Mouthy women who know how to take care of themselves are the kind of ladies that Urban Fantasy fans have come to love and crave fr...moreGenre: Urban Fantasy
Mouthy women who know how to take care of themselves are the kind of ladies that Urban Fantasy fans have come to love and crave from the genre. Kate Daniels has definitely taken one of the top places since her debut, and several books later she's still one of the most highly recommended bad ass babes around.
Magic is coming back after a 4,000 year absence, in a alternative Atlanta, GA. Where during Tech time magic is down and technology is in full control. During Magic technology doesn't work and it's back to a buggy wagon if you don't have car that runs off magic and water. Everything isn't black and white though, some magic can still get through tech time and visa versa. The world is strange and delightfully NEW! Mercenaries fight monsters for a price, Crusader knights still battle, shifters come in tons of fun varieties, necromancers control vampires (who are anything but sexy and romantic), and any kind of demon/creature could pop up at any moment going all Godzilla.
The world is really well fleshed out. The mesh of technology and magic is suburb, where the lights of the modern day go out and magic lanterns spark on. The two blend so well together, but magic and technology still battle for control. The creatures all have a mythology behind them that you can understand, but like the magic there's still an unpredictability that leaves you guessing.
Still, I must be upfront that this is not the strongest series starter I've read. The killer was obvious right from the beginning, to the point that the killer handed Kate all the evidence and clues she needed. Kate isn't fleshed out enough for my taste. Sure I loved wondering what kind of awesome wit would pop out of her mouth next, but the reader really doesn't get to know her. It may have been something to do with the short page count and the tons of action crammed into a tight bundle. And there's no complaining about the action!
This is a great setup novel to get the key players in and get readers ready to really start on the series. Kate's secret of what she is and why she's protecting that secret was driving me up the walls by the end of Magic Bites. The tension between The Beast Lord, Curran, and Kate is just firing up here—I wanna see these two Alphas butt heads! The wide range of paranormal critters make for a colorful cast that I just can't get enough of. Even with the drawbacks that only make this a good series starter, the potential is there. So much potential that I've continued to buy anything that the author duo put out.
Sexual content: Lots of creepy sex talk from the villain and raping of victims, readers who are not used to darker fantasy might find content disturbing. Lots of sexual humor.
Rating: 3/5- Adored it, just a few minor things held it back.
Magic Burns could easily have passed as book one for the Kate Daniels series. In fact, I might have preferred it as the starting point. It brought mor...moreMagic Burns could easily have passed as book one for the Kate Daniels series. In fact, I might have preferred it as the starting point. It brought more details about Kate to light, but not much. Then some of the more basic questions about the universe of the Kate Daniels were finally given a better explanation. The lack of world building and character depth on Kate were two of my biggest complaints on the first book. The focus on Magic Burns is much like the previous book—Magic Bites—the supernatural mystery. Since I like mysteries I can’t complain too much and the magic “wave” that comes up here is just too much fun!
Andrews shows us a side of both Kate and Curran that had been seemingly lacking in the first book—featuring compassion and personalities outside of killing things. A little girls live is at stake and it’s warming how both Kate and Curran do everything in their power to help this one girl. Kate still isn’t fleshed out enough for me. I. Need. More.
The monster isn’t as scary as the creepy animalistic rapist from the first book, but it’s definitely up there. A magic flare is coming up, where magic takes out technology for days to weeks. What was supposed to be a quick retrieval of some pack maps turns quickly into a gruesome battle between gods. Of course the evil god is trying to break through and become “real” on the human plane—which can only successfully happen during a magic flare.
Another fun entry to the Kate Daniel world. It helped flesh it out a bit more, but I still feel like it held a lot back. Fun characters come in and are not explored enough, mainly a certain goddesses’ horny “hell hound”. The buildup between Kate and Curran is definitely heating up, and I’m starting to see why the fans rave. With a better plot, tons of great action, and simply more Kate Daniel time—why miss it?
Sexual Content: As mentioned in the review, there is one horny guy/hellhound. Nothing too risky, unless you can’t handle the sexual tension building up.
3/5- Adored it, just a few minor details held it back
Urban Fantasy junkies, this is it. The fabled book that is supposed to change your mind about this series. The book that drags the Kate Daniels series...moreUrban Fantasy junkies, this is it. The fabled book that is supposed to change your mind about this series. The book that drags the Kate Daniels series away from the average read it has been teetering towards and pulls it up out of the shadows.
For me it’s been the inability to get past Kate’s snark. Don’t get me wrong I love—love, love, love,worship—her wit and sharp tongue. Those snarky comebacks are one of the main reasons I would have read this series into the realm of one star reads. Andrew’s finally lets us into Kate’s head. What she’s running from, what she is, and her past. It was like I was meeting Kate for the first time. She’s truly one of the most wonderful bad ass woman leads out there. She’s hard and lethal, but she is a huge softy. She can kill the bad guys and right the wrongs without a worry of the price, but she can grieve over the “innocents” she doesn’t even know.
Curran and Kate are really starting to heat. To the point where they might have enough sexual tension on the page to outdo early Anita Blake books and The Night Huntress series. You’ll need a few cold showers by the time this book is done. Not only is the sexual tension good, but Curran’s real feelings for Kate become clearer and clearer. She’s not just someone he wants because she said no, he has an emotional interest.
