Book Review: Djinn by Laura Catherine

djinn

 

Ohhhh….I really liked this book.  Really, really, liked it.  Read in one day, liked it.  Here is the synopsis:

Kyra’s life is far from normal.

She’s been on the run for as long as she can remember and her father is the only stable thing in her life, but everything changes when the people pursuing them finally catch up.

Kyra is abducted by the handsome and mysterious, Will. He takes her to a secret compound where she is told the truth: She’s a Djinn, a genie-like creature with super powers and a love of dogs.

Kyra has to adjust to the Djinn and their rules, but her new life is far from perfect. Everyone is hiding something and the one person Kyra cares about most is forbidden to her.

There are secrets around every corner and more dangers than Kyra could ever imagine as she struggles to find herself and be with the one she loves.

Very different from the normal “vampire and werewolves” fare.  That is why I was drawn to this book.  I recently read the Forbidden Trilogy by Karpov Kinrade(I may do a post on it soon), and this kind of reminds me of that series mixed in with one I love, but have yet to finish, called The Significance Series by Shelly Crane.

Kyra is a very strong character.  Very strong-willed, smart, resourceful.  She analyzes her situation and tries not to get too emotional.

I don’t want to give any of the twists and turns away at all, but this is probably one of the least predictable YA novels I have ever read.  You think you know where it’s going and WHAM! a new twist.  That is probably why I was up until 3 a.m. last night finishing this book.  Characters aren’t stereotypical, events aren’t what they seem.  Very refreshing in this genre.

I found myself wishing this book was longer.  I wanted to know more about the Blooders, the history of the djinn and their wars.  I guess if this is going to be a trilogy, there is more to come.

I also like the social commentary.  Most of the time I try to ignore that, but the commentary in this book was written in such a way that it wasn’t preachy, it wasn’t political.  It was just part of the story and events weren’t contrived to get the point across.  It was woven more naturally into the story.

This is strictly YA fare as well, I would be comfortable recommending it to a younger teen.  I wish books like these were written when I was younger!!!

Looking forward to the next few books…

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Wrayth (A Book of the Order, #3)

13480291Title: Wrayth
Author: Philippa Ballantine
Publisher: Ace
Release Date: April 2008
Length: 309 pages
Series?: A Book of the Order #3
Genre: Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Supernatural, Thriller, Romance
Format: Paperback
Source: Goodreads Giveaway
Challenge: n/a

Find the book: Website | Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Synopsis

In the Empire of Arkaym, the Order of Deacons protects and shelters the citizens from the attacks of the unliving. All are sworn to fight the evil forces of the geists—and to keep the world safe from the power of the Otherside… 

Although she is one of the most powerful Deacons in the Order, Sorcha Faris is still unable to move or speak after her last battle. Even her partner, Merrick Chambers, cannot reach her through their shared Bond. Yet there are those who still fear Sorcha and the mystery of her hidden past. 

Meanwhile, Merrick has been asked to investigate a new member of the Emperor’s Court. But when Sorcha is abducted by men seeking Raed Rossin, the shapeshifting rival to the throne, Merrick must choose where his loyalties lie.

Review

*I received this book through Goodreads First Reads book give-aways quite a while back. I was concerned about starting the third book in a series, so Phillipa sent me the first two! Without that, I can honestly say I would not have enjoyed this book as much, and I definitely would not have understood s0me things that happened and the importance of so many things in this story.

Warning: this post may contain spoilers or necessary information found in the first and second books. To get acquainted with this series, read my reviews: Book #1 here and Book #2 here.

Again, Ballantine has produced a story that is jam packed with dedication to intricate details. The story of Sorcha and Merrick, the remarkable and ill-favored Deacons, have weathered several storms together, experienced what most Deacons don’t see in a lifetime of dedication, and have seen the corruption of their own Order (of the Eye and Fist).

Many years ago, the old Order of the Circle of Stars tried overthrowing the Empire and taking control. They fled to the underground, although all thought they had been destroyed. Sorcha and Merrick found out otherwise in the first two novels in the series, and it shook the bedrock and foundation of their ties to the new Order, which formed to protect the Empire and its citizens from geists, geistlords and other manner of unsavory things from the Otherside.

Unfortunately in their last promenade to save the Empire things did not go quite according to plans, and Sorcha was left trapped inside her own body, paralyzed. It is a terrible thing to have your mind running, hear and overhear conversations, and not be able to say or do anything at all. Despite her strong Bond with Merrick, it is not enough to bring her out of this stupor. Merrick has stopped visiting, and now the Abbey and Council want to assign him a new partner – after Sorcha has been kidnapped!

