I gave four stars because I didn’t know how to give three and a half. I loved the storyline of this series more than the ShadowFever books because Dani is a compelling character, even if she can be a bit annoying, but what fourteen year old who’s lived through what she has wouldn’t be? Also, I couldn’t give this a higher rating because I felt like the character of Dani in this series should have been older given the subject matter she’s being subjected to in this book. Clearly, Ryodan has an inappropriate thing for her, well he and Christian McKelter and several of the other men in the story. Dancer is the only one who rightfully should have a thing for her, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the direction in which this is going. She is destined to be with Ryodan, and hopefully this will happen only after she’s twenty-one.
POSSIBLE SPOILERS BELOW:
Despite the fact there wasn’t any blatant sex in this book, there was plenty of sexual innuendo. Heck it began with 14-year old Dani indavertently touching Ryodan’s penis, and all the penis jokes throughout. Poor fictitious 14-year old. If this were an older Dani (even 18), this story would have received five stars from me, but I suppose I shouldn’t impose my morality on this very well-written story. All that aside, this story was more compelling than Mac’s stories, because Dani begins as a very strong character, despite have been abused by her mother who didn’t know how to mother a child with her gifts, then used by Rowena to do her bidding, then befriended then kicked to the curb by Mac, this child has been through a lot. Then in this story, she is “hired” by Ryodan to investigate the myserious Icing going on in AWC Dublin. Ryodan is already more than a little in love with the woman he hopes she will become, and his attraction to her is not just for her mind, either. What ticked me off was Ryodan’s entrance into a relationship with Jo, one of Dani’s few true Sidhe Seer friends form the Abbey. Of all the women in Chester’s he could’ve chosen someone else given that this was someone important to Dani. I can’t fathom how he’s going to get out of that one unless Jo dies, because Dani has seen them doing the dirty, and I don’t think she’s likely to forget anytime soon.
I suppose the character I sympathize with the most of the men attracted to Dani is Dancer, with Christian McKelter coming up second. Dancer doesn’t have the sophistication to compete for Dani’s heart yet, unless there’s something about him we’re going to find out later on. She loves him as her friend, and he’s technologically savvy, but she (and Ryodan) feels like he’s a liability in battle. Christian McKelter has the power to compete for her heart, but he’s a “death by sex” fey (fae), so I don’t think she’s going to give him any real play, but you never know. Christian has become something he didn’t want to be, so he’ll be acting according to his nature. Eventually, he will act on his feeling for Dani if given the chance, and he’s saved from the Unseelie monster who took him off to knit with his innards. I think his feelings for Dani are genuine even if his memory waxes and wanes due to the Fae change driving him mad. His sacrifice may soften Dani up to him. However, if she decides to give her virginity to him in the end, I think it would only be to piss Ryodan off, and Ryodan will kill Christian if given half the chance.
I look forward to reading the next installment, although it’s likely she’ll be fourteen again given how it ended, unless a time leap occurs in the second book (and I really hope it does). I don’t want to read the next two books torn between being a mother who has children older than Dani and hating that she has to be subjected to such a grown up life before her time.