Night Veil

This review contains spoilers. 

Night Veil by Yasmine Galenorn

9673866

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy – Paranormal Romance
  • Date Started :  July 2, 2015
  • Date Finished : July 8. 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 2nd book in the Indigo Court series.

Night Veil leaves off where the first book ends. Grieve is still with the big bad, the indigo court and the vampires Cicely made a deal with constantly want her to do their bidding. Things at home are not that great, relationships mostly and things just keep getting worse. Kaylin starts off in the book in a coma and Cicely must wake him up by visiting the Bat People and deal with his demon, who decides now is the perfect time to come out and play. Cicely finds out who her father is, but that’s not really a surprise. I mean that was fairly obvious from the beginning. Cicely is betrayed, has her home blown up and forced to go on the run with a her rag tag group.

This is a tough one. Here is my dilemma with this series, I enjoy the concept of the book and story but I don’t like the execution. Night Veil was easy to read and it kept me hooked but I felt like this book could have been a novella. We do learn a lot of back story in this book and discover characters true sides. I still feel like most of this could have been added to the first book.

Some of the plot points felt forced, like Kaylin and his demon issue and pretty much every scene with the vampires. Every scene with the vampires makes me feel slimy and gross. Galenorn does a great job writing the vampires as freaky and ultra creepy. I’m still not convinced of the romance between Grieve and Cicely. I understand they have a bond and are destined to be together but it doesn’t feel real. Their emotions are not, they are not what I would expect from lovers destined to be together.

There were a few surprises, things I did not see coming, not at all. Leo snaps and in a burst of rage hits Cicely and all of a sudden he starts acting weird. This was so out of character, no build up to his switch in personality and now he has ulterior motive? All of the characters interactions with Lannan were odd. At first he is like he was in the first book and then he decides to help Cicely and her group. Lannan who apparently we can be sort of trusted now? One of the biggest shockers and out of left field was a ritual with Peyton’s mom to strip Cicely and Grieve’s bond in order to “protect” Peyton from her father. To do that sort of magic against the will of the person apparently is pretty horrible and the execution left me disliking Peyton’s mom. I think her betrayal was more of a shocker than anything else.

Like I mentioned before, this book is easy to read and has potential to be pretty good but execution is still lacking. We are reading this series for book club and at this point, I’m still entertained. I’m giving this book a 2.5 stars because it’s not bad, it’s entertaining but I probably won’t reread the series ever again.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating  2.5 Stars

Advertisements

Shadow Of Night

This review contains spoilers. 

Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness

11559200

  • Genre : Romance – Historical – Supernatural
  • Date Started :  January 10, 2015
  • Date Finished : May 7, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 2nd book in the All Souls Trilogy.

I really wanted to like this book. I loved the start of the series yet this book felt like a chore. I was expecting a book much like the first one and most of this book was a slow and somewhat boring history lesson. That’s not all I got but the entire time they were in London I wanted to fall asleep and dreaded continuing. I was expecting a grand adventure since the whole reason for time walking was to get the manuscript/book and find Diana a witch to help with her powers. I know the reason they traveled back to this particular time but really, can you pick a worse time to travel back in time to find a witch? Maybe a time in history where witch burning and hunts were not all the rage?

Most of the new characters you meet when they first get to the past are either forgettable or highly annoying. I did like his friends that at least tried to make Diana feel welcome. I really liked the stammering Henry, Phillip grew on me and Gallowglass was amazing. I found it heartwarming for Diana to take in Jack and loved watching Jack and Matthew’s relationship grow. I also enjoyed Diana taking in Annie and making her feel like part of the family. Even if Annie was meant to spy on them for a vampire. I did not like either of the main characters personality changes when they time walked. Matthew’s change of character was way more overprotective and controlling and Diana seemed to get more annoying. I gave some leniency to Matthew because he was a different person in this time period and he needed to keep up appearances. Diana on the other hand knows about time periods and still tries to be a 21st century woman. They each got better the longer they were back in time so that helped, a little.

Another thing I didn’t like about this book is how many villains there are. I swear, every time Diana and Matthew were in a good place and sort of happy, some new horrible person pops up to ruin everything. It was incredible frustrating. I know that you need someone to be the bad guy in books but this book was crammed full of people who either wanted to kill them, get in their way or were too nosy for their own good. The bad guy could also be a “friend” who is so drugged on opiates that he kidnaps Diana and plans to kill her to get Matthew back! Ugh I really hated Kit and was not at all sad that he died a horrible death! I still have no idea how Matthew and Kit’s talk went and whether or not Matthew forgave Kit like Diana suggested.

The story starts to pick up when Diana finally meets the witches who help her discover what type of witch she is. Learning about Diana’s powers was fascinating and meeting the Jewish weaver was pretty cool. The witches Diana meets really made the story enjoyable. I was a little surprised that, even with all the crap they were going through and all Diana’s time spent with the emperor’s dancer/painter, etc, that she pretty much forgot about studying her powers. I know the manuscript/book was so close and they were focusing on that but it still surprised me.

