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review 2017-10-04 10:00
Haunted Blade (Colbana Files # 6) by J.C. Daniels Review
Haunted Blade (Colbana Files Book 6) - J... Haunted Blade (Colbana Files Book 6) - J.C. Daniels

 

 

Haunted, Hunted…and harassed.

Never let it be said that Kit Colbana had ever been given the easy road. Or even the semi-paved road. Only weeks after dealing with the mysterious—and murderous—being called Puck, she’s got another killer on her hands. Perhaps even two.

Some of the bodies turning up bring up haunting memories of a past she longs to forget, but as always, that past is chasing her at her heels, like a hated shadow.

As the body count racks up, there’s an imbalance of power, particularly among the vampire population, and Kit must yet again deal with ugly memories as one of the monsters who tried to break her is set free to deal with the imbalance of power. Yet while a power struggle rages in East Orlando, there’s another, more subtle battle taking place and Kit feels like the center of it all.

Arrogant? Maybe. But the dead bodies don’t bear the mark of her grandmother’s pet killer by sheer coincidence…and she doubts her nemesis being released is either.

 

 

 

Kit Colbana’s back and she has another killer (or is it two?) on her hands which means she’s up to her eyeballs in thrilling suspense and drama.

 

The twists keep coming and I get a quite the adrenaline rush when I become immersed in Kit’s life, it’s full of adventure, action, drama, suspense and romance. The series is full of interesting characters and lots of magic, some good and some bad with Kit having to deal with it all while handling her personal angst and drama, which draws readers in and refuses to let go.

 

Between her love with life with the sexy cat and her evil family, Kit’s life is quite exciting, but when you add in her job and The Assembly, you get lots of twists and excitements and this time is no different, the vampires are mixing things up and what’s more, her nemesis being released just may be her last straw. The story is fast paced with the action and drama being a roller coaster ride of thrills throughout the book, which keeps the reader on the edge and the suspense has readers biting their nails wondering if Kit’s going to come out on top. Her magic is adding a few surprises to Kit’s arsenal and the repertoire between Kit, her companions and her enemies are full of snark and attitude. 

 

Kit may have lots of enemies but she also seems to be gaining allies which hints there is much more to come in Kit’s life, especially since some of those allies have her questioning their motives and wondering just what they are up to. I can’t wait to find out what happens next, especially as it seems the big bad grandmother is going wreck even more havoc in Kit’s life.

 

4 Stars

 

Haunted Blade is the 6th book in:

Colbana Files

 

Find J.C. Daniels at:

Website   Goodreads   Facebook   Twitter

 

Purchase:

Kindle   iBooks   Kobo   BN   GPlay

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review 2016-07-19 22:49
Edged Blade (Colbana Files #4) by J.C. Daniels
Edged Blade (Colbana Files Series) - Luke Daniels,J.C. Daniels


Kit has come a long way since being kidnapped and tortured by Jude. Sure, she's still triggered sometimes but has found a way to barrel through it and has begun to resemble herself somewhat. When her best friend Justin comes to her looking for help because witches have gone missing, Kit is quick to agree to take the case.  What she doesn't realise is that the case is even larger than she ever could have imagined and that to work on it, she's going to have make some very unlikely allies.

I really do think that Edged Blade is the best Colbana Files book to date.  To be clear, the grammar is still a problem and at times, I had difficulty differentiating who was talking, particularly because Daniels seems to like to give her characters the same voice but it was enjoyable nonetheless.  I understand that this is a self pub but line editing would have gone a long way to clean up some of the sloppy mess.

One of the things that I like about this series is that though Kit has obviously been assaulted and tortured, J.C. Daniels didn't try to gloss it over as though it were nothing.  It's been a full on year since her attack and Kit is still trying to deal.  She's modified her body with tattoos to hide scars and she's trained to regain her strength.  I would really have liked to see Kit actually have some counselling considering what she has been through. Kit faces down her fear and even agrees to work with and for the vampires.  This is a huge leap given that in the last book, she could barely stand to be around one for a few short moments.

