Book Review: Sapphire Flames by Ilona Andrews

Book: Sapphire Flames by Ilona Andrews

Published August 2019 by Avon|400 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the e-book from the library

Series: Hidden Legacy #4

Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance

In a world where magic is the key to power and wealth, Catalina Baylor is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, and the Head of her House. Catalina has always been afraid to use her unique powers, but when her friend’s mother and sister are murdered, Catalina risks her reputation and safety to unravel the mystery.

But behind the scenes powerful forces are at work, and one of them is Alessandro Sagredo, the Italian Prime who was once Catalina’s teenage crush. Dangerous and unpredictable, Alessandro’s true motives are unclear, but he’s drawn to Catalina like a moth to a flame.

To help her friend, Catalina must test the limits of her extraordinary powers, but doing so may cost her both her House–and her heart.

I liked Sapphire Flames a lot more than I thought I would!  I mean, I liked the previous books in the series, so I was expecting to just like this one.  But I liked it a lot more than I thought I would!

So, this book focuses on Catalina, Nevada’s younger sister.  This book is set several years after the third book on the series, and it’s clear that Nevada’s story is pretty much over.  She does pop up, by way of phone calls, but this book is clearly centered on Catalina as head of house and navigating the family through hard times as their three-year grace period comes to a close.

I really liked Alessandro and Catalina together.  I didn’t spend the whole book waiting for something to happen between them, and I felt like there was more of a something between them than I did with Nevada and Rogan.  I like them together, and there are certainly going to be challenges in terms of them getting together, but I have no doubt it will happen.  I feel like they’re evenly matched, more than Nevada and Rogan.  I’m interested to see how their story plays out over the next few books, and if there will be more books but featuring other characters.

I’m also curious to see how things will go now that they’re past their grace period.  Catalina has a lot in store for her, and I’m sure she’ll rise to the challenge of steering her house in the right direction.  I just hope she can balance that with finding love.  Hopefully with Alessandro, because I do like them together, and I feel like it’s being set up for it to happen.  It’ll be an adventure getting there, I think.

It’s weird how shifting a series to a different set of characters reset the series for me.  I liked Nevada, and I liked her story but maybe I wasn’t super into her story.  Still, her story led to Catalina’s, and that is something I’m happy about.  I’m glad we get to see her abilities, and I really want to see more of them.

4 stars.  I really Sapphire Flames, and I can’t wait to read what happens next!

Book Review: Serpent And Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Book: Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Published September 2019 by HarperTeen|513 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: Serpent & Dove #1

Genre: YA Fantasy

Bound as one to love, honor, or burn.

Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.

Sworn to the Church as a Chasseur, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. His path was never meant to cross with Lou’s, but a wicked stunt forces them into an impossible union—holy matrimony.

The war between witches and Church is an ancient one, and Lou’s most dangerous enemies bring a fate worse than fire. Unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, a choice must be made.

And love makes fools of us all.

Serpent & Dove was just okay.  I wanted to like it more, because overall, the story was pretty cool.

I mean, a witch marries the man who’s hunting her.  It actually bothered me that she was pretty much forced into it to make the Chasseurs look good.  It was hard to get past that, especially once we learn a lot more about the witches and the church.  The church, by the way, reminded me a lot of the Catholic church, and something about how witches are hunted down made me think of the Spanish Inquisition.

I didn’t care for the relationship between Lou and Reid, and I think it’s because of how they’re forced together.  I just had a hard time rooting for them, knowing what I know about Lou and how she had to hide it.  How she managed to keep it hidden from Reid for so long surprised me, but then again, he seemed oblivious at times.

The beginning and the ending were interesting but it was hard to get through the middle of the book.  We learn a lot at the end of the book, and there’s a lot of action at both the beginning and the end, but it felt like the middle was full of nothing I cared about.  I’m actually surprised I finished it, because there were times I wanted to just not finish the book.  I did want to know how everything came together but I don’t know if I’ll be picking up the next book.  It just felt really slow and long.

I felt like, even though there’s more than enough story for a sequel or two, that the story did wrap up pretty well.  It would work well as a stand-alone novel, in my opinion.

2 stars.  Serpent & Dove was okay, and really long and slow-paced.