Towards the end, they finally get the book, after the pages are ripped out of course. When they start preparing to travel back to their own time after spending MONTHS in Elizabethan London, they run into Diana’s father. He helps her discover more about her powers, with the help of the witches before he travels back to his time. He also tells Diana and Matthew that the book is going to have to stay back in time. So while they accomplished 1 of their tasks, the 2nd task, the manuscript/book is still incomplete and they have to leave it behind. The bright side, at least they got a chance to see the manuscript/book when it was whole, even for a brief time. They also discovered that the pages that were ripped out might be available back in their own time. The also learn that the manuscript/book is literally made from the flesh of dead supernatural creatures, creepy.

Then we get back to present day and find out Em, Diana’s aunt has died. No build up, no real explanation, just died during the birth. I better get an explanation about this in the next book! I also want to know how much trouble their 7 months back in the past effected the present. Every thing I’ve read about time travel says that small changes can throw the entire future out of whack.

I’m still trying to figure if I liked this book or not. I started reading this book back in January and had to switch to audio because reading it felt like a chore. The woman who reads the audio did a fantastic job and I’m so happy I switched. I would not have finished had I needed to read this book. For me, the main story is interesting and I wanted to know what would happen. The author’s description of the past make you feel like you are really there but at the same time, parts of the story felt unnecessary. It’s like listening to a friend who has a great story to tell but they won’t get to the point.

I’ve had a hard time deciding on what rating to give this book. If I would have read the book I probably would have given up but the story was interesting enough to find another way to get through the story. For me her writing just didn’t engage me enough but I don’t feel like this book deserves 1 star. I’m giving Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness  2 stars.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 2 Stars

Magic Burns

This review contains spoilers. 

Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews

1811543

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy – Supernatural – Paranormal
  • Date Started :  April 30, 2015
  • Date Finished : April 30, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website.

I’ve read this series before and am even more in love with it the 2nd time around.

This book starts off with Jim asking for back up on a Mercenary Guild gig. Towards the end of this gig, that has spun out of control, Jim gets called away on pack business and their mark is killed. Kate is forced to deal with the body and the object they were supposed to retrieve. She needs both to get the bounty and ends up cutting the head off the guy and grabbing the orb thing. Typical Kate Daniels, fast thinking and resourceful.

After dropping off her bounty, Derek, her amazing sidekick/babysitter makes a pretty simple request from the pack. The pack needs some help retrieving maps that were stolen from them. Sounds pretty simple and straight forward right? If you think about it, not so much. Even Kate questions how something like maps could be stolen from the pack, turns out the thief just disappears. Since Kate has followed in her old guardian Greg’s footsteps and has the honor of being friend of the pack, she feels obligated to help. Regardless of how much she wants to stay away from the pack and their leader Curran, she’s there to help. This straight forward task ends up putting Kate in the middle of a huge battle that could destroy Atlanta and with no one else there to help, it’s up to Kate.

After some investigating and tracking down clues, Kate finds herself tracking the same guy who killed her earlier bounty, a bowman named Bran. Turns out witches who worship Morrigan had their cauldron, a VERY special cauldron stolen from them by Morrigan’s greatest enemy. Bran is there to find the cauldron and while he is a pretty cool character, he’s also pretty secretive for 75% of the book. The enemy that stole the cauldron is also looking for one more thing and Kate keeps getting in their way. Things happen and they find what they are looking for. There is a magical dome over a part of Atlanta and the bad guys are filling it with an army. Kate, the witches and the pack defend the city in a bloody and brutal battle.

A lot happens in this book and we get to meet a few new characters. We learn more about the magic/tech issues going on. We learn that every 7 years there is a flare and that makes things go wonky for a while. I thought it was interesting that during these flares, the people shut down their operations. Learning about how the vampires are navigated was interesting as well. Made me think of a role playing game but way cooler.

We also get to meet Andrea who works for the order and is a beastkin. Her father was a hyenawere. When Andrea is injured we get to meet Clan Hyena. We also meet Red and Julie, Red is a power hungry jerk so I won’t talk about him. He gets what he deserves but you need to read the book to find out more. Julie is essentially an orphan that Kate is forced to take guardianship of. While I found it odd that Kate would form a bond so quickly with the kid, I loved Kate’s protectiveness of Julie. I’m assuming this bond is due to Kate’s own lack of a mother and her ability to be conscious of other people’s feelings. Ok so I just really like Kate Daniels. I love her wit, her bravado, her strength and her attitude. If I had a fictional hero it would be Kate. Speaking of Kate’s attitude, we get more banter, fighting and tension filled goodness from her and Curran. I’m reading this series again for my book club and it’s incredible hard to stop myself from reading the next book.

Overall this series has to be one of the most enjoyable series and author’s I’ve read. You get great characters, a growing and evolving world, plots that engage and an overall story that keeps you hooked.

I’m giving Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews a 5 star.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 5 Stars

Fool Moon

This review contains spoilers. 

