"I throw back the cup of tea. It tastes like hot swamp water filtered through a baboon's ass."
This was my first time reading a Sandman Slim novel as well as anything by Richard Kadrey despite hearing this series and his name pop up from time to time. Yeah, I'm starting a little late in the game, but I'll take what I can get! Color me impressed! I really enjoyed this world and characters. Kadrey has quite the imagination when it comes to the powers and abilities of his supporting characters and his central character, James, as well. I started reading it feeling like there was plenty of back story given so I didn't really feel lost. However, as I read a bit more I do think there were things I would understand better had I read the other 5 books when it came to species, their abilities, and their interrelationships with other species and James. Even still, there is enough new material for me to follow along without much issue. They do reference the past a lot so it's nice to see another series that does a good job of building on itself. I was intrigued enough by the plot and enjoyed this story enough that I do plan to go back and read the others! Candy (James's demon girlfriend) is really cool. I like her personality a lot and can see how well it works with his character as well. The world-building is fantastic, thorough, and consistent. This particular book wasn't very dark for me but I hear that this series takes a bunch of very dark turns in the prequel novels, so color me intrigued.
I am coming off of reading the complete Dresden files earlier this year so a few elements made me think back to that series, but this series has plenty to stand apart on its own as well. I was engaged from beginning to the end. I feel like readers of The Dresden Files and Kate Daniels in particular would really like this one too. There are plenty of quotable passages, very funny ones.
So yes, overall I enjoyed it and look forward to reading the rest of the novels in this series. Looks like I have another marathon planned for 2015!
I’m usually always up for a good angel series. I probably enjoy those second after vampire books. So the premise of this one was partDIVINITY Review
I’m usually always up for a good angel series. I probably enjoy those second after vampire books. So the premise of this one was particularly interesting. The world building itself has a fair amount of potential. I think some things could have been fleshed out a bit more because there were a few instances that felt like info-dumping to me. There were some issues that may be hard to swallow for some readers, especially a certain plot point relating to domestic abuse. That topic has been hot in the media as of late (ie: the Ray Rice situation), so I found myself particularly invested in that outcome. The author seemed to have quite a bit of knowledge about the situation so it played out realistically.
I wasn’t crazy about the romance aspect here. I actually think the book would have been fine without it. I just didn’t feel the chemistry between Julia and her boyfriend, and to be fair, when it comes to supernatural series I find that human book boyfriends are at a disadvantage by default (poor Nick from The Hollows never stood a chance for me honestly). That said, I think there are other potential on the horizon there for future installments. Overall, if you haven’t read a lot of angel novels then this will probably feel like a fresh read. While it wasn’t bad, for me it did lack a fresh factor, but I do think the next books could be promising. I would give a sequel a try because some of the characters were interesting and there are some interesting paths where this story can go.
*ARC provided in exchange for an honest review...more
I can always get behind a good graphic novel, and the synopsis here was practically irresistible! If you’re going to put a twist on classic fairy tales then sign me up! Unfortunately this has happened more often so it’s becoming a trend. That makes it harder for stories to stand out and be truly unique though a few still accomplish this.
For this graphic novel I’m more on the fence about it. I don’t feel like the character’s back stories are incorporated well enough for me to buy why these characters are special. They aren’t anything like what I knew or grew up with. They really could just be anyone but that’s a harder selling point. That said, the story kept my interest for the most part. I do want to see where things go next, but it’s mostly because of a potential villain, or at least a character that is clearly in the gray territory. I am curious about his motivations.
All in all it’s a good read to pass the time. The artwork is good, though not great. And there appear to be spin-off stories for all the main characters toward the end of the volume where we see brief side story prequels for them. Though I wasn’t a fan of how throughout all of those prequels we see little notes to buy other issues to read even more about their back stories. I understand the marketing tactic behind it, but as someone who doesn’t really read comics and graphic novels too often, I want everything I need in the Volume I am current reading and I don’t really care to seek out half a dozen other comics to get the big picture.
That said, I will read the next one, Volume 2 that is.
