Teresaelectro’s #CBR5 Reviews 13-16: Sabina Kane books 2-5

#CBR5 Review #13: The Mage in Black by Jaye Wells (3 stars):

The Mage in Black is the second book in the Sabina Kane series by Jaye Wells. Sabina Kane is a half-vampire, half-mage (witch) assassin for the Vampire council. At least, she was until she learned her grandmother who rules the vamps betrays her in book 1 and tries to kill her. Those two never really got along since Sabina isn’t a pureblood and has been corrupted by icky mage blood. Sabina joins forces with a sexy mage agent named Adam working for the Hekate Council. They flee to NYC to meet Sabina’s long lost twin sister. Together with the countcil, they must plan the next move against the vampires who are hellbent on mage genocide.

I really enjoyed the dynamic between the sisters. They are twins but with opposite upbringings (vamp vs. mage). Sabina also has an undeniable attraction to Adam even though it’s forbidden for mages and vampires to get together. Good thing she’s half-mage. Sabina, Gilguhl and Adam become an even more formidable trio by the end of this book.

#CBR5 Review #14: Green-Eyed Demon by Jaye Wells (4 stars):

enjoyed this third book much more than its predecessors. Sabina finally embraces both parts of her vamp/mage heritage. And damn does she kick some ass. Unfortunately, for them the vamps are playing dirty and weilding some mage magic of their own. Her relationship with Adam has progressed faster than expected, which has her worried he may become a distraction from the mission. I absolutely loved all of the colorful new characters they dig up in NOLA. Sabina once a lone assassin now has a host of allies willing to help her foil her grandmother’s plans. And with each book, we uncover more about Sabina’s past and whether this prophecy is worth its salt.

#CBR5 Review #15: Silver-Tongued Devil by Jaye Wells (5 stars):

This was my favorite book of the series because it starts out with the supernatural war relatively wrapped up and descends into chaos with each oncoming chapter. I suspected the villain, but was pleasantly surprised by the final twist. The ending was so gut-wrenching because the characters grew so much only to be knocked on their asses. It really sets up the final entry where the stakes could not be higher in this supernatural war.

#CBR5 Review #16: Blue-Blooded Vamp by Jaye Wells (4 stars):

Sabina has come full-circle from the first book where she lived a lone vampire assassin existence. All the characters from past books re-appear and show the part they had to play in her journey. Wells kept her black humor and didn’t forget to keep the action going until the very end. All in all a great ending for a this urban fantasy series.

I would recommend this series for fans of no-nonsense female characters and age old wars between supernatural races.

Read the full reviews for books 2-5 on my blog.

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Teresaelectro’s #CBR5 Review #10: The Angel Stone by Juliet Dark

The Angel Stone is the final chapter of the Fairwick Chronicles trilogy See my previous reviews here and here. Beware small spoilers to follow!

Callie McFay is a literature professor (at only 27, mind you) at a small liberal arts college in New England. In the previous books, she discovers her father was fey and her mother a powerful witch, their frowned upon union giving birth to her. On top of her mixed supernatural heritage, she is a doorkeeper – born with the power to open the door between Faerie and the human realm. She fell in love with not one (an irish professor named Liam) but two! (a handyman named Bill) incarnations of an incubus. Apparently, it was true love which restored the demon lover to his former human form. Shame it was two seconds before his throat was cut by a nasty fallen angel. Book 2 ends with Callie losing her true love and the door to Faerie closed forever…or is it?

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And so begins book 3 with things looking very bleak for the sleepy town of Fairwick. All the supernatural professors including the former dean were forced to return to Faerie leaving the school open for a fallen angel aka nephilim takeover. Duncan Laird is the big bad from book 2 and now has become dean, formed a fraternity full of bastard nephilim boys. It reminded me of the fifth Harry Potter novel, everything becomes more and more unbearable for the characters with each turning page.  In similar fashion, Callie and the remaining supernaturals in town form a secret resistance and vow to find a door to Faerie to uncover the angel stone, the only weapon again the nephilim.

I would recommend this novel for fans of scottish fairy tales, nephilim myths and novels about true love that doesn’t involve abstinence.

Read the full book review on my blog.