Book Review: The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton

Book: The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton

Published March 2019 by Freeform|344 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: The Belles #2

Genre: YA Fantasy

In this sequel to the instant New York Times bestseller, Camille, her sister Edel, and her guard and new love Remy must race against time to find Princess Charlotte. Sophia’s Imperial forces will stop at nothing to keep the rebels from returning Charlotte to the castle and her rightful place as queen. With the help of an underground resistance movement called The Iron Ladies-a society that rejects beauty treatments entirely-and the backing of alternative newspaper The Spider’s Web, Camille uses her powers, her connections and her cunning to outwit her greatest nemesis, Sophia, and restore peace to Orleans. 

I have really mixed feelings about The Everlasting Rose.  I really liked The Belles when I read it almost two years ago- enough to pick up the sequel and see what happened next.  But I’m not sure how I feel about the sequel.

I really liked the world and we see more of it in this one.  I felt like the underground resistance randomly came up but I also feel like it sort of makes sense, considering how little Camille actually knew.  We learned some stuff at the end of The Belles that is the focus in this book.  Sophia really takes things to a different level, and part of me wishes we had spent more time closer to Sophia to actually see what happens.  We do get it in bits and pieces throughout the book, which is fine, and works okay enough, considering what’s going on with Camille, Edel and Remy.

I did like the significance of the Everlasting Rose, and how it had a few different meanings.  I really liked the moments where I got to see each meaning of it.  One is definitely better than the other, that’s for sure.

There’s definitely more to the Belles power than I originally thought.  It was hinted at in The Belles, and I did kind of like how it was used throughout the book.  It makes me wish we saw it earlier in the series, because I wanted to see a little bit more of it, but I think it worked well here.  Just because the first book had a different focus than this one, and it might have been a little out of place in this book.

Changes are in store for Orleans, and under Sophia’s rule, you see how much it affects everyone.  What people think about the changes under Charlotte’s rule remains to be seen, and hopefully, we’ll see that in the last book.  Even though my overall feeling is…meh…I still want to finish out the series and see how much has changed.  I won’t be rushing out to get the next book, but at some point, when it is released, I’ll pick it up and read it.

I wanted to like it more, but considering how fast I went through this book, I didn’t like it as much as I could have.  It did keep me reading, though, so I’ll give it that.

2 stars.  Overall, The Everlasting Rose was okay.  The world is interesting but I lost interest in Camille’s world in this book.  Hopefully, the next book get my attention a lot more than this one day.

Book Review: Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Book: Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Published July 2017 by Avon|400 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the hardcover from the library

Series: Hidden Legacy #3

Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance

Just when Nevada Baylor has finally come to accept the depths of her magical powers, she also realizes she’s fallen in love. Connor “Mad” Rogan is in many ways her equal when it comes to magic, but she’s completely out of her elements when it comes to her feelings for him. To make matters more complicated, an old flame comes back into Rogan’s life…

Rogan knows there’s nothing between him and his ex-fiance, Rynda Sherwood. But as Nevada begins to learn more about her past, her power, and her potential future, he knows she will be faced with choices she never dreamed of and the promise of a life spent without him.

As Nevada and Rogan race to discover the whereabouts of Rynda’s kidnapped husband and are forced to confront Nevada’s grandmother, who may or may not have evil motives, these two people must decide if they can trust in each other or allow everything to go up in smoke.

I liked Wildfire!  I’ve enjoyed this series, and it’s been pretty entertaining and interesting.  I’m also excited to keep reading because I really want to see what happens next with Nevada and her family.

The thing with Nevada and Rogan as a couple is that I’ve never felt completed invested in them as a couple.  There’s a lot of interactions but for the most part, it felt like business and not romantic.  I’m not sure if it’s something that happened more off-screen but I didn’t particularly care when a big moment happened between them.  I had a hard time caring because there was barely any build-up to it.

In fact, I’m not really sure why I’m shelving it as a paranormal romance because the romance for me has been minimal.  Actually, urban fantasy might be a better categorization but for now, I’ll keep it under the paranormal romance shelf.

