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Outcast #1

City of Light

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The first in an all-new futuristic fantasy series from Keri Arthur—the New York Times bestselling author of the Souls of Fire novels.

When the bombs that stopped the species war tore holes in the veil between this world and the next, they allowed entry to the Others—demons, wraiths, and death spirits who turned the shadows into their hunting grounds. Now, a hundred years later, humans and shifters alike live in artificially lit cities designed to keep the darkness at bay....

As a déchet—a breed of humanoid super-soldiers almost eradicated by the war—Tiger has spent her life in hiding. But when she risks her life to save a little girl on the outskirts of Central City, she discovers that the child is one of many abducted in broad daylight by a wraith-like being—an impossibility with dangerous implications for everyone on earth.

Because if the light is no longer enough to protect them, nowhere is safe...

378 pages, Kindle Edition

First published January 5, 2016

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About the author

Keri Arthur

103 books5,748 followers
Keri Arthur, author of the New York Times bestselling Riley Jenson, Guardian series, has now written more than 25 books. She's received several nominations in the Best Contemporary Paranormal category of the Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Awards, and recently won RT's Career Achievement Award for urban fantasy. She lives in Melbourne with her daughter and two crazy dogs

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 332 reviews
Profile Image for Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin.
3,468 reviews9,629 followers
November 4, 2016
Buddy read w/some beautiful peeps over at BB&B ♥


Wow, I have never read a book like this one before! I thought it was pretty awesome!

There are worse things in this world than the vampires and Others, and many of them hide under the veil of civility and lights.

I loved Tiger's character. She's bad to the bone. She's a dechet. She has little kid ghosts as friends. Bear and Cat are the main ghosts that are her friends and it was sad to read about why they are ghosts. But Tiger also has many ghosts that help her and others that are cranky but they help too. She can see them and converse with them and they can help her with weapons and such. It's so totally cool!

The shifters--with their greater strength, speed, and the capacity to heal almost any wound--should have wiped the stain of humanity from Earth. But humans had not wasted the many years leading up to the war, and bioengineering labs, which had initially produced nothing more than body-part replacements for the sick and dying, had gone into full--and secret--production. These labs had created not only an enzyme that gave humans the same capacity to heal as the shifters, but also the designed humanoid. Or dechet, as we'd become known.

It said a lot about humanity's opinion of us that we were given a nickname that meant "waste product."

Most of us hadn't come from human stock, but were rather a mix of shifter and vampire, which gave us most of their strengths and few of their weaknesses. We'd been humanity's supersoldiers--designed to fight and to die without thought or feeling--and we'd almost turned the tide of the war.


But not all of us had been trained strictly as soldiers, just as not all of us were unfeeling. There were a few who'd been created with more specific skills in mind--chameleons able to alter their flesh at will, and who'd been tasked with either seduction and intelligence gathering or assassination.

I was was one such creation.

Tiger's shifter self was in the form of a white tiger. I thought that was cool.


It doesn't show on the cover of the book but she is described to have hair the color of white and black, the colors of her cat =-)

You can read from the blurb about a species war that ended up tearing holes in the veil of the world and created rifts where the Others can come through - demons, wraiths etc.

Tiger and her ghosts stay down in the bunker where they were all made at one point. She is the only one left alive until she finds an old friend she hadn't seen in 100 years.

Tiger also saves Penny a little girl she hears crying in the night. Penny makes sure she saves Jonas too, he is in a group of people that are trying to fight the bad things. Vampires are all around and almost take them out before they get back to the bunker. Cat, the ghost, gets Penny back but Tiger has a hard time getting back dragging Jonas along.

After all of this, it's on. . . Tiger meets, Nuri who is a seerer and she tells Tiger that wraiths are taking children. Tiger can't let the children down and helps to get them back.

There are a lot of things going on in this world and it's beautifully written. I think so anyway. I can see this as a science fiction type movie. I think it would be awesome!

I enjoyed the book so much I have already pre-ordered the next one. Lol. I hope anyone else that reads it enjoys it as well.

MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List
December 18, 2016
I Might Have Been Two Weeks Late but Hey I Finally Managed to Read it There are Miracles Sometimes Buddy Read (IMHBTWLbHIFMtRiTaMSBR™) with Jo, Mel and Ange (aka my hand-holding, vodka-providing companion) ●

Actual rating: 4.5 stars. Hell yeah.

Bloody hell. There is still non-crappy UF out there. Non-crappy UF NOT written by either Ilona Andrews, Pippa DaCosta or Craig Schaefer. Well I'll be damned.

Yes, I know, I faint in the most graceful, delightful way. Because my being slightly nefarious doesn't mean I don't have impeccable manners. Ha.

Besides the fact that non-pathetic UF is as hard to find nowadays as a gleefully whistling shrimp on top of a snow-covered mountain on Neptune, there is another reason why I so elegantly swooned earlier: this book was a complete and total disaster waiting to happen. Oh yes. This book was a bomb waiting to explode. A shrimp waiting to viciously murder you in your sleep. I mean, take a post-war/post-apocalyptic/post-whatever SF world. Now throw in werewolves, vampires, wraiths and boring ghosts . Add a dash of humanoid soldiers that are a weird, mixed breed of vamps and weres. What do you get? Total doom and instant annihilation of all life on earth, right? Wrong. Because this Mostest Improbablest Mix in the History of Mostest Improbablest Mixes (MIWitHoMIM™) bloody works. And how. Let me tell you, my Little Barnacles, this is one of the most original, refreshing world I've ever read about. I kid you not. Uh-Oh, stand back, I think I'm getting the faints again.

Sorry 'bout that, it looks I'm getting overly emotional in my old age.

You know, I was SO impressed with Arthur's amazing world-building that I even considered giving her a 24-hour pass to my High Security Harem [insert cries of utter horror and total dismay here]. Worry not, though, for I quickly regained my senses, and realized the best reward for Arthur's fantastic work would be for me to pre-order book 2 in the series [insert sighs of complete relief and outright happiness here]. In any case, this short lapse of insanity on my part should give you an indication as to how awesome this awesome world is awesome is.

And get this: not only was this book a disaster waiting to happen that didn't, but it was also a mess waiting to be confusing that wasn't. This world should have been slightly befuddling because there is lots of, you know, stuff going on. With lots of players and factions and, you know, stuff involved. And with lots of backstory and, you know, stuff. And lots and lots and lots of, you know…stuff. The book is packed with information, and yet it is all crystal shrimping clear. And never, ever boring. And never, ever slow-paced. I'd read the 800-pages version of this book if Arthur wrote it. Yep, that's right. Because there might tons of info in this book, but none of it is superfluous. Deadly Tedious Info Dumping Paradise (DTIDP™), this ain't not. And instead of a Confusing, Boring, Please Kill Me Somebody Mess (CBPKMSM™), you get one of the best first instalments in a UF series I've ever read. Which kinda sorta makes me feel like this:

This world is creative. It's compelling. Thought-provoking. Different. And bloody entertaining. It's shrimping amazing, I tell you! It's doubly triply quadruply amazing because absolutely nothing in this world is black and white, which makes it feel real. And you know what's quintuply sextuply septuply amazing here? There are two major UF tropes in the story (spoiler spoiler spoiler, and spoiler spoiler spoiler). The kind that usually means infernal, instant combustion of all beings and things *shudders* But you know what Keri Arthur does? She goes beyond the clichés. She uses them, plays with them, and smacks them upside the head. Ding dong, the tropes are dead. And it's bloody shrimping cool.

Damn right it is. And you know what else is bloody shrimping cool about this book? The characters. They're deliciously NOT one-dimensional. They all have shady pasts, and most of them are delightfully untrustworthy, with deliciously dubious motives. There are some exquisitely treacherous assholes, too. And kid ghosts that are awesome and uber cute but don't tell anyone I said that because I'm supposed to hate both ghosts and kids so it would ruin my street cred if word got out so you never read this thank you bye now. And then there's Tig.