Much of Edged Blade focuses on the romance between Kit and Damon.  Damon is still in full possession mode and this is hardly a surprise given that he once walked away from her because she wouldn't answer his summons immediately.  I know that Daniels means us to be fired up about the relationship between Damon and Kit but it's far too dysfunctional for that. Damon is jealous of Kit's partner Jason because they used to be lovers.  Kit has to carefully monitor her interactions with Jason, lest she end up smelling like him thus driving Damon into a rage.  This is ridiculously abusive and puerile behaviour. If that were not enough, when Damon's former lover rejoins the pack, Kit becomes jealous and repeatedly taunts the woman. Kit is also insecure about how Damon feels about her even though he has been stalking her.  There's also the issue that Damon treats his former lover like a piece crap every time he sees her to calm Kit's nerves.  I really have begun to believe that these two deserve each other.

 

 

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Source: www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2016/06/edged-blade-colbana-files-4-by-jc.html
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review 2016-05-15 23:56
Night Blade (Colbana Files #2) by J.C. Daniels
Night Blade (Colbana Files) - J.C. Daniels

Kit Colbana's past is filled with abuse and violence but this tragic history has made Kit highly skilled at her job.  When she comes to the attention of Banner, the policing organisation for supernaturals, Kit's first instinct is to avoid their attempts to contact her.  She's particularly not interested because the agent in question is her ex boyfriend Justin.  Kit may not want the job but Justin is certain that she is the only one who can solve the case of the murdered council members. When Justin informs her that it's believed that her current boyfriend Damon is suspected of murder and will be sentenced to death, Kit has no choice but to agree to the job, even if this means she has to go it alone.

Kit spends most of the book getting the shit kicked out of her as she investigates the case.  BecauseNight Blade is so circular, it feels as though Kit spends the entire time chasing her tail without getting anywhere.  Because of a binding spell placed on her, Kit actually feels pain anytime she even thinks about telling anyone what she is up to.  Kit's inability to speak angers Damon and so she is forced to remind him repeatedly that she was doing her job long before he entered her life and is therefore capable of taking care of herself.

When we first met Damon in Blade Song, I really wasn't a fan of him at all and this feeling of dislike continues into Night Blade.  Damon is extremely possessive, jealous and controlling.  When Damon learns that Kit is working with her ex, he immediately demands that she quit.  Due to the nature of her investigation, this is something that Kit cannot do and so Damon responds by biting her neck, permanently scaring her so that the world will know that she belongs to him.

I hissed out a breath as he sank his teeth into my neck.  My mind processed what he was doing but before I could decide if I was going to do a damn thing, his hand tangled in y hair, arching my head to the side as he pressed down harder, harder until his teeth broke through the skin.
He growled against me and I groaned.
It hurt-
There isn't anything remotely sexy or romantic about having a six-foot five, two-hundred fifty pound werecat sink a powerful set of teeth into your neck.
But it was over in seconds and I was still in processing mode as he grabbed something from the bed to press against my neck.  "You're asking me to deal with something that I can't change and I hate it," he said, his voice hard and flat.  "That's how I'm dealing.  The next tie anybody looks at you, they're going to see what I wanted everybody to know months ago." (pg 107)

The mark on her wrist was something that Kit could choose to hide but the neck mark gives her absolutely zero options.  If that were not enough, when Damon smells another man on Kit because she had to be close to a witch for the purposes of cloaking her location, he responds by ripping the clothing from her body, demanding that she never wear them again.  For Damon, this is what passes for love but in actuality it amounts to abuse.

