Delighted by the Series: The Crown & Key Series by Clay and Susan Griffths

Delighted by the Series: The Crown & Key Series by Clay and Susan GriffthsThe Crown & Key Series by Susan Griffths

Genres: Steampunk Romance, Urban Fantasy
Published by Del Rey   add to goodreads
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Delighted by the Series

I previously reviewed book one, The Shadow Revolution (review link: http://delightedreader.com/the-shadow-revolution-by-clay-and-susan-griffiths-review/ ) on the blog and loved it so had to continue on with the next two books to find out what happened next. Each book builds on the book before it so this is very much a series that needs to be read in order.

The series is a balanced blend of Steampunk and Urban Fantasy. These two books were much stronger than the one that set it up. I gave them both high ratings, but if I had to choose, The Undying Legion was probably my favorite because I was very taken with how the characters came together, became a cohesive group, and were a formidable team that worked well together by book three. It had more depth due to the character and team growth going on. I love action, but I like to see my characters flesh out, too.

Delighted by the Series: The Crown & Key Series by Clay and Susan GriffthsThe Undying Legion by Susan Griffths

Genres: Steampunk Romance, Urban Fantasy
Published by Del Rey on June 30, 2015
Pages: 338
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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The Undying Legion covers the time from when the group decided to work together under Simon’s leadership through to the unveiling for who and what is behind the ominous stirrings in the shadows.

Simon and Penny work to figure out the properties and use of the key. Kate focuses on helping Imogene have a semblance of normal after becoming one of the doctor’s experiments even as Kate feverishly works to restore her back to her old self. Kate also experiments on a solution to help Charlotte control her werewolf nature. Kate is big on family and drawing these eccentric individuals together as a family is a great deal like herding cats.   Malcolm can’t help with any of those things and he is dead set against trusting in Charlotte’s human nature to keep her werewolf half in line so he returns to London to hunt down the monsters that are hurting people. Their status quo ends when brutal ritualistic murders point to the fact that someone is attempting to perform a powerful magical spell for some purpose of their own. Each step of the ritual works to bring the dead to life and push the group harder to stop the killings and prevent the completion of the spell. The group leaps into action and it is under the pressure of stopping evil that they really start to gel as a formidable team.

I found the group dynamic my favorite part of this story full of intrigue, exciting action, and striking characters. It is not a weak transition book between the previous book and the next, but strong in its own right. There is a set up for what is to come and its building to something huge, but the author’s took the time to make this story more than worth the read.

 

Delighted by the Series: The Crown & Key Series by Clay and Susan GriffthsThe Conquering Dark by Susan Griffths

Genres: Steampunk Romance, Urban Fantasy
Published by Del Rey on July 28, 2015
Pages: 338
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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Throughout the first two books, there were numerous references to the Order of the Oak that was broken up when the members turned on themselves and several were killed or imprisoned and there were many references to the work that Kate’s father and Simon’s father did together. Finally, many things start to make sense as the past is illuminated to shed light on the dire situation in the present as two of that past Order’s leaders are in a tug o’ war over Britain. It’s for all the marbles and Simon and his band of helpers find themselves smack dab in the middle holding the line to protect millions of people who don’t even realize they’re in danger.

After the events of the last book, Simon is left with a personal crisis that affects his ability to help the team. They all still look to him to anchor them and lead them, but he is no longer sure of himself. Kate stands by Simon and will do whatever it takes to restore him because they will need them if they have any hope of defeating Gaios and his evil followers. Nick returns and with him he brings an atmosphere of mistrust and secrets. Simon welcomes him back though the others watch him warily.

The team is pulled so many directions and their enemies are tough. The danger is constant and deadly and they must work together and rely on each other to survive let alone win. Betrayal, loss, and sacrifice face them before all is said and done.

This final book took my breath away. And I do mean that literally. It was one long adrenaline rush that rarely slowed down. The action scenes were crystal clear and I felt I was right there. It felt like a series of climaxes rippling higher and bigger instead of a climb to one peak and then the denouement. Character and team development were there, but not emphasized. The end left me with many questions so I sincerely hope there is more to come.

Overall, this series was a strong one. I loved the well balanced blend of Urban Fantasy and Steampunk. The cast of characters are colorful and well-drawn, the plots engaging all the emotions from humor to heartbreak, and the worldbuilding fascinating. Well worth it for fans of both sub-genres or blends.

Romance Roundabout

Cliché Klatch

Historical Romance

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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.

Latest posts by Sophia Rose (see all)

  • Oh yeah, I want to read it ! I’m still hitting myself for not requesting it on Netgalley when I first saw it, stupid me. But I’ve bought the whole series for my library, and I’ll be the first to read it before my readers do ^^

    • Absolutely! As a librarian, it is your sacred duty so you can recommend to the right readers. 😉
      I do hope you enjoy the series, Iza.

  • I tried getting book 1 on NG but was not approved, nooo. Now I will just to whenever I decide what I want for xmas. So maybe in 3 years

    • They approved me for books one and three, but not two. Weird!
      I have had to put so many on my wish list, too, which I’m sure is at like a five year wait. LOL

  • Debbie Haupt

    Oh I have got to get this series. I reviewed The Vampire Empire for RT loved their writing.

    • Oh, good! I was looking at their other series after I enjoyed this one. Hope you like these, too, Debbie.

  • I haven’t tried reading streampunk yet, but I’ve been looking at series to consider. I’ll have to add these to my list! Great reviews!

    • It took me a while to try steampunk, but I slid into it by the side door when I started reading the blended ones like this series, Bec McMaster’s London Steampunk series and Delilah Dawson’s Blud series. In fact, I’ve read very few straight steampunk books. LOL!

  • Not sure if binge reading this series is good or bad. On one hand you get an epic action and adventure, on the other it’s over too soon! I can see you had a good time with the books though

    • Binge reading is an iffy thing for me usually. The things I don’t like in an author’s books tends to get exaggerated or it all becomes a blur. But I didn’t technically binge the whole series. I read book one several weeks before I picked up books two and three.

  • I love finding a series that has a few books out and binge reading them all, especially if I already liked one of the books. Thanks for the great reviews.

    • These were a lot of fun. I got book one and loved it. Then I went after book two and three a month later. Thanks, Mary!

  • I am really excited to read this series. I have the first book on my e reader, but haven’t gotten around to it yet. But I hope to soon. I love a series like this that builds up to a group of well drawn characters. Fabulous reviews on this series.

    • Oh cool! I hope you like it. Look forward to what you think of it.

  • This was our book club read this month and I was so bad and didn’t read it *hangs head* It really sounds like an awesome time!

    • LOL! I’m not sure I’d be ready every month, either, especially if it was a book I wasn’t in the mood for or if it was a type I didn’t normally read.
      Yeah, these were fun stuff. Hope you get a chance at them soon.

  • vvb reads

    I may have to binge read this too. It sounds sooo appealing.

    • The first one grabbed me and then I waited a whole month, but then read the last two back to back. 🙂 It was a rush and I liked the blend of paranormal and steampunk.

  • Seems like a solid series overall! I love steampunk and romance. Wish there was more heat to these, but you can’t have ’em all. 😀 Lovely reviews, Sophia!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    • LOL! Yes, the romance is very back seat and understated. Action all the way. 😉

  • karina

    So need to read this series!

    • I think you just might, Karina. I had a good time and now I want to read their other series about the vampires.