Camille's lovers and the men in her life. The sisters have things going on and it's fun keeping tabs on them as Menolly starts to go to Vampires Anonymous, and Delilah has a few firsts.
It seems like more and more PNR/UF titles have very sparse writing, or trendy writing. Such as the House of Night series, Accidentally Friends series, some of Mary Janice Davidson's, and so many others. Galenorn's style is poetic at times, and the images it paints are sometimes breath taking and other times harsh. That doesn't mean that the writing isn't "modern" there's plenty of media humor from movies, music, and such. The best thing about Galenorn's style is the mix of rich writing with some of the slang of today. Everything blends beautifully from action to romance, mystery to sisterly love, horror to humor and so on. A few times I even had to look up the definition of a couple of words, which in my book is a good thing!
There are so many amazing creatures, mythology, and ideas to work with in the Otherworld series. Galenorn balances it all so well! The way the Otherkin see humans and humans see the myths is amazing. Some humans treat them like celebrities, others with indifference, and then of course the human only extremists. The mythical creatures for the most part see humans as lowly and don't exactly treat them right, but just like with the way humans there are other factions. The worlds blend together beautifully from politics to magic, and it's wonderful.
What a great start to a series! Each sister is very appealing and it's exciting to be able to change POV between the three Camille, Delilah, and Menolly each book. The characters and the way they interact are so complex, and I love how Galenorn's simple touches make them seem real. Between the amazing mythology and Otherworld politics I am one happy fantasy reader. The save the world plot is just the cherry on top! This book, and clearly this series is going to be magic!
Sexual Content: Considering that the sidhe are pretty lose and free with sex it’s not to bad. There are sex scenes, but nothing to graphic.
Thoughts: It has been such a long time that I've read a book and at the end want to obsessively stroke the cover. This was one of t...moreGenre: Urban Fantasy
Thoughts: It has been such a long time that I've read a book and at the end want to obsessively stroke the cover. This was one of those books, it pretty much had me going all Gollum after the last page turned. Considering this was a reread for me, even better.
One of the main things that I love about Nightlife is the running dialogue. If you've ever watched an episode of Gilmore Girls (not that the two have anything in common story wise) you can appreciate witty conversation. Nightlife is full of it. You can be shivering in terror at one of the scenes in the book completely repulsed by the actions of the evil villains, but you can't stop yourself from smiling. Thurman has dark, witty-gritty humor down to a science. Even if this book only had half the genius of plot and world building, the dialogue would have been enough to carry it.
Luckily, it has all the plot and world building you never knew you could ask for. Cal and Niko, our two awesome brothers have a lot of baggage to bring into this story. Niko has a taste for all things shiny, pointy, and deadly—if it can kill Niko knows about it and can use it. He's smart as all get out, and is quite appealing to the ladies. Cal is lazy and sarcastic, which makes for one heck of a narrator. Most of a dark and witty humor is from Cal, but the banter between the two brothers is great.
The world Thurman has created is beyond believable, everything adds up for better or worse. Going into this you want to forget everything you think you know about the magical creatures of legend. You think elves are beautiful people with long flowing hair? You got the hair right, but don't forget about the evil red eyes and a body straight from the images of hell. They may have stolen children, but they sure as heck wouldn't replace them with anything but the bones from a nights good meal. There are so many dark and scary creatures in here that it's a real treat. By the end of this book you won't be able to look at spaghetti quite the same way. Plus, forget about looking for Bloody-Mary in the mirror, keep a look out for a banshee in the mirror.
Never have I had the pleasure of throughly enjoying characters in a book as I did in Nightlife. Cal and Niko's relationship is pure genius. I know a lot of reviews say how they love the sibling relationship, but this time I mean it. The two have a bond that time, or monsters, can't shake. In really cheesy words, it down right beautiful. Niko refuses to let Cal believable he is a monster, even if he is half human and half monster. By the end of this book, Cal gets a front row seat of what a monster truly is as his own body is taken over. They came into this book with a lot of baggage, and by the end they may have dropped a few, but they gained more.