Tig is slightly wondrous. Tig is one of those weird, mixed shifter vamp humanoid soldiers I mentioned up there ↑↑ And Tig is one of the most coherent, well-written character I've come ever come across. Everything she says and does makes sense, and is consistent with both her personality and past history. Plus, Tig has more than two synapses and actually uses them (shocking for a UF heroine, I know). Tig is honest with herself. She accepts what she is and never makes excuses for herself. Tig doesn't bullshit herself or others. And she stands for what she believes in. And never gives up. And has more self-respect than a truckload of murderous crustaceans. And that's saying something. And, Tig is refreshingly kind-hearted but don't tell anyone I said that because I'm not supposed to care about these things and it would ruin my street cred if word got out so blah blah blah you never read this thank you bye now. And Tig's got some Super Cool and Nifty Tricks (SCaNT™) I won't tell you about because spoiler spoiler spoiler. And obviously, Tig kicks serious ass. I think I'm in love.

AND I think that's about it.

» AND the moral of this All Hope is not Lost There Still is Non Despicable UF Out There Bloody Hell Will Wonders Never Cease Crappy Non Review (AHinLTSiNDUFOTBHWWNCCNR™) is:

Very private message to Joanita: Jonas is mine. Just refreshing your memory here, my dear. You're welcome.

Book 2: Winter Halo ★★★
Profile Image for Carole (Carole's Random Life).
1,723 reviews464 followers
December 27, 2015
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life.

I loved this book! I decided to read this book because the premise sounded really interesting. Plus it is the first book in a new series so I jumped right in and never looked back. This book was one that sucked me right in and I found it very hard to put down. The world building was amazing and the world that is in this book is different than anything else that I have ever read. The story grabbed me right away and it really never stopped. It wasn't a perfect story but it was highly entertaining with a lot of action.

I liked Tig right away. She is really an easy to like tough character from the start. I grew to like her more and more as the story unfolded and I learned more about her. Tiger is a déchet. A déchet is basically an engineered super-solider that is a blend of human, shifter, and vampire. Déchets are not born. They were created by humans to fight in the war between the humans and the shifters. Everyone believes that all of the déchets were killed at the end of the war so she must keep her true identity a secret.

Tig is tough but she has quite the soft spot for children. She lives in the same bunker that she lived in at the end of the war. The only difference is that now she lives with the ghosts of the other déchet that did not survive the war most of them children. Two of the ghosts, Cat and Bear, spend a lot of time with Tig and are able to leave the complex because of their strong bond. Cat and Bear are ghosts but they were children at the time of their death so Tig is determined to keep them safe. She is fiercely protective of all the ghosts. It is no surprise that she will sacrifice everything to save the children that are mysteriously being abducted.

One of the things that I really enjoyed about this book was the fact that it was very easy to slip into this world. I had honestly expected that there would be some info-dumping since this is the first book in a futuristic fantasy series. While there was a lot of information about the world shared in the story, I never felt like it was being dumped on me. The world building happened seamlessly as the story unfolded. This really is a very complex world but I was never confused about anything going on. I really enjoyed this world and thought that it was very creative and unique.

I also really enjoyed the characters. Tig wasn't perfect which I think added to her appeal. At her core, she was good and I found that I liked the way she handled difficult situations. Her abilities were very interesting. I can't remember reading about another character that could do nearly as many things as she can do. It will be fun to see how she uses all of her talents as the series progresses. I also really liked Jonas. He is a shifter who is not really sure that he should be trusting Tig. Jonas is the kind of character that will question things but once he gives his word he will follow through.

The only thing that I didn't care as much for was the sex scenes that kind of came out of nowhere. It just seemed like there wasn't enough build up leading to the sex and I really didn't feel the chemistry between the characters involved. I don't mind a good sex scene but only when it moves the plot forward. Throwing a sex scene into a book just so it is there doesn't do a thing for me. I think that it was supposed to help illustrate that Tig is wired a little differently than a human but it just seemed forced to me.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a futuristic fantasy. The book does end with a few unresolved issues and I am looking forward to seeing how things work out in future installments in this new series. This is the first book by Keri Arthur that I have had a chance to read but I look forward to reading more very soon.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Penguin Group - Signet via NetGalley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

Initial Thoughts
I loved this one! Excellent world building with wonderfully interesting characters. I can't wait to get my hands on the next one in this series.
Profile Image for Denisa.
1,193 reviews290 followers
March 14, 2017
What an unexpected read!

It's hard to find an original dystopian subject (I mean, cm'on, after-apocalypse world, bad stuff, good chick/guy who saves the (new) world in the end). But this one I haven't seen before.

Even more than the good plot, it was well written. I loved the characters and, like in all stories, I like it when the MC isn't that all-powerful and when he/she needs help.

Yeah, there were some small problems here and there, but it was a pretty good read, can't wait to see what happens next.
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,607 reviews1,481 followers
November 28, 2016
3.5 Well This Is Different Stars


I don’t mean it is a good or bad thing…it just was. In a world full of UF and PRNs with tons of shifters and vampires I think this is the first that has a human/shifter/vampire cross breed. How you might ask does this happen??? Well when a human (Kate Daniels) and a cat shifter (Curran) and a vampire (Gastek okay he isn’t a vampire but a navigator of the dead so it is quite the same but….) really love each other and have a threesome nine months later you get….. Tig

Well no not really. That honestly was for all my fellow Ilona Andrews fans and I hope you guys cringed when you thought of that dynamic happening…*giggles* No of course that isn’t how our heroine Tig came to be. She was genetically engineered to have all the benefits of being a vampire and shifter without the drawbacks.

Why you might ask? She was a super elite soldier of a sort bred to use sex or attraction to root out secrets and fight a race fueled war. A war that tore the world apart and opened portals for interdimensional creatures to come through. Since then the Humans and Shifters have learned to play nice mostly. But what do you do with the race of super soldiers you bred to fight your war when they aren’t needed anymore. I bet you can guess and that means that Tig is pretty much on her own now.

I like Tig, she has some pretty cool powers happening and they are different than most of the other heroines out there. She also is not at all ashamed of who or what she is. She hasn’t been part of any war effort for over 100 years but in that time she has been mostly alone. She does have the company of some ghosts but other than that she has kept off the grid and out of the way of any human or shifter until now.

Now kids are disappearing and it is thought that maybe the Wraiths or demons from another dimension are taking them Tig not prone to trust anyone will have to put that aside for a little while if she is going to help the children.

Drawbacks: I got a little confused in a few places in the beginning just because this is more SciFi/UF than UF/PNR actually just forget I even mention PNR because this is not that. It was just the intro of the war and the different factions of shifter/vampire/wraith hit you hard and fast and it took a second to sort them in my head.

The Benefits: This is a pretty cool world once you get into it and our girl isn’t of the TSTL (Too Stupid to Live) variety. She uses her smarts and she plays her games and while she isn’t perfect I never questioned her motives they made sense to who her character is. There is a bit of a hint of a forbidden romance that could happen in the future and I’m rooting for it a bit but it was so back seat that it could happen in the next book or four books down the road (I have no idea how long this series is supposed to be). Most of this is refreshingly different than the ton of UF I’ve read lately and I like that the change up to most lore and ideas about vampires and shifters. Plus the introduction of soft spots that other worldly creatures can come through has a lot of potential as well.

All and All I was pretty entertained and appreciate the different direction the author went in this series so far.
Profile Image for Angela.
3,198 reviews368 followers
October 25, 2016
It's been a long while since I've read the blurb for this book, or bought it, so I essentially went into this blind. I had no idea what it was really about, or what was going to be happening. And so, I was taken on this wild ride, learning the world, pulled along by the plot, and enamoured with our main character, Tiger.