*ARC provided by Net Galley in exchange for an honest review. *Review also posted to Amazon. ...more
I enjoyed the first novel in this series, Sanctum, and jumped right into Fractured as soon as I could. There’s not much of a time-lapse at all so you won’t feel like you’ve missed much. While the supernatural big bads have come over to the human world, that leaves less time to explore the Shadowlands. I enjoyed the story overall, but I found myself wanting Lela and the gang to head back into Shadowlands pretty often since I found the world building and development there pretty interesting. This one focused more on high school life and came across as a more traditional paranormal YA read.
Malachi and Lela run into trouble in paradise which didn’t totally surprise me. One of the highlights of the book included several fish out of water moments for Malachi. You can’t expect someone who existed during the Holocaust to easily grasp how things are today. There are some interesting twists with the character as well that will leave you on the edge of your seat waiting for the next book.
We meet new side characters as well, but I didn’t find myself as invested in their storyline as I was with characters from the first book. I guess I might be a little afraid to get too attached.
Based on the ending of this book, I think book 3 will be closer to the same vein as book one which is a little more of what I’m looking for in this type of series. I look forward to its release and definitely recommend this series! And as an added bonus I really like the covers!
After reading Jennifer Armentrout flex her YA skills with the Lux novels, I was ever so curious to check out her adult skillMore Like Fangirl Rising
After reading Jennifer Armentrout flex her YA skills with the Lux novels, I was ever so curious to check out her adult skills with Unchained. I will be honest and say that any series set in Washington, DC like this one is will automatically make me a little biased. But I probably would have loved this book if it took place in Timbuktu (well, not really, but any urban setting would have worked). I have grown to enjoy the fallen angel subgenre almost as much as a vampire one and books like this are probably why.
After reading the novel I learned that this was actually an earlier novel by Armentrout and while I enjoyed it, finding the plot and characters satisfying enough, I wasn’t surprised. If there was one area I could criticize it would definitely be the world building aspect. We definitely hear about Washington, DC, but she does very little to actually show us the setting with good details. It’s only because I live here that the setting makes sense to me. She has since improved in that area with her Lux novels.
The characterizations are very good, especially when it comes to Julian, the fallen angel. I don’t doubt he’ll make the book boyfriend list for many readers. While I personally liked Lily, I think she would have to grow on other readers. She’s brash, overconfident and loves to dive head first into danger. But she’s Nephilim (a fallen angel/human hybrid), what do you expect? She’s also a bit of a rebel but for me that made her all the more fun. She’s good at what she does so she can back it up…for now.
While I would call this an urban fantasy, it definitely comes on strong with the romance too. The chemistry between Julian and Lily is totally scorching, but you’re never allowed to feel comfortable with their relationship because they are inherently on opposing sides. There’s just enough tension to keep things interesting the whole way through. I was honestly fearing a potential love triangle, so if you’re concerned about that, don’t be. There are definitely bigger fish to fry as to what can drive a wedge between the two.
There’s a lot of action and brutality and I honestly wasn’t always sure of the characters’ motivations which kept things from being too predictable. All in all there was never a dull moment for me, so even though this is an earlier work of Armentrout, it’s still plenty enjoyable and re-readable. I will absolutely be reading Book 2 and I’m crossing my fingers that it can release on time in 2014.
I held off on reading this series for a long time. I actually started it some time ago then stopped and then decided to resume it closeCity of Bones
I held off on reading this series for a long time. I actually started it some time ago then stopped and then decided to resume it closer to the movie’s release. Ultimately I ended up watching the movie before finishing the book. There were times that the book read like fanfiction to me (and then I learned that’s because it actually was), but I’ve certainly read worse. While I thought the movie was pretty rushed, the book had the opposite effect for me and felt overly long, but that could be because I didn’t find the melodrama particularly interesting between the main three, especially Simon’s assured-to-be-unrequited feelings for Clary.
Jace. Jace. Jace. Well at least he has a personality? He comes off as pretty juvenile for me at times and I didn’t always find it funny, so for me he wasn’t as swoon-worthy as I’m sure he is for millions of others. The chemistry with Clary is pretty good until the twist that made my eyes roll. After that I was pretty sure I wouldn’t be interested in seeing it play out for multiple books throughout the series.
