On Labor Day Weekend, Half-Price Books 20% off sale was completely irresistible. Really.
So I headed over and found a few books I knew were delightful and one I thought may be interesting:
Just guess which one was the dud.
Here, let me help you:
Death of the Necromancer review: https://clsiewert.wordpress.com/2013/0…
The Shadowed Sun review: https://clsiewert.wordpress.com/2013/0…
Review for Retribution Falls: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show…
But I’m a fan of the apocalypse genre, and I’ve heard both Aguirre and Kagawa’s names for quite a while. And, I often enjoy short stories/novellas. And, sale!, right?
Dawn of Eden, by Julie Kagawa: A woman running one of the last open clinics for victims of the Red Lung disease takes in two strangers, one of which has the disease. Unfortunately, his disease has mutated, spreading like wildfire among the already dead. The handsome living stranger, Ben, soon convinces Kylie they need to abandon the clinic and head to his estranged childhood home at a ranch in Illinois.
Overall, I was disappointed in the writing. Language was acceptable, if slightly slightly flat. Plotting was completely predictable, with eye-rolling character decision-making. A vaguely interesting disease premise/world-building was severely hampered by super-tropey characters that may indeed be deemed Too Stupid To Live. Alas, they do: apparently it is a prequel to one of her more popular series.
Thistle & Thorne by Ann Aguirre: A woman in the slums has a job forced upon her by the local gang-leader. Although it is a set-up, she becomes the excuse for a brutal campaign.
This was the standout in the collection. Just enough bones of some interesting world-building, decent plotting, and somewhat standard characters that actually have some depth to them. Slight beginnings of a romance that did not in any way interfere with problem resolution.
Sun Storm by Karen Duvall: yet another woman working at a hospital (sigh) in exchange for her demented father’s care. She’s a Deviant, a person who has been exposed to the devastating sun-showers and lived, developing a super-power. She meets Ian outside the hospital, and he tags along as she goes on a run to warn a nearby town of an incoming storm.
A meh, although it might appeal to fans of superheros and Rachael Cline’s weather-related UF. Characterization is an inconsistent mess. Interesting world-building. Amazingly bad dialogue.
Truly, I’d advise a pass, unless you are a fan of any of the authors. It did convince me that Aguirre will likely be worth checking out further, while Kagawa won’t.