I've seen some people say that this is a bit of a wordy book, and I suppose that's true in some places, but I never felt the lack of action, I was always on the edge of my seat, unable to put the book down. Because what Keri Arthur manages here is a beautiful blend of action and world-building. I was never lost in this world, despite not knowing anything about it when I started. Everything was explained and described in a way that never felt like info-dumps to me. I love that. I love that I was so immersed with Tig in this world that I cared about what happened.

We've all read the books with the supposed kick-ass heroine who is really TSTL (too-stupid-to-live). It doesn't ever really surprise me anymore when I get a character that's touted as incredibly intelligent and capable, but really flings him (or her)-self into danger unthinkingly time and time again. What does surprise me is when I get a character that actually exhibits those characteristics without me being told that's what she is. Tig is that character. She is intelligent, smart, caring, and kick-ass. Seriously.

In a world where vampires rule the night, and it's not safe to be out after dark, what's a heroine to do when she hears a child crying in the distance, outside safety, at dusk? I'll tell you what Tig does, she calmly and quickly arms up, sets her precaution/safety measures at her base, and then goes out to save the child. Knowing that a delay could be deadly, but that not taking these couple of moments to make sure the base is safe and she has the capability to actually save the child, instead of offering herself as an additional sacrifice and hoping for luck to save them both, Tig does the logical thing. Which means that she ends up saving not only the child, but the child's guardian. And this is exhibited again and again and again in this book.

I love that. I love Tig. I love how she is with her "little ones" and how she isn't afraid to use every weapon at her disposal to do what needs to be done. I love that there's no shame over her sexuality, that there's not even the slightest bit of self-recrimination for being who and what she is. I love that she respects herself. And I love that despite an attraction to another character, she doesn't let it overrule her common sense, her sense of self, or her ability to get the job done. Thank the gods.

There are several other characters that I find incredibly interesting in this start to a series - Jonas, Sal, Nuri, and Penny, especially. And it seems that fate has entwined Tig in a battle of epic proportions. The fight for the very world's balance and survival. I can't wait to see what happens next.

I've seen some people say the world is jumbled and confusing - and it could be, if Keri Arthur didn't lay everything out so beautifully. I admit that occasionally I was reading so fast to find out what happens next that I sometimes had to slow myself down, go back and catch what I'd read over, but that was my fault, not the author's. Everything is here to explain the world, and it's so, so interesting.

There was a war over a hundred years ago between shifters and humans. It's complicated and not neat. The shifters were the oppressed and fought back. The humans created new and terrifying super-soldiers, the déchet - programmed, and most unable to do anything without orders - to fight their stronger foe. What I really enjoy here is that Tig doesn't focus so much on the reasons for the war, or who was right and who was wrong, but acknowledges that there were atrocities committed on both sides, that there were those that died tragically on both sides. And that the war is long over though the scars still remain. It's time to start healing. Because the winners, despite the shifters declaring themselves as such, were really the vampires who feast on their prey in the dark. And there's so much darkness now. And then there are the Others, those that appeared when the bombs tore rifts in the world and thrive in the night.

There are a lot of prejudices that some characters are forced to face and maybe start to overcome in this book. I like how it's being handled now. I like how Tig expects better treatment than she often gets, and doesn't just accept less because of whatever reason at the moment. I have high hopes that it continues to be handled well and that healing can truly take place.

I loved this book for the action and the storyline, for the world that I got to inhabit for a while, and the characters I walked beside while doing it. And I devoured it in a single day. But the more that I think about it after finishing it, the more I enjoy everything that I found in these pages, the deeper emotions that it pulls out in me, the bigger statements I appreciate it making.

Keri Arthur has created a fantastic new urban fantasy landscape that proves for all the light, there must be shadows. And sometimes you need a heroine that can walk in both.

Review also available at The Book Eaters
Profile Image for Mogsy (MMOGC).
2,030 reviews2,604 followers
January 5, 2016
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum http://bibliosanctum.com/2016/01/05/b...

This was my first book by Keri Arthur, and I was completely unprepared for how good it was. I don’t even know why I was caught so flat-footed! After all, I know friends who have been fans of the author’s for years and they all absolutely adore her work, which is what convinced me to give City of Light a try in the first place. I’ve been curious about her books for a long time, and this being the first book of a new series seemed like the perfect place to start, so I went in with pretty high expectations. It ended up exceeding all of them.

Of course, I was skeptical at first, especially right after I opened the book and was almost immediately overwhelmed by a huge solid wave of info-dumps. To be fair, I understood the reasons for this, especially after I finished the book. There’s a tremendous amount of world building and a lot of amazing wonders and mysteries to discover, but the fun can’t start until after we’ve all taken the crash course, so to speak. After the story gets moving though, things really heat up.

This series opener introduces us to Tiger, a genetically hybrid soldier known as a “déchet”—a word that translates to “waste product” and speaks volumes about their makers’ attitudes towards their creations. But all that happened more than a hundred years ago, during the war between this world and the one beyond the veil. Those alive now live a precarious existence in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, with humans and shifters alike occupying highly-secured cities lit perpetually with artificial light meant to keep all the monsters like demons, wraiths and vampires out.

Tig is the last of her kind, after the shifters eradicated all déchet at the end of the war. She lives in the remnants of a military bunker filled with the ghosts of her people, whose energies she can sense and interact with. For the past century she has been in hiding, until one day she rescues a little girl on the outskirts of Central City and learns of a disturbing string of child abductions. Wraith-like beings are snatching kids in broad daylight—which should be impossible—and after what happened to her people, Tig has sworn never to stand by and let another child be harmed again.

I admit it’s a lot to take in, and I was initially confused given the staggering amount of information I had to process about Tig’s world. I almost thought City of Light might have been a spinoff from another series, and had to double-check to make sure this wasn’t the case. The world building is simply phenomenal, with a very robust and established feel, blending sci-fi futuristic elements with magic and other aspects from the fantasy genre. Even creatures like wraiths and vampires feel very different from the kind I usually read about in urban fantasy.

And for some reason, I went into City of Light expecting it to be a full-blown paranormal romance, probably since most of Keri Arthur’s other books have that tag. I was wrong, but I was also far from being disappointed. With Tig being a déchet created specifically for espionage and seduction, I admit was prepared for nothing but romance and sexual tension, but in the end the heavier emphasis was on the mystery of the abducted children rather than Tig’s relationships. On the whole, this book read more like a well-crafted UF with some PNR elements and a couple of smoking hot sex scenes thrown in, and it was a balance that struck the perfect note.

I also loved Tig as a protagonist. Her kind was created by humans to be a mix of animal, shifter, and vampire—the ultimate weapon. But after the war, the déchet were completely killed off, and even after all these years, Tig still remembers the day when the military bunker she was in was gassed with poisons. Everyone else inside was killed, including the young déchet in the nursery. Tig herself barely managed to survive thanks to her genetically modified DNA, but two of the children, Bear and Cat, died horribly in her arms. Today, their ghosts are her loyal companions, playfully following Tig wherever she goes, but the story of their tragic deaths haunted me and shattered my heart to pieces. It made me see why Tig is so protective of her little ones, and why she would go so far to help the kidnapped shifter children. I also gained a deeper appreciation for her strength and resolve, knowing the terrible things she witnessed back during the war. And finally, being able to connect with Tig made the ending more poignant, because it underscored the sacrifice behind Tig’s decision. Ultimately, nothing can ever come between her and her responsibility to those she has sworn to protect.

All told, City of Light is exciting and well-written, its story containing a remarkable mix of intrigue and action punctuated with sizzling melt-your-mind love scenes. The book’s main character is a sympathetic and lion-hearted (or rather should I say, tiger-hearted?) heroine you just can’t help but root for. Now I am waiting on pins and needles for the sequel to see what she’ll do next! I simply couldn’t have been more pleased at how this experience with my first Keri Arthur novel turned out. If I loved it, I have no doubt her fans will as well.
Profile Image for Carmel (Rabid Reads).
706 reviews381 followers
January 2, 2016
Reviewing by: Rabid Reads.