I enjoyed the magic, mythology and lore here, but it honestly wasn’t something that I can’t get anywhere else and better, so while I don’t think I’ll completely drop the series, I’m also in no rush to continue it anytime soon. I’m much more likely to read the The Infernal Devices Trilogy instead because there are only 3 of those and they’re complete.
This was my first time delving into the Love at Stake novels, or at least I think so. What drew me to this book was mainly the title. I thought it’d be a parody of the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo novel. There was humor here and there, but this is first and foremost a paranormal romance, so the romance and drama take precedence. I may have read a short story from this series before because one aspect sounded familiar to me; it was the VANNA angle in particular though I can’t recall where I could have read it. VANNA is a life-size synthetic device designed to look like a human woman. There’s blood stored inside it to help curb a vampire’s desire to attack real living people. That provided a healthy dose of comic relief in this book. Though the story appears to be a standalone, there is an overarching plot that I feel has been developing since the earlier books. But even still I never felt lost.
The relationship between Dougal and Leah was decent but I didn’t connect to it very much. Both were a little too down on themselves most of the time. I also think the timing was wrong for me because I read this on the heels of another book where reincarnation was at the heart of the relationship. I wasn’t disappointed with the book, so I imagine fans of the series who have read it from the beginning should enjoy it. Though I doubt I will read all the earlier 13 novels, I might look into reading one of its stronger prequels to get a better feel for Kerrelyn Sparks’s writing at its best.
3 stars. The writing and world-building wer solid and the story moved along at a reasonable pace. I have taken a liking to the angel angle of the para3 stars. The writing and world-building wer solid and the story moved along at a reasonable pace. I have taken a liking to the angel angle of the paranormal genre as of late, so the premise stood out to me. However, as I read it I didn't connect with the characters as well as I would have liked. I wasn't quite sure if this was targeted towards young adults or adults. Based on the cover (which looks cool) I was expecting something grittier. It depicts more chemistry between the hero and heroine than I felt while reading the actual story. Needless to say, it fell a bit flat for me there. The second half was significantly more interesting and it clearly sets things up for an ongoing series. It has a lot of potential.
To be fair. I read this directly after finishing a series of books that became a top 5 all-time favorite of mine, so after a book high like that it's very likely that I just wasn't in the right frame of mind to really embrace this story as much.
I received this book for review though I hadn’t read the first book, Angelology. The beautiful cover drew me to it like a moth to a flame, but it was the story kept me in the fire. This definitely presented a different feel than your typical paranormal/urban fantasy. After reading it I can certainly understand the Da Vinci Code comparisons, revealing deeper meanings behind countless important figures and artifacts throughout history. While reading you feel like you’re experiencing a small slice of a much bigger picture. This is an age old fight that only appears to be heating up.
Since I hadn’t read the first book there were some things I was confused about, wondering if the confusion was due to starting with Book 2, but as the story unfolded I eventually learned that wasn’t the case at all. The questions I had weren’t revealed in the first book. That said, I do plan to go back to read the first one. I am not sure about the frequency of releases when it comes to this series. Those of us used to authors releasing 1-2 times per year may have to pump the breaks here. The first book was released 3 years prior to this one. I imagine the amount of research to write these takes a while. Even still, I finished the book already wanting to read the next one.
There were multiple point of views throughout this book, and I’m not sure if it was for the better. I found myself invested in only a few characters, so I would have liked more focus on them to add more depth. Another area where I think this series could benefit is through illustrating the angels. An appendix would be invaluable. There are a number of different angelic species and Nephilim, so it’s difficult to visualize and remember how they look since their features differ vastly from one to another.
The series has been picked up by Columbia Pictures, so it looks like a movie is in the works. It looks like these angels will be larger than life soon enough. I hope that goes well.
If you’re planning to read this series, I recommend getting the hardcover. It looks better in person than in pictures. It’s practically coffee table quality, though the content of the book certainly isn’t.
Though I have yet to read one of her novels, Sylvia Day’s Renegade Angel series is currently on my TBR list, but it’s pretty farDecent for a Quickie
Though I have yet to read one of her novels, Sylvia Day’s Renegade Angel series is currently on my TBR list, but it’s pretty far down, so when I got a chance to read this prequel for free I wanted to see if it could get a bump up to something higher. This was a decent short story, but I didn’t feel the need to bump the series up any higher at this time. I will likely get to it around 2014 if not later this year. I know Sylvia Day is pretty popular so I hope I like her writing as well. This short story is still available for FREE as an ebook on B&N and Amazon.
