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Book Review: Throwing Shade, by Deborah WIlde

I purchased a Supernatural Book Crate book box and a signed copy of Deborah Wilde‘s Throwing Shade was included as one of the featured books in the August box.

throwing shade deborah wilde

She’s ditching her shapewear, owning her hormones, and letting her magic fly free.
Underestimate her. That’ll be fun.

It’s official. Miriam Feldman is killing it in the midlife crisis department. She’s mastered boredom, aced invisibility, and graduated Summa Cum Laude in smiling and playing nice in her post-divorce life. But when a drink with a “good guy” goes sideways, Miriam snaps, and in a cold dark rage unleashes a rare and powerful shadow magic.

To make matters worse, her best friend goes missing and Miri is thrust into a world of hidden magic, vampires, and a legacy of hatred aimed directly at her. Hard to say which is more dangerous, this spiderweb of supernatural power plays, the grumpy French wolf shifter she’s teamed up with, or Miri herself, kicking butt and rediscovering the woman who got lost along the way.

But lines get blurred in the shadows, and if she’s not careful, she could lose everyone she loves. She’ll have to turn her invisibility into strength and pray they never see her coming.

Forty isn’t the new twenty. It’s better.

my review

I enjoyed this quite a bit. I had a funny moment when I was about halfway through where I was thinking, “Urban fantasy set in Canada with a Jewish heroine and paranormals from Jewish mythos, it reminds me a lot of Blood & Ash and The Unlikable Demon Hunter? Who wrote those again? Deb…Deborah….?” At about this time I walked by the book on the table and caught a glimpse of the author and went, “…Wilde. Deborah Wilde. No wonder it feels familiar. It’s the same author.” I amused my self.

I have to admit to liking this book more than either of the other two by her that I’ve read. Not necessarily because it’s a better book. I think I just like the older heroine more. I liked Miriam. I really liked Laurent and the banter between the two. I liked Miriam’s relationship with her daughter and the world Wilde has created here. Plus, I liked the 40-year-old woman finally learning the fine art of giving no fucks about convention. She lets the snark fly.

I’m not a huge fan of the cover though. I know this isn’t really relevant to the book review, and I don’t dislike it. I just don’t feel like it matches the tone of the book. Sure, there’s reference to Miriam taking her heals off after work as a legal librarian. But nothing about her character paints her as quite the fashionista who would wear stilettos to work.

All in all, I’m hoping to read book two and three in the series at some point.

throwing shade photo

Other Reviews:

Book Review: Throwing Shade by Deborah Wilde

Book Review: Throwing Shade by Deborah Wilde

Throwing Shade (Magic After Midlife, #1) by Deborah Wilde

Throwing Shade by Deborah Wilde

blood and ash

Book Review: Blood & Ash, by Deborah Wilde

Though I own a kindle copy of Deborah Wilde‘s Blood & Ash (I think I picked it up as an Amazon freebie), I borrowed and audio copy through Hoopla so that I could listen to it while I worked outside.
blood and ash

Cold-blooded kidnappers. Long-lost magic. When things get serious, she goes full Sherlock.

Ashira Cohen takes pride in being the only female private investigator in Vancouver. With her skills, her missing persons case should be a piece of cake.

She wasn’t counting on getting bashed in the skull, revealing a hidden tattoo and supernatural powers she shouldn’t possess.

Or the bitter icing on top: a spree of abductions and terrifying ghostly creatures on a deadly bender.

And don’t even get her started on the golems.

Reluctantly partnered with her long-time nemesis Levi, the infuriating leader of the magic community, Ash resolves to keep her focus on the clue trail and off their sexual tension because WTF is up with that?

But with a mastermind organization pulling strings from the shadows and Levi’s arrogance driving her to pick out his body bag, can Ash rescue the captives and uncover the truth or will the next blood spilled be her own?

my review

I generally liked this. I actually loved some aspects of it. A urban fantasy with a Jewish heroine and supporting characters? Yes please. Set in Canada? I’ll take it. All that lovely diversity? Yep, give it here. Writing that rarely pulled me out of the narrative? I am here for it!

But I also felt like I was dropped into the middle of the story. Ash talks about ‘my leg’ and ‘my coma’ and about characters the reader hasn’t met for too long before any of it is explained. I thought I must be missing a first book for quite a long while. And so much is only barely given context. I never really felt any of it. The relationship with the romantic partner especially. So, while I enjoyed the ride, I wasn’t super invested in any of it.

All in all, though, I’d read another of Wilde’s books.

blood and ash

I’m gonna try a new thing for a little while, see how I like it. I’m going to start including links to other reviews of a book for comparison. I don’t know if it’ll become a permanent thing, but here it goes. Let’s start with two.

Blood & Ash by Deborah Wilde


Review: Blood & Ash by Deborah Wilde

Book Review of The Unlikeable Demon Hunter (Nava Katz #1), by Deborah Wilde

I downloaded a copy of Deborah Wilde‘s The Unlikeable Deomn Hunter from Instafreebies.

Description from Goodreads:
The age-old story of what happens when a foul-mouthed, romance impaired heroine with no edit button and a predilection for hot sex is faced with her worst nightmare–a purpose.

Ari Katz is intelligent, driven, and will make an excellent demon hunter once initiated into the Brotherhood of David. However, this book is about his twin Nava: a smart-ass, self-cultivated hot mess, who is thrilled her brother is stuck with all the chosen one crap.

When Nava half-drunkenly interrupts Ari’s induction ceremony, she expects to be chastised. What she doesn’t expect is to take her brother’s place among the–until now–all-male demon hunters. Even worse? Her infuriating leader is former rock star Rohan Mitra.

Too bad Rohan’s exactly what Nava’s always wanted: the perfect bad boy fling with no strings attached, because he may also be the one to bring down her carefully erected emotional shields. That’s as dangerous as all the evil fiends vying for the bragging rights of killing the only female ever chosen for Demon Club.

Odds of survival: eh.

Odds of having a very good time with Rohan before she bites it: much better.

You guys, this book has a 20yo, sexually liberated, Canadian, Jewish demon hunter with a gay brother (and neighbor couple), bi best friends and fellow hunters that are racially diverse. I should have loved it. I really, really should have. But I did not.

I’ll start with the sexually liberated bit, because it’s important. I loved that Nava is 20 years old and shamelessly slutty. She likes sex and has a lot of it, mostly in the form of one night stands. And I’m cool with that. I like it even. Why shouldn’t girls have as much sex as men, with as few repercussions? I’m even ok with her taking her happy-screwup-slut and draping it around herself as part of her personality. Hell, I’m thrilled to get something other than a ‘good girl’ Mary Sue for a change. What I am not ok with is the fact that this appeared to be the only personality she has. I love a witty innuendo as much as the next person. I like seeing women claim their sexuality. I was even moderately ok with her sharky attitude. But by about a quarter into this book I was tired of Nava and her one track mind. Even a good thing is horrible when you’re beat over the head with it. Nava and the book never let up on the sexs—think of sex, crave sex, pursue sex, have sexs—long enough to let the rest of the plot develop.

Plus, she was supposed to have some sexual hangups (like not kissing her partner), intended to keep it firmly in lust not love territory. But the reason for this was never explored. It served no apparent purpose in the plot.

As for the rest of the plot, what little there is under the flood of sex, sex, sex, it is thin to say the least. I found that it jumped around, with challenges popping up willy-nilly and being defeated just as randomly.

All in all, it wasn’t horrible. I was just hoping for something better.