I really like Nevada’s family, and there are a lot of challenges they have to deal with in this book.  I doubt things are over in this book but hopefully, things will be a little better for them.  I don’t want to give it away, but I wasn’t surprised by where things went in terms of them forming a House.  I also wasn’t surprised at the outcome, and I am excited to see how things are different for them.  Assuming things change at all, which they very well could.

Honestly, I don’t have anything else to add for this book.  I’ve definitely said everything I wanted to!

3 stars.  I liked Wildfire, but I’m not interested in Nevada and Rogan as a couple.  I still want to see what happens next!

Book Review: White Hot by Ilona Andrews

Book: White Hot by Ilona Andrews

Published May 2017 by Avon|416 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the e-book from the library

Series: Hidden Legacy #2

Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance

Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill—she knows when people are lying—and she’s used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family’s detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor “Mad” Rogan.

Rogan is a billionaire Prime—the highest rank of magic user—and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada’s “talent.” But there’s no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice…

I liked White Hot!  I think I liked it about the same as the first book in the series, Burn For Me, and I liked seeing what was going on with both Nevada and Connor.

I’m still not sure how I feel about Connor and Nevada as a couple.  The romance really takes a backseat to everything else going on, and even though you can tell they’re into each other, it’s not really acted on until the end of the book.  Which is fine, but I did go into this series expecting more romance than what we’ve been getting.  I’m actually okay with that, because there’s a lot going on in both the book and the world that the characters live in.

I had never considered the extent of Nevada’s abilities before this book.  I mean, I was wondering what she could do, and if there was more to her ability than what we saw in the first book.  There definitely is, and that means there is a massive wrench in any sort of relationship with Connor.  Especially if she goes with one particular option.  And everything we learn about her family…it makes me wish we met her dad and knew him more.  He’s mentioned, of course, but right about now, I really wish he were alive.  Then again, how different would things be if he were alive?

There’s a lot going on in this book, and it’s more of a mystery than trying to find Adam Pierce.  Nevada’s trying to find out what happened to a lawyer, and it puts her in even more danger than trying to find Pierce.  I didn’t think that was possible, but it is.

There’s a lot of shadowy puppeteer stuff going on in the background, what with trying to solve this case, and dealing with the family stuff.  The family stuff is not going away, and I do want to know how that works itself out.  It will mean a lot of changes if Nevada does what I think she’s going to do.

Her family is still a priority, and I’m glad that hasn’t changed.  She would do anything to protect them and keep them safe, and I hope that is something that never changes.  I really do like that it’s important to her, and that she wants some semblance of normalcy and independence.

Rogan is frustrating sometimes, because he seems to go against what she wants, but in his own weird, twisted, messed up way, he does want to protect her and keep her safe.  He doesn’t seem to give her a choice, which she wants very much.  It’s frustrating that he doesn’t seem to respect that.  Hopefully, he’ll figure it out, and they can work things out, because they would be an interesting couple.

3 stars.  I liked White Hot, and I really like spending time in this world.  I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Book Review: Only Ashes Remain by Rebecca Schaeffer

Book: Only Ashes Remain by Rebecca Schaeffer

Published September 2019 by HMH Books For Younger Readers|432 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: Market Of Monsters #2

Genre: YA Fantasy

After escaping her kidnappers and destroying the black market where she was held captive, all Nita wants is to find a way to live her life without looking over her shoulder. But with a video of her ability to self-heal all over the dark web, Nita knows she’s still a prime target on the black market.

There’s only one way to keep herself safe.

Nita must make herself so feared that no one would ever dare come after her again. And the best way to start building her reputation? Take her revenge on Fabricio, the boy who sold Nita to her kidnappers. But killing Fabricio is harder than Nita thought it would be, even with Kovit by her side. Now caught in a game of kill or be killed, Nita will do whatever it takes to win.

I was really excited about Only Ashes Remain, and it ended up being an okay book.  I didn’t like it as much as Not Even Bones, to the point that I’m not sure if I want to finish the series and see how it all ends.

Usually I finish a series if I make it past the first book, but I was pretty uninterested in what was going on.

I wasn’t sure how I felt about Nita in the first book, and in this one?  She was really frustrating.  I get her need to take revenge on Fabricio, but as it would turn out, she was so very wrong about everything that had happened.  There’s a lot that she didn’t realize or see, and I wonder if being at home so much hurt her.

