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review 2017-12-11 15:13
#Audiobook Review: Blood Cross by Faith Hunter
Blood Cross: Jane Yellowrock, Book 2 - Audible Studios,Faith Hunter,Khristine Hvam

Beginning shortly after the conclusion of Skinwalker, Jane finds herself working for the Vampire Council of New Orleans (NOLA), trying to track down a rogue-making vampire. Her best friend, Molly, and her two children are staying with Jane, and she’s got the head of the NOLA vampires, Leo, after her for killing the creature he believed to be his beloved son. Things are dangerous and crazy, and I wouldn’t want it any other way!

 

Starting Blood Cross, I was unsure how I felt about the Jane Yellowrock series. Mostly I liked the first book, but something about it still didn’t click with me, or rubbed at me. However, after finishing the story, I was eager to begin book three. I think part of the issue is that the world is huge and even in this second book, the author continues to add and build upon both the mythology and the political structure of the vampires. There are times I was lost trying to follow the detailed history of the vampires or had trouble recalling the political alignment of each character and clan. The world is detailed and full, making it both exciting and enjoyable, but also a lot to take in.

 

Once again, I enjoyed the base story of the adventure. Jane is solving a mystery, one that has been covered up for a while, and I enjoy watching her put the pieces together, not necessarily caring if she upsets the apple cart in the process. She pulls apart the status quo and gives readers the inside scoop as she discovers the truth behind the vampire myths and legends. The action-packed storyline is interesting, albeit a bit gruesome. I did take issue with the number of times Jane nearly dies - she’s been at this for years and now she makes mistakes that nearly cause her death several times in a short period. It felt repetitive and unnecessary after the first time.

 

The author seems to narrow down amount of side characters central to the story. I was disappointed that Katie is still MIA, with little explanation of how long her recovery will take. I did enjoy the complexity of Leo and seeing the different parts of his true nature. Beast was also featured a bit less, as was Jane’s heritage, although we do get some of both. 

 

One thing that annoyed me at first was the issue of Jane’s sex life. Granted I’m a romance junkie, and Jane’s story has nothing to do with love and everything to do with scratching an itch; satisfying Beast’s need to mate. But the oscillation between Rick and Bruiser is a game and I found it annoying. Also, the constant pull of Beast to mate clouded the first half of the story. I’m not one for triangles, so I was eventually pleased with Jane’s thought process and the outcome by the end of the book.

 

As far as narration, I don’t have much to add that I didn’t say in my review of Skinwalker. Ms. Hvam nails Jane’s tough attitude as well as her surprisingly tender moments with Molly’s kids. Since I am now familiar with her work and the characters this second time around, I didn’t notice as much of an annoyance with her accents. Her projection of each character is solidifying in my head. 

 

Overall, while I started off unsure about the series, I found myself fully invested in Jane’s journey by the conclusion of Blood Cross, and I look forward to seeing what adventures lie ahead.

 

My Rating: B/B-

Narration: B

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review 2017-12-09 04:59
Review: Maid of Ice (Blood and Silver, #3) by Shona Husk
Maid of Ice (Blood & Silver) - Shona Husk

Finley and Alina are part of an ancient magical civilization called Albah. Some call them elves, others call them witches, but in truth no one truly knows what they are or where they are from. The only thing they are certain of is that because their race is capable of creating evil creatures they are being hunted to extinction. 
This is the third installment in the series but it can be read as a standalone. As I started reading the book I had the impression that one had to read the first two books in order to get the gist of this one but as the story progressed it was pretty obvious that was not necessary. 
Finley is an adventurous and one could almost call cynical man that wants nothing to do with the magical family he was born into and couldn’t care less if they truly went extinct. The thing with Finley is that even though he gave up the responsibilities that came with being part of that family, he never gave up his magical gift as he always considered it an intrinsic part of himself. So, when he meets a long lost Albah that never before had the chance to experience life in the magical sense, he realizes what could be lost if all that magic is completely gone, and worst, what would happen to the family and friends he hardly gave himself a chance to meet. 

Of all three books this one is by far my favorite. Not only did the author tell us more details of the world of the Albah, their Guardians, Albanex, and Keepers; but the story also gave us a more expanded view of how they interact with regular humans. I also thought there is a bit more humor in this one but that may be due to the interaction between the two main characters (there is also more sexual content so, fair warning) who are young and free and trying to survive a fight neither one of them asked to be a part of. Overall it was a great read with a unique world-building, just as the previous two books, and I do recommend it to anyone that likes PNR/UF with a different twist. 

** I was gifted a copy of this book and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.**

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review 2017-12-07 09:37
Good urban fantasy with known weakness in the romance department.
Changeling's Fealty (Changeling Blood Book 1) - Glynn Stewart

I have read the fantasy space adventures written by this author with great enjoyment.

 

This book was also a very good story with a likable main character.

 

The strength of it certainly came from the storytelling.The thrown in romance was unnecessary and didn't add at all to the story imho.

 

The world-building was solid and had some interesting twists - there was a not so unexpected turn hinted at in regards to the "power level" of the main character, so I am sure there is more development to come.

 

I really liked the Calgary "mundane world" setting, it gave the story atmosphere and depth.

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review 2017-12-01 06:30
Review: Maid of Ice (Blood and Silver #3) by Shona Husk
Maid of Ice (Blood & Silver) - Shona Husk

Finley and Alina are part of an ancient magical civilization called Albah. Some call them elves, others call them witches, but in truth no one truly knows what they are or where they are from. The only thing they are certain of is that because their race is capable of creating evil creatures they are being hunted to extinction. 
This is the third installment in the series but it can be read as a standalone. As I started reading the book I had the impression that one had to read the first two books in order to get the gist of this one but as the story progressed it was pretty obvious that was not necessary. 
Finley is an adventurous and one could almost call cynical man that wants nothing to do with the magical family he was born into and couldn’t care less if they truly went extinct. The thing with Finley is that even though he gave up the responsibilities that came with being part of that family, he never gave up his magical gift as he always considered it an intrinsic part of himself. So, when he meets a long lost Albah that never before had the chance to experience life in the magical sense, he realizes what could be lost if all that magic is completely gone, and worst, what would happen to the family and friends he hardly gave himself a chance to meet. 

Of all three books this one is by far my favorite. Not only did the author tell us more details of the world of the Albah, their Guardians, Albanex, and Keepers; but the story also gave us a more expanded view of how they interact with regular humans. I also thought there is a bit more humor in this one but that may be due to the interaction between the two main characters (there is also more sexual content so, fair warning) who are young and free and trying to survive a fight neither one of them asked to be a part of. Overall it was a great read with a unique world-building, just as the previous two books, and I do recommend it to anyone that likes PNR/UF with a different twist. 

** I was gifted a copy of this book and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.*

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review 2017-11-29 23:06
My Review of The Blood Queen
The Blood Queen (Deathsworn Arc, #3) - Martyn Stanley

The Blood Queen by Martyn Stanley is the third installment in the Deathsworn Arc series. Wizard Saul Karza and his comrades have made it back to the Empress, but she is not as Saul remembers. 

This book gave a bit more insight into some of the mysteries surrounding the female elf and the wizard, but I think the female character gets too much attention from the author. I would like to know more about the dark elf and the dwarf. I can see the author's writing has matured since the first book, and the editing is getting much better.

I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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