today's lesson in not judging a book by its cover:
i was in the mood for a light-hearted UF, +/- some quantity of asskicking but definitely not too muctoday's lesson in not judging a book by its cover:
i was in the mood for a light-hearted UF, +/- some quantity of asskicking but definitely not too much angsty torment, and this one was available right then from the e-library. i've really liked other things of Huff's before so had it on my wish list, but this one had gotten back-burnered in no small part due to the self-published looking cover and sorta twee title. go ahead and take a look: there's a girlish girl gazing in wonder out of a storefront to a dragon's shadow arcing up the wall of the building. so, a YA tale of a girl making friends with the local supernatural community in her fun magic store?
Alysha is a member of the deeply interconnected Gale clan, a family of people that all work magic as naturally and easily as breathing air. clan friends are marked with invisible fingertip tracings of charms to keep them safe, family squabbles are sorted with charmed pies that make the eaters speak the truth, power is connected to land and to family and deepens with age, and sex and love are a free-for-all governed by only a few firm rules. 'the enchantment emporium' is a leisurely-paced character study with a decidedly mythic bent, very much in the same category and feel as Practical Magic or Charles de Lint's Newford stories. it's beautiful and thoughtful, and decidedly more mature than the CG dragon cover would lead you to believe (though a dragon shadow does appear over the storefront one morning)....more
3.5, but probably closer to 4 stars, so definitely rounding up here.
i think i'm going to end up starting every review of a new series the same way her3.5, but probably closer to 4 stars, so definitely rounding up here.
i think i'm going to end up starting every review of a new series the same way here: there's a lot of filler crap on the UF bookshelf, so it's nice to find something that's not a rehash of something else you've already read or head-scratchingly silly. our heroine this go-around is a part-sidhe "changeling", called on by an old acquaintance to solve a murder; sleuthing ensues, as is somewhat standard in this genre. october is a minor player in the local supernatural scene, so a good chunk of the book is her rushing around SF asking for help from a colorful cast of characters, some of which feel as though they're only there because they sounded like a good idea in the author's head (i'm looking at you, here, Tybalt).
all of which makes it sound pretty meh. not so; anything that can keep me solidly entertained such that i devour the whole book in 2 short sittings has to be a fairly well put-together tale. there's a LOT of backstory that's only hinted at, so there's plenty of room for these characters to stretch out, and i'm left wanting more of this world. i've got the 2nd one waiting here, and i'm certainly planning on seeing where McGuire goes with her version of faerie. ...more
an upward trend from the first installment, the southern-fried heroine has begun to show some real character development. the main plot lines are stilan upward trend from the first installment, the southern-fried heroine has begun to show some real character development. the main plot lines are still wide open as a barn door by the end, but it's kinda refreshing to have the mission to save the world be actually difficult and fraught with danger instead of neatly tied up in a couple hundred pages. ...more
moning is known as a romance author, and that's part of the reason I put this book off, though it was a freebie amazon kindle promo - I had to be in tmoning is known as a romance author, and that's part of the reason I put this book off, though it was a freebie amazon kindle promo - I had to be in the mood for something a little trashy. this, however, was completely not that book: sex in this world can be deadly, and there's no quick flirtation before the tumble in the sheets for this girl.
MacKayla is a green-off-the-turnip-truck southern belle, with no more pressing concern than what shade of pink she's going to do her nails. she gets the phone call that her studying-abroad sister has been killed, and ultimately heads to Dublin herself when she thinks the police have closed the case too soon. Mac stumbles into the horrific world of the fae - inhuman predatory monsters - when she discovers she's one of the (un)lucky few that can see through their glamour to the true evil beneath.
what's good about this book is simultaneously what's bad about this book. the heroine is, quite literally, TSTL (that's "too stupid to live" for those of you unfamiliar with standard paranormal romance tropes): she blunders in way over her head several times, necessitating rescue in one manner or another, and hearing her prattle on about revlon iceberrry pink polish became annoying quickly. that being said, it was refreshing to have a main character that was an actual real person, not an instant super-badass, not someone who blithely accepts a whole new supernatural world in an eyeblink. all of the main characters are complexly flawed, leaving no one obvious to root for as the knight in shining armor, but leaving everything intriguingly mysterious. it doesn't end with a cliffhanger, though none of the major plot points are tied up.
in short, the whole book feels like an extended prologue to the series. it's written in a future-tense first person, as though Mac is reading you her journal a year or two after the fact, giving you glimpses into the stronger, harder woman she will become. as long as that promise of character development comes through, and this intro remains the weakest in the series, the rest will be well worth getting into. ...more