Keri Arthur has made a career of writing about half-breeds, and has hatched some rather interesting combinations over the years, but my favourite will forever be her werewolf/vampire hybrid, RILEY JENSON. In CITY OF LIGHT she tweaked her prized formula by changing up the shifter type, then proceeded to give her heroine all of the upgrades that come with being a genetically engineered super-soldier, and finally thrust Tiger into a Dystopian Science Fiction universe that beat everything that I’ve read in this genre to date.

For the most part, the author avoided of all of her usual patterns which has been my biggest critique of her past two series (DARK ANGELS and SOULS OF FIRE); the primary culprit being the romantic thread. The protagonist knows from the onset that both of the men in her life are bad news and acts accordingly instead of succumbing to hormones. Can I get a HELL YEAH!? Tig resists her attraction to one while using the other to her advantage which admittedly, led to a few too many sex scenes for a first installment, but it also put an end to any potential love triangle which was an acceptable trade-off.

The female lead was equipped with so many advantages that it almost seemed unfair to the rest of the characters; she can modify her appearance, blend with the night/day, is resistant to poison, can converse with ghosts, gleam peeps’ thoughts/emotions, and seduce anything with a pulse. However, Tiger is also a champion of children, her entire race was eradicated, she’s confronted with extreme prejudice on a daily basis, and has lived in complete isolation as a result for 103 years. She was just such a level-headed heroine, that when coupled with awesome fire power, made her an easy protagonist to get behind.

Most of the secondaries SUCKED, not because they were poorly developed, but by reason of their superiority complexes. The shifters won the war, and have re-written history so that it paints them in a favorable light when in reality everyone’s guilty of being a monster. Nuri threatened Tig’s loved ones in order to save others, and Jonas couldn’t come to terms with having a déchet as an ally even though she’s pulled his tail out of the fire twice. Still, they all have a chance to absolve themselves in future novels which is in part what makes OUTCAST so thought-provoking. Well, except Branna. He should die.

It may be a little premature to label CITY OF LIGHT a top pick of 2016, but it was DAMN GOOD!
Profile Image for Marta Cox.
2,571 reviews191 followers
December 30, 2015
The words dystopian or post apocalyptic are often used in reviews when discussing books that are set in a dark futuristic world and it seems that Keri Arthur has well and truly dipped her toe in the water. No I will go further and suggest that she has dived head long in with this the first in her new urban fantasy series. Most definitely not paranormal romance although there is sex here but if you are expecting romance then you might be a tad disappointed . Whilst the heroine Tiger ( who takes my prize for oddest name) certainly seems to share chemistry of some sort with one or two characters I'm left wondering just where her journey will take her.
Ok down and dirty, it took me a while to truly connect with Tiger. Why? Well there's just so much thrown in , it's as if science meets magic to create a female that resembles the energiser bunny! Her abilities are astounding and for me maybe too so. She is what's known as a dechet, a humanoid type mixture of shifter and vampire created to be nothing more than cannon fodder really. When they created Tiger though they imbued her with all manner of 'other' qualities . She is a lure, able to seduce but unfortunately the flip side of that means Tiger is almost a slave to her own hormones . She can see and communicate with ghosts and this is when we see her humanity the most . Oh and did I forget to mention her immunity to poisons which is key her survival . Yes this is the first book so a lot to digest but I confess by the end I was routing for her and now I need to know what happens next!
I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review
Profile Image for Yodamom.
1,989 reviews195 followers
January 21, 2016
It's all about the details in the building of a great series. The first half of this book is packed with world building, a complex world with so many levels to explore in the future. There is barely a moment to catch your breath between paragraphs. I admit I had to go back and slow down several times to absorb all the information but I loved it. There are so many levels, so much hidden yet to discover. My imagination went wild with the possibilities. The characters where so cautious and intelligent, realistic for this world of survival and betrayal. The second half of the book is not stop action, once on the ride you can't get off, can't slow down can't set the book aside, you have to finish.
Tig is a creature bred in a test tube, a mix of many different creatures to carry out the skills of each to overcome the enemy and win the war. Her kind were extinguished by the shifters leaving her the only survivor, or so she thought for the last 100 years. She has lived a solitude life with the ghosts of the children who died, the ones she couldn't save until one day she rescues a live child and a man, Jones, who could be her executioner. Jones, is a shifter her enemy and more. The more ? We don't really fid out yet but there are moments of intriguing glimpses into this mystery man that had me chewing my lip in worry and anticipation. These two are part of a complex package that will alter Tigs life, and send her out in the world of vampires, humans, ghosts, others and magical rifts.
I really enjoyed this urban fantasy,it had all the right ingredients to hold my attention and leave me thinking of the what ifs after I finished it. I can't wait to get my hands on book two.
Profile Image for Beth.
3,129 reviews263 followers
January 5, 2016
Arthur has woven a riveting urban fantasy that held me spell bound till the end.

City of Lights had everything that draws me time and time again to the urban fantasy genre. The action is intense, the characters are wonderfully engaging and the plot is absolutely original. Of course, it also holds certain familiar aspects that we all love, like shifters, but the overall twist on the shifter story was highly imaginative; giving the plot the a special kick.

I really loved delving into the world of City of Lights. I can’t wait to see what Arthur brings next in the Outcast series.

I received this ARC copy of City of Light from PENGUIN GROUP Berkley, NAL / Signet Romance, DAW in exchange for a honest review. This book is set for publication January 5, 2016.

My Rating: 5 Stars

Written by: Keri Arthur
Series: An Outcast Novel
Sequence in Series: Book 1
Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
Publisher: Signet
Publication Date: January 5, 2016
ISBN-10: 0451473507
ISBN-13: 978-0451473509
Genre: Urban Fantasy

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

For Reviews and More Check out: http://tometender.blogspot.com

Profile Image for Emma.
976 reviews976 followers
November 18, 2016
I am so glad I saw the review of this one by Sarah (of Crustaceans fame) because it was so damn different from anything in the UF genre i'd read before. It has all of the same species types but with some interesting twists and a created world that has the same detailed feel as Ilona Andrews', while being very unlike it. Loved the characters, the backstories, the quirky and cute ghosts. Really just loved everything about it, might even be 4.5 stars now that i'm thinking about it...

The intensely emotional, and blindingly abrupt, ending has made me desperate for the next instalment. Thankfully due in December so i'm not really too annoyed. Tick tock..

If anyone is interested in giving this a try (yes!), it's only 99p on Kindle UK. Now that's a bargain. Go, go, go.
Profile Image for Annie .
2,442 reviews812 followers
January 5, 2016

In the first of a brand new futuristic series, Keri Arthur takes readers into a whole new world filled with vampires, ghosts and underground bunkers.

Our heroine, Tiger, is the last of the déchet, a breed of soliders that have long been eradicated. She lives in an underground bunker with ghosts, hiding her existence from those who hold prejudices against her kind. Her friends and family consist of two young ghosts, Bear and Cat, who died in her arms and now devote their time in trying to help her.

When Tiger hears the cries of a child right before the sun is about to set, she goes to investigate, knowing that at any moment the vampires will emerge and kill the child. However, when she finds Penny, she is not alone. An injured ranger is with her and he has been poisoned. Unless gets the help he needs, he will die. So Tiger and her friends take the girl and the ranger to Nuri, the only person who may be able to help.

There more trouble seems to find her as she jumps to help other children who seem to be missing. What I found intriguing about this series is the world. I’ve read a lot of Arthur’s books and know that she has wonderful imagination but this world seems to be the most unique so far. Filled with shifters, vampires, and ghosts, there’s plenty to love in this new series!

One of my favorite things about this book is Tiger. She’s a tough girl for having managed to survive on her own for so long but her best quality has to be her heart. She’s a selfless woman that will constantly risk her safety for others. Sometimes I think it can also be her greatest flaw as well because there were some points in the book where I wondered why she was helping certain people when all they did was hold who she was against her even when she has done nothing wrong.

