Tag Archives: Fae

Review of Throne of Winter: The Dark Court, by Sophie Davis

I received a free audible code of Throne of Winter, by Sophie Davis.

Description from Goodreads:

She’s the Fire Fae of Legend. 
He’s the Warlock Heir to the Throne of Winter.  
Maybrie Hawkins is the badass who dominates the Dark Court’s fight pits where fae and shifters battle for powers. The royals chant her name, like she’s a goddess instead of a lowly entertainer. 
Like all Casters, Kai needs the shared powers of a fae to do more than basic magic on his own. The strongest bonds are forged via love, and it’s time for him to find a match. 

His sights are set on her. 
She’s not impressed.  
Maybrie doesn’t have time to be courted by the Prince of Winter. A rebellion is brewing, an uprising against the Casters. The dome of the Dark Court is the only thing protecting them from the frozen wasteland beyond, but the fae are done pandering to the Magicals in exchange for safety. 
And Brie doesn’t pander to anyone. 
Can Kai keep up?

Review:

I think I just wasn’t the right reader for this book. It’s mechanically fine and the narrator did a good job and I even liked the characters a lot (even Kai). However, I never could get over the fact that Maybrie and her people are enslaved by Kai and his people. Sure, Kai was hoping to give the fae more rights when he became king, but they didn’t have them yet and ‘more rights’ isn’t free. So, no matter how the author dressed it up (and she did), this is a romance between a woman who has been stolen from her people and enslaved by another and a member of the race who is enslaving her (the Prince of those people even). That’s a big FAT nope for me. 

Also, the book is very Earth-like, with characters driving cars, wearing jeans, talking on cell phones, humans are even mentioned at one point. However, it’s either not Earth or a post-apocalyptic Earth, but none of the how or why of this is addressed. I felt that was a big detraction. I wondered about it the whole book. Similarly, we were introduced to Maybrie’s two best friends in the first chapter, but they never reemerge. I wondered what happened to them. It felt like another loose end. 

All in all, not a bad New Adult book. But one that strayed into my personal No-Go Territory.

Review of Remnants of Ash and Scorched Uprising, by C.k. Dawn

I received audio codes for Remnants of Ash and Scorched Uprising (Reign of Fay, #1&2), by C.K. Dawn.

Description from Goodreads:

Mere mortal. Fae hunter. Oh, and the apocalypse? Yeah, that happened!  

She’s an unstoppable human. He’s an immovable beast. But the Fae have scorched the earth, thrusting it into unending darkness, and humans are next… 

Through her research, University of Washington student Chloe Etain stumbled into an ancient war between the Light and Dark Fae that has culminated in her world being thrown into pre-industrial chaos. Dark Fae scum now roam free, feeding on unsuspecting humans. Chloe knows the truth though and, possibly, how to stop it. But as a mere mortal, what can she do? 

That’s when the fates step in. Bram Tice, a fae hunting his own kind, vows to help Chloe. But he won’t say which Court demands his allegiance. Together, they set out to right the imbalance plaguing her world and save humanity before they turn into nothing more than remnants of ash. 

I’m only going to write one review for these two books. The reason is that I feel this is a serial, not a series and, and as such, both books contain one single story that doesn’t break. I don’t actually understand why it’s broken in two. Neither book is so long as to prohibit their remaining as one. I can only imagine the same can be said for the rest of the series. I got no conclusions in either of these two, so I doubt I’d get one in the next or the next, etc.

There was a time I felt like I was making this point, about the difference between a serial and a series, every day. I even wrote a ranty blog post about it. But the trend finally died down and I haven’t had to in a while. I guess all those same books are making it to audio now. Because this is the second time in a week I’ve written a review for a ‘series’ that is actually a serial in my opinion.

So, on to the actual review. I don’t want to be mean, but I don’t think this was particularly good. I think the author probably had a good idea, but didn’t quite manage to get it onto paper. The hero and heroine meet in the prologue (meet and nothing more) and then when all hell breaks loose in chapter one (some time in the future) they are meant to already be friends and at least one is in love. The story moves from there. HOWEVER, the reader has been left out of all of it. Thus, I didn’t feel Bram’s affection for Chloe at all. How could I? We don’t see any of it prior to him basically telling her he loves her. NONE. In fact, I initially thought they were still virtual strangers.

We also don’t see any of the research Chloe, Bram and the professor have been doing to understand the Scorch. So, when it happens right out of the gate, the reader is clueless and basically unconcerned. And Chloe seems to know things she shouldn’t, because I didn’t know what she’d been researching. So, how could she recognize a royal fay [fae] on sight? No idea.

