CHILD OF A HIDDEN SEA is an interesting take on the fish out of water fantasy tale. Our heroine Sophie is cast into a strange world after trying to saCHILD OF A HIDDEN SEA is an interesting take on the fish out of water fantasy tale. Our heroine Sophie is cast into a strange world after trying to save the life of her aunt that she's never actually met, and wonder of all wonders, she actually questions the setting! She takes a scientific look at her surroundings and even has the smarts to record some of the odder, even magical occurrences. She questions as much as she can, but of course, this gets her into trouble. Sophie finds secrets that others would prefer to remain hidden, and she has to unravel a murder plot and inheritance question, and practice diplomacy to keep her new world from descending into war.
I love the fact that Sophie is a scientist, how she catalogs each new specimen and compares it to known Earth items. I like how she texts her brother even though she's obviously in a place with no cell coverage (would that be roaming or what?). Eventually, Sophie is able to get back to Earth, but she has to return to Stormwrack to fix what she has inadvertently broken, taking her nerdy-cool brother with her. Her brother is gay, but it doesn't take over the story, nor does it seem odd. Diversity is normal here, and that's the way it should be. The magic system in Stormwrack is interesting, with the fantasy trope of making sure no one knows your real name becoming important.
This is a classic example of portal fantasy, and I am very much looking forward to the next book in the series, to go back to Stormwrack and get some questions answered!
Received as a free digital ARC via Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review....more
I've read a few of these now, and each time I think it might be the last, because they all follow the same basic formula, yet I still come back to theI've read a few of these now, and each time I think it might be the last, because they all follow the same basic formula, yet I still come back to them. A mysterious death with paranormal overtones is discovered, normal police can't handle it, the Krewe is called in, and new or old Krewe members fall in love. THE NIGHT IS ALIVE doesn't vary from this script, but it's still a fun read. The author is good at describing the settings of her books, in this case, Savannah, Georgia. Her history research shows in all of the stories, and that's probably what I like. The relationships can be rushed (shades of insta-love), but overall her characters are quite realistic and often funny. Even the ghosts have personality; I particularly liked Blue and his pirate mannerisms. Usually the clues to the bad guy are somewhat predictable in this series, and I was able to pick him out early here, thanks to the text. But there is plenty of action to keep the pages turning, and the characters do encounter real peril. Check these books out if you want a quick paranormal-romance thrill; they don't have to be read in order....more
Anyone else fall in love with the way the title is styled on the cover? Pirates and assassins, oh my. I was hoping that this book would live up to itsAnyone else fall in love with the way the title is styled on the cover? Pirates and assassins, oh my. I was hoping that this book would live up to its cover, and it did. The main character Ananna is very realistic and quite often funny, with surprising insight. She's able to take care of herself (which she points out quite often) but she's not a bully. Her manner of speaking takes some getting used to, but it sounds natural. The titular assassin isn't fleshed out as fully as Ananna, but Naji is a likeable character, even if he was sent to kill Ananna at one point. I've got lots of questions about Naji and his training, just like Ananna. I liked the settings, and felt as though I could easily imagine the Night Markets and the Isles of the Sky. There is plenty of peril and frightening scenes to keep you wondering what happens next. I'm not a fan of how the book ends, just after Ananna and Naji find out what they have to do to break the assassin's curse, since it seems abrupt, but there is plenty of hope, and the things they have to do sound suitably daunting. I'm interested to see how the author gets her protagonists off the island, so to speak, so I'll keep an eye out for the next in the series.
I received this as a digital ARC via Netgalley....more