Stars: 5 out of 5
Excellent modern take at the Romeo and Juliette myth, only if both Romeo and Juliette decided to join forces and kick ass.
Once again, I am happy to announce that you can’t go wrong with an Ilona Andrews book. They all range from good to excellent, no matter what series you pick up. Though I have a particular soft spot for Kate Daniels and the Innkeeper series.
I somehow missed all the other books in the Kinsmen series (an oversight that I will rectify as soon as I get a hold of the first two books), but I loved this entry into the series. Oh, and by the way, you don’t need to have read the previous books to enjoy this one. I went in fresh and ignorant of the world of Rada and enjoyed it immensely. Each book is meant to be read as a standalone, from what I gathered.
Anyway, here is the set up. The Adlers and the Baenas are the only two secare families on Rada, and they had a blood feud going ever since the first colonization. The reasons for that feud have been lost to the sands of time, but the families still hate each other on sight and try to kill each other on occasion. So imagine the leaders of these two families, Ramona Adler and Mathias Baena, being put in such a situation that to save their families and their reputations, they have to become allies. Sparks fly and enemies dies.
What I like about Ilona Andrews books is that her characters are always alive, especially the protagonists, and most of the supporting characters as well. They are vivid, they jump out of the page at you, and they are believable. Both Ramona and Mathias are very strong individuals who had to become the heads of their respective families at a very young age. They aren’t just figureheads. They are smart, business savvy and efficient. They are also deadly when it comes to wielding their secare weapons. And they had been married to their work basically, and rather unhappy in their personal lives, even if they didn’t realize it until the proverbial shit hit the fan and their spouses eloped with each other.
I like that they respect each other even though they are sworn enemies. They recognize each other’s strengths and combine them in order to get the results they want – get their families’ research back and eliminate a treat. And the rest of their relationship sparks from that place of mutual respect. They are strong and independent and well adjusted individuals that don’t need each other to be happy. They choose each other. Now that’s how a real relationship should be.
This book is a breeze to read. It’s fast, it’s witty, and it flies by in a whirlwind of dance and secare blades. I wish it was a bit longer because I devoured it in a day.
My only complaint is that the main villain of the story (I am talking about the in-laws from hell), was a little bit caricaturesque. How could a successful politician, even non-Rada native, be so ignorant about kinsmen politics? That’s not very believable. But that’s a very small gripe towards what is otherwise and excellent book.
Thank you, mighty authors, you did it again!