After their last run in with a geistlord, in the ruse of a goddess, Raed the Young Pretender has been on the run from Emperor Kaleva and in search of his traitorous sister and former captain, but this time he is on his own. His crew is dispersed, and his first mate is determined to find him – with Sorcha’s help.

Once again, there is trouble in Vermillin within the palace. Kaleva has taken a stranger, a minor noble by the name of del Rue, into close confidence to the disgruntlement of his sister. The more she inquires, the more he shuts her out. The identity of this man is no stranger to Merrick, who is left holding the bag when del Rue pulls a fast one on Kaleva and the princess and the future of Arkaym is in question.

This does not bode well for the Empire or the Order, especially after Sorcha makes a deal with a geistlord, the entire Order loses the power of the Strops and Gauntlets, the Abbey is destroyed, the Deacons are on the run and The Tormentor is again on the lose.

The Rossin, a geistlord who made a deal with his ancestors, has not left Raed. In fact, he is in leagues with Fensema, another geistlord who wheels and deals with the Rossin, and has innate ability to track and stalk the Rossin. The Rossin seems to operate more and more independently unawares of Raed the Young Pretender, giving readers a nice glimpse of the set-up of the fourth book. The Rossin even struck a deal with Raed in the search for his sister that the Rossin can now be subdued but still access Raed’s conscious. I found in this book that the Rossin is very much more tamed, and humane (an ironic twist, I know), than in the previous books, but I think perhaps this is just setting up the groundwork for what will occur in the next book.

Sorcha discovers the painful and terrifying truth of her own history and birth, explaining the many remarkable peculiarities about her and her strong Bond with Merrick. She uses this knowledge of her mother’s last few desperate hours to save Arkaym.

Nynnia, Merrick’s lost love, is still helping Merrick and Sorcha from the Otherside…and ultimately saving Arkaym, again. I suspect in the fourth book she will also make an impact, even though her character has since long departed.

You can continue reading the Book of the Order series with Ballantine’s fourth installment, Harbinger.

About the Author

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Born and raised in Wellington, New Zealand, Philippa is a writer and podcaster of fantasy fiction. Immersed in books from an early age, she moved onto to become a librarian. She’d been dreaming of being a writer since a teenager, but in the last ten years she’s devoted herself to it.

She’s the author of the Books of the Order series from Ace Books. Also, with Pyr books the Shifted World series, Hunter and Fox (2012) and Born and Made (2013).

Philippa is also the co-author of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences series, Phoenix Rising and the Janus Affair (2012).

Philippa currently resides in Manassas, Virginia with her husband and co-writer Tee Morris, their daughter and a clowder of five cats who keep them all in line.

Find the author: Website | Facebook | Goodreads

Book Review: The Twilight Swimmer by A.C. Kavich

twilight

This book intrigued me because it is another one of my favorite type of mashups:  romance, young adult and sci-fi with an added twist of adrenaline at the end.

I was a little skeptical at first, come on, fish people?  But it is so well written and sounds entirely plausible.

Here is the synopsis:

One year after her beloved sister drowned while swimming in cold New England waters, sixteen-year-old Brandi Vine is still struggling to understand what happened. As she mourns on the rocky beach where her sister’s lifeless body washed ashore, she is unaware that a pair of haunting gray eyes is watching her from beneath rolling ocean waves.

When Brandi attends a party that goes horribly awry, the mysterious owner of the gray eyes emerges from the ocean depths and comes to her rescue. She only sees him for a few brief moments, but that’s all it takes to turn Brandi’s world upside down. What were the strange markings on his neck that seemed to flutter with every breath? How did he possess such inhuman strength and grace? And why did he look at Brandi with such longing?

Brandi’s fascination with the Swimmer grows. She makes it her mission to find him again and learn who – and what – he is. Meanwhile, the Swimmer’s fascination with Brandi compels him to leave the safety of the ocean behind, to be with her at all costs. They are from two different worlds, but neither of the star-crossed romantics can resist the pull of the other.

Ultimately, as her feelings for the Swimmer swell beyond her control, Brandi comes to realize that the strange young man from the sea can unlock the secret of her sister’s final swim.

This isn’t typical sci-fi fare.  The way the author describes the Swimmer, his abilities, his experiences is extremely scientifically based and entirely believable.  But I still can’t figure out what he eats.

Brandi’s adolescent experience is entirely authentic.  As is her family dynamics that were more than disrupted with the death of her sister.

