Burned by Karen Marie Moning #Review

Posted May 26, 2016 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 22 Comments

Burned by Karen Marie Moning #Review

One StarOne StarOne Star

Series: #7 Fever
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Dell
Released on November 24, 2015
Pages: 512
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased

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I came to this book after recently finishing Iced.  I was ready to keep pursuing story threads that were introduced in Iced.  I liked where it was going and how all the characters were interacting.  This one picked up some of those threads for which I was glad, but it was one of those ‘be careful what you wish for’ reads.  Interesting things happened, but it will depend on perspective to decide if it made for a good installment to the series.

I found it a disappointment to a certain extent and it was very much a transition book.  I’m just going to get it out of the way- Mac was a boring and annoying heroine.  Any enjoyment I had was for everything and everyone else that was going on around her

See, that is the point- everything was going on around her.  She was this static, stagnant piece that bogged down the story and kept the reader stuck in her head so much.  It was Mac in a holding pattern- ‘Can’t do this, can’t do that, can’t, can’t, can’t…because, because, because’.  The world is going to pieces.  Literally.  But we’re stuck with Mac worried because she has the evil book inside her, worried because she can’t use her spear, worried because creepy creatures are following her, worried because people can’t know that she knows xyz’.

The sharp, tight plot of the earlier books are not present in this one.  Mac is a pale shadow of the dark, raw warrior woman of Shadowfever.  Instead of engaging with Barrons, their presence as a couple is lacking and barely present.

The decision to swing the spotlight back on Mac and away from Dani was disappointing to me.  But wow, that was an interesting choice to shock the readers when it comes to Dani.  I’m going to reserve opinion on how I feel about that until I read the next book.

KMM used the fae world inside the Silvers with its own rules about time to age the girl about five years and split her personality so now she is nothing like the Dani of old.  She’s a cold, icy beautiful warrior woman who puts Mac into the shadows and is now old enough to tantalize the equally strong and cunning Ryodan.  It’s like she’s a different person right now (and she is since she goes by Jada and says she’s not Dani) which is why I was okay with it, but I don’t know what will happen if the Dani side of her split person ever makes an appearance.

So the storyline…Mac confronts Dani planning to make her peace, but instead finds that she still isn’t ready to forgive the girl for her sister’s death.  This drives Dani to rush through the Silver mirrors of the fae and become lost.  Mac hides her part in making Dani disappear until she realizes that while Mac was off researching how to get the evil book out of her, Dani was saving the world and is now critical to lots of people who need her.  Mac’s not the only game in town and now there are several others who can get the job done.  Mac is forced to truly confront her feelings about her sister’s death and Dani’s role which was not what it seemed as the truth comes out.  But Mac’s epiphany about Dani might have come too late.

In the meantime, an Unseelie Princess appears and has a disconcerting effect on Lor.  The icing issue may be over, but it left black holes that are growing and ripping apart the world.  Cruce’s effect on the abbey is growing stronger.  There is a new and powerful group of Sidhe-Seers on the town and their leader, Jada, has an agenda that doesn’t bode well for several key players.  Kat comes to Ryodan for help to become the gifted leader she is meant to be.  Ryodan is finally surprised when he is confronted by the appearance of Jada.   Mac has a suppressed memory appear that makes her doubt Barrons.  Christian is in need of a rescue after his selfless act at the end of the last story.

This was book seven and really needs to be read in order or things will make very little sense.

This book was not an utter disaster for me, but there are several moments when I was disappointed.  Mac and Barrons as a couple?  Don’t look for it here.  Mac as a fighter?  Uh uh.  Mac as a serious contender in helping to save the world?  Again, look elsewhere.  Mac is superfluous at best.  There really was no point in the story that she was pivotal and yet she is there and she is the narrator.  Okay, I guess the times when she opened her mouth and told the wrong people secrets that they shouldn’t know, or when she took a break from the world falling to pieces to do a bit of Puck-like relationship tweaking between Ryodan, Jo, and Lor, but really she was a distraction at best.  And that tiff she gets into with Barrons was eyeroll worthy and her issue that now he isn’t trustworthy was drama llama stuff.  I can only hope she either takes a more pro-active role in the next book or it goes back to being Dani as the heroine.

This book was a transition book and I can appreciate that it was bridging things and setting up for bigger stuff to come.  Much of what was happening other than the rescue of Christian from the Crimson Hag was putting things in place for the future story arc.  I’ve never been one to mind too much even if it ends up not being a favorite book in the series.

The highlights for me were definitely the ongoing reveals and new little intriguing secrets popping up.  More is revealed about the Nine and the Unseelie King shares some pretty impressive reveals that went over Mac’s head, but not the reader’s.  She really needs to pay more attention to his cryptic disclosures.  The thing with Ryodan and Dani is still simmering.  And I am still waiting for Dancer to play his part because I think it will be shocking. The highlanders make an appearance in this one and are in on the rescue efforts for Christian.

I had a teary-eyed moment near the end because there is a critical loss in this book.

And then there is that ending.  She gets me each time with my mouth left open in surprise.

