Okay, I’m a Libran, which might mean that I like balance a little too much. I just finished reading Ruby Fever by Ilona Andrews. And I loved it…like I always do. And I gave it 5 stars, because the writing is wonderful, but my true score would have probably been 4.5 because there was SO much action, I lost some of the characterization that I love in her earlier books.
There’s something about the last book in an action series. It has to be bigger and badder than the books that came before it. But for me, that means there’ll be even more action with bigger battles and bigger odds, and less characterization and relationships. Ruby Fever had these, and I enjoyed each and every single one of them, but they were overwhelmed by one battle after another.
Now, to give Ilona Andrews credit, she comes up with so many different kinds of battles, that it’s entertaining. Her protagonist, Catalina Baylor, is a siren, who constantly has to struggle to keep her magic under control. But when she’s stressed, the siren turns into a harpie with black wings that pop out of her back, and then her magic turns deadly. Under that much pressure, the harpie is even harder for Catalina to control. Her fiancée, Alessandro, is a warrior type mage who can THINK of a weapon, and it’s in his hands. He’s gorgeous and deadly. But the villains coming against them are nothing to sneeze at. Arkan is trained in the Russian military fighting techniques, and he can snap his magic so that no one can move for 15 seconds to defend themselves. Really deadly.
Catalina’s brother-in-law is a telekinetic who can summon a whirling weapon with blades. He can topple trees, destroy buildings. Her sister and aunt can crush minds. Her friend, Cornelius, can communicate with animals. Which doesn’t sound deadly until he summons thousands of rats to attack or pats the head of a deadly beast summoned by an enemy from a different dimension. Every battle is different in an Ilona Andrews’ novel. And that’s what I enjoy about them. And the battles in this book were WONDERFUL.
But, I did get a little overwhelmed by battle after battle, and I missed a little more character interaction. But I can never go wrong with Ilona Andrews. When I want a good read, she’s guaranteed entertainment..