When I found out there wasn’t going to be a Kate Daniels book in 2012 I knew I had to do something, fast. There was no way I could go a full year without reading something from Ilona Andrews. Even though there was a book from the Kate Daniels world coming out, I wanted more so I picked up a book from The Edge series. Not that I would expect anything less but what I got was a wonderful romance/urban fantasy series. Steel’s Edge is the fourth and final book in the Edge Series. Our H/h are Charlotte de Ney, The Healer, and Richard Mar, brother of Kaldar from Fate’s Edge.
Taken from her home at the age of seven Charlotte de Nay has become The Healer. When she finds out she is barren and her husbands presents her with an annulment she loses it. There is a fine line between healer and destroyer and Charlotte almost trips that line with her ex. She realizes she cannot continue her current life and leaves to travel to the Edge where she can start fresh.
Upon entering The Edge she finds things are so very different from what she is used to. After trying to heal someone and being shot for her efforts she stumble across the grandmother of George and Jack from previous books. She takes Charlotte in and becomes like family to her.
Richard’s goal in life has been to take down the slave traders. They changed his life and the life of his niece irrevocably and they must be stopped. When he injured he is found by people who bring him to Charlotte to be healed. He needs bloods so Charlotte leaves him there with Éléonore. While she is gone the slave traders find him, kill Éléonore and destroy the house. Charlotte vows revenge even if it means using her gift in an ugly way. She follows Richard and the traders into the Weird where she rescues him and teams up with to bring down the slave trade.
So really, what was not to love about this book? It had it all. The plot was so tight and kept me riveted from page one. The Andrews’ create such complex yet identifiable characters. Charlotte and Richard had more of an urban fantasy love match and by that I mean it didn’t come across as romance. They just happened as a couple. I didn’t, at all, doubt the depth of their feeling but this book more explored the world and the parts other characters play than it explored their relationship. Because of the beauty of the overall story not having it be 100% romance was not an issue.
Richard was strong and true. There were times were he wanted to just leave it all behind and go away with Charlotte but he didn’t give up. He stuck to his promise to make the world somewhere where Lark (Sophie) didn’t have to fight if she didn’t want to. Richard’s relationship with his brother was funny and got some great page time.
“Congratulations,” he said, his voice dry. “You finally managed to find a woman as tragically noble as yourself. I didn’t think one existed.”
“I’m not tragic.”
Kaldar held up his hand. “Spare me. Some children were born wearing a silk shirt; you were born wrapped in melancholy. When they slapped you to make you cry, you just sighed heavily and a single tear rolled from your eye.” He dragged his finger from the corner of his left eye to his cheek. “Your first words were probably ‘woe is me’.”
“My first words were ‘Kaldar, shut up!’ because you talk too much. Still do.”
Charlotte was also a great character. She followed through with her desire to avenge Éléonore’s death even though it meant using the wrong side of her gift. My heart hurt to see her struggle towards the end. I thought it brilliantly written the way she had to come back from flaming out. Too often we see no consequences from the display of huge magic usage. Here our characters were heald accountable for that usage.
Now let’s talk about the stars of this book. As with the previous book Jack and George stole the show. For several books now we have watched them grow and mature. We also have the addition of Lark (Sophie). The children/mini adults are heartbreaking and oh so lovable. They grabbed on to me in their first book and haven’t let go yet. I know this is supposed to be the last book in The Edge series, but I beg you Mr. and Mrs. Andrews, PLEASE write their stories. I am not sure I will be able to stand not knowing their fates. I might have to create mini stories for them in my head and that will be nowhere near as good as what you can do. I feel like there is so much left to explore in this world and would be very grateful if we could have more.
As always, this book from Ilona Andrews was a gem. I am never disappointed and I eagerly look forward to their next offering whatever it may be. Final grade- A
“Jason has father-figure issues, doesn’t he?” she asked.
“Yes.” Richard sighed.
“In that case, it’s good that you’re a human Cuisinart,” she said.
“A Cuisinart. It’s an appliance from the Broken. You put vegetables into it, push a button, and it chops them into tiny pieces.”
Richard frowned. “Why would you need an appliance to chop vegetables? Wouldn’t it be easier to chop them with a knife?”
“It’s meant to save time,” she explained.
“Well, cleaning it usually eats up most of the time you save on chopping.”
“So you’re telling me that I’m useless.”
“It’s a neat gadget!”
“And I’m hard to clean, apparently.”