I don’t totally love these books but I like them enough to continue. They are fun to read here and there between other books. This one wasn’t my favorite. After four books in, I was hoping to be a bit more invested in the storyline and characters. Cain is featured in this one. He’s an infamous throughout the course of fictional and biblical history, so it’s a tall order to create a memorable version of him. A number of authors do a fine job of taking old characters and making them their own (ie. Karen Chance with Mircea, Jeaniene Frost with Vlad ). I didn’t feel like this book accomplished that very well. The characterization in general was sort of flat for not only him, but for Martha as well. The constant comparisons to her dead husband didn’t really enhance the story or character development.
I am glad that this series goes the typical PNR route and focuses on a different hero and heroine because I wouldn’t see myself continuing if it was focused just those two. I have become somewhat invested in the world and the potential future of The Fallen and what appears to be the ultimate villain. The battles and politics actually keep me more interest than I though I’d be. And I like the occasional focus on the stars of the prior books. I’ll certain continue if only to see what happens on that front. I like that these books don’t take the instalove route as well even though they do eventually end up together. The author does a good job of making them take a pretty hard road so that you care a little bit more as a reader. I just worry about her stretching things out so that it becomes long in the tooth.
If you follow this series, I definitely don’t recommend skipping this one. It has a lot going on.
I do enjoy this series, but no installment has surpassed the first book as my favorite. Archangel’s Storm doesn’t do it eithExceeded my expectations
I do enjoy this series, but no installment has surpassed the first book as my favorite. Archangel’s Storm doesn’t do it either, but I would probably rate it top 3. Much like Archangel’s Blade, Elena and Raphael take a back seat as the story gives Jason, one of Raphael’s Seven, focus as he enters the rival territory of archangel Neha to solve the grisly murder of her consort. Jason has his own demons to face from his past, and they do challenge him; however, he must put it aside to work with Princess Mahiya, daughter of the slain archangel, to find the murderer and return to Raphael.
Jason isn’t particularly one of my favorite side characters. In all honesty, I never really thought too much about his character at all so I wasn’t really looking forward to this book. I sooner expected angel Illium to get his own story or even my personal fave, the vampire Venom. While Illium doesn’t get much time at all here, Venom actually does get significant focus which was a pretty good consolation prize. As progeny of Neha, his presence helped to flesh out the story and character development, though I would have liked more.
Both Jason and Mahiya have had pretty difficult upbringings, easily making them sympathetic characters. You root for them to find happiness, but it isn’t the easiest love story and there is no insta-love, which is for the better in my opinion. There is a lot more mystery and story than romance in this book which is personally how I like it, but it’s hard to say if other readers will feel the same. I love the world building and the focus on angel politics, but I am sure there is a contingent that reads these more so for the romance aspect.
It was a satisfying read, but I am still hoping Ms. Nalini Singh gifts us with a Venom-centric book at some point. With the next book set to go back to Raphael and Elena, I am not sure how far off that possibility is. Either way, I’ll be reading all the same.
Overall I enjoyed the novel and found it engaging almost the entire time, though it wasn't until the third act that it reached unputThe World After
Overall I enjoyed the novel and found it engaging almost the entire time, though it wasn't until the third act that it reached unputdownable territory. Though it's clearly not the only dystopian novel out there, I enjoy the balance with supernatural elements and creatures. I like that I can become completely immersed in this gritty world suddenly turned upside down where we see beings (human or otherwise) at their best and their worst. Though it's considered a young-adult novel, I think it's just as gritty as an adult novel which adds to its appeal.
I found it thought-provoking often, wondering many times what I'd do in Penryn's shoes. For a seventeen-year-old, she's had to grow up so fast and while she makes a few dumb decisions, she also makes a lot of good ones and I was really rooting her for and her sister, Paige. I even found myself liking Penryn's nutty mom. I feel like she's just crazy enough to survive this thing. But Paige. Ugh, I spent most of the book just wanting to hug her. Her ordeal is completely heart-wrenching and I had a very tough time reading about it. We learn how she becomes what she is now, a twisted, patched up, razor-toothed experiment gone totally wrong...or maybe totally right? All I know is she's seven and it's just not fair. But I do appreciate that there may be a sense of destiny about the character which would make her even more multidimensional than being a sympathy magnet.