However, Arthur addresses this in the very last scene, giving Tiger that moment where she says no finally and walks away. If I could’ve been there to give her a standing ovation, I would because that was exactly what Tiger needed to do for herself. I’m very curious to see where she goes from here.

Arthur is known for her love triangles in her books so I wasn’t very surprised to see one in this book. However, it’s not your typical one and I liked that it wasn’t dragged out completely. But now that Tiger really is the last of the déchets, I’m curious to see how Jonas, the ranger that she saves will get over his prejudices and come to accept that Tiger isn’t the monster he believes her to be.

CITY OF LIGHT is bursting with action, suspense and the supernatural. If you’re looking for a kickass heroine with a big heart to match, look no further than Tiger. I suspect big things for her character.
Profile Image for ᴥ Irena ᴥ.
1,649 reviews213 followers
December 13, 2020
I can't remember the last time I wanted to read the next book in a series the moment I finished a book. I hate cliffhangers but Keri Arthur's ones are always well written. Most of her books end similarly - they don't exactly leave you hanging (the protagonist does find out part of the truth in this book), but promise much more later. For those who haven't read any of her books this might be a surprise. City of Light ends the way I expected it would.

As for her usual female protagonists, I can only say I love them. Nobody is protecting them for their own stupid good, nobody is making decisions for them without asking. In a couple of Keri Arthur's books some tried - it didn't end well for them (it took a lot of grovelling to get forgiveness). But, I digress.

Tiger is the last of her kind. She is C5, déchet, lure rank, which means she was used in a war to get information. The war between shifters and humans ended 103 years ago. She lives in a forgotten military bunker with ghosts of déchet children, soldiers and scientists who died when shifters got to them. The older ones are in the lower levels of the bunker and Tiger doesn't deal with them unless she has to.
The children, especially Cat and Bear, are her only company there. It is heartbreaking and yet lovely how connected they are.

The plot of City of Light canters around missing children. Tiger cannot ignore any child in need. It may as well be her curse.

The cities use UV light all the time to prevent the vampires from getting too close. Vampires in the Outcast world are horrendous creatures. True monsters. They come out only at night to hunt. To say there is nothing romantic about them here would be an understatement.
They are not the only threat though. The war between humans and shifters created drifting doorways - rifts, that brought the Others. Their arrival forced the warring sides to unite against the common threat. The rifts move sometimes and people (shifters who won the war and humans both) can only move from their path until they are gone.

This book doesn't have true romance, but Tiger is attracted to a character. There is sex in case you were wondering (did you expect a Keri Arthur's book without sex?).

There is one unexpected underlying theme connected to Tiger's loneliness. The shifters had won the war, killed all the remaining déchets (the name tells a lot what their human creators thought of those genetically made people like Tiger). At least, they thought they did. They are the ones who control the facts and, of course, people like Tiger are depicted as unfeeling monsters in their histories. Even a hundred years later the hate remains.
Basically, the only person to root for is Tiger (and her ghosts). It will break your heart to find out more about them.

Overall, City of Light sets the foundation for what seems to be a great series. Even if I could list a couple of nitpicks (I would have to try hard in this case though), Keri Arthur is one of those authors when I see a low rating review I don't read it.
Profile Image for Beige .
246 reviews81 followers
September 13, 2017
I almost dnf'd this book but since I'm a fan of her Riley Jenson series I decided to push through. There are a lot of interesting ideas in this story, but I don't think the scifi blend of uf comes naturally to this author. I almost wish she'd chosen to write about Tig during the original war rather than 100 years later when she's all alone except for the ghosts of her kind - this would have been heart wrenching.

I'm not giving up on the author. I'll likely try her Dark Angels and Myth & Magic series in the future.
Profile Image for Mandi.
2,300 reviews721 followers
January 5, 2016
I love when I see a new urban fantasy series - but unfortunately, I don't think I'll be reading book two of this series. Here is the blurb:

When the bombs that stopped the species war tore holes in the veil between this world and the next, they allowed entry to the Others—demons, wraiths, and death spirits who turned the shadows into their hunting grounds. Now, a hundred years later, humans and shifters alike live in artificially lit cities designed to keep the darkness at bay....

As a déchet—a breed of humanoid super-soldiers almost eradicated by the war—Tiger has spent her life in hiding. But when she risks her life to save a little girl on the outskirts of Central City, she discovers that the child is one of many abducted in broad daylight by a wraith-like being—an impossibility with dangerous implications for everyone on earth.

Because if the light is no longer enough to protect them, nowhere is safe...

Tiger, or Tig is our heroine. She has been living/hiding inside a bombed out, underground base alone. Tig is a dechet, designed to kill shifters that were wiping out humanity. Created in a lab:

These labs had created not only an enzyme that gave humans the same capacity to heal as the shifters, but also the designed humanoid. Or dechet, as we'd become known.

Tig, had extra powers as a dechet. She can alter her appearance, she can see well in the dark, she can see ghosts and can communicate with them. Currently, the world's biggest threat are vampires - who come out at night and are horrific creatures. The main plot of this story is that Tig needs to figure out how wraiths are kidnapping children - and put a stop to it.

For me, this world had too many things going on. So many supernatural creatures. A world ravaged by war, but also by biological threats and vampires and wraiths and shifters and other things. I also felt like Tig had a gazillion different powers too. She can change into other people, she can talk to ghosts, she can see in the dark when others can't, she can read people's emotions, she is immune to all known poisons - just to name a few. It was too much, and at the same time I found it to be a tedious read. I don't mind a complex urban fantasy world, but it has to be presented in a way that doesn't make my eyeballs cross as I read it.

Plus - Tig didn't do it for me - she fell flat. I never felt endeared to her. Jonas and Sal, two other central characters in this story intrigued me more. Jonas is a shifter who is more of a mystery and you don't know if he is good or bad. And Sal is a blast from Tig's past - who she has romantic interests tied to.

Overall, a confusing and slow book for me to read.

Grade: D
Profile Image for Douglas Meeks.
863 reviews232 followers
December 9, 2017
UPDATE DECEMBER 2017: Just FYI , I just gave 5 Stars to the finale of this trilogy, it ends really well

Yet another author who decides that the best way to sell books is to leave a story unfinished.

I enjoyed the story, it was needlessly verbose and I have never been a fan of stories where freakin EVERYBODY is an enemy or a suspect at best. Our heroine is a déchet and possibly the last of her kind. She is basically a good person and for reasons that are best described in the book seem to be hated by almost everyone.

The story of saving children was good and if the author had decided to actually finish the story instead of trying to treat readers like animals and holding the stick out with the carrot basically saying "Buy the next book and I will tell you the rest of the story" it could have easily been 5 Stars.

Sorry but all that does infuriate me and kinda make me tend to never buy another of her books.

Bottom Line: Decent writing, decent story, stress at all side, not a happy place in the whole book, and cap it off with a cliffhanger that you did not even finish the story. If this was going to be a trilogy or something a bit of warning might have been nice. 3 Stars, if you like a partial story with what amounts to a cliffhanger and a heroine that you the reader are the only one who will love to the point of being depressing, then this is your depressing book.
Profile Image for Meigan.
1,131 reviews68 followers
January 26, 2023
I've heard of readers who think less of an author when they're prolific. Putting out too much work equals less quality offerings, something along those lines. Myself? Huge fan of authors who crank out the books, especially when it's an author who excels in a specific genre. Keri Arthur is one such example -- every time I turn around, it seems she's got a new series going, a new release from an already established series, or a rerelease of a previously published and completed series. Prolific, to me, means more mass appeal. I've tried several of Arthur's series in the past and some were right up my alley, while others weren't really my thing. The good news about an author who has so many published books is there's something for everyone and in the case of the series that didn't work for me, it wasn't lacking in quality. So now I know -- prolific isn't bad, it's not lesser-quality work. It's oftentimes an author that's brimming with ideas and stories and works their ass off to get it all out there.