Other side characters were just as enjoyable. Puck, or Robin—the things with the furry legs—was one enjoyable/annoying son of a gun. I wasn't sure whether to chuck him out a 30 story building or high five the perverted guy. You can't let Robin's laid back sleazy ways fool you, his pretty much immortal existence is taking it's toll. Hopefully with the next books we will get to see his dirty laundry. I can only imagine how much with a guy who new everyone from history, and probably slept with everyone from history. The freckled-face redhead was a great oracle, seeing how such powers could effect a teenager was refreshing. Instead of a crazy wacked out hormone crazed girl, we've got someone who knows the weight of the world. She's not going to drop it until she breaks. A no nonsense Healer, and his cousin/dog really had me begging for more info on the two. Even the villain in this book is . . . there's just no words you have to read it to experience this monster.
One of the things I truly appreciate is the flash backs. In most books you deal with them to get the 4-11 on what's going on. Thurman makes you want to know what happens to these characters. With other books the flashbacks are boring and tedious. Not here, there just as wild a ride as the rest of the book and only add to the story. Thurman doesn't just rely on flashbacks to give us more on the story or what's happened in the characters life. Events unfold smoothly giving out the information in little bits and pieces so it never feels out of place.
I read this book back when it was first debuting, 2006, when the Urban Fantasy boom was really starting up. Back then I thought this was the best UF I had ever read. Even after all this time and all of the other UF I've read (and it's a lot) it still holds true. In fact, this is probably the most solid debut novel I have ever read. In the end I'm not going to have enough words, or the right ones, to say just how much I love this book. Everyone I have ever recommended this book to has given it 5/5, and that is pretty amazing considering everyones individual tastes. Lots of reviews claim that this book, or other, has great grit, humor, and original story. This one is a guarantee. Put your big girl/boy pants on and get ready to get messy.
No sex scenes, just some dirty talk every now and then.
Epic Fantasy books and I have been on a “break.” Every once in a while I'd read a fantasy title, but would soon flee back to the comforting arms of Ur...moreEpic Fantasy books and I have been on a “break.” Every once in a while I'd read a fantasy title, but would soon flee back to the comforting arms of Urban Fantasy. Poison Study was a great intro back into the wonderful world that is Epic Fantasy.
This is a reread for me, but I had to reread it because the series has finally released other installments. It was a great first novel. Snyder tells readers about Yelena's story, which skips the usual save the world tale that fantasy stories favor. Yelena is introduced to us when she is about to be executed, and is given the option to be the new food taster instead. The story carries on beautifully from there.
It’s intense watching Yelena blossom into a woman, and to see a female heroine with some brains. What I love the most is that the romance is subtle, it grows on you just as it sneaks up on Yelena. This book isn’t just the struggle of Yelena defending her life from her past and the future she deserves, but the struggle of a kingdom trying to become something more for it’s people.
The world building is so wonderful in this series, and the characters will linger in your mind long after. Some characters are exactly as they seem, while the inner depth you get on the King, Valek (Yelana’s poison teacher), and other friends of Yelena is just awe inspiring. They’re characters that would be missed if they don’t appear in future books.
If you’re a Epic Fantasy virgin, or a EF reader who’s burned out, Poison Study is the perfect fit for you. Snyder is a wonderful addition to the endless list of fantasy series out there, and clearly is passing the test of time. There’s a reason this series was bought up from Luna and republished, it’s just that good.
Sexual Content: Some might argue that there’s some homosexual themes, but I think it’s more about “women’s rights.” There is some sex, but it’s clean. Clean enough that I believe it’s no in print for YA.
I had no intentions of reading Revealers after I had read Uninvited by the same author. Luckily for me I ended up needing another book, and Uninvited...moreI had no intentions of reading Revealers after I had read Uninvited by the same author. Luckily for me I ended up needing another book, and Uninvited had a little preview of Revealers. After reading maybe about five pages I was hooked. If I hadn't already purchased Revealers I would have made a pit stop at the book store just for it.
Even with the great start I was afraid this book would somehow take a turn and I would end up with another Uninvited. More teen drama then urban fantasy. I shouldn't have to worried. The take on witches in this book is sooo good. The girls are thirteen when they start going out into the night slaying the “evils” of the supernatural community. The reader pops in just as the girls are turning 18 and will be “joining” the coven. These girls are expected then to have daughters of there own that will then take there place in the fight. The task the girls are given and still expected to do is put into light through Jules eyes as she tries to live with the fact that she kills things.
Marrone moves this story along nicely. Giving us a little teen drama with a heavy dose of evil plot. The side characters were all fun and I loved reading about them, probably even more then the main character. Of course that's not saying Jules wasn't a wonderful character to follow. Jules was a healthy enough dose of curiosity and defiance, without being annoying. Dani, Jules best friend, was a fun nerdy character and her love troubles had me giggling. Revealers also had a wonderful dose of humor that went great with all of the characters.