You're probably wondering why I haven't really said much about Raffe. You know, Raphael, the Great Archangel, the Wrath of God, and more importantly for the fans, Penryn's unexpected but very yummy main squeeze. He's definitely our favorite archangel. Well, unfortunately there's not much to tell this time. About half his significance in the book is through flashbacks of what we already knew. When they finally do meet up their chemistry and banter are a lot of fun, but I would have liked more of it and sooner.
Aside from that I had a couple more gripes with the entry. For one, the end didn't feel complete enough. I wouldn't quite call it a cliffhanger but it honestly just stops. I prefer when books wind down in the last chapter or at least provide an epilogue. My next issue would be the length. This novel is not very long at all. While I don't have page numbers to reference, I can't imagine it being over 300 pages. So why does this book have 75 chapters? Unless you're busting out 1,500+ pages novels like George R. R. Martin or something, it's completely superfluous. And since most of the scenes flow into the next one if anything it affected the pace a little. I honestly don't see why this would need more than 30. I just finished it and yet I couldn't tell you a standout chapter if my life depended on it.
But yes, my issues aside, I thought it was a very entertaining read and I'm looking forward to the next one. I also recently learned that this series will be adapted into a movie. I definitely think it's a good call because that's all I could think about while reading it, how cool it'd be on the big screen. But how often do movies live up to expectations?
If you're a fan, you won't want to miss it, but you might want to re-read Angelfall to give yourself a bit of a refresher.
The Vampire Council just won’t leave poor Risa Jones alone. This time she is forced to investigate a string of murders involving blood-whore addicted vampires. Sure, she’s got her own problems to deal with, but with an execution order on her life she’ll have to shift priorities and solve this case in order to get it lifted. She begrudgingly enlists the help of her ex-boyfriend journalist; this only serves to stir the pot even more, bringing up old feelings and nuggets of her past.
Not a lot of progress is made toward the overarching plot of the series, which involves Risa confiscating keys for her father that could potentially open the gates the hell. But I found the mystery to be satisfying enough to keep my interest. I love vamps so if we were going to get a side plot, I’m glad it was this one. That said, I hope that the next book is heavier on the main plot so that there can be steady advancement of the plot.
I am enjoying the continued development of her dark angel partner in crime, Azriel. There is progress on the relationship front with Risa as well, but it’s fragile at best and I have feeling that there will be a hitch. Not to mention, her current lover Lucian is not quite out of the picture yet, though this relationship hits its own rocky waters. I’m surprised it’s taken this long honestly. Lucian practically has a red flag stamped to his forehead when it comes to trust. It’s so obvious that he’s hiding something that I question if this is a red herring; otherwise, we’re in for a grossly underwhelming revelation of his true intentions.
When I first started reading Keri Arthur’s Dark Angel series, I wasn’t sure if it would be my cup of tea. I wasn’t really feeling Risa much as the lead and sometimes that can make or break a series for me. While she’s still not necessarily my favorite, I’m growing more attached to the supporting characters (namely Azriel), so for now I will continue reading.
It looks like Kristina Douglas has finally hit her stride in The Fallen series. Warrior is the best yet. What a difference addThe series at its best
It looks like Kristina Douglas has finally hit her stride in The Fallen series. Warrior is the best yet. What a difference adding more plot and featuring a better romance dynamic can make.
Raziel and Azazel have settled and found happiness with their human mates, but now it's Michael's turn. He's the fiercest warrior of The Fallen, shying away from love as much as he possibly can, even to the point of only drinking blood from The Source to avoid a deeper connection to his partners. However, his practices and beliefs are challenged in this installment as he is must marry the reincarnation of Victoria Bellona, the Roman Goddess of War.
Throughout history Victoria ("Tory") does not live past her 25th birthday, which is convenient as the prophecy states that in order for The Fallen to win against Uriel and his plans for destruction, Michael must fight with her by his side as his wife...and she must die. Knowing her fate ahead of time should make this process easy. However, as Tory and Michael grow closer they realize this is more difficult than they were expecting.