In Keri Arthur's latest offering, Tiger is a déchet -- a race of scientist-created humans with special powers. Part shifter, part vampire, all soldiers created to win a war between humans and shifters. 100 years later, all of the déchet are ghosts, with the exception of Tiger, the last of her race. Living in a bunker away from prying eyes, all she has are the ghosts. In this new and futuristic world, the shifters won the war, but there's a battle that it seems no one can ever win. Vampires are the enemy now, and lights blaze night and day in hopes of fending off the loathsome creatures.

Arthur really pumped a whole lot of creativity into City of Light. While the concept of half-breeds isn't new to either the genre or Arthur herself, I absolutely adored the half-breed she created with the déchet. I also love the sci-fi elements and feeling that she incorporated into this one. I'm a huge fan of dystopian and the darker and dirtier side to urban fantasy, and City of Light definitely hit all the high notes for me. The world-building was brilliant, as was the characterization. There's a lot of adversity each character faces in this new world, and it's going to be an interesting journey to see whether or not Jonas and the rest of his kind can overlook their prejudices.

All told, City of Light was a fantastic first entry into a new series that will most likely become one of my favorites. It had all of the elements that I most look forward to in urban fantasy, with the exception of romance. Keri Arthur excels at writing sex and romance and while there wasn't much of it in this installment, the seeds have been planted and maybe, possibly, hopefully there will be some in the next few books. Highly recommended and I can't wait to see what happens with the next book.

**eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Melliane.
2,023 reviews340 followers
January 8, 2016
Mon avis en Français

My English review

I love everything written by Keri Arthur and it’s true that I was immediately intrigued by this new novel. Admittedly, the author puts forward some ideas and genres that she had not really exploited yet. That said, we find a post-apocalyptic theme, science fiction, a war with terrible consequences and clashes between shapeshifters, vampires, and other mutants. In short you’ll understand that we have a lot of elements that make this story something really interesting and fascinating.

We discover a Déchet, Tiger, a kind of mutant created by humans to help them defend themselves. But the war ended a long time ago and nobody knows she exists and so she lives isolated from all … Yet her existence is going to be turned upside down when she discovers a child, a prey to the vampires who look forward to recover her. But because of her past, the young woman can not let this little girl to her fate, as well as the man who accompanies her, a man who killed her friends during the war and who could kill her if he knew who she really was. Yet by saving him, she will start a story that will completely overtake her. Only wishing to live quietly away from everyone else, she will have to face the people who were her sworn enemies and who ask her for help to find other missing children. Hiding her identity, she will have no choice but to ally with these people to understand what’s happening. But the consequences will be much more difficult than she could have anticipated …

I really enjoyed this novel. The author presents us a world that fascinates us and that we love to discover in the chapters. We also have a lot of important events, and we remain in suspense throughout the story. Do not worry, you will not get bored here! But of course the most important thing is… Tiger. This heroine is full of complexity and talents. She is able to read the emotions of a person, to see ghosts, to become someone else physically and else. But more specifically, she is a person who has been hurt by her past and the children she was unable to save, she is a solitary person but finally she also dreams of having someone with whom she could be herself. She is a strong woman who is ready for a lot of things if it is related to those she cherishes the most. In short, you’ll understand that it is a main character that you’ll love to follow and to discover.

Yes, it was a very good story and a good beginning for a genre that I had not seen for the author. In any case, I’m really curious to read more now.
Profile Image for Christal.
936 reviews69 followers
January 8, 2016
Wendy and I reviewed this book and many more like it at Badass Book Reviews!

Group Review - 4 Skulls - B

Christal: Having read some of Keri Arthur's Riley Jenson series, I wasn't sure what to expect from this more science fiction driven series. I have to say that City of Light felt very different, in a good way, and I can't wait to read more about this world!

Wendy: This was my first Keri Arthur read, so I had no basis for comparison. I was a little nervous when I started City of Light, though. It wasn't even that it felt like an info-dump, it was almost the opposite. It felt as though I should already know the world and understand the terminology. It was a little off-putting.

Christal: I agree! Keri Arthur started us off deep in the world and filled in the blanks while the story went along. I feel satisfied with the world building we received in this debut, but I do have more questions that I would like to see answered in future installments. I would especially like to get more information about the world before the war and what led to the humans and shifters fighting.

Wendy: Definitely. I do feel satisfied with the world building, but only just. By the end I felt like I grasped everything that had been introduced, but my head was slightly spinning. I think more back story about the world before the war would really help with that. I do think we will get more information going forward, now that the characters are all getting to know each other.

Christal: I found Tig to be a wonderful lead character. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to connect to her at first because she came off very cold and closed-off, but Keri Arthur really developed her character and gave her wonderful dimension. I would love to learn more about her back story, but what we got was pretty amazing. I thought the story behind the déchets, lab-created super soldiers made of a human, shifter, and vampire DNA mix, was nicely done and believable within this world. I wouldn't mind a few more flashbacks from Tig's time in the war though, so that we can see the types of things she had to go through and how it shaped her character.

Wendy: I liked Tig too. There were some aspects of the world and the lore that reminded me, loosely, of Kate Daniels, but still feeling authentic.

I really loved Cat and Bear. Tig's back story with Cat and Bear broke my heart, but the love between them now and the childlike feel of the ghosts really added a lot of heart to the story. That connection made it easy to understand why Tig was so protective.

Christal: Cat and Bear were the absolute best and very unique characters to boot. I thought they added a softness that the story needed and helped us as readers connect to Tig through what happened to them. I have to say that I got nervous every time they went out on their own; I would already be wrecked, even this early in the series, if something happened to them.

Wendy: Me too! Tig's explanation for why they didn't stay out all night, being that they're only children, was exactly how I felt reading the story. Knowing that things could steal their energy and snuff them made me so nervous.

What about Jonas? Slow developing relationships in a series are my favorite, and City of Light definitely left me looking forward to everything that's coming up.

Christal: I didn't like Jonas at first, but he was okay by the end. Trying to avoid spoilers here -- I understand why he reacted the way he did at the end of City of Light and I know that Tig overreacted as well, but I really did sympathize with her. I hope Jonas won't let her go so easily and that we see him fighting for Tig in the future books. They obviously have a lot of chemistry, but now he needs to prove his trust in her. One thing that kind of turned me off about the author's other series, Riley Jenson, was the overabundance of sex, so I appreciated that it was kept pretty mild here -- even with Tig's previous "profession."

Wendy: When I got to the first sex scene, which felt a little early to me, I was nervous that the book would be too sexual for an UF. I prefer my UF's to be heavy on the world and plot and light on the sex. I read romances and erotica's for that, haha. Happily though, there wasn't too much and what was felt appropriate.

Christal: I wasn't crazy about Jonas' group of mercenaries and I especially came to hate Nuri by the end of City of Light. I started the book thinking she would be a wise, almost motherly character that, while wary of Tig's déchet nature, would serve as a bridge for Tig to become more involved with the world. Yeah, that didn't happen. I know she had to do what she thought was best for her people, but she turned out to be a ruthless, vile woman and I kind of hope Tig gets to beat the crap out of her some time.

Wendy: I'm on the fence with Nuri. I also thought she would become more of a friend to Tig. I suppose I just try to look on both sides of the coin. I feel like we're all capable of ruthlessness to protect our children. For now the jury's still out on Nuri until I read another book or two. I have a feeling that a deeper understanding might happen between the two of them. (Though, if Tig does get to beat her once for revenge I wouldn't be opposed.)

Christal: I did feel like the story of the Others and the kidnapped children got buried a bit underneath all the world building and character drama. I don't feel like I have a handle on who the Others are, why these children were being kidnapped, or what is being done to them. Everything still feels very up-in-the-air at this point and the way the book ended didn't help. I don't see this being a series where the installments can stand alone; each one will probably build upon the previous to create one big, overarching story instead of self-contained conflicts in each book.