Another thing I loved was how Marrone could make me hate the mothers for betraying their daughters. Then the next thing I know I'm feeling sympathy for the wicked mothers and can understand why they made the choices they had to make. By the end of the book I was even cheering the mothers on.
This novel is not perfected. Yes, you can guess some of the plot twisters and who dun'it parts. It is, however, worth the read. The plot moves fast and includes one the the best mysteries I've read in a YA novel in a while. I look forward to reading other books by this author even after the terrible taste of Uninvited.
Kiss scenes, the make out scenes are not too in depth. (less)
Sounds like any number of fantasy books out there. Aurian had the potential to be another boring A-typical book in the Fantasy genre. Before rereading...moreSounds like any number of fantasy books out there. Aurian had the potential to be another boring A-typical book in the Fantasy genre. Before rereading this book, I had wondered how come this book had stuck in my mind for so long after reading it probably about six years ago. I was fairly young and thought maybe the impression was left from the inexperienced mind of a young reader. However, Furey has created one of the best epic fantasy books I have read. Taking the same old tale and turning it into a refreshing new story.
One of my favorite things about Aurian is all of the subplots that work themselves into the main idea. They all fit together somehow and it’s fun to see each one pull together and shape the story. The twist on fairies is really fun, and the history of the world is unique to see from different cultures. Especially once the reader is given the real facts. Every time you get more information on the world, other races, and cultures , it is like feeding an addiction. Meeting each of the powerful races of the elements is also a great treat, and I want more on the Skyfolk.
Aurian is the main character, but it is told by the points of views of many different characters. I come up with ten right off the top of my head, but there are many more. Furey is so skilled that I never found myself bored as the story went from one character to the next. Even with all the back and forth between characters and plots, I didn't get lost.
The names of the characters are very beautiful, and they are all different enough that I never get the characters mixed up. That has always been one of my pet peeves with fantasy books, all the names are so similar that you never know who you are reading about.
My favorite part of this book isn’t the wonderful plot and story ideas, but it is the emotions. Furey has truly proven with this book. Her skill is making the characters real by thinking, feeling, and interacting with the world they are in. I’m not quite sure if I can properly explain it. Each character from our main heroine to the evil villain, or even just to a temporary character, has such depth and growth. Furey expertly deals with grief, the kinds of love there are, happiness, revenge, evil, and the change people go through as they live. She expertly shows how others can impact and change someone’s life.
The great characterization is coupled by Furey’s rich writing. Every place that is described flows easily into the mind. Every character has a unique voice, and point of view, that never takes away, but adds to Furey’s style. She can easily wrench your heart with sorrow, and then have you chuckling with a humorous line.
Even after all of these years, Furey’s book still manages to captive me. Aurian’s character depth and emotions are something that no reader should pass up. This book has one of the best love stories I have ever read. There are many plots to follow in this book, which I didn’t find over whelming as some readers might. If you read a lot it shouldn’t be too hard to differentiate and remember them. This is a series where you are not going to want to wait a long time in between reading the next book.
Sexual content: Furey keeps it pretty clean. There are some sex scenes which are not detailed. A beginning to a rape scene, the author does not go into details. (less)
This book is whacked. Plane and simple, but trust me it's a good kind of whacked. The...moreOriginally posted at Book Whipsers.
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
This book is whacked. Plane and simple, but trust me it's a good kind of whacked. The kind that has fans as thick as the Harry Potter books—or dare I say even more then the Twilight Saga. There's nothing off limits in Clare’s Immortal Instruments series, and a reader can appreciate that.
Clary is our leading lady, who is soon to realize that vampires, werewolves, and faye are just the tip of the iceberg. She's plunged into the scary reality of monsters when her mother is kidnapped by the evil Valentine (much like the evil Lord Voldemort). Jace is the awesome man candy. Clare's writing proves that there can be more to the brooding male types. Jace has had a hard life and behind that rude mask he throws up, he's hurt and damaged. It's appreciated to get a male lead in a YA series that just doesn't stare and stalk people.
Each page is dripping in snarky wit and my favorite kind of sarcastic commentary. It helps that most of the smart-alec talk comes from Jace,—yummy and witty is a lethal combination. The other members of the cast have their own sharp tongues to add to the memorable one liners. Speaking of the cast, if you want one that comes this diverse you can't ask for a better book.
