Review of Frost Burn (Fire and Ice #1), by Erica Stevens

I received and Audible code for a copy of Erica Steven‘s Frost Burn.

Description from Gooreads:

After years of running, Quinn has finally found a town to settle down in while she searches for the man who tore her life apart. Despite her every intention not to, she’s started to put down some roots and make friends. However, the small bit of solace she’s found is quickly shattered when a group of vampires walk into the bar where she works and turn her life upside down.

Looking only to stop for a few nights and have a good time, Julian never expected to stumble across someone like Quinn. Determined to keep her free from the vampires looking to use her as a weapon, Julian is stunned to discover himself starting to care for the mysterious woman with a dark past she’s unwilling to reveal. It doesn’t take him long to realize that the vampires after her are only a part of the problem. This quiet little town is hiding a violent secret of its own; a secret that not only threatens the town, but Quinn in particular.

Review:

(slightly spoilerish)

Honestly, I just didn’t like this. I thought Julian was an arrogant a-hole and Quinn a bit of a limp rag. It’s not that she was a weak heroine, there just kinda didn’t seem to be much to her. I didn’t feel their relationship grow and I was often annoyed.

What’s more, the book starts with the mystery of Quinn’s origins and why vampires are after her. Then, it immediately swerves off into an unrelated and immensely less interesting human investigation. The fact that these two end up being related is merely luck on the part of the characters and felt like nothing more than a manipulation of the plot on the part of the author.

I do want to address the fact that this is the first book in a spin-off series. I have not read the original series, but the author assures us that we don’t need to have read it to enjoy Frost Burn. I call BS on that. Yes, I could follow Frost Burn. But the characters and events of The Kindred Series are so often referenced that I 100% felt that I was missing out on vital information. What’s more, Julian so often reminded the reader that he’d been a bad man that I believed him. That’s part of why I didn’t like him. Maybe if I’d read the previous series and seen his moral transformation I would feel different. And there is absolutely no character development of side characters. I assume that is because they are known from the previous series. So, I recommend reading The Kindred before this.

Lastly, I think I have to give in and accept that I don’t like Meghan Kelly‘s narration style. That’s not to say it’s objectively bad, just not for me. I’ve listened to several of her books and while they are competently done, I find I just don’t like the way she voices people.

All in all, just about nothing worked for me about this book.

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