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Review: Storm Born by Richelle Mead

Storm Born (Dark Swan #1) by Richelle Mead
Urban Fantasy, Fae, Shapeshifters
Mass Market Paperback (ZEBRA, 384 pages, $6.99)
ISBN# 1420100963
Released: August 2008 (Reviewed: August 2008)
Just typical. No love life to speak of for months, then all at once, every horny creature in the Otherworld wants to get in your pants...
Eugenie Markham is a powerful shaman who does a brisk trade banishing spirits and fey who cross into the mortal world. Mercenary, yes, but a girl's got to eat. Her most recent case, however, is enough to ruin her appetite. Hired to find a teenager who has been taken to the Otherworld, Eugenie comes face to face with a startling prophecy--one that uncovers dark secrets about her past and claims that Eugenie's first-born will threaten the future of the world as she knows it.
Now Eugenie is a hot target for every ambitious demon and Otherworldy ne'er-do-well, and the ones who don't want to knock her up want her dead. Eugenie handles a Glock as smoothly as she wields a wand, but she needs some formidable allies for a job like this. She finds them in Dorian, a seductive fairy king with a taste for bondage, and Kiyo, a gorgeous shape-shifter who redefines animal attraction. But with enemies growing bolder and time running out, Eugenie realizes that the greatest danger is yet to come, and it lies in the dark powers that are stirring to life within her...

Author Site: www.richellemead.com

Richelle Mead does it again! (5 stars)

Eugenie Markham is a Tuscon native shaman who makes her money banishing unwanted ghosts and fey to the world of the dead, or at least back to the Otherworld they came from. When she's asked to meet with a man, Wil, who says his sister, Jasmine, was taken by one of the gentry (fae) she's hesitant to take the job. Not only is this not the sort of job she does, but it's darned dangerous. To rescue Jasmine she will have to cross over into Otherworld not in her own spirit form--that of the dark swan known as Odile--but as her flesh and blood self. Before heading off to save the day she has a night out and hooks up with a handsome veterinarian named Kiyo and the two are attacked by one of the gentry elementals and the fight that ensues reveals she is more than what she said she was and so is Kiyo.

Persuaded by thoughts of the teenaged Jasmine being forced to be a gentry's plaything she accepts the job and with the back-up of her spirit servants, Volusian, Nandi and Finn, she sets off to get the girl back from Aeson, the Alder King. While in Otherworld she meets Dorian, the Oak King, who she becomes friends with but when the fight with Aeson fails she has to return home. With continued attacks from gentry she eventually finds out that not only have her parents been keeping MAJOR secrets from her but that there is a gentry prophecy about the child she might one day have. No wonder every gentry around is trying to rape her or at least win her favor!

Dodging would-be rapists, learning how to control new-found powers and sorting out the possible relationships with both Kiyo and Dorian, Eugenie never has a dull moment. Neither did this book! A fan of Mead's YA series (Vampire Academy) and the urban fantasy genre in general I was thrilled to see this book hit the shelves and it wasn't at all disappointing. Filled with action, interesting characters, sexual tension and plenty of well-timed humor it had everything I look for in an urban fantasy novel.

Fans of Rachel Morgan or the Sisters of the Moon series will not want to miss this one. With the elements of magic and a heroine in the vein of Rachel and a world building filled with kitsune, fae and elementals this series looks to be a crowd pleaser. Be on the lookout for Thorn Queen, the next book in the series due out in the summer of 2009!

Other Reviews:
Best Fantasy Stories
alanajoli @ flamesrising.com

Notes: I bought this book at a bookstore.

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