The author also paints a vivid picture of a shrinking costal small town.  I have never been to that region of the country.  But throughout the book, I felt like I was actually there.  I can actually picture these places, the sights, the smells.  Amazing.

I loved the entire sequence with Brandi trying to teach the Swimmer about her world.  I kept on singing songs from “The Little Mermaid” in my head while I was reading.  Very light, comical, but not too campy.

I definitely did not expect the dramatic twist events during the last part of the book.  That is where it turned from an interesting sci-fi romance to a page turner.  Fantastic.

The ending is very satisfying and complete.  I don’t want to spoil the ending, but I was very grateful for the shot of reality injected at the end.

Overall, this book is extremely fascinating, very well written, with very good plotlines and themes.  I can see most young adult romance lovers liking this even if they usually avoid anything sci-fi.  Well done.

Book Review: Rise From the Ashes Part One: Lena’s Story

risefromtheashespic

 

I was sent this book from the author for review.  I am a huge fan of post-apocalypse tales, so I was eager to jump into this one. Here is the synopsis: The Taliban have bombed the US with a chemical agent. It wiped out over half of the population and left the country in shambles. Those who are left find unexplained things happening like premonitions in their dreams and enhanced senses. Lena, a young woman from Vermont, and Mick, a young man in the US Army, grow close and become leaders as they trudge north to meet up with a military camp at Lake Champlain. Their dreams continue to get more peculiar and have even synced up in a historical setting. With the power out and gasoline a scarce resource; motorcycles, horses and bicycles have become the new mode of transport. In another group that is trying to survive, a priest leads discouraged parishioners north and is faced with tough decisions as he has to put the well-being of the group ahead of individuals. They have to band together to make it through this new chaotic situation, relying on their intuition and basic survival skills. This motley crew must reorganize the country just as was done after the revolutionary war. The clock is ticking as the persisting threats of the Taliban, drug lords from south of the border and rival gangs across the country put US freedoms in jeopardy. Unlike many books in this genre, the author uses something that is very real in this world, the threat of terrorists from the Middle East.  Instead of imagining some enemy, she draws on reality to provide the basic backdrop for the action. And that is where the similarities end. I might be arrogant when I say this, but I really don’t feel that the Taliban would have the resources to pull off such a wide spread attack across the globe.  Their biggest hit to date (with Al Queda) was 9/11, and that was over a decade ago. When I read stories like this that use realistic elements, my mind immediately goes to the probability of such an action.  I have explained this before in my review of “Zomblog”, how the author just bypassed this step for me altogether and took my analytic brain out of the equation and allowed me to just read the story and not compare it to real life. This author removes that when she bases the apocalypse in reality. The story itself is interesting with people from different segments of society banding together for the common.  The characters are strong and memorable. For the YA audience, this would include the relationship between Mick and Lena. I love their relationship and the way they treat each other.  Apparently they are connected in a past life, which completely came out of left field.  But the way their story is woven throughout the book is unique. There is some confusion with more minor characters.  I understand what the author was trying to do by linking the actions of different groups of people in the same area, but it wasn’t as clear as it could have been. I also do not feel that the issues of “superpowers” and similar dreams were fully explained.  It is intriguing, especially with the element that links them all, but it was very vague. I did like reading about the ways they try to rebuild society, and I look forward to reading more about the story of Mick and Lena in the future.  I just feel the story idea could have been executed in a better way.

Book Review: The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

hobbitpic

This post was written by Amanda’s bonus child, Christian (age 11), who  had to read and review a book for a school project.  Thanks to Patti Sheehey for sharing her copy:

I read the book the Hobbit by J.R. R. Tolkien and I loved it.  I thought it was really unique book.   The idea of being in another world was awesome. There were elves and trolls and it was cross-over between fantasy and adventure. I also liked how the author was really descriptive, he would describe every little thing. It made the book even better.

The action parts in the book were amazing.  There were parts where I couldn’t stop reading. The things that the group fought were hard and huge. The trolls that they fought were huge and dumb, the spiders they fought with almost killed them. Plus the goblins were ugly mean things. The ending was really surprising but I liked it.  I didn’t think that there was going to be a big battle scene because the main villain was dead but there was. It was a really good ending.  It was action packed and I liked how the different teams got together to kill the goblins.

While I was reading the book I saw the movie. But the movie had huge differences like characters that weren’t in the movie at all and the movie added people who weren’t in the book. But there was also a part that I didn’t like when Bilbo and the group were traveling it got really slow in some parts but there were cool parts. I liked how they had to fight to progress with the journey.

