Reading Level: Adult
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Size: 512 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release Date: October 30, 2012
Stand Alone or Series: 1st book in the Dani O’Malley series
Source: Audiobook from Audible.com
Rating: 3/5 stars
This is the first book in the Dani O’Malley series which takes place after the last book in Moning’s Fever series. The second book in this trilogy, Burned, is scheduled for a Jan 2014 release. The third and final book, Flayed, is scheduled to release in 2015. I think that you could read this book without reading the original Fever series; there is a ton of recapping. Still if you really want to know what is going on here, you probably want to read the Fever books first.
I listened to this on audiobook and I wouldn’t recommend it. The audiobook had two different narrators, one who does the female voices and one who does the male voices. As a result the female voices are very high in sound and the male voices are very low. When you turn up the sound to hear the very low and deep male voice, the female voice comes across as shrill. It made the book hard to listen to. I was either straining to try and hear the male voices or wincing at the shrill female voices.
Dani O’Malley was a side character in the Fever series and this is the start of her story. Dani is a superhero of sorts, she is super fast and super tough and she has one of the only weapons that can actually kill Fey. When Ryoden’s club gets frozen solid (patrons and all) he forces Dani into a contract. He wants Dani to work with him to solve this mystery before more people and Fey are killed. Now Dani is facing off with something that might be more dangerous and evil than anything she’s ever faced before.
The book is told from many POVs, not just Dani’s. This didn’t add a lot to the story but just drew it out and fractured it.
Dani is incredibly obnoxious. She basically bitches and complains throughout the whole book. She yells at people and is mean to them, then is indignant when they won’t help her out. If you cut out all of Dani’s complaining the book would be a third shorter. Dani is also supposed to be a superhero of sorts, but she spends the vast amount of time either passed out or being rescued by the harem of men that lusts after her. I am not even going to go into how weird it is that she has all these older men lusting after her when she is only fourteen.
So, yeah, in a nutshell I thought Dani was an incredibly immature and obnoxious character and really didn’t enjoy her. I suppose that gives her a lot of room to grow in future books, but I am not sure I want to read more about Dani.
Next let’s talk about the men. You have Ryoden who is super sexy and super dangerous and has trapped Dani into working for him. He is creepy but strangely seems to care about Dani in a very uh…sexual way. Then you have Christian who is slowly turning into a Fey Prince, he is incredibly unstable, sex crazy, and has decided that him and Dani will be getting married. Seriously we hear about how hard Christian is a lot throughout the book, and it is just yucky.
The last man in Dani’s life is Dancer, and he is the only one who deserves his own paragraph. Dancer has been Dani’s friend for a long time, they kind of look out for each other with no strings attached. He is actually Dani’s age, but as the story goes on you realize he must have some pretty deep and dark secrets of his own. He was my absolute favorite character in this book; he is smart, supportive, and stands up to anyone (human or Other) who tries to harm Dani in anyway. I liked him. In a world of crazy he was something interesting and intriguing.
The world is completely insane. Basically this is after the war was lost and the Fey invaded Dublin (Earth?). Apparently realities can shift at will and you never know what will be around the corner. There is a lot of talk about people waking up in different realities and about horrible creepy crawlies…but honestly we don’t see much of that in the story. Most of the story is spent with Dani complaining and trying to manage her harem of testosterone driven men.
By the end of this book I just wanted it to be over. I loved the idea of this world, but the characters were obnoxious and overdone. Dani gets so distracted from the story by these crazy older man that want her, then there was the strange addition of the Crimson Hag. The Crimson Hag was kind of a cool enemy but her addition to the story seemed so last minute and contrived that I just kind of rolled my eyes at this part. Ugh, the whole thing was a bit of a mess.
Overall definitely not my favorite urban fantasy book. There is just too much in here that bugged me. I love the world and some of the characters are intriguing. But Dani is an absolute flop as a character for me, she is annoying and obnoxious and not someone I ever want to read about again. Even though the book features a fourteen year old girl it is definitely an adult read. Having all these older guys jonesing after Dani was super creepy too, I just didn’t enjoy reading about it. The story took too many detours from the actual main plot and all of the POVs throughout just served to draw things out. I will not be reading more books in this series and don’t recommend this new addition to the Fever series. Stick with other urban fantasy reads like Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassin series, Ilona Andrew’s Kate Daniels series, or Seanan McGuire’s October Daye series.