Jean, 39, lover of sci-fi, horror and fantasy, reader of comic books, conqueror of genre fiction.
Even better than the first book. I am absolutely hooked on this series now, and I regret nothing! Talon and Sunshine were marvelous; from what I've seen so far, I adore that Kenyon's characters, both male and female, are never cookie cutter, they're never just walking stereotypes meant to fill out one half of a romantic role. They're full characters, and they have their own eccentricities; they're not overwritten, but to my delight, she takes the time to explain their motives, to make me understand them. That's a good author.
So glad to see Amanda and Kyrian again, to keep them a part of the story; I have a feeling I'm going to have a little bit of separation anxiety each time a new book starts and I don't want to let the other characters go! Zarek is off to an... interesting start. Didn't love the tortured shtick at first, but his connection with Sunshine made more interesting, more multidimensional. Certainly interested enough to eagerly await Dance with the Devil! There was maybe a little more Acheron than I would have liked. I'm interested, but not quite as much as she seems to be in writing him, and certainly not as much as I am in the other men of the series. And if there's one real complaint I had, it's that the book ends on a graphic sex scene between Artemis and Ash; it's extremely close to rape and even though there's a nice, happy epilogue of Sunny and Talon, I would have just preferred to have a nice, happy ending sort of sexy time instead of it leaving me feeling a bit soiled.
The most common complaint I've seen of the book was that there was too much sex. To which I throw my head back and laugh hysterically, mostly because I was sad there wasn't as much as Night Pleasures, or it felt as if there wasn't. And, as well as the sex being wonderfully erotic and quite often times creative, it felt that when the novels were more focused on the romance and eroticism, the female lead had a more equal role in the story. Sunshine is an extremely strong character, but I felt myself reading quickly through some of the story passages about Acheron because I wanted to get back to her, sex scenes or no; it felt like there were fairly long stretches without her.
I was skeptical of the reincarnation storyline at first, and then was totally won over by the fact that she tackles the idea head-on that Sunshine is a very different woman from Nynia, that she challenges him, and it adds some comedy to it to have Talon a bit indignant at first that she doesn't just automatically do what he tells her to. I don't usually like the trope of the reincarnated lovers, but it works, and I was won over. She has a way of taking two characters I couldn't imagine working together, and just proving me wrong!
The story was also stronger than it was in the first book (that I read; I'm grabbing Fantasy Lover now) but that has it's downsides as well as upsides, as I've elaborated. And while Night Pleasures felt as if it was setting up the world, this one inhabits it, opens it up. Very excited to continue the series. And now extremely anxious to get to Bride and Vane's story!