I would recommend this book for people that like action, adventure and fantasy.  Overall, I think it is worth the time to read.

If you have any books for middle school boys that you would like Christian to review, send an email and we can get you set up.

–AA

 

Will I survive a zombie apocalypse?

This is a poster in my bonus child's bedroom

This is a poster in my bonus child’s bedroom

Out of all of the horror genres right now, I am a huge fan of zombies.

I love “The Walking Dead”, I love the numerous books and series I have read featuring zombies.  With all of this reading/watching, I have learned one thing:  if the zombie apocalypse happens anytime in the near future, I am so screwed.

Here’s why:

1) I am a walking zombie buffet.  Have you seen any FAT people alive on “The Walking Dead”?  Didn’t think so.  Everyone left is lean and muscular.  My guess is that the fat people couldn’t out run the zombie hoard…

2)  Due to chronic illness, I have limited strength in all of my limbs.  I highly doubt I could use an ice pick to impale a zombie brain in my current state.

3)  I will go blind eventually if I do not have the medications that keep me functioning during my current health crisis.  Yeah, I could knock off a pharmacy if it hits the fan, but injecting medication and trying to run from zombies doesn’t sound too promising.  And some of the side effects of medications leave me foggy and sleepy.  A zombie could sneak up and I would be none the wiser.

4)  Sleep.  At the least, I require 12 hours to even FUNCTION these days, let alone run from a herd of zombies.  So unless I find a fantastic, zombie proof shelter and stay there permanently, I’m screwed.

5) I don’t know how to drive a motorcycle.  In “The Stand” (not zombie, but scary nonetheless), many people choose to travel via motorcycles to drive around the various traffic calamities that plague (ha!) the roadways after the apocalypse.  See Darryl Dixon on “The Walking Dead”.

6) I live in Texas.  Yes, this is a very gun-friendly state, but with the weather, the wildlife and the religious fanatics, I’m not sure I would pick this location to ride out a zombie apocalypse.  In some of the books I read (namely World War Z), zombies freeze.  It rarely freezes in central Texas.  Also living in central Texas, I am an hour to three hours away from three major population centers.  Ask my cousin what happened to Houston after the Katrina survivors showed up.

In my favor:

1)  I know how to load, fire and shoot various firearms.

2)  I live near a small reserve post for the Texas National Guard, and about 20 miles from a huge military instillation and about 60 miles from one of the largest army bases in the country.  Supposing the military isn’t evil, like some of the books I read (Zomblog), I would have either a nifty location to stay in, with fences and barbed wire, or a place to scavenge.

3) I live about 10 miles from a prison.  See “The Walking Dead” for the reasons prisons are a good idea.

4)  I’m a nurse.  I have knowledge that others lack. I am the daughter of nurses and my husband aspires to be a nurse.  We will not be dying of any preventable infection or from bleeding out.

5) I live about three miles from a huge hospital.  In the zombie books (Apocalypse Z, Zomblog, Zombie Games), hospitals are usually bad places to be near, but if someone has the knowledge on how to lure zombies out (apparently all zombies like noise and light) and how to get in…jackpot!

5) I live in Texas.  I know that I also listed this on the “why I’m screwed” list, but I have several relatives and friends who live in the middle of nowhere, complete with fences and livestock.  They also tend to be heavily armed.  Also, the Texas landscape (at least in this part) is so wide open, you can see zombies and other people coming from a mile away.

6)  Dead bodies and gore don’t freak me out.  I have been a nurse for over a decade. I spent a part of my early career in critical care.  I have seen disgusting, infected wounds, horrible hatchet jobs by less than stellar surgeons and one 500 lb lady with green ooze seeping out of her gargantuan legs.  At one time she also harbored a colony of maggots.  I am definitely not squeamish.

7)  I have read so many zombie books and post apocalyptic books that I have a wealth of knowledge on how to kill zombies, flee zombies, trick zombies, provided that the zombies are the ones depicted in popular culture.

I guess it’s a mixed bag.  I hope the zombie apocalypse doesn’t occur until I can at least get this weight and my health conditions resolved.

I am currently reading the “Zomblog” series by T.W. Brown.  I am not disappointed. Look for a review for that series soon.

Here are my postings on the zombie books I have read so far:

Memoirs of the Walking Dead

The Zombie Bible

Westmarket

Zombie Games

World War Z

Apocalypse Z

Book Review: Spectyr (A Book of the Order, #2)

Life is never quite how you imagine it. 

