Leather does not a kick-ass heroine make.
With the avalanche of urban fantasies these days, it’s difficult to be precise in one’s book selection. The story blurb on the back cover can be so deceiving, pushing all the right buttons, hitting all the right kiliti nerves. I don’t know how others do it, but I oftentimes let my self be just carried away and regret later the hole in my wallet from a wasted purchase.
I’m afraid I have to list Queen of Shadows under misses. The excess of clichés and bland characters did nothing for a formulaic story, in which vampires are real, very much a part of society, they hate us, they love us, they kill us, they save us. There was no major effort to make this story stand out from the pack.
The story was sufficiently intriguing, of a musician with the power to manipulate her audience’s emotions, in a city secretly ruled by an army of vampires, where head vampire falls in love with a fragile human after he finds her brutalized by thugs. He mentors her on shielding and helps her to heal, while fighting against his attraction to her. She was also attracted right away alright but then she struck me as someone easily pushed willy-nilly anyway.
It wasn’t that bad, I guess. The fact that this is a published book tells us that the author has risen from the ranks of wannabes to actually making a name. I can respect that, but I also have to be honest that I am in a comparing mood right now, and I find this book unremarkable compared with the likes of the Kate Daniels and Greywalker series. Queen of Shadows received the brunt of my disappointment over finding ok instead of great. That my introduction to the female protagonist was when she was busy whining and absorbed in self-pity did not help any in creating a good first impression. It was down the drain after the first chapter, actually.
Kiliti – Tagalog slang word meaning, roughly, something causing excitement, often used in connection with romance situations