Nita is pretty naive, but that makes sense considering the world she lives and how she grew up.  She trusted the wrong people, and was so focused on going after Fabricio that she didn’t realize the real danger until it was too late.  I don’t know that I would have acted any differently if I were her, and I did like seeing her finally figure things out.

I don’t really have strong thoughts about any of the characters.  Kovit is interesting, and I want to know more about him.  Kovit and Nita have a lot to work out but hopefully they’ll be able to agree to disagree.  It felt like everyone was just…there, and even though we meet quite a few people along the way, I could not begin to tell you anything about them.  I couldn’t even tell you names, much less anything about them.  That’s how little they stuck out.  It’s also been a few days since I’ve finished the book, so that might be part of it too.

I was so curious to see what would happen next, and now I’m not sure if I even want to know how things work out for Nita, Fabricio and Kovit.  I just wasn’t into this book, which is sad because I was so interested in reading it.  Maybe I just wasn’t in the right mood for it, or maybe I just wasn’t into this book.  Either one is possible, and I’m thinking it’s a little bit of both.  I wish I had more to say about this one, but I don’t.

2 stars.  Only Ashes Remain was just okay, and even though I like the world Nita lives in, I just don’t know if I want to keep reading.

Book Review: Living Dead In Dallas by Charlaine Harris

Book: Living Dead In Dallas by Charlaine Harris

Published March 2002 by Penguin USA|196 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the e-book from the library

Series: Sookie Stackhouse #2

Genre: Adult Fantasy/Urban Fantasy

Cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse is having a streak of bad luck. First her co-worker is killed, and no one seems to care. Then she comes face to-face with a beastly creature that gives her a painful and poisonous lashing. Enter the vampires, who graciously suck the poison from her veins (like they didn’t enjoy it).

The point is: they saved her life. So when one of the bloodsuckers asks for a favour, she obliges – and soon Sookie’s in Dallas, using her telepathic skills to search for a missing vampire. She’s supposed to interview certain humans involved, but she makes one condition: the vampires must promise to behave and let the humans go unharmed. But that’s easier said than done, and all it takes is one delicious blonde and one small mistake for things to turn deadly….

The Sookie Stackhouse stories are delightful Southern Gothic supernatural mysteries, starring Sookie, the telepathic cocktail waitress, and a cast of increasingly colourful characters, including vampires, werewolves, and things that really do go bump in the night.

I liked Living Dead In Dallas!  I needed something light and fluffy and this book was a good choice for that.

Sookie finds herself in some interesting situations in this book, and some of it is traveling to Dallas.  I wonder if she’ll have to do more work for Eric, and if something will ever happen with them.  I know she’s with Bill, but I can’t help but feel like there’s the possibility she’ll be with Eric at some point.  Maybe I’m reading a lot into it but I get the impression he’s really interested in her.  Whether it’s romantic or not, I just want to know where things stand with them.

We really see Sookie use her abilities in this one, and I am kind of curious to see if it’s something she can hone or develop more, and if there are different ways to get what she needs.  Assuming she’s asked to get information from people in future books.  It seems like there are ways to turn it off, or at least mute it, so it’s not overwhelming or horrible.

As Sookie spends more time in the supernatural world, we see different groups and creatures.  The world she lives in is opening up to both her and to us, and I have no doubt that it will continue to open up.  She lives in an interesting world, and the South is the perfect setting for all of the weird happenings.  It makes a perfect backdrop for the vampires and shapeshifters we see.

Like the first book, this is one that I don’t have a lot to say about.  It’s an enjoyable read, and good for this time of year, when I don’t want to read anything heavy.  It’s a fun, quick read.

3 stars.  I liked Living Dead In Dallas, and I can’t wait to see what adventures Sookie has.

Book Review: Burn For Me by Ilona Andrews

Book: Burn For Me by Ilona Andrews

Published October 2014 by Avon|382 pages

Where I Got It: I own the paperback

Series: Hidden Legacy #1

Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more dangerous desire…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world. 

I liked Burn For Me!  Nevada and Rogan are interesting, and I really liked the magic system.  Their world is one I wanted to stay in just a little bit longer.  It’s also one I wanted to know more about.