Andrews has brought readers into the dark world of the Umpar—a cannibalistic rapist—to battles between two gods. Now we’re introduced to the world of the Midnight Games. Basically teams of people volunteer to be gladiators and make a living that way. The spectators are just as bloody as the olden times and they love a good show—meaning the more death and blood the better. It’s cold and cruel, hard believing that Kate grew up in such life. Too be quite honest the gladiator battles have to be some of the best action scenes written out there. Many times I found myself in a frenzied panic along with the characters.
Speaking of characters so much happens to them that it well makes up for the first two books. Kate gets a new friend, the were-hyena Andrea who is being wooed by a “sex god” from the local hyena clan. My favorite jaguar shifter is breaking the rules and almost defying Curran—and he gets a little silly. Then there’s poor Derek. The stuff that happens to him is heart breaking. At more than one point I had to get up leave the book behind and go on some really long runs to relieve the stress.
This book is hot. The action is on fire, the plot is burning with emotions and plot turns, Kate and Curran are sizzling with chemistry, and Curran is just smoking hot! This is the book that probably has some of the funniest moments, sexiest, and best one liners. The more Kate becomes a “real” person the more I like her. It’s a world that is well worth a visit. By the end of the book I was driven made by the cliffhanger between Kate and Curran. (As a hint I will say it has to do with a underwear served dinner.)
Sexual Content: Hot kisses, hot tub scene, and some nasty hints of rape from the villains.
“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.
The Better Part of Darkness was huge talk around the book sphere last year when it made it's debut. When its sequel, The Darkest Edge of Dawn...moreThoughts:
The Better Part of Darkness was huge talk around the book sphere last year when it made it's debut. When its sequel, The Darkest Edge of Dawn, came out this year even more praise started to pour in. Clearly it was a no brainer to finally read my copy of The Better Part of Darkness. Let's say I am not disappointed, I'm practically whispering sweet nothings to this book.
Dark gritty, with one heck of a kick booty heroine, what's not to love. Sure I'll confess I had some doubts about my kick-booty heroine being a single, divorced, mother. Those factors usually turn me off immediately, especially when combined. Gay pulls it of smoothly, creating such an emotional connection between me and Charlie. I don't have kids, nor am I married or have been married. So riding along with Charlie was like going into the Twilight Zone. The love between Charlie and her kid is simply beautiful. When Charlie's life is spinning off into Danger Land I felt even more concerned for what was happening.
The ex-husband was another mind blowing part of this book for me. When reading it always seems like the ex is either a cheating jerk, dead (not quite an ex then), stupid, or simply wanted to be with someone who wasn't so kick-booty awesome. That's it, we hate the husband let's have few mouthy scenes and move on. The relationship between Charlie and her ex, blew me away. Sure the guy cheated, but the circumstances left a lot up in the air. Charlie still loved him, and ex was just too likable not to love. Even though I hate cheaters (that's putting it way too mild) I found my self cheering him on occasionally. So when events unfold I was on a roller coaster ride of tears, hope, and determination.
Charlie herself is a really great character. She's so real I want her to be my awesome friend. The kind that would hurt (if not kill) the people you hurt you. Charlie balances her life as a cop who deals with nasty other world creatures and her family life really well. So you get nice mushy emotions and hard butt police woman in one. The character growth in this book is also another treat, after all who could possibly think that a in control super mommy like her would need it?
Hank is a siren whose voice isn't the only thing seductive about him. He balances Charlie out as her partner in crime, mouthing off along with her. Personally I would have loved more page time with him, he's impossible to ignore. Hank reminds me of the strong, brave, gentleman that every women is looking for.
Other characters here are well worth investing in. Especially a relationship between Charlie's flower power sister (emphasis on powers) and a yummy Mage. I half breed Jinn, she was fierce but clearly vulnerable. Jinn are creatures from a different plan, kind of like hell, they're a warrior breed with a serious self worship issue. Let's just say that halfbreeds are not safe things to be.
The world Gay has created has me jumping up in down in glee. Earth is trying to balance out the discovery of two other worlds that creatures from legend live, and have been coming to earth throughout history. Elysia heaven-like where nicer monsters live and hell-like Charbydon where the eviler and darker monsters reside. Besides Sirens, Jinns, and Mages there are even more supernatural creatures happening. Hellhounds, angelic-like Adoni, Goblins, Revenants (read to find out), and so much more. This is a world that is every Urban Fantasy readers wet dream.
One thing that really stopped me from jumping on The Better Part of Darkness train, is that there are some complaints that it is slow. Personally I thought that the action was coming in a rush, the mysteries of Charlie's dark new life after she died and came back were perfectly paced. Gay gives the reader enough time to get a hold on all the characters and get a connection with the world that most authors glaze over.
This is a hard core entry into the Urban Fantasy genre. If you have doubts about reading a book about a single mom with an ex, don't worry this is good stuff. The Better Part of Darkness is sweeping away readers with a edgy world, featuring fantastic creatures and characters. This alternate supernatural Atlanta is definitely going to be one of my new favorite Urban Fantasy places to visit. There's a lot I'm not going over in this review, all of it good, put this one at the top of your TBR pile.