Urban Fantasy, Fae, Demons, Angels
Mass Market Paperback $7.99 (400 pages, POCKET)
WAR IS HELL. AND WAR WITH HELL IS NO FUN EITHER.
Just when her new life as a TouchStone—a mortal bound to help OtherFolk cross between Faery and human worlds—seems to be settling down, Abby Sinclair is left in charge when the Protectorate, Moira, leaves for the Faery Court. And when the Protectorate’s away . . . let’s just say things spiral out of control when a spell on Abby backfires and the Faery Queen declares the Doors between their worlds officially closed. The results are disastrous for both sides: OtherFolk trapped in the mortal world are beginning to fade, while Faery is on the brink of war with the daemons of Hell. Along with her brooding elven prince Talivar and sexy incubus Brystion, Abby ventures to the CrossRoads in an attempt to override the Queen’s magic. But nothing in this beautiful, dangerous realm will compare to the discoveries she’s making about her past, her destiny, and what she will sacrifice for those she loves.
Author Site: heartofthedreaming.com
Making Geeky Sexy the Urban Fantasy Way (5 stars)
Abby Sinclair is back but it's been a good half year since the events of A BRUSH OF DARKNESS. Training in the Dreaming with Ion's sister she's learning how to control how things work in her Heart. With Moira away in Faery dealing with the aftermath of recent events things in the mortal world get a bit crazy. When a spell cast on Abby has unexpected side effects the Faery Queen shuts down the CrossRoads, trapping everyone either inside or outside. Those left outside will fade if the Doors cannot be reopened while those trapped inside face a war with Hell.
It's up to Abby and Talivar, Moira's broody brother, to find a way to re-open the Doors to save the OtherFolk. Venturing to the CrossRoads with Phin in tow, Abby will have to confront her growing relationship with Talivar, the one she lost with Brystion, and the secrets her mother kept to protect her.
My synopsis isn't great but the blurb says most of what needs be said regarding the overall plot of A SLIVER OF SHADOW. This is definitely more about how the past can haunt the future as Abby learns about some major secrets her mother kept that greatly impact her future. Though his presence in the book is nearly non-existent until the last third of the book, her previous relationship with Brystion also complicates things. So there's your warning my fellow Ion fans, you'll have to be patient. Even so, Talivar manages to pick up the slack as far as brooding and sexy goes, I felt like I was cheating on Ion with my 'new book boyfriend' but Talivar is equally enjoyable as this book's man-candy.
One of Pang's strong suits as a writer is creating exceptional secondary characters and A SLIVER OF SHADOW rests strongly on the shoulders of them. They often steal the show, but in good ways. If you love Phin, he's a far more involved and verbose character this time around providing my favorite one-liner and pop culture reference of the book (if you love Flight of the Conchords you'll catch it). The introduction of a lesser known mythological character known as Jimmy Squarefoot adds another dimension of what the possibilities are in this world building set. A mysterious fox-woman, a really nasty villainess, and a truly intriguing Daemon are just a few of the new threads woven into the tapestry that I hope continues for many more books.
Though the novel starts out with a few slow chapters that build the foundation of the plot, once the action picks up and the one-liners start flying this is another really great novel from Allison Pang. Fans will feel the pinch of Brystion's absence but it is essential to the plot and makes him all the more enjoyable once he comes into the story. Expect lots of surprises and some down-right steamy (one literally lol) scenes with a strong build up for TRACE OF MOONLIGHT. Aside from those slow first few chapters the only thing I didn't like was that at one point I thought the resolution to a certain issue happened just a bit too conveniently. It was excusable just anti-climatic, I was expected something a little more dramatic. Overall, I loved A SLIVER OF SHADOW and pre-ordered TRACE OF MOONLIGHT before I'd even finished it because the build-up for it is strong. If you loved A BRUSH OF DARKNESS this is a must-read!
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Notes: ARC received via publisher/booktour but also purchased the book myself.