Scandalize Me, Caitlin Crews
Review from Jeannie Zelos Book reviews.
Interesting trilogy where each book is based around one person from the group of three friends who’ve grown up in the past ten years, and now circumstances are forcing them to look back on one devastating night where death roamed, and they ignored it. Now they want and need to make amends, and be certain that no-one else will get caught in that same trap.
I read Austin’s story and enjoyed it but with reservations. Now having read Hunters episode I understand much more, and I’m thinking this is going to be one of those trilogies where reading it a second time when I know the whole story, and understand more of the subtle clues and events described, that I’ll get far more from it. Certainly Austin’s book helped me understand much of this one.
Characters, well Hunter – we can see just how his guilt at so much has lead him down this trail of devastation of a brilliant career, but can he redeem it with Zoe’s help? That’s a tough task for her, not least because she needs to persuade him that he wants his career revived. He’s just killing time the way he is, turning a head in the sand approach to his guilt, and yet until he faces it I feel he can’t move on. He’s a good example of the Edmund Burke quote “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing” – he did nothing, and the guilt has haunted him and shaped his life ever since. Zoe needs him though – he’s essential to her plans to bring down Jason Treffen. She was another young girl who he lured into his wicked practices, she escaped, but even now his reach covers her and she’s out to stop it, and prevent any more girls getting sucked into his evil games.
Its an interesting read, I enjoyed it more for understanding the back story after reading part one. I loved Zoe, she’s worked hard, been putting pieces into place for many years. It would be easy to just accept Treffen’s control and just work within it – but she won’t, and she wants to do the right thing and bring him down and end the debauchery. The heat between Zoe and Hunter was searing from the first, but neither wanted to give in. Hunter because he sticks to one off sex, is just apathetic and doesn’t do relationships any more…and Zoe, well, he’s everything she hates about what she sees as the wealthy, entitled, moneyed group. She’s worked up from nothing and fiercely independent, and not willing to loose control as she knows she will if she gives in to her desires. Still, despite their best efforts the passions and intensity is too deep to be ignored. I haven’t price or length info but from reading it I’d guess its around 250 or so pages, certainly long enough to get into the characters fully, explore the story and provide an interesting read.
Stars: four, and I think if I went back to Avenge Me now having read this I’d get more from it. Its definitely one I want to re read once I’ve all three parts.
ARC received via Netgalley .
Kindling the Moon, (Arcadia Bell 1) ,Jenn Bennett
Review from jeannie zelos book reviews
I love a good paranormal mystery, especially when there’s a romantic angle to it. I’d had this one on my list of To Be Read for a while – you know, that list of books you want to read at some point…when there’s time..and money! Then the fourth one came up on Netgalley for review and I had that and loved it. I knew from the quality ot the writing and plots that this would be a long time favourite series for my keepers file, and when I was offered the earlier novels for review I jumped at the chance.
So, the story starts with us being introduced to the major character Aracdia ( Cady) busy at work in her part owned Tiki bar…busy as always, serving drinks and keeping the peace between humans and earthbounds. Earthbounds being descendants of demons from generations back. To humans they look like humans, and many marry and never let their demon side be known – but its there, and Cady’s bar is one of the few where all are welcome. Cady herself doesn’t have demon blood but does have some special magical abilities. Then comes the shocking news her parents aren’t dead after all, and the FBI – among others – are looking for them in connection with a gruesome series of murders. Cady knows they’re not dead, for the past seven years she’s been in hiding too, under a false name and background and had little to no contact with them. Now she needs to prove their innocence to one of the main magical societies or face giving her own life up. She teams up with Lon, an earthbound. He seems surly when they first meet but when we learn more about him, and his teen son Jupe, we see he’s not like that at all. He and Cady dance around their attraction for a while but then…sparks fly and they’re a great team.
Lots of “first” novels suffer from trying too hard to introduce characters and plots, and it gets overcomplicated and difficult to follow the story, but Jenn has done this perfectly – the characters are fairly limited – just the main ones focussed on, and the secondary ones there but kept back, and that allowed me to really get to know Cady, Lon and Jupe. I feel they’re a great trio, and work really well together. The plots were perfect, one major one but lots of minor detours along the way keeping the story fresh and interesting, and allowing Lon and Cady to showcase their talents. So many books have just one simplistic plot and then fluff out the story with irrelevancies just to add content, but this one – it’s one of those that has so much detail, keeps the reader rivetted to the page ( or screen!) and doesn’t need to add superfluous padding. Every plot and little incident is relevant, and I love the challenge of trying to spot when things will turn out to be of major importance even though at first sight they seem innocous.
It’s a great read, a terrific first in series and I’m really looking forward to the rest, even though I’ve already read the final ( fourth) book. I’m one of those readers who love to re read favourite books, and especially when I’ve a whole series to go through.
Stars: Five – a fabulous book.
review for rest of series to follow