I’ve been putting off my review of this book, hoping my feelings about it would come up a notch, but since that hasn’t happened, I guess it’s time to give it a go. First, I want to say kudos to Kim Harrison for writing a series that kept me coming back for thirteen books. That’s a huge accomplishment, and she must have been doing something right. Her fans are legion, and the series has been a best seller from Day One.
For me, it has never been a 5-star series, but it has always been a steady, reliable 4 stars, book after book. The things that kept me from giving any of the books a full 5-stars related most often to several characters I just did not like. And they were characters I was supposed to like, so they were featured often and extensively. I was caught up in the overall world and complicated plot lines, but those particular characters always stopped me from giving any of the books more than 4 stars.
Having said that, there were also several characters I loved. Rachel Morgan, herself, could be fun and interesting, though a flawed character, to be sure. Still, her flaws made her relatable, and I liked her. Trent Kalamack was a favorite of mine long before it was ever hinted that he might become a love interest. The pixie, Jenks, was always consistently funny and clever, and a staunch ally of Rachel, though never afraid to tell her when she was doing something stupid. And the demon, Algaliarept, was a wonderful draw. Always scary, always complicated, and often funny. Once in a while, he was even touching. Those four characters kept me coming back over and over.
The vampires in this book were not among my favorites. None of them. I wasn’t into the whole mythos, so when the final book, which I had long anticipated, featured them for a huge chunk of the book–probably more than half of it–it was bound to leave me feeling unsatisfied. I really didn’t care a lot what happened to any of them, I’m afraid, so that part of the last book just didn’t work for me.
SOME SPOILERS AHEAD
What I wanted most was a satisfactory ending to the relationship between Rachel and Trent. And actually, I got it in a way, so you’d think I’d be happier. But to me, it felt rushed and crammed into the last part of the book, and left me wishing I had been along for the ride as they worked out their differences. So. I got the outcome I wanted, but not the fun of sharing it with Rachel. Honestly, it felt like it should have been spread over two books, with the resolution of the vampire story line in one, and the resolution of Rachel and Trent’s story in another. That, I could have enjoyed a lot more.
This is the first book of the series I’ve given less than 4 stars, so you can surmise from that, I consider it the weakest of the thirteen. It was the one I enjoyed the least, anyway. If you’ve read the series so far, you will definitely want to see how it all turns out, and you might have a completely different take on it than I do. So be sure to get your copy. If you haven’t read any of the series, but are a fan of Urban Fantasy, you probably should give it a try. As I say, Harrison’s fan base is enormous, so she had to be doing something right to create that kind of loyalty. I know I kept on reading, even when there were characters and occasional plot lines that didn’t thrill me. And I’m glad I did. It was a good series, overall, and mostly fun. But it deserved a stronger, better-written ending, especially to the long-awaited Happily Ever After for Rachel and Trent. Just my opinion, as always.