Kit Colbana—half breed, assassin, thief, jack of all trades—has a new job: track down the missing ward of one of the local alpha shapeshifters. It should be a piece of cake. So why is she so nervous? It probably has something to do with the insanity that happens when you deal with shifters—especially sexy ones who come bearing promises of easy jobs and easier money. Or maybe it’s all the other missing kids that Kit discovers while working the case, or the way her gut keeps screaming she’s gotten in over her head. Or maybe it’s because if she fails—she’s dead. If she can stay just one step ahead, she should be okay. Maybe she’ll even live long to collect her fee… (netgalley.com)
BLADE SONG is a bit out of my normal reading repertoire but at the moment I'm all about branching out and I've been following Shiloh since she unabashedly spoke her mind about the Sirengate debacle. So throw all of that together and I wanted to read something by her and see what she was all about author-wise because I already thought she was pretty cool as a person.
JC Daniels is the pseudonym for Shiloh Walker who writes romances, among a bunch of other books. It looks like she writes PNR under her Walker name as well as her Daniels name and I just don't know enough about her to know why she pseudonymously writes. But needless to say my first Walker book was a Daniels book simply because the blurb appealed to me and it's right up my alley for some adult PNR (because the YA stuff makes me a touch homicidal).
Kit is your kick ass heroine that smarts off right from the get-go and at least has the know-how to realize she should really keep her mouth shut most of the time she allows it to open. She's part Amazon that allows her to call her sword at a moment's notice even if it's not in the area and it also gives her some other heightened senses that help her out in tough times. Her childhood was total crap and I really liked the way Daniels interspersed Kit's PTSD with her current job, sending her reeling into her past. Not that PTSD is a good thing but it's authentic to the character. For instance Kit spent a lot of time starving and injured in a pit at the hands of her grandmother. When her and Damon come upon similar pits in the Everglades Kit starts flashing back. I just felt those flashbacks were authentic. I bought them and it added a new vulnerable depth to Kit that gave reason to her kick ass attitude.
I was a little less than thrilled with her speech. I felt that her dialogue and slang was, at times, reaching and it grated on me a little bit but not enough to stop reading. The story was fast-paced and entertaining enough that it carried me through what I didn't care for and let me just enjoy the story for it's entertainment value. I'm finding I can do this more with adult books than YA, probably because I'm starting to burn out on YA, I think.
The writing itself was on the simple side in terms of words on the page and at times redundant but I still felt Kit was a fully fleshed out character. I found her as real as could be, right along with all of the secondary characters that Daniels introduced, from the witches to the cats and even to the humans that she ended up interacting with. They were barely there and when they were they were serving a purpose but they were fully realized. I didn't feel like they were puppets in a show, merely there to serve Kit. They helped her, as much as she needed it, but they all were ultimately their own entity.
I was less than thrilled with the romance. There was a bit by the way of sexy times but it was an antagonistic relationship that you could see coming from the beginning. And the way Damon kept referring to Kit as baby girl made me want to strangle something. From what I got Kit wasn't all on board with that pet name either. The progression of the romance was exceedingly fast for what ended up coming to fruition but ultimately I think the two actually work together. They both antagonize and compliment each other in equal measure; neither are dependent on the other, both are a bit possessive (Damon a bit more so which I found off-putting) and both could hold their own. So I was less than thrilled with it but I didn't wholly not like it either.
You know it's a good foray into adult PNR. It satisfied a craving that I had for something different yet similar (how . . . vague of me) and not nearly as angsty as I've been getting with the YA crowd. It was a good deviation from my otherwise norm. It's definitely gritty and doesn't shy away from the themes it presents so if you're a bit weaker in the will area BLADE SONG might not be for you. But if you're keen on some violence, a kick ass chick with some issues, a nominal amount of sexy times and a good set-up for the next book, BLADE SONG is your bag. I didn't love it but I'll keep my eye our for more, that's for sure.
Ban Factor: High - Is that a joke? Did you read the last paragraph?
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