This series is not the best and it's not my favorite, but yet I keep coming back for more. I did enjoy this book quite a bit. Tory is actually a cool heroine this time around. Who doesn't like a character that kicks butt? It certainly ups the action factor which this series needs to add interest and excitement. I like that she is so skilled and even gives some of the angels a run for their money. All but Michael of course, though I'm not complaining because this is where I felt their chemistry was the strongest. They feel like a well-matched pair so I enjoyed seeing the relationship flourish. It has an angst factor, but I was a lot less bothered by their situation compared to Azazel and Rachel in book 2.
I also enjoyed what was going on around Michael and Tory. Characters from the past still get attention, especially Ally who has been experiencing a sickness that no one can identify. I predicted her issue early on, so I felt that it was dragged out for too long, but the possibility of Sheol evolving shows that Douglas is only getting started with this world. I look forward to what comes next. Each book is better than the last and the preview of book 4 makes me believe this trend will continue. ...more
I picked Susan Ee’s Angelfall at just the right time. Coming off the high of reading and totally adoring Wicked as They Come by Delilah Dawson, another debut author, I am fully convinced that rookies know how to play with the big boys. And that’s a wonderful thing.
Susan Ee’s post-apocalyptic series takes place in Silicon Valley, California. In only six weeks the world has been brought to its knees by the hands of beautiful, yet destructive angels. There’s little order among the chaos as gangs terrorize by day, and the supernatural terrorize by night. One night, 17-year-old Penryn and her family take their chances and a brave the night to find a safer harbor. But once they witness a major struggle between an angel called Raffe and his fellow brethren, it ends with the lone angel beaten and wingless, and her little her sister being abducted by the winged terrors. They must begrudgingly team up with one another so that they can get back what they want most; Penryn, her sister, and Raffe, his wings. And they face almost any and every danger along the way.
This book would have taken me by surprise, but the high ratings and praise made me pretty confident that it would live up to the hype. Though I’m capable of thinking for myself, I have to side with the majority here. It’s a fantastic new series and it’s definitely one of my favorite dystopian novels. Maybe it’s because I’m a sucker for all things paranormal and this book blends both elements perfectly? I’m not going to try to figure it out, but it just works. Every time I had to put the book down, I really didn’t want to. And if that’s not a sign of a good read, I don’t really know what is.
The cover is really cool. I like the simple, but understated feel to it. It sets you up for a complete surprise once you begin to read the book because it’s filled with tons of creepy and pulse-pounding moments. Penryn and Raffe’s uneasy relationship is surprisingly endearing and it only gets better as the book progresses. I wasn’t sure what to expect since this book seems to be classified as young adult, but I found there to be a number of mature subject matter involved and the only thing separating it from an adult novel is the lack of sex, though the themes are there.
Speaking of themes. There are a number of others that Susan Ee brings to light in this book from racism, to misogyny, to religious beliefs, to human experimentation, to rebellion, to fractured family life. Each setting is structured to tackle these issues, or at least bring them to light for the reader to ponder. But it’s easy to see that it’s all under one big umbrella of deceit.
The book only lagged for me once when they reach a resistance camp. I think it’s because that’s the only area of the novel where it felt like your standard dystopian fanfare for the oppressed to strategize about how to take down those currently in power. With a book so unique, this scene stuck out to me like a sore thumb, though it’s still manageable and the book does move along to other places.
There’s very little to complain about on my end. I highly recommend this book. It’s only $1.99 right now, so you’re not breaking the bank too much if you want to give it a try. But I personally think you won’t be sorry.
I read the first novel of Keri Arthur's series, Darkness Unbound, finding that the pieces of a good Urban Fantasy series were therNow we're talkin'
I read the first novel of Keri Arthur's series, Darkness Unbound, finding that the pieces of a good Urban Fantasy series were there, but it didn't really come together to carve out its own unique spot in this genre. Well, Darkness Rising is definitely putting this series on the right track to do that and I'm glad that it didn't take very long. Many books suffer from FBS (first book syndrome), even some of the best series. So that's why I decided to give the Dark Angels saga another shot and I'm happy I did.