Book #2

Book #2

Spectyr (A Book of the Order, #2) by Philippa Ballantine (2011)

Genre: fiction, fantasy, sci-fi, supernatural, thriller, romance

*Let me preempt by saying Philippa sent me this book because I won her third book, Wrayth, in a book give-away. I am reviewing her first two books out of thanks for her kindness in sending them to me, and her third per the give-away rules. However, that has no affect on the review itself.

Warning: this post may contain spoilers or necessary information found in the first book, so get acquainted with this series, starting with my review of Book #1 here.

Spectyrs brought retribution on those who had wronged them.

Their shared sight dipped and swayed as Merrick tried to compensate for the staining of the ether. A scuttling sound made his mouth snap shut. Rats were running from every corner, scrambling through the walls, and skittering down the drainpipe. Animals were more sensitive than humans and always fled in the face of the undead. The noise was unnerving – even to the trained.

Beyond reality and time, the Otherside held knowledge that no human could ever possess, so the greatest Deacons of the Order had often taken chances to snatch what they could from the void.

This book continues in the principality of Vermillion, (part of the larger Arkaym nation) only one month after the attack of The Murashev, the most powerful geistlord, under the ossuary. It picks up with the despised Grand Duchess, and she is yet again getting in hot water and about to create more havoc and danger for the kingdom by calling on a goddess long without support.

I fear this addiction of yours will bring you nothing but ill.

Sorcha is (rightfully so) very cynical and bitter about the Emperor and the Order, given what happened on her assignment in the previous book and the betrayal of the Arch Abbot. The people do not trust, let alone respect, any of the Order anymore…when in fact their mistrust and fear should reside with the Emperor – or moreover, his militant sister, who just so happens to be second to the throne. Merrick is certain that time will pass and the people’s faith in the Order will return.

Life had taught her such things were oversimplifications – wishes that seldom came true in the complicated realities of existence.

When I first started reading the second book in this series, I was surprised that it started with the Grand Duchess (bad news), and not with Sorcha and Merrick on some task with the backstory from Book #1 entwined. I was a little thrown off, but then I was really thrown when “spectyrs” started appearing in the text. What is a spectyr? In Book #1 we learned that “shades” are the unliving remains of a dead person, and Book #2 gives a very short explanation about “spectyrs” – the evil cousins of shades…who want revenge. Ohhhh crap! 

But you’ll soon see why Ballantine started off with the Duchess, and the situation Ballantine sets up explains how the roles work and some of the terminology, so you don’t necessarily need to read the first book. (Kudos – that can be hard to do.) Since the great shindig with the Otherside under the ossuary a few months before (Book #1), geist attacks have continued – although some are truly real, and others are just calls of paranoid citizens who believe they have a geist in their midst. During Sorcha and Merrick’s task, we find out they are assigned areas where there are no real geist attacks…except this is not the case this time. Precious Nynnia comes to them from the Otherside and gives a warning and glimpse of the future to Sorcha – a foreboding of what is to come.

It was apparent that for every rule there was an exception. 

Since they returned to Vermillion as hunted fugitives in Book #1, the new Arch Abbot is keeping an eagle eye on Sorcha and Merrick. They are assigned meaningless tasks – guarding empty halls, escorting wagons of porcelain. They are kept on a very tight leash…with Sorcha’s husband and former partner, Kolya, following along. Although she has filed for the equivalent of a divorce in their world as well as dissolution of their Deacon’s partnership, Kolya is dillusioned into thinking her leaving the Abbey to save their world was merely her living in her fairytale mindset and “sneaking out” to avoid him. Grow up, pal. Which brings up a reminder of a couple things: Sorcha still shares a Deacon’s Bond with her husband, as well as one with her new partner, Merrick. And her bond with Merrick is so much stronger it is beyond what any Deacon’s Bond should be. But then, Sorcha and Merrick also share a Triple Bond with Raed the Young Pretender that was forged in haste in Book #1, that neither of them can break…and that’s not all she wrote! This Triple Bond will serve as the integral locking puzzle piece that draws this book together.

Meanwhile, the Young Pretender receives a summons from someone I thought dead from the way the first book went and must find his missing sister. He learns he cannot trust his entire crew, and singles some out for this excursion. Connection? Oh yes. But it’s not what I thought at all – it’s SO much bigger.