So, while, this one was one that left me wanting, I am still eager to press forward and see where events in this series take me.  More edge of my seat danger and more Ryodan, please!

Challenges Met:

Romance Roundabout #173 UF
Bad Boys #24

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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  • While I like a surprise ending and also like fae and other things you mentioned int this review, Mac doesn’t sound appealing as a character. Thanks for the review.

    • Yeah, it was half good with the primary heroine, meh. But its in the series and must be read to get to the next book. Maybe Mac will get better.

  • I’ve read her Highlander series but I’ve never read this series.

    • They share the same world and the Highlanders pop up in these books once in a while. I’ve been told the other series is better, but I still need to read them so can’t say. 🙂

  • Debbie Haupt

    AHHHHH, I know how you feel Sophia Rose. I left the series after Shadowfever and have been wanting to pick it back up but there just aren’t enough hours in the day LOL. Thanks for the great review!

    • Sympathy pains, huh, Debbie? LOL
      There was enough other stuff going on to keep it interesting and then that end has me really eager to keep going.

  • Sooo, behind with this series. I read book one which I really enjoyed. Sounds like this book is losing it.

    • I love the series as a whole and other than this book, I haven’t minded Mac like a lot of other people, but I really struggled with her pulling an impersonation of a statue in this one. Hope it changes in next book back to her getting involved again.

  • I have really struggled with like Mac over the series and through five books that I have read—couldn’t get to liking her very much. I never know what to think about surprise endings though.

    • Yeah, she’s not my favorite, but I didn’t mind her until this book. She bored me to tears with her ‘do-nothing-ness’.
      But that ending, it was very much one of those hooks meant to make you go crazy waiting for the next book. I’m just enough behind that the next book is out so I can see what comes next without having to wait too long.

  • I am glad to hear you still enjoyed this book to a certain extend, but it also sounds a bit disappointing with how the point of view switched back to Mac and she’s a shadow of herself. I just can’t imagine that happening after how she handled everything in Shadowfever. And how her relationship with Barrons changed sounds like it would bother me a bit.

    That change about Dani does sound like it was and interesting twist, I read the spoiler. But I am not sure if I would like it, it sounds like they somehow make up a rule to make her older because readers complain about it. And I actually liked Dani in Iced, so I am not sure if I would enjoy the change.

    I hope the next book will be a good one for you, with how you say this one feels like a transition book. I don’t mind those as much, but they can make for less fun reading, but it will be worth it if the thing it builds up for is worth the wait. It does sound like it had some good parts with the secrets, the twists and the ending.

    I am glad you read this one and shared your thoughts, but so far I don’t think I will continue the series as I think I would just be disappointed. I am looking forward to hear what you think of the next book!

    • You were on my mind, Lola, when I wrote up this review. I promised to be the guinea pig and try it so you could decide. Haha!
      This is not the same Mac you saw in Shadowfever and the only scenes she has with Barrons seem to be her flipping out b/c he kept something from her that she even agrees was a better choice to make at the time.
      I suspect you are right about the age decision for Dani though we’ll see if I end up being okay with it when I get the chance to read the next book.
      I didn’t want to read the books back to back after the way this one felt. Needed time to get in the mood again. 🙂

  • I quit reading this series with the one before Iced. I read so many bad reviews about it that I just didn’t buy it. Not too long ago, I found Iced for a really good price so I got it. Still can’t make myself start it. This one has had a truck load of bad written about it as well. I am thinking no. Just no. Good for you that you stuck with it even with all your issues. I think it would have been a dnf for me! Thanks for such an honest review-always appreciated!

    • I don’t blame you for not wanting to dive in enthusiastically or at all. The last one, Iced, I waded into carefully and ended up liking it. Got my hopes up and didn’t go as cautiously into this one and fell on my face. By reading Iced and enjoying it, I got myself hooked into certain threads that I needed to see the end. Now I’m still hooked and have to keep going. So yeah, the jumping off point is Shadowfever. After that, you might end up needing and not getting completely satisfied. LOL!

  • Wow, your review mirrors my thoughts on a book I recently finished. I felt it took the series nowhere, until the end, and the heroine annoyed me. Still, it’s really hard to actually hate a book when other things keep you reading.

    • Well then, I know exactly how you feel- addicted and frustrated at the same time. Haha!

  • is this more ya or adult?

    • This is adult. It gets dark in a few spots back around book four plus all, but one or two characters are ‘mature’ (some more or less) adults. 😉

      • ah okay Thank you! I;m going to have to try this one out 🙂

        • I loved her worldbuilding and many of the characters. It will have a fantasy feel the way she brings in the fae race, but the rest is pure Urban Fantasy. 🙂 Oh, and the heroine can get annoying at times, but the rest of the story is worth it.

  • Oh weird about Dani. I never really liked her character. Sorry to hear this one was eh and Mac a disappointment. Hopefully the next will be less transition and the characters a little less iffy for ya.

    • Dani had the annoying arrogant teenager thing going for her, but whew, this change will be interesting.

      Yeah, I really hope next book turns things around and Mac shoots back into action. I like where the worldbuilding is going with things.