Then there is the rather large and abrupt shift in Chloe’s personality that happens at roughly 50% into the first book. She goes from teary and afraid to kick-butt superhero in a split second (in a seriously stupid move too). Though she does remain a too perfect Mary Sue throughout, as well as too good at everything, mastering magic and weaponry in an instant, without effort.

Then there is the fact that I think the author tried to get too much in. There are fae (high, low and royal), the four horseman of the apocalypse, witches, werewolves and vampires. And none of it given any real world building to understand it all.

The narrator did a fine job, except that it’s based in Seattle. Chloe started out sounding perfectly American. But about halfway through the fist book she turned English, apparently. Then in book two, she’s American again.

All in all, this was not a winner for me. Mechanically the writing is fine but the story feels barely sketched out.

Review of More Than Mortal, by Abbie Zanders

I won a paperback copy of Abbie ZandersMore than Mortal through Goodreads.

Description:

Ceri always knew she was different. Seeing people’s auras and being able to change the weather with her moods just isn’t normal, nor does she understand why simply being around others saps her of her strength. There’s no one she can turn to; who she is and where she comes from are the biggest mysteries of all.

Settled into a small college town, she immerses herself in studies of the supernatural and lives a solitary existence. Until he crosses her path and comes to her rescue.

After earning his master’s in criminal justice, there’s no plausible reason for Edan to stick around campus. There’s only a feeling. A feeling of destiny and purpose that calls to his ancient Highland ancestry and keeps him right where he is. When he meets her, his purpose becomes clear. He can’t explain it, but she needs him, and he’ll go to great lengths to protect her.

In their search for answers, Ceri and Edan learn there’s a lot more to the world than either of them ever imagined. The lines between reality and myth blur as they discover ancient magic, hidden realms, and the truth about who – and what – they really are: pawns in a game that’s been played for millennia.

Will Ceri and Edan embrace the destinies that have already been written for them? Or will they sacrifice everything to be together?

Review:

This book started out very poorly, with a male (who you might think is the hero, I did) using his mystical powers to turn women into mindless sex kittens, getting him and his friends BJs in a night club. Something he apparently does multiple times a night, regularly. The book does improve from there, but that’s not saying a lot. I almost DNFed it there, in chapter one. The fact that I needed a Z-author for my alphabet challenge was what forced me to hang on.

While I’ll admit the writing is perfectly readable, so much about this book made me rage. Back to those sex kittens mentioned above, for example. Women are SERIOUSLY underrepresented in the book. With the exception of the heroine, a grandmother and one woman who turns out to be a main secondary character’s mate, every other woman is basically faceless and there for the purpose of sex. That’s it. There isn’t a queen, a female guard, a woman passing on the street. Nothing. Women outside of the main characters exist as sex objects only. Even Ceri’s two friends (the books only hope for a woman existing as something other than something to fuck) turn into mindless lust as soon as they serve the purpose of introducing Ceri and then disappear. Abbie…hey Abbie, don’t you think you could have done us sisters a little better than that? It’s FUCKING INSULTING.

You know what else is insulting? A heroine who is so infantalized she couldn’t be more childlike if the author had put her in pampers. She’s small and innocent, with big wet eyes and a tendency to cry and snuggle into mens arms as they LITERALLY CARRY HER OFF TO BE TUCKED IN AND PUT TO BED (repeatedly). All the men always know what’s going on, but no one tells her anything. And her mental state is so fragile she can’t even be left alone in public. No males, even ones of the same fae species, are so mentally delicate their sanity is in question. What’s more, in order to maintain this virginal childlikeness, the only relatively detailed penetrative sex scene in the book isn’t even between the H & h. We never see that. It’s off page. The second couple seems to have been included entirely to function as proxies for this very purpose.

What’s more, I didn’t really feel the development of any spark between the love interests. This is the sort of book (and it is a sort of book) where we’re just told how awed they are of each other, how this or that warms their hearts, or slips through their walls, or boosts their pride. Whatever. It’s meant to make the reader go “Awww.” But it has absolutely no substance, and as such, just irritates me.

The thing is though, I know that some people like this sort of book. As the writing seems fine and with a few exceptions (like the main character being named Ian on my copy’s cover blurb, but Edan in the actual book) the editing seemed pretty tight I can’t wholly trash it. But this was not my jam at all.

And as a totally petty aside, because that’s how I’m feeling, the cover is ugly.