Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Indie/Self Published
Released on September 13, 2019
Source: Kindle Unlimited
After devouring the exciting Dragon’s Claw following Dory Basarab’s latest adventure, I was thrilled to discover that the author planned to do a companion story showing some of the same events from Cassie Palmer series character, War Mage, John Pritkin. But, it wasn’t simply a companion story telling a different perspective. It turned out to be a story told in split time and only tapped briefly into Dory’s story. I was left amazed by more electrifying world building and setting, twisted around and upside down by the insanely clever plot, and just utterly riveted because this was Pritkin’s perspective and lots of his backstory I couldn’t have asked for anything better when I anticipated this one coming.
Siren’s Song marries both of the author’s series. This one falls after Ride the Storm, book 8 in the Cassie Palmer series and coincides with Dragon’s Claw book 4.5 in the Dorina Basarab series. Because it’s Pritkin’s story, it makes more sense if the reader is current with the Cassie Palmer series though it wouldn’t be a total loss for those who only read the Dory series. But, for one who reads both, like moi, it works the best.
So, John Pritkin has just been saved by Cassie from a horrific demon curse and is supposed to be recouping. But, instead, he finds himself at the Las Vegas War Mage HQ with no idea how he got there and listening to Caleb, a friend and fellow mage, tell him stories even while some sort of memory from the past- a past he never experienced- are crashing in on him. They are interrupted when Caleb and the other mages are enthralled and go through a portal to the magical under city of Hong Kong. John feels the pull of the enthrallment, but it doesn’t work on him because he isn’t entirely human. He goes through the portal to figure out what is going on only to encounter sheer insanity as mages, vamps, and storms are after him even while another set of unenthralled works to fight off the enthralled and save the city from an unknown, but powerful threat. Meanwhile, John’s still getting those wonky visions and barely surviving deadly attack after attack by luck and the skin of his teeth.
I’ll be honest, when this one got going, I felt physically dizzy from all that was going on. This is not an uncommon occurrence when it comes to this author’s books. Nothing makes sense, until it finally, brilliantly, does. You just have to fasten your safety harness and hang on for the duration of the ride to get there. Because of the crazy pace and jittery, distracting events, its easy to assume there isn’t much character or world development in these, but the author has a gift of giving depth and feeling to her characters and great description to her world even while its on a nutter and trying to kill the main character throughout.
John Pritkin has been a secondary character whose story expanded through each new installment in the Cassie Palmer series so that he is as beloved and important as Cassie herself to most readers- me included. There were some short stories and novellas from his perspective, but this was the first novel-length and I devoured all the details from his past, his thinking, and how he feels about being the only human-fey-demon in existence.
It was the height of wonderful when he and Dory finally meet. Or should I also include Dory’s second half, Dorina? John is attune to the half-human half-vamp Dhampir because, like him, she is alone and unique and feared because of who she is. She also fights a split personage and an internal struggle over what half of her is to be in charge though she is well ahead of him in that her two sides are in communication. He is faced with unleashing his powerful demon half if he is to help save the city and stop the enemy from destroying it and gaining more power.
As you might have guessed, this was insane and stupendous. I am left wanting more and frantically checking dates on the next releases for both series. Urban Fantasy fans who love all the action and excitement you can hold should definitely consider reading both these series.
New Release #130