When a plague deadly to women sweeps through the aerial empire of Arthurise, doctor’s assistant Jonathan Gouden discovers that with the aid of a strange chemical called fantillium, he can create powerful illusions, which is key to finding an antidote. Unfortunately for Jonathan, the woman with the solution won’t help unless he agrees to be her champion in a magical arena. Heather Dixon’s ILLUSIONARIUM has some charms, but it’s centered around a flawed premise, and rushes through young adult tropes as if moving quickly will keep anyone from noticing the predictability. The system of magic which holds the book together makes no sense, and I had a hard time getting past it.
Posts Tagged: review
MIDNIGHT’S KISS promises to show the sexier side of the vampire from SERPENT’S KISS, as Julian was first heir to Carling’s throne and then a threat to her life.
THE LAST CHANGELING by Chelsea Pitcher is Ordinary People-meets-Maleficent – and if that sounds like a strange combination, that’s because it is. Almost all of the information given in the blurb on the back of the book is actually kept from the reader for more than a hundred pages, and Elora’s motives for attending a human high school are extremely vague. Instead of a faerie war, we mostly get Taylor’s still-fresh grief over losing his younger brother and the torment of his high school. Elora’s ‘otherness’ (not to mention otherworldly beauty) gives Taylor something to focus on aside from his family’s pain, but it’s a long time before the reader gets to know her endgame.
Though the world of SNOW LIKE ASHES by Sara Raasch is a bit uninspired in its construction, Raasch more than makes up for kingdoms named after seasons and capital cities named for misspelled calendar months with Meira and the other refugees of the Kingdom of Winter. An aspiring soldier, desperate to be important to her people and her lost homeland, sixteen-year-old Meira struggles with being kept off the battlefield and forced into a world of political machinations. She’s a pawn, she’s a symbol, she’s a hero – much like THE HUNGER GAMES Katniss, all Meira really knows is that she wants to survive. That, and she’s in love with her best friend, the once and future king.
When a wicked bishop starts a witch hunt in Bavaria, orphan Rune finds herself targeted – but unlike most of the so-called witches caught in the net of hysteria, Rune really does have powers, and a reason to fear for her life. She also has an ally in the son of the local magistrate (called the Electorate), after he nearly tramples her with his horse. What follows in FOREST OF WHISPERS by Jennifer Murgia is a young adult romance, but, more importantly, a story about confronting the past, accepting where you come from, and embracing your strength.
Since I’m always up for a good twist on the classic fairy tales, FREE AGENT sounded right up my alley. And does it ever have all the right twists! A modern version of Snow White’s poisoned apple, werewolves who don’t like red because of a red-hoodie-wearing female in their past, and fairy godparents in mirrors are just some of the aspects of the mythology Nelson has created. Add the nearly non-stop action, an awesome cast of characters, and we’ve got an excellent opening to a new series!
Even the most diehard urban fantasy and paranormal romance fans have to read something different every once in a while to shake things up! This series, which we hope will become an every-so-often feature here on All Things Urban Fantasy, will showcase some of our recent reads which don’t generally fit with our normal genres. DON’T LOOK BACK by Jennifer Armentrout Published April 15, 2014 by Disney-Hyperion There’s a definite UNBECOMING OF MARA DYER feel to this story, especially where mirrors are concerned, but they’re so much freakier in DON’T LOOK BACK. This story picked me up, sat me down… Read more »
With this sequel to THE SHAMBLING GUIDE TO NEW YORK, Mur Lafferty returns her readers to a world of vampires, zombies, dragons, and gods, most of whom are just looking for ways to pass their lengthy, or even immortal, lives. The pressure’s on Zoe Norris in GHOST TRAIN TO NEW ORLEANS, as the urban jungle she’s scouting for her next supernatural travel guide recognizes her as a rare citytalker, and doesn’t want to let her go – especially when she’s determined to go straight into danger. GHOST TRAIN is a fun urban fantasy, with some clever ideas in a rich setting, but it’s tripped up by repetition, a few too many characters, and some flaws in the internal logic of the universe.
I love to see it when authors take already well know stories and remake them by adding their own unique touches. I didn’t read the previous book, THE MADMAN’S DAUGHTER, which pays homage to THE ISLAND OF DOCTOR MOREAU luckily HER DARK CURIOSITY can easily stand alone as we are told enough of what happened previously to get what is happening.
Between the constant action, romantic entanglements, and complex death threats CURSED BY DESTINY doesn’t give poor Celia a break after the events of A CURSED EMBRACE. I love how strong Celia is in spite of all the horrible issues she has and yet is able to still be the loving and protective big sister to her family.