Now that Kolya is out of the infirmary, which his own rash actions caused, rumors abound within the Mother Abbey since Sorcha has moved out of their chamber into a small one next to Merrick – but they won’t be there for long. Kolya is like that crazy ex-girlfriend (or boyfriend, in this case) who just doesn’t get it. And wouldn’t even if you remarried. That’s how out of it he is. We didn’t see much at all of his character, let alone characteristics, in Book #1. The only thing we really gleaned from his character in Book #1 was that he likes to defy the rules (walking among crowds during a geist attack) and that he didn’t care one whit for his marriage. Not much has changed, except we find out he’s crazy and oblivious and annoying. As hell. Oh, AND in cahoots with Sorcha’s nemesis Rictun, who I think is just as tainted as former Abbot Hastler was.

Although Merrick has grown up some during his experience, and even with the betrayal of Arch Abbot Hastler, he is completely blinded to the animosity that the new Arch Abbot Rictun has for Sorcha. Indeed, as a reader we saw this in Book #1, but now that he is the head of the Order it really piques my curiosity. Yet Sorcha seems to have an ally on the Order Council – an enemy of Rictun’s? (I hope so – I’m holding out for a revolution of sorts; each time I see Rictun’s name I read it with a stink eye.)

What he also had were eyes that would suck out a person’s soul.

The Emperor, Kal, is in the hot seat: he must choose a wife – a proffered princess from other kingdoms in the empire. He must choose wisely, and he ironically chooses Princess Ezefia, sister of Prince Onika of Chioma, who is fabulously wealthy. Chioma is a principality south of Vermillion, home to all strange spices but also the most powerful, hard-to-detect poisons…and it’s the oldest kingdom, with the same ruling family since its beginning. And there are strange rumors about their ruler, quite strange rumors. Sorcha and Merrick accompany Princess Ezefia back to Chioma…but I think they are all getting more than they bargained for. Meanwhile, Raed’s journey to find his sister leads him right to Chioma.

I can trust very few in my Court – not even my own Deacons.

During their separate journeys to Chioma, it becomes apparent that Raed, Sorcha and Merrick are battling their own very personal issues on this journey. They arrive in Chioma and it seems like Ulrich all over again. The Prince of Chioma is not safe even inside the walls of his palace. There have been several murders already – of his unusual bloodline. The first murder was his Chancellor, second to Prince Onika, but all are told he died of old age…yet there’s no body. The Deacons of Chioma are quite odd; they openly worship the “little gods”, but particularly the goddess Hatipai. They wear robes of her colors – not colors of the Order they were sworn into. And then Sorcha and Merrick get separated…

We thought we knew better. We could go where we wished, harness all that power. We thought weirstones were harmless…

We see the return of Nynnia again, and she pulls Merrick back in time to a very pivotal turning point. He discovers some insight about who they refer to as the Ancients, and why they chose to move their famed grounds to the Otherside. So much is revealed in that section, that I can’t share without ruining it – but with that knowledge, things start pulling together to come full circle for readers. Suffice to say that The Native Order (often termed The Ancients) is not dead….and it turns out, they were dabbling in the Otherside quite a bit.

Some things you can’t fix once the time has passed.

Although Raed is on the hunt for his sister, and he has a handful of his most trusted working to find her…he is betrayed in the worst way possible. Reading this part, and his anguish of experiencing the terror and horror that the Rossin causes, and the fact that this beast killed his own mother, my heart hurt for him during this section. It was obvious his anguish and guilt and success at protecting from the Rossin was not considered. I felt those who betrayed him were very selfish, not seeing the big picture…but in a way, I agreed with one. Ten years of staying away, no real communication, is a long, trying, hard time.

From reading the first few chapters, I had the sneaky suspicion that an overthrow or revolution was going to happen in this book – and be exposed this time. I understand the reasons why Book #1′s geistlord fights couldn’t be explained to the people, and I thought something of the same sort (but on a more massive scale) was going to happen in this book.

I found it interesting that Ballantine references Raed’s grandfather’s reign – and the biggest problem  he dealt with was slavery. He was

Book #3

Book #3

the Abe Lincoln of the time, which is as yet unknown, but he also kept a diary as a young intended royal and mentions some interesting things about Chioma, including a brief and unexplained comment about it being an “ancient enemy.” Hmmmmmm.

You will definitely be thrown for a loop with this book. So many things are going on, and they all pull together. Geist seemed like such a huge feat, but Ballantine was definitely not prepared to go home. She went big! I give 5 stars for this detailed, well-written book.

Safety is just an illusion.

You can continue reading the Book of the Order series with Ballantine’s third installment, Wrayth.

-CA

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