Malin’s #CBR5 Review #128: Dark Currents by Jacqueline Carey

Daisy Johanssen grew up in the town of Pemkowet in the Midwest. Her mother lives in a trailer and works as a seamstress, her father is an incubus accidentally summoned during an ill-advised Ouija board session when her mother was a teenager. Of course, you’d think being half-demon would make Daisy unusual in town, but there’s all manner of supernatural beings in Pemkowet, and tourists travel from all over the country to see fairies and trolls and naiads and the like. Hel, the Norse goddess of the underworld keeps the supernatural element in check, and Daisy is her agent in the mortal world, as well as acting as supernatural liaison with the local police department.

When a young, wealthy college kid drowns and everything suggests supernatural involvement, the tourist trade could be seriously affected. The local police are under a lot of pressure, and Hel isn’t all that happy with the situation either. Daisy has to work the case with Cody Fairfax, trying to hide the massive crush on him she’s nurtured since high school. She also has to keep a lid on her volatile temper, as giving into the temptations from her demonic dad could set in motion Armageddon.

Full review on my blog.

Valyruh’s #CBR5 Review #41: Cold Days by Jim Butcher

So, the latest in the Dresden Files supernatural thriller series came out late last year and I’ve just finished it. I took a bit of a hiatus after the last one, called Ghost Story, in which the protagonist and hero of the series, semi-mortal wizard Harry Dresden, dies and comes back as a ghost! Yeah, right! Determined as I was to enjoy Ghost Story to the hilt, as I had the previous volumes in the series, I just couldn’t wrap my head around my favorite wizard going all incorporeal and stuff. So I was thrilled to discover that Harry is now back from the dead, and elevated to the post of Winter Knight to the Queen of Air and Darkness, Mab. And she’s a bit of a nutter, as most of the high fairys are, and manages to turn her knights into looney-tune rage-balls and her enemies into very very dead. So if she managed to resurrect Harry and bring him back, it can’t be for anything good. Or can it?

For die-hard fans of this series, you’ll note that sooner or later, Harry hooks up with most of his former mortal (and immortal) friends—including potential love-interest Karrin Murphy. The bad guys are bigger and badder and uglier than ever, if that is even conceivable, and what is at stake is once again Harry’s first love, the city of Chicago. The spirit of Demonreach is back, Bob the Skull is back, Harry’s half-brother  the White Vampire Thomas is back, so is the mysterious Gatekeeper, and so is Harry’s apprentice Molly Carpenter, cooler, more powerful and more in love with Harry than ever.  Harry is torn between his burning desire to get back to the mortal world he knows and loves, and his sworn loyalty to Mab even as he knows that he is little but a glorified assassin at the Queen’s bidding who is slowing going mad under her “tutelage.” Harry gets an apparently insane order from Mab to kill an immortal—Mab’s evil daughter, no less—and in the process of trying to decide whether he can or should obey or not, he uncovers a conspiracy of what you might call “global” proportions which he, and only he (once again!) can stop before the whole world goes to hell—literally.

The action is non-stop, the plot is cool, and the villains are truly terrifying, and I certainly got my supernatural high on with this novel. Nonetheless, I was distressed by the fact that, in Cold Days, our hero has undergone a truly disturbing transformation. Prior to turning into a ghost, Harry Dresden was the consistently overworked, underpaid, and underappreciated wizard we all know and love, who managed to protect his city and his friends from the dark forces while keeping up a steady stream of wisecracks and humorous observations about everything from technology to sexual politics to religion. In Cold Days, Harry has entered the ranks of the supernatural, whether willingly or not, and while more powerful than ever, he also feels no pain and, it would appear, little emotion either. He is subject to terrifying and violent impulses which he must struggle to control, and is somehow now “above the crowd.”  Whether this is the author reminding us for the umpteenth time that power corrupts, or whether Butcher is seriously messing with the direction his main character will now take–which he shouldn’t, in my opinion–remains to be seen when the next volume comes out at the end of 2013.

mandasarah’s #CBR5 #8: The Good Neighbors 1-3: Kin, Kith, and Kind by Holly Black and Ted Naifeh

41Cowo1Ve9L Rue has always known her mother was mad.  Just one of those family quirks, you know?  Rue knows she’s mad too (how else do you explain seeing men with deer heads and plants bowing to her mother), but unlike her mother, she can at least pretend she’s not.  So when Rue’s mother disappears one night after an argument with her father, Rue has had a lot of practice in pretending everything is fine.  But when the police come to arrest her father, it gets harder and harder to pretend.