This book felt pretty light on the romance- there was a point where I thought Adam was going to completely change and end up with Nevada, but I realized that wouldn’t work, because things were set up so she’d end up with Rogan.  It felt more about trying to find Adam, then their attraction to each other, but maybe I was so interested in everything else that was going on that the romance went over my head.

Honestly, I think it’s because of the cover.  I haven’t read a lot of paranormal romance/urban fantasy but based on what I have read, I think I went in with the expectation there would be a lot more romance.  Part of me is hoping we’ll see more of that in the books to come, but even if it doesn’t happen, I still want to keep reading to see what happens to Nevada, her family and Rogan.

The magic is really cool, and it’s interesting how magic can get more powerful, or less powerful, depending on the generation, and how powerful their parents are.  The dynasties that each family creates based on their powers was something I wanted to know more about.

Especially because Nevada gets dragged into this world she doesn’t want anything to do with.  She’s dedicated to her family, and would do anything to protect them, even though it won’t end well for her.  I wanted to see more of her family, because they seem like a close-knit group who work really well together.  She also seems to be the main provider for them, and I’m glad she survived, if only to take care of them.  Her family is colorful and I loved that.  I wanted more with them because of it.

I like that Nevada is practical.  She has to be, but she is this practical, smart person in a world very different than the one she is used to.  She clearly didn’t want to work with Rogan but did because she had to in order to protect her family and the family business her father worked hard to build up.

Nevada had some great one-liners as well, and there’s an interesting dynamic between her and Rogan.  I am curious to see if this series will follow them, or if other characters will be the focus of the other books.  I’ll have to read to find out but their story feels far from over.

3 stars.  I liked Burn For Me, especially Nevada’s family, and the world they live in.  I do want to see what happens next.

Book Review: Gravemaidens by Kelly Coon

Book: Gravemaidens by Kelly Coon

Published October 2019 by Delacorte Press|416 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: Gravemaidens #1

Genre: YA Fantasy

The start of a fierce fantasy duology about three maidens who are chosen for their land’s greatest honor…and one girl determined to save her sister from the grave.

In the walled city-state of Alu, Kammani wants nothing more than to become the accomplished healer her father used to be before her family was cast out of their privileged life in shame.

When Alu’s ruler falls deathly ill, Kammani’s beautiful little sister, Nanaea, is chosen as one of three sacred maidens to join him in the afterlife. It’s an honor. A tradition. And Nanaea believes it is her chance to live an even grander life than the one that was stolen from her.

But Kammani sees the selection for what it really is—a death sentence.

Desperate to save her sister, Kammani schemes her way into the palace to heal the ruler. There she discovers more danger lurking in the sand-stone corridors than she could have ever imagined and that her own life—and heart—are at stake. But Kammani will stop at nothing to dig up the palace’s buried secrets even if it means sacrificing everything…including herself.

I really liked Gravemaidens!  I was drawn in by the cover, which is really pretty.  And it sounded like something I’d like to read.

I loved how Kammani just wanted to save her sister.  I also loved that she sees the selection of her sister to be a death sentence.  Everyone- or most everyone- sees it as an honor but Kammani wasn’t one of them, and that was nice to see.  She really does everything she can to save the ruler of her country, though it seems to be to save her sister from dying, and not because he’s a good ruler or anything like that.

She’s definitely trying to figure things out, even though it ends up being pretty dangerous for her.  Things go in a completely different way than she expected, and things weren’t what they seemed.  The book stands on its own pretty well, though I’m curious to see how the second (and final) book goes.

Gravemaidens does have a lot of elements that I’ve seen in other fantasy books, so nothing was particularly surprising as far as characters or plot goes.  It didn’t get in the way of me enjoying the book at all, because I did like Kammani and how she was willing to figure things out.  You could tell she cared about her sister, and they do have a really great moment towards the end of the book.

Something about going into the afterlife made me think of Greek mythology.  Maybe it’s because Netherworld was mentioned frequently, and paying the Boatman coin came up several times.  I know the afterlife isn’t a concept solely related to Greek mythologies, because it comes up in a lot of religions.  But I did finish Outrun The Wind recently, and that’s a Greek mythology retelling, so maybe I just have Ancient Greece/Greek mythology on my mind.  Now, I’m curious to know if she was inspired by any kind of mythology.