Fool Moon by Jim Butcher

91477

  • Genre : Fantasy – Urban Fantasy – Mystery
  • Date Started :  March 23, 2015
  • Date Finished : April 2, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This post turned out way too long but here it goes.

The gist of the story, a werewolf is killing people close to Johnnie Marcone (Mob Boss) and Harley MacFinn (a loup-garou). The police have a hard time with this one because of the gruesome nature of the crime and the mysterious wolfish paw marks left at the scene. Lt. Murphy even suspects Harry and arrests him. Things get worse from there and lots of people die. Harry almost dies multiple times and it’s hard to trust anyone. In the end everyone ends up at Johnnie Marcone’s mansion because that’s who the bad guys want dead.

After what happened in the first book, Harry isn’t expecting to hear from Lt. Murphy anytime soon. That changes when bad things start happening in Chicago and the police are at a dead-end. In an attempt to figure out who is murdering people in a gruesome way around the full moon, Lt. Murphy reaches out to Harry as a last resort.

A few things happen here, we meet a group of FBI agents who have been following these killings and don’t want any help from the local police. After a tense moment between Lt. Murphy and one of the FBI agents, Harry and Lt. Murphy leave and are followed home. Harry not wanting the trail to go cold and assumes this will help with the case, follows that person. Here he finds a gang of teenagers who can turn into wolves. You would think, well that’s too easy and it is. Harry doesn’t think this group could have done the killings and tells Lt. Murphy that exact thing. Lt. Murphy doesn’t believe him though, no big surprise there!

Harry also tells Lt. Murphy all he knows about werewolves and the types they could be up against. I found this information pretty cool and it was interesting to hear about the different types of were’s in Harry’s world. What I didn’t like was that we got to meet each type he tells Lt. Murphy about. Do we really need to experience each type in one book? It seemed excessive to me. While at the police station, Harry also gets a tip from one of the FBI agents about a gang that they think might be involved, the appropriately named Streetwolves (a pack of lycanthropes). Harry foolishly checks out this group, by himself and ends up challenging the Alpha of the gang. He escapes of course, but now Harry needs to watch his back not only from the teenage gang who turn into wolves but now from the Streetwolves as well.

Johnnie Marcone also attempts to hire Harry to protect himself because he suspects he is the next one to be killed by the killer. Of course Harry declines but it still doesn’t help with his image. Marcone does help Harry by giving him information and a possible connection to Harley MacFinn and the Northwest Passage Project. At this point in the story we get MORE information which could be true. Harry summons a demon to get information on Harley but the demon ends up baiting Harry with information about his parents and how they really died which was almost more entertaining than the story we are currently involved with. This interesting tidbit gets shelved for another time though because Harry has more pressing matters to deal with. Although it does get brought up sometime later when Harry is unconscious and talking to his subconscious, great scene!

Before Harry can question Harley, Lt. Murphy arrests him for the death of Kim, who Harry helped in the first book to understand her powers. Tera, the woman who followed Harry and led him to the teenage gang, the Alpha’s, ends up freeing Harry in order to help her contain her fiance, Harley, before he can hurt anyone because he is a loup-garou. Before Tera and Harry can get to Harley, Lt. Murphy arrests him, going against Harry’s advice and at moon rise Harley changes and kills a ton of police. Harry shows up to try to contain him but only drives him off.

So we have a loup-garou who is on the loose and a pack of lycanthropes, the Streetwolves, trying to kill Harry. While Harry is trying to track down Marcone, he is attacked by the Streetwolves and finds out he was set up by the FBI agents who happen to be hexenwolves and are the ones behind all the murders. So now Harry and the Alpha’s take off to save Marcone from Harley and the FBI. This can’t be easy and to make things difficult, both Harry and the Alpha’s are captured once they reach Marcone’s mansion.

Here we find out that the ones who Marcone thought were there to protect him, end up using him as bait to catch and kill Harley, the loup-garou. Harry and Murphy escape and end up fighting with the FBI agents and taking the belts that make them hexenwolves and destroying them before the police show up. The Alpha’s escape with the help of Susan, the reporter and Harry’s sort of girlfriend. Oh and we find out in the end that Tera is a wolf who turns into a human. SO. MUCH. INFORMATION.

In the end we find out that the FBI agents have planned this whole mess to eliminate Marcone for good but the power of the belts over took them. I will say that the scene with Harry wearing the belt and transforming was excellent. It really helps you understand the loss of control the agents had and how much of a drug it really was to them.

One thing I really love about this series so far is Harry. Yeah he has bad things happen to him all the time and he is down on his luck most of the time but he truly behaves like a hero even if he doesn’t feel like it. Overall I enjoyed the parts of the story that I HOPE will be more meaningful later. I loved the characters and it kept me hooked but I felt like there was too much happening. I don’t think this is a book that I will read again but the writing is good and I like where the story seems to be going.

I’m giving Fool Moon by Jim Butcher a 3.5 star.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 3.5 Stars

.