Tag Archives: Fae

Book Review: Shadow King, by Susan K. Hamilton

shadow kingA few weeks back, I (or rather my Sadie’s Spotlight persona) had an Amazon credit that I decided to spend on books written by Twitter followers. Shadow King, by Susan K. Hamilton, was one of those books.

It’s likely to be the last book I read in 2020. There’s a chance I might finish one more before the new year, but not a great one.

about the book

Ambition. Betrayal. Revenge.

Centuries ago, the Faerie Realm was decimated by a vile and corrupt spell. To survive, the different faerie races—led by the Fae—escaped to the Human Realm where they’ve lived ever since.

As the Fae Patriarch of Boston’s criminal underworld, Aohdan Collins enjoys his playboy lifestyle while he works from the shadows to expand his growing empire, until one night when he shares a shot of whiskey with the lovely Seireadan Moore…

A Fae Seer, Seireadan is haunted by a vision of the Fae responsible for destroying Faerie and murdering her family. Common sense tells her to stay away from Aohdan, but his magnetism and charm are irresistible.As their passionate affair intensifies, Seireadan is pulled into the center of the underworld. And while her heart is bound to Aohdan, she cannot let go of her lifelong quest to hunt down the Fae who haunts her visions… especially when she realizes Aohdan might be the key to helping her find him.

But is revenge worth betraying the one she loves?

my review

This wasn’t bad, but I think it was a little overly long, the plot could have been tightened up a bit, and there were some super cliched elements. However, having said that, I liked the characters, liked that females (at least females of note to the story) were shown to be as capable, blood-thirsty, and powerful as men, and liked the general world (even if it’s not deeply developed).

All in all, I found it quite readable and would be happy to pick up another of Hamilton’s books.

dark king

Review of Dark King, by C. N. Crawford

I picked up a copy of C.N. Crawford‘s Dark King (Court of the Sea Fae, #1) when it was listed as a freebie on Amazon, mostly based on the cover alone.

A snarky fae, a sexy king, and forbidden desire deep as the sea.

Once, I was a fae princess with sea-magic at my fingertips. Now? I’m a hunted supernatural in a squalid shop, stripped of my power. My only comforts are stale cookies, Elvis records, and my hula-hoop. Until a lethally sexy fae king arrives and rips even those away.

After the brutal king throws me in prison, I strike a bargain with him: my freedom in exchange for helping him find a magic blade. What Lyr doesn’t know is that the blade might restore my stolen magic.

But as we journey, the gorgeous jerk is starting to make me feel things I’ve never felt. When Lyr touches me, desire ignites. I see raging passion in his eyes, too. If I give in, I risk losing my chance at reclaiming my power. Even worse… I could be forfeiting my life.

I was surprisingly amused by this. Yes, it’s not particularly deep and a little cliched in the “protector of abused women” department. But I also liked Aenor’s snarkiness and refusal to do as told. And Lyr was plenty sexy for a fae king, if a little cardboard. I had a hard time suspending my disbelief that a whole kingdom just up and believed an implausible lie for over a century and a half and no one ever mentioned it to Aenor. Seems exceedingly unlikely. But it didn’t ruin my enjoyment any. I thought the brothers were funny, but a little over the top. All in all, a book that’s not topping my favorites list but that kept me entertained enough that I’d be happy to read more.


Review of A Drop of Magic (The Magicsmith, #1), by L.R. Braden

I won an audio copy of A Drop of Magic, by L.R. Braden.

Description from Goodreads:

The war isn’t over . . .

With the world clinging to a fragile peace forced on the Fae by humanity after the Faerie Wars, metalsmith Alex Blackwood is plunged into the world of the half-fae who traffick in illegal magical artifacts. Her best friend’s murder and his cryptic last message place her in the crosshairs of a scheme to reignite the decade-old war between humans and fae.

Worse, violent attacks against her and the arrival of a fae knight on a mission force Alex to face a devastating revelation of who and what she is. To catch a killer, retrieve a dangerous artifact, and stop a war, Alex will have to accept that she’s an unregistered fae “halfer” with a unique magical talent—a talent that would change everything she believes about her past, her art, and her future.

Her world is crumbling around her, and Alex will have to decide who to trust if she and the world are going to survive.


I thought this was ok, not great, but not bad either. I liked the main character, but I had issues with most of the side characters. The book passes the Bechdel test (it does feature at least two women who do talk to each other about something other than a man), but not by much and honestly, it didn’t feel like it should. It felt very much like all the important side characters were male. In fact, it started to feel like a reverse harem, though there is no sex and the only whisper of romance comes in the last pages. (It could have been one of several male characters and worked just as well, so I can say it wasn’t impactful to the story.) Actually, very little in the book is impactful. I think that’s why I’ve finished it with a mental shrug more than anything else. I won’t remember it next week.

The writing was fine, though I think there were a few editing mistakes. It’s hard to tell with an audiobook, but I’m fairly sure it said ‘we’ll find out who killed your father,’ at one point when they were investigating the death of her friend. All in all, I don’t think I’ll be rushing to continue the series, but I didn’t hate it either.