Damon is as far from a romantic love interest as possible.  When he isn't busy trying to control Kit, he infantalises her by calling her "baby girl". Why oh why would a grown ass man think it's okay to refer to the woman he is having sex with as "baby girl"? The only reason for that is that as the supposed adult in this relationship, Damon expects obedience.  When Kit finally gets the evidence she needs to stop a kill order on Damon to be acted upon, Damon demands that she leave with him right now because he needs her like he needs air.  When Kit objects because she has one thing left to do, Damon responds by ending the relationship and walking out. Who the hell does that?


It's only when Kit gets kidnapped that Damon actually wants to do something positive which for him involves stalking around, growling and forcing a confrontation with her, though everyone on the rescue crew tells him to back off because Kit is in no shape to deal with him.  This man who wants obedience from Kit, cannot even respect her wishes for a few moments to get herself together, though she has been raped daily for weeks and tortured.

Kit does manage to walk away from Damon and I sincerely hope that he is out of the picture in the next book.  Daniels stops just short of calling Kit sullied because of her rape and says instead that she cannot be with Damon because she was broken by weeks of rape and torture. Really Daniels?  Why couldn't she have gone with the idea that showing up to play knight in shining armor after abandoning her, being physically abusive, and controlling doesn't make him a fit love interest.

Kit wouldn't even have been in this situation had Damon trusted and respected her enough to reveal that he was indeed guilty of murder but only because he wanted to protect her. It seems that Kit's grandmother had actively been trying to hire someone to harm Kit and that Damon killed anyone who was willing to do that job.  Why exactly Kit couldn't be trust to know that her life was in danger is absolutely beyond me. It's ironic that Damon ends the relationship because he feels that he cannot trust Kit.

 

 

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Source: www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2016/05/night-blade-colbana-files-2-by-jc.html
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review 2016-03-02 23:02
Blade Song (Colbana Files #1) by J.C. Daniels
Blade Song (Colbana Files) - J.C. Daniels

Kit Colbana is a member of the Aneria - a race descended from the Amazons. Because she is half human, her people don't fully recognize her, leaving Kit essentially alone in the world. As a trained assassin and killer, Kit is more than able to make a living.  When Kit is contacted by the werecats to help find a missing kid, Kit cannot resist taking the case.  As someone with a history of being abused, Kit cannot help but get emotionally invested in the case, even if it means she has to deal with the Cats main enforcer Damon.

Blade Song is a PNR/UF which means that while this story could very will exist without the romance angle, it is weaved into the plot.  Unfortunately, at times the romance feels quite forced.  From the very first meeting between Damon and Kit, it's clear that they are going to move from hating to each other to loving each other.  It makes Blade Song extremely predictable as far as that storyline is concerned. It's one thing to portray the dislike between two characters and another to make the love interest actively abusive.

No fear, damn it. I could still breathe…barely…and he wasn’t trying to kill me. He just wanted me afraid while he yelled at me.My blood is noble. My heart is strong. My aim is true. I am aneira…my heart is strong—No fear, damn it. I could be drowning in it, and he damn well could smell it on me, but I sure as hell wouldn’t show it.

This above passage is very heavily framed as saving Kit from her own stupidity but it sets the tone of things to come. There are several times in the story where Kit asks Damon to back away and give her space. At one point she becomes so desperate, she hides in the bathroom and sleeps in the bathtub. Then there's the fact that Damon simply refuses to respect her wishes when she asks him not to touch her.

His hand spread open over my neck and despite my intention to ignore it, I almost groaned at how good that felt. I was tempted to lean into—And then I realized I was—“Damn it,” I snapped. “Would you stop? I thought I made it clear, I’m a little freaked out by the fact that you keep touching me even though just an hour or so ago, your Alpha was telling you that you might be killing me soon.” (pg 46-47)

Damon spends much of the time in the book trying to convince Kit that he is not going to hurt her and with good reason. Because Damon bruised Kit's neck so badly, she could barely swallow.  He claims he didn't know how fragile she was and that is why he didn't hold back his strength but the fact still remains that he hurt her so badly that he bruised her.

