Books are cheaper than heroin, but they DO add up....

Amy, Carrie, Chanin and Sarah buy (and read and review) their own stuff. They've been known to shop around from dealer to dealer looking for the best price. If you're interested in slipping them something to try out, just contact us.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Hexed by Ilona Andrews, Yasmine Galenorn, Allyson James, Jeanne C. Stein

Curses! Foiled again!

Except that this book is more like "Curses! But then safe again."

Hexed is an anthology of four short stories about curses (well, hexes, really) foisted onto characters from existing series by the four authors. I knew of two of the series when I noticed this book, and I bought it solely for the Ilona Andrews contribution. I was not disappointed. Magic Dreams focuses on two characters previously introduced in the the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews. This series is urban fantasy with a touch of romance set in a world where magic and technology no longer co-exist. When magic is "up" technology stops working; conversely, when magic is "down" technology works as it should. In addition to an interesting take on vampires and weres, this series incorporates magical legends from cultures that aren't always represented in today's urban fantasy books. I really love the series, and it was great to get a closer look of the two re-occurring characters, Jim and Dali. The plot was an excellent stand alone story where Dali must save Jim from a Japanese whore-spider curse. (Yes, you read that correctly.) If you haven't read any of the Kate Daniels' books, this is an intriguing peak into her world.

The second series familiar to me was created by Yasmine Galenorn. Ice Shards was a decent short story about a house sprite trying to discover the truth from her past and lift a curse that's preventing her from having children. There's just something about this series that doesn't speak to me. I've started two of the full stories and have never finished them. I think it's just a matter of personal preference.

Of the two that were new to me, the Allyson James story, Double Hexed, really intrigued me. In Double Hexed, someone has worked a double hex (one that doubles in strength when someone unsuccessfully tries to remove it) into the wards on a hotel. The characters in this story are featured into Allyson James' Stormwalker series. I'm going to look into those books because I liked her main character and a few of supporting characters. Double Hexed is considered 2.5 of a 4 book, to date, series.

Blood Debt by Jeanne C. Stein was the weakest of the four stories, in my opinion. Here, a relatively new vampire is called to task for past actions and needs to save herself and a friend's brother. Short stories always make it hard to tell, in my opinion, but I found the romance part of Blood Debt to be a little too sudden and a little too pat. I was ready for the story to end, and that's never something that happens when I'm reading the Ilona Andrews' books.

One of the reasons I buy anthologies is for the opportunity to discover new series on the cheap. I would have considered this book worth the price even if I had only liked Magic Dreams by Ilona Andrews. However, the Yasmine Galenorn story was decent enough filling and finding the Stormwalker series was an added bonus and treat!

I recommend this book for fans of urban fantasy, but don't take my word for it. Check out the reviews on Pin It

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