Wendy: That is exactly how I felt coming to the end of the story. I feel like I have a good basic knowledge of Tig and her little world in the bunker. I can follow her history, where she came from, and where she stands with Shifters/Jonas. It's the actual plot, the vampires, The wraiths, The Others... why the children were needed. What the false rifts actually create... that all still feels just out of reach. Hopefully we get more answers in the next installment.

Christal: Overall, I was very satisfied with City of Light and I am looking forward to more from this world. Keri Arthur has created an intriguing world and sympathetic characters, so I am definitely along for the ride.

Thank you to Signet and Netgalley for providing an ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
Profile Image for Jen Davis.
Author 7 books700 followers
February 11, 2016
Keri Arthur knows how to create an interesting world. Every series I have read from her has had a unique feel and this first installment of her Outcast books does not disappoint. It’s a fascinating blend of vampires, shifters, ghosts and magic in a world ravaged by war and temporal rifts. The elements may not sound all that unusual, but this isn’t so much Urban Fantasy as a paranormal/sci-fi/ futuristic journey, led by an unlikely heroine, starved for contact with the living.

Tiger is a duchet, a genetic hybrid created by humans to help them fight shifters in a great war a century ago. She is the last of her kind, her people slaughtered to extinction. Now she lives in the remains of an old bunker, with only the ghosts of the other duchets for company. She forages for food and parts to keep her home running, but she must stay hidden. If anyone figures out what she is, it will be an automatic death sentence.

That makes it all the more of a sacrifice when she ventures into the dark to answer the call of a crying child. She risks her life at the hands of the vampires targeting the child, but even more, when she realizes she must also save the injured shifter along with the little girl. The rescue is a success, but it turns out to be only the beginning as Tiger is pulled into the mystery of other disappearing children and she is forced to work with the very kind of beings who annihilated her race.

It takes a while to absorb the set-up for this world, its many inhabitants, their histories and their districts. It made it hard to connect at the beginning, especially since so much time is spent with only Tiger, her ghosts, and her introspection. But in time, I started to like and understand Tiger. Her loyalty to her ghosts is unwavering; her morality and commitment to children drives her, even to her own peril. As with most of Arthur’s series, the sexual morays are a little more fluid than a simple H/h, but it made sense with Tiger’s genetic design.

There is plenty of action, especially in the second half, no small about of violence, and a bit of sex. It’s not a romance, though. That shifter I was talking about –Jonas, the guy traveling with the little girl– feels like he is going to be a romantic interest, but it’s not happening in this book. The only real relationship we see here is the one Tiger has with her child ghosts. It’s sweet, and it makes her who she is, even more perhaps than her unique genetics. But it’s not quite emotionally sustaining enough for me as a reader. I wanted to feel more deeply about what was happening, and for that, I need more connections. I feel like that is coming down the road for Tiger, but she’s not there yet.

The story has a definite ending, but it’s more like the end of a chapter than the end of the story. Tiger’s journey is just getting started. I’ll give the second book a try, because this series is interesting and I liked it for the most part. I just hope the next installment gets to be deeper on an emotional level, to really get me hooked.

Rating: B/B-

*ARC provided by publisher
Profile Image for Holly.
312 reviews52 followers
November 16, 2016
It felt SO good to be back in a fictional world written by Keri Arthur. I'm a huge fan of her Riley Jensen series. While I've dabbled in most of her other series none of them really pulled me in like Riley's did. I'm happy to say the Outcast series was a big hit for me. It was similar but different. Some differences are: in this world vampires are smelly, blood thirsty monsters (I miss me some Quinn), and this book is most definitely post apocalyptic. This new world did have the same genetically altered theme that Keri liked to delve into in the Riley series. And it's got that same blend of dark-grimy/action/scifi/romance feel.

One problem I had was it seemed very obvious to me that the shifters Tiger meets should have been able to easily tell that she was a déchet. The heavy amount of posturing and intimidation tactics got annoying. I'm excited though to see where the story goes in book 2.
Profile Image for Meels.
894 reviews18 followers
April 27, 2021
*upon reread, I actually thoroughly enjoyed this. Reading the three books in succession was SO much better. It’s really one big story told in 3 parts. When I initially read it all three books weren’t out yet.

I liked it. I'll read on. But, she hit a couple of my pet peeves with her writing, and sometimes I felt like there was a whole lot of babble going on, but the plot wasn't really getting anywhere. I'll put some of that down to world building and book one of a series and give the next one a go.

The story itself is interesting, and I really like Tig as a character, as well as Bear, Cat and Jonas. It's a fresh take on shifter stories, so that's huge points in my estimation!
Profile Image for RachelW (BamaGal).
746 reviews66 followers
June 4, 2017

3.5 Stars. A good story overall, looks to be a good series. When I first started it, it felt a little like reading 'Kate Daniels'; but the book soon got its footing and went in a new direction. There was great wordbuilding, and an interesting storyline. Tig is the last of a breed of warriors created during the human/vampire/shifter war. All the others (she thinks) have been killed off in the war that ended 100 years previously. She is pretty much making it on her own as the book starts, along with the ghosts of her dead comrades (sadly, mostly the children in the nursery) killed when their bunker was flooded with poison. When she rescues a shifter and a young girl from vampires, her life undergoes a drastic change.

The bad - as good as the wordbuilding was, the character storyline was the same old, same old formula. As always with a KA book, the heroine HAS to have sex. Here, that was explained by making Tig a biological being who was created during the war to seduce and get information from the enemy. This is a trope that has been present through all her series. I don't know, maybe KA thinks it empowers her heroines to sleep around. There was also the well used trope of the main hero trailing along behind Tig as she has sex with another man; and as usual, the other man is not what he seems, and may be a bad character. Sound familiar? It should, these things are present in nearly every book the author has written.

Anyway, I enjoyed it, even with the nits; enough to continue with the series.

For the record; the book did not end in a cliffhanger ending. What it did do, however,


The kindle file for this one wasn't clean. I downloaded the epub file to my tablet (Aldiko reader) and it was fine. I'm not sure when I'll read it, though. I understand it ends in a cliffhanger.
Profile Image for Koeur.
1,080 reviews21 followers
November 16, 2015

Publisher: Signet

Publishing Date: January 2016

ISBN: 9780451473509

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 2.5/5

Publishers Description: When the bombs that stopped the species war tore holes in the veil between this world and the next, they allowed entry to the Others—demons, wraiths, and death spirits who turned the shadows into their hunting grounds. Now, a hundred years later, humans and shifters alike live in artificially lit cities designed to keep the darkness at bay….

Review: The world building and the story line were fantastic. Rift portals, vampires, shifter soldiers, underground bunkers and a world still recovering from a decimating war. Tiger is a Dechet, a genetically designed human(?) that is part shifter, vampire and white tiger, blended to make an inviting lure for opposing foes. She can talk to ghosts, particulate her body, draw light or darkness to herself in order to disappear, morph her body, telepath your ass and is immune to poison.

Initially, this novel had some major info dumping issues at the beginning to get the motor started yet quickly settled into good character development with some fantastic movement. This had a good scifi vibe until “Magic” started being thrown around with earth witches and her own abilities to become particulate. I don’t know if “feeling the magic” is another way of saying she is utilizing her own genetic abilities or is using something externally. Most likely the former. Perhaps Nuri the earth witch was genetically modified as well, yet the details were never revealed.

Where this lost a star was the phrasing utilized to expedite the scenes. “Softly” was used 50 times and murmured (20x). Throughout this novel, Tiger is constantly in an erotic state. Even when facing dire circumstances she manages to notice his smell or the “luscious contact when he touches her hand or his grip seeping into her body flushing the chill”. Fug. Additionally the grammatical errors were fairly consistent. The novel hints at Tiger going it alone, which bodes well as we can truly see her in an independent light without all the gushing tingles and heated pheromone desire from Jonas’ touch.

