Re-read. This novelette feels very much like a precursor to Hidden Legacy. It feels as if here the ideas are developed and put to paper for the first time, that will fully manifest into a fleshed out novel with Burn for Me five years later. Not quite as fun yet and due to length with a fairly simple plot. A devious little revenge story with a strong dose of romance.
Review from 2015:
A little long for a short story, let’s call it a novella. Romance with a licking of sci-fi. Nice characters, one very good fight scene, some nice sex. Harlequinesce, silly, tacky, kitschy, feel-good ending with very high awww-factor. Satisfying. To be read on a rainy day on the sofa with a hot cup of cocoa.
Re-read 2016, before book #2 came out:
“The name is Mad Rogan. They also call me the Butcher and the Scourge, but Mad is the most frequently used moniker.”
Nevada Baylor sounds like Kate Daniels. Or perhaps they both sound like Ilona Andrews. The setting might be different and their magic, too. But other than that they feel the same.
I find Mad Rogan more interesting than Curran Lennart, though.
This time around I had no problems to get hooked by the story. Once I started, it was hard to put this down and only my own, feeble body prevented me from reading through the night to finish this.
The cover is still hideous, but I am willing to agree that it is a little bit PNR…
Read first in April 2015, original review:
I once read an adventure novel set on the ocean. The book cover featured waves with a drifting oil drum. The book was a 1000-page hummer of a book, but nowhere in there was an oil drum mentioned, drifting or otherwise. On my list of most-idiotic-book-covers-of-all-time Burn For Me has beaten this book and taken top spot on the list.
If you are a fan of PNR and don’t know Ilona Andrews, fair warning: this book is great fun, I loved it and can’t wait for the sequel, but this is NOT paranormal romance in any shape or form. The designers at Avon must have smoked something really strong, when they came up with this cover. As strange as it sounds, guys ripping of their shirts every five minutes do not make a romance novel.
Ok, now, book…
I read a review that called the world building shoddy. Perhaps I am not critical enough and too fangirly, when Ilona Andrews is concerned, but I liked the world building. It told me everything I needed to know to get a good picture, there were no needlessly long info dumps and it fitted neatly into the plot.
The plot got going a tad slowly. Meaning not everything went BAM! on page two already. But it’s a new series, so a little setting-the-scene is to be expected. Also I didn’t read the beginning in one sitting, but with some stops. It might have influenced my perception of it.
I like the idea of Houses with different talents. It reminded me a little of the second book of the Kinship stories, as it toys with a similar set-up. The Pit reminded me of Bayou Moon.
Nevada’s family is to die for, the lot of them. Grandma is fabulous and I love the warehouse with its beehive of rooms stacked on each other and grandmother’s lair of tanks and assault vehicles.
All the characters work well and get enough of a backstory to be colourful and interesting. The two main male characters are idiotically handsome and, as mentioned, keep ripping their shirts off at every opportunity. I am thinking Hugh Jackman as Mad Rogan? By the way, does anybody else keep thinking of Indian food, every time his name is mentioned?
You never really get to see the bad guys that hold the strings, I am guessing they will either pop up in the sequel or we will have to suffer through one of those dragged out story archs that take several books to resolve. I hope not, because those tend to annoy and bore the crap out of me by the third installment.
The book has a proper high-stakes ending with a lot of suspense, but the story is not really resolved. It’s the first book in a series and the somewhat open ending and some other loose, dangling ends scream for the sequel. Half a year of waiting, argh! I almost took off a rating star just for that, but ultimately I had too much fun for that.