Every character is so well done that each one finds a way into the readers heart, even if they turn out to be unsavory sorts. Your in for the inside jokes, subtle hints or actions is all you need to know that something profound has just happened. My heart was running rampant with fear, adrenaline, anger, hope, joy, and love. This is the one series that always makes my heart ache with emotion.
Even after many re-reads and all of the other books in between nothing comes close to the City of Bones. This book is a legend, and it has every right to be. With a non-stop plot that makes you stay up all night to finish the book—no matter how many times you've read it—this is one title you will not want to say no to. Some readers may not like the turn of events between Clary and Jace's relationship towards the end of the book, but it's good in a shocking way that only Cassandra Clare would dare. Who can say no to a good dare?
Sexual Content: Kisses and making out, light amounts of homosexual themes. And a dash of incest.
Rating: 5/5- Fabulous, a beautiful obsession! (less)
Paranormal Romance is pretty new for me, so I was a little shy of a series about finding soul mates. The setup for this tale is between a Lykae king (...moreParanormal Romance is pretty new for me, so I was a little shy of a series about finding soul mates. The setup for this tale is between a Lykae king (werewolf), Lachlain, who has been imprisoned by the Horde (evil vampires) to be burned a live again and again, because he's immortal. Finally escaping when he catches a sniff of his mate, Emma, who turns out to be half vampire/half Valkyrie. Then the plot thickens. Lachlain needs to take his mate to his homeland in Scotland before the next full moon. Because a Lykae without his mate on these nights will stop at nothing to get to her. Emma does not require the mate for life setup and grudgingly (forced) goes along, thinking there's a pot of jewelry at the end of this journey. All the while Valkyrie are being attacked by the Horde, and the Horde is looking for one particular Valkyrie halfbreed . . .
Emma, or Emmaline, ended up being a very refreshing character. She was timid and scared of pretty much everything. Personally, I hate weak characters, but it's really fun tagging along and watching Emma grow up and find her inner strength. Once she faces a memory of getting forcefully burned as a child, so she could learn the dangers of the sun, she's on the path to inner discovery. Her whole relationship with her Valkyrie family changes. She realizes that they've always have loved her and have treated her like one of them. Even though the majority of them have dedicated their lives to killing vampires. Emma finally finds out who her mystery dad is (which was not a surprise) and taps into her inner bad-booty Valkyrie gifts. It's fun watching her leave behind her sheltered life, even if it is because of a insane Lykae who's kidnapped her.
Lachlain was a very interesting character. He had spent 3,000 years looking for his mate, when he is captured by the Horde in a rescue attempt for his younger brother. Revenge is the only thing that keeps him going during his century of burning torture. He only accomplishes his escape when he smells his mate nearby, basically chewing off his leg to get to her. It's interesting watching Lachlain battle his insane hatred for vampires, when instinct is telling him Emma is his mate. For me, his craziness seems more like rudeness and a case of dominance/control issues. It made it really hard at times to sympathize or like him.
Even after they're mated they still need to learn to trust each other and actually progress in their relationship. Which was nice because I was afraid Emma was just going to roll over and play good little mate. Instead she got a back bone and the relationship really bonded between the two and I just fell in love with the couple.
A Hunger Like No Other is told from the points of views of Lachlain and Emma. There are some other characters who step in and give us a little perspective. Annika, Emma's adopted mother, and Bowen, Lachlain's best friend. Annika's narration really adds to the information we get on the Valkyrie clan. And let's be honest just the word Valkyrie sounds great, so any other information we get on any of these ladies are great. Bowen shows an interesting perspective on the relationship between Emma and Lachlain, and what is in store for a Lykae who looses his mate. All of the characters in this book are fantastic and I wan more, more, more! Bottom Line:
This story ended up being more complex then I could have imagined a silly PR being. All of this is accompanied by Cole's great sense of humor, and she had me laughing out loud. I love it when I book can be funny and balance the dark and gritty elements. Even though Lachlain wasn't for me, I feel in love with the couple and look forward to future books. Because honestly, I love the whole love can conquer all mentality. The other also has a great way of making the characters seem a little more real and less like mythical beings, where emotions are concerned anyway. This is a reread for me and it hasn't even been a full year since I've first read it!