Profile Image for Mara.
2,476 reviews234 followers
January 17, 2016
Great world-building and a fresh take on vamps/shifters. If you have read her other series, the heroine's half-breed status isn't that new, even if the way it's framed certainly is. :)

I fully enjoyed it, but the 'compulsion' to save children wasn't something I could buy fully, even with her history. Plus, I'm not that fond of unfinished stories. Overarching plot are common in series, but this was more like part one of two. Acceptable, still...
Ergo, no five stars *grin*
Profile Image for Jeanny.
1,877 reviews144 followers
May 25, 2018
Cliffhanger ending
Audible version
Profile Image for Deniz.
1,145 reviews100 followers
January 7, 2016
first reaction:
no no no!
When is the next one coming out?!

love the world building.
Like Tiger and am intrigued by Nuri and her crew... though they are kinda asshats at times... and love Cat and Bear and crew
Interesting character building
Steady paced storyline with loads of action thrown in. But I was left with loads of questions.
All in all a well written dystopia.


I really enjoyed City of Lights. There were many good surprises and I can't wait to get my hands on the next book.

Let's get straight to the point: I loved the world building. It's imaginative and unique. I like the idea of the dechet. And one slowly gets to know more and more about the past wars, learning about the rifts and the after effects of the past. A complex and interesting world.
I think City of Light shines with the world building- my favorite part of the book.

Tiger is a great female lead and I really liked . This is mostly told from her POV. I loved her vulnerability, her strength and her level-headedness but also her utter kindness. She is a kick-ass hero, who is complex and likable. I liked her choices at the end - in fact I was so upset with Branna and her crew at the time, I felt I would have not been as kind as Tig at the time.
While I found that Branna and her crew were questionable at times- their actions absolutely infuriating- I am intrigued by them- I want to know more. Especially Jonas.
I found the ghost really an interesting part of this. Arthur used them very cleverly, more than that I loved how Tig interacted with them. Their reactions are totally believable and relatable. It ties in with the great world building and I love this aspect just as much.

The plot was despite the huge amount of action scenes quite slow- but steady. In fact not that much happens, I mean lots of battles and stuff but we actually not give that much. The mystery however does keep one entertained and guessing.
I liked the story line even if it is definitely same old same old for Arthur in some ways. Honestly: I thoroughly enjoyed it.
But I was left with a gazillion questions! The fact that I am going to have to wait a while before I get to read the next book is a huge issue! ( in the best possible way(

My biggest issue with this: The romance aspect and the smut. I don't exactly know why Arthur always let's the heroin sleep around- but well, she does. And the sex scenes here were not particularly good, nor did they make much sense to me. I liked Tig's chemistry with Jonas. I didn't think she had any chemistry with Sol. None whatsoever actually.
So I found their relationship off kilter and I didn't believe their supposed old bond.
It's actually quite odd, because Arthur usually excels on the romance parts.
The good news, the romances bits are rather a side track in this. Which was another surprise for me, since I expected this to be a PNR. Which this is not. I really liked that. I am however hoping that we will get some more romance in the next installment.

A solid start to a new series!
The world building is brilliant. I loved most of the character building and enjoyed the mystery and have high hopes for the next installment.
I am intrigued

Side note: I took a long while to read this. But not because the book wasn't any good- I had issues in how the ARC formated on my kindle. I found myself reading a page at times twice or thrice- took ages to read and was quite often distracted by the odd break in between sentences and even words.
I ended up downloading it onto my ipad and reading it on there... Don't ask me why I waiting for nearly half the book to do so, well actually I simply prefer to read novels on my paperwhite- it's way nicer to read on.
This is not a real issue connected to the book- I just thought I mention it, because it took me a couple of weeks to get through the book- which is an eternity really.
Once I gave in and just read it on my ipad- I read this in a few hours.

Profile Image for Tez.
841 reviews218 followers
May 15, 2016
It's been a long time since I last read a Keri Arthur book, the final in the Riley Jenson series. (I own all the Dark Angel and Souls of Fire novels, but haven't read them yet.) What I love about those are the serial killer cases to investigate.

City of Light, however, is an entirely different kettle of fish, though this Outcast world also has shifters and vampires, and the lead character is a hybrid. Tiger is a shifter-vampire humanoid, genetically engineered by the military to act as a "lure" - to seduce targets, collect their secrets, then kill them. This was during the time of the war between shifters and vampires that opened some rift that let wraiths and whatnot into Tiger's world. (I still don't understand rifts.)

I came in expecting a sci-fi novel, but it's much more paranormal - which had me struggling to make sense and picture things. The biggest problem is Tiger herself. Her shifter genes came from a tiger, but not just any tiger - a WHITE tiger. The book acknowledges that white tigers are rare, but neglects to mention why - INBREEDING. Yes, there are some Bengal white tigers in the world, but mostly the white tigers you see are a result of inbreeding, which leads to health problems such as kidney issues.

So why don't Tiger's genes come from a regular orange-with-black-stripes tiger? White tigers don't have special abilities, and as mentioned above they come with extra health concerns. So why would you use THEIR genes, instead of healthier genes? You wouldn't. So the white tiger element does NOT MAKE SENSE. Tiger never shifts into a tiger, anyway - she shifts into other people, and "particles" consisting of shadows or a "sunshine shield". So the only reason I can think of to include the white tiger aspect would be...aesthetics? Though in one scene, Tiger's old friend refers to her being orange, which he should've known better about but Tiger acknowledges that and shags him anyway, even though she doesn't trust him. *headdesk*

I can't wrap my head around the world-building. I figured that the population was decimated during the war, but there's still enough for the city to have at least TWO high-class brothels? Tiger scavenges for food, but that doesn't explain how the bunker she lives in has power, if she can't afford to pay it. Also, does she live IN a museum, or next to one? Her security set-up of laser grids and whatnot belong to the museum, I think, so I couldn't quite follow.

And the ghosts. Tiger's regular companions are Cat and Bear, whom at first I thought were ghosts of her colleagues in the military, but they're actually ghost children. And we're told that there are "hundreds" of "little ones" in Tiger's bunker, but since we don't individually meet them by name it's kind of hard to care when their lives are at risk. (Well, their ghost lives.)

Had I understood the world more, I would've been better able to connect with the story and characters. Hopefully Book 2 will fill in the gaps so I won't feel so baffled.
Profile Image for Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller.
725 reviews1,201 followers
February 7, 2016
Keri Arthur has been a staple in my urban fantasy/paranormal romance arsenal for many years now, and I'm convinced she gets better and better with each new series. City of Light was the fantastic combination of unique setting, great characters, and good storytelling that I've come to expect from her, and I think it a strong start to what promises to be a great series.

The basic plotlines surrounding the paranormal creatures and their proclivity for mischief was very similar to that in Arthur's Riley Jensen series (my favorite of hers to date). It can be risky recycling old ideas, but Arthur presented it in such a different way that it made me nostalgic rather than disappointed. She has a way of weaving complex supernatural cultures into giant hodgepodge societies that somehow work. It made for an atmosphere that was fresh, exciting, and easily one of the best elements of the story.

But, by far, the best element were the characters. Tig was a strong female lead, which is to be expected, but my favorite thing about her was her rich back history and experiences that shaped her motives and decisions throughout the entire novel. She was such a well developed character that it made the novel special rather than just good. All of that praise is in addition to the cool aspect of how she came into being (lab-grown) and the cooler combination of DNA that made her unique (white tiger shifter with a hint of vampire... plus some other genetically superior upgrades). I was yet again reminded of Riley, but in a way that made me appreciate how well each heroine stands on their own despite their similarities. All of the characters surrounding Tig were equally interesting, and I have the feeling we've only just scratched the surface of their potential in this first book.

Overall, City of Light was a strong first novel in a series I can't wait to devour more from. Fans of Keri will definitely appreciate it, and urban fantasy lovers in general will hopefully like the paranormal/futuristic infusion is much as I did. Fair warning though: sexual content and language.

Via The Obsessive Bookseller at www.nikihawkes.com
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