Still, I wanted to know more about Kammani’s world.  You get an idea of what it’s like, and I hope we see more of it in the next book.

I liked Kammani but I didn’t love her.  I’m not sure why I didn’t love her but you could tell saving her sister was important.  I wasn’t a big fan of her sister, Nanaea, who came across as spoiled for most of the book.  She did make more sense and I understood her better by the end of the book, but I still haven’t warmed up to her.

Speaking of liking or not liking characters, I wasn’t a fan of Dagan.  Something about how much he wanted to be with Kammani was off-putting to me, and even though he said he didn’t want to push her, he also seemed much more interested in her than she was in him.  I wasn’t interested in anything romantic between Dagan and Kammani but I was intrigued by the possibility of Naru and Kammani.  I feel like anything romantic has been set up for Dagan and Kammani, but if it does, it’ll take a lot of convincing to get me on board.

4 stars.  I really liked Gravemaidens and considering that things seemed to be wrapped up pretty well, I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Book Review: Outrun The Wind by Elizabeth Tammi

Book: Outrun The Wind by Elizabeth Tammi

Published November 2018 by Flux|302 pages

Where I Got It: I own the paperback

Series: None

Genre: YA Fantasy/Re-Telling

The Huntresses of Artemis must obey two rules: never disobey the goddess, and never fall in love. After being rescued from a harrowing life as an Oracle of Delphi, Kahina is glad to be a part of the Hunt; living among a group of female warriors gives her a chance to reclaim her strength, even while her prophetic powers linger. But when a routine mission goes awry, Kahina breaks the first rule in order to save the legendary huntress Atalanta.

To earn back Artemis’s favor, Kahina must complete a dangerous task in the kingdom of Arkadia— where the king’s daughter is revealed to be none other than Atalanta. Still reeling from her disastrous quest and her father’s insistence on marriage, Atalanta isn’t sure what to make of Kahina. As her connection to Atalanta deepens, Kahina finds herself in danger of breaking Artemis’ second rule.

She helps Atalanta devise a dangerous game to avoid marriage, and word spreads throughout Greece, attracting suitors willing to tempt fate to go up against Atalanta in a race for her hand. But when the men responsible for both the girls’ dark pasts arrive, the game turns deadly.

I thought Outrun The Wind was just okay.  I wanted to like it more, but I had a really hard time getting into it.

I was bored the entire time I was reading the story.  If you’re looking for any action, this is not the book for you.  It moved at what felt like a snail’s pace, and I had a hard time staying interested in the book.  I wanted something more to happen, and it didn’t.

I liked the setting, though.  Kahina’s world is one where gods and goddesses roam the earth, and are living, breathing people.  It’s too bad we only got a glimpse of Artemis, but this book wasn’t about her- it was about Kahina and Atalanta.  I’ve heard of Atalanta, but I don’t know her story, so I can’t speak to this book as a re-telling of her story.  I felt like I was in Ancient Greece the entire time, and though the setting didn’t feel like an additional character, I think the world was still one I wanted to spend more time in.

I don’t know how I feel about Kahina or Atalanta.  I didn’t feel particularly interested in their stories or what happened to them, and I wish their backstories felt a little more clear.  Their pasts felt really muddled, and we get some tidbits about what happened, but it seemed a little fuzzy to me.  Maybe I just wasn’t paying enough attention.

It seemed like it was supposed to be a romance, but I didn’t pick up on that at all.  The description made it seem like there was going to be romance involved, but it felt like they went from enemies to friends and never quite made it beyond friends.  Unless I’m massively missing out on something, and I’m completely and utterly clueless.  Maybe I just need to be hit over the head with it, because any romantic connection that was in this book went over my head.

Kahina and Atalanta just didn’t feel completely fleshed out to me, though I felt like we knew Kahina a little bit better.  Atalanta felt a little more guarded and closed off, but I still feel like we didn’t get to know them as much as we could have.  Maybe that’s why I felt like they never moved past the friends stage.

2 stars.  Outrun The Wind was okay, and I wanted to like it more than I really did.  It wasn’t for me, but if you like Greek mythology, this might be worth checking out.