After the heart-wrenching ending of the prior book, Risa Jones, the Aedh/werewolf hybrid, is out for blood and desperately searching for her mother's killer. She's even willing to work for Madeline Hunter, the evil leader of the vampire council, doing her bidding in exchange for information to help her get to the bottom of the murder.
Part of that includes Risa finding the culprit responsible for spelling elder vampire council members to rapidly age and die. As if those two pesky tasks weren't enough on her plate, Risa's Aedh father also has plans for her, practically demanding she thrust herself into danger to locate the keys to heaven and hell--to what purpose we still don't quite know, but if she fails it will be her friends who pay the price. All of this while trying to figure out the growing powers within herself.
This book still wasn't perfect, but I felt like I was finally becoming familiar with the world and the characters. I wasn't hooked during the first book until the very end, but the momentum flows into this book so it ended up being quite an entertaining ride. I'm still not totally in love with the characters yet, but I think it has potential to grow over time. I particularly see a lot of potential with Risa's own personal "guardian angel" of sorts, Azriel. Some of their interactions are a bit predictable and I think I have a sense of where the relationship is going, but I appreciate that the author isn't rushing it. I was concerned this could be the case considering how Risa rationalizes her whoring ways as "celebrating sexuality." Still not buying it and I still think it's a lame attempt by the author to seem edgy, but it doesn't detract overall from the story.
After reading the first novel I wasn't really sure I would be interested in reading the original 9 novels from the Riley Jenson books. But after this book my interest has piqued a bit more. Unfortunately, I know how those books will end up so that may take away a bit of the suspense, but it could be worth it regardless of that. I'm still not in a rush to read them though and I doubt I will get to them this year.
All in all, for anyone that may have had a hard time getting into the first book, I urge you to give the second book a try because the series has potential to be really great.
I will start off by saying that I have not read Keri Arthur's original Riley Jenson series. I honestly went into this thinking it was the beginning of a new series, not a spin-off of 9 prior novels. Maybe that's why it was hard to really get into this book and into this world, but I did try. The leading lady of the Dark Angels series is Risa Jones, a psychic Aedh/werewolf hybrid whose day job involves running a restaurant with her buddies, but her most important job includes talking to souls of those who are near death's door, helping them realize whether or not it's their time to go. She also has the added perk of seeing soul reapers who guide these souls to the next life.
It's not Risa's favorite thing to do. And we soon learn why when she is sent to help a little girl who is comatose in a hospital. A somber, but routine visit goes horrible wrong when Risa learns that the little girl's soul was actually stolen, robbing her of the choice to move on. It leads back to a supernatural creature that's been collecting souls. Risa will have to do all she can to solve stop them. It leads to revelations that put the world as she knows it at risk. She has a daunting task ahead of her and needs all the help she can get. But will she get it?
This series has a well developed world, which seems to go back to the Riley Jenson novels. It's so developed that I couldn't always keep up at times; I will be honest and say that there are things I can't even remember now. It made it somewhat difficult to get into the story. Not to mention, there are a number of characters introduced so it's hard to pin down their personalities and decide on how I feel about them. I tend to read novels primarily for the characters and if they are lacking, then my readership follows.
I don't like how the sex is handled in this book. I wasn't expecting Risa to be such a hoe, being quick to hop in the sack...with multiple parters no less. She doesn't even need to know their names, or their true intentions towards her! I'm no prude or anything, and the books thankfully don't make it the main focus of the plot, but this is a double edged sword because it feels arbitrary and pointless. It was a failed attempt at being edgy and the characters' relationship suffers for it because it doesn't give the reader any sense of a genuine bond, especially towards the end where one lover is completely MIA and a chance for decent development outside the bedroom (or club dance floor) is lost.
I wasn't completely gripped with this book until the very end if you could believe it, but I was determined to keep trucking on. I feel like it has potential with the number of creatures we learn about and worlds that we'll no doubt continue to explore in future novels, so that alone is why I will give the second book a chance. And by the end Risa has motivation, drive, and an overarching mystery plot line that I genuinely want to see her solve. But does this make me want to backtrack and read the Riley Jenson books? Not really, though that could change later on.