One of the things that irks me about the relationship between Kit and Damon is that she spends so much time saying that she doesn't want a relationship and that he wouldn't be good for her. Since Daniels was determined to force these two together, we never get to see Kit follow through on this. Given the fact that Damon physically hurt her, violated her trust and didn't respect her enough to stop touching her, this all should have been reason enough for Kit to refuse a relationship, particularly given her history of abuse.

Much of Blade Song is filled with Kit being triggered by different events. The descriptions of her abuse are quite graphic but it makes sense given that she is remembering what happened to her and trying to find a way to put it behind her. The years of abuse not only place Kit into a position to be triggered, they effect her daily life. Kudos for Daniels for actually portraying PTSD rather than having her character live through horrific events and remain untouched by them.  After being told repeatedly how dirty she was as a child, Kit showers almost compulsively.  Not only does she want to wash the past away but any suggestion that she might be less than.  Often in this genre we see that a protagonist has a troubled past but rarely do we see the follow through with how said protagonist deals lives with the pain. As much as this was difficult to read, it made the story feel real to me and made Kit relatable.

 

 

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Source: www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2016/02/blade-song-colbana-files-1-by-jc-daniels.html
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review 2015-02-11 03:15
Review: Edged Blade by J.C. Daniels
Edged Blade (Colbana Files Series) - Luke Daniels,J.C. Daniels

Opening a few months after the conclusion of the previous title, Edged Blade continues with Kit’s recovery from her abduction and torture at the hands of an evil vampire (Blade Song). While the majority of Kit’s journey finding her way back to life after her horrible experiences were chronicled in the previous book, Night Blade, I was glad that Kit still isn’t (and never will be) her old self. This is one area that the book and story excels; Kit was broken and now she must come to terms with how to live her life under a new set of rules.

 

Kit and her lover/mate Damon, alpha of the powerful Southern Cat Clan, share some amazing moments throughout Edged Blade. Both are uncertain and awkward, yet full of desire and love. Ms. Daniels continues to skillfully put the pieces back together for this pair, allowing them to safely express concerns and share their feelings. The scenes focusing on Kit and Damon’s relationship were by far my favorite parts of the story.

 

Unfortunately, I had issues with much of the rest of the book. Kit’s good friend (and former lover), Justin, pulls her into a case involving several missing non-humans who have mysteriously vanished. This case is not straight-forward and left me constantly trying to understand what was going on. In fact, I had to re-read and/or go back to find a scene for clarification at least a dozen times. Time after time, scenes would begin or change, leaving me unsure as to what had just happened. At one point in the story, Damon’s second (and good friend of Kit), Chang, says to Kit “Saves time when I don't have to connect the dots.” But the problem for this reader is that I DO NEED help connecting the dots. Too often Kit makes connections that I just don't see, causing confusion and making it hard for me to follow and enjoy the story.

 

In addition to my confusion was the frustration of what appears to be yet another female jealous of Kit and her relationship with Damon. While this particular storyline is a bit different from previous one, it was too similar, making me angry to see it happen again, especially with Kit and Damon finally healing deep wounds. Also, there were a couple of side storylines that seemed to have potentially serious impacts to Kit and/or the Cat Clan, yet weren’t followed up on after initially mentioned.

 

In the end, other than seeing Kit recovering and her relationship with Damon healing, I didn't care much for Edged Blade. I felt lost and all over the place far too often, with questions constantly plaguing my enjoyment. Even after finishing, I was still trying to sort out the pieces and realizing that this was just the first chapter in a bigger story arc. The story had a strong transition feel, and I do not suggest anyone start the series with this book. I am grateful to the author in her handling of Kit and that she still isn't the same Kit she was before her kidnapping and torture. But moving from stories focused on Kit to some HUGE conspiracy event, left this reader frustrated with an abrupt ending and many loose ends.

 

My Rating:  C

Review copy provided by author

Originally posted at That's What I'm Talking About

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