This is the third book in a series. This review does contain spoilers pertaining to events in previous books.
After finishing Bloodfever I was very glad of my foresight when I ordered all the available sequels in one go rather than getting them one by one. Once I closed that book I literally only took the time to scribble down a few basic thoughts from which I intended to build my review before I opened this one and got back into it. It was at this point that I decided that though I am most definitely not a fan of Karen Marie Moning’s Highlander time-travel romance-with-a-touch-of-faerie, her urban fantasy series had me on the edge of my seat wanting more. I had high hopes that this book would take the story back to the more important arc of the series rather than the subplot explored in the second book.
Presentation: Mass market paperback. There are 370 pages broken down into a prologue and 19 chapters. The font is relatively small but spaced.
Story: Mac now knows how the Sinsar Duhb is travelling around Dublin. And it knows her. She seems to be surrounded on all sides by people who desperately want the book for reasons that are not always clear and they are willing to attack her, abuse her, or try to woo her loyalty to their team. But more important than even the Book, Hallowe’en is coming and if the ancient rituals do not work this year, the barriers between the realms will fall, allowing the Unseelie – ALL of them – to escape their prison and enter into our human world.
Mac has to do everything she can to save mankind.
Thoughts and impressions: Oh yes, definitely much better than book two! When I finished this book, it was all I could do to stop myself from jumping straight into book 4 before I’d even jotted down the basis for a review. What a cliffhanger! All I can say is that I’m glad I’m reading this now and not three years ago when I would have had to wait a whole year for the next instalment. I get the feeling that this book marks Mac’s lowest point in her story. At least, I can’t imagine how it can get much worse than this current situation. In the first book, Mac dropped a prolepsis mentioning that she would have to sell part of her soul in order to be able to resist V’lane’s overpowering death-by-sex Fae sexual appeal. Is this where that soul selling comes into play?
I’m not sure what to make of Barrons right now. I’m not sure whether I’m supposed to view him as a good guy or a bad guy. He certainly has his own secrets that he keeps closely guarded. Who the hell was the dead woman? Though I recognise that he’s going to be the romantic interest in all of this (even if I do occasionally find myself more partial to V’lane – at least he tries), he treats Mac more like a piece of his property than a woman he’s sexually interested in. As she tells him herself, she’s his OOP-detector and what he did to her this time was stooping to a new low. I consider mental violation worse than sexual violation. In Mac’s position, I’d have packed my bags right then and there and left him to find the book without me. But at the same time there are scenes where he presents himself as a very different person. All I know is that I shouldn’t really be rooting for him, but I am.
There weren’t so many light-hearted scenes in this book – but as the book pretty much ends as a dystopian, and represents Mac’s darkest hour, I suppose that’s to be expected. There were however a few of these scenes – in particular when Inventor Mac invents her MacHalo. I loved it and I was laughing right along with Barrons when he discovered her prancing around in it.
Christian, a Scottish druid, and Dani, a fellow Sidhe-seer, have both started to receive bigger roles in this book. They’re both very interesting characters, too. Dani's so full of energy, she's fun, even though she can also be a little frustrating at times. I like Christian and how he forces Mac to reconsider herself at every turn.
And the ending… oh the ending!
Style: Colloquial, but good. When Mac goes on about the things her daddy told her, sometimes I have absolutely no idea what she’s wittering on about, but hey!
Final verdict: It’s got to the point in the series now where I’m sucked in as of the first page and do nothing – don’t eat, don’t drink, very reluctantly nip to the loo – until I’ve finished the book. The ending completely blew me away, though what led up to it was occasionally a bit long-winded. 4 stars
Extra notes: Bad language is abundant in this series. Sex takes place.