Yet another fun episode in the Lords of the Underworld series. I’ve noticed that word crops up almost every time I write a review for one of Showalter’s books—fun. The characters are always so funny, and even when they don’t get along, their dislike of each other always includes funny situations and verbal sparring.
I was a little uncertain of Kaia and Strider as a couple. I wasn’t exactly thrilled to have one of the protagonists have a sexual history with the other protagonist’s friend, but the author actually pulled it off pretty well. Strider was bothered by it, yes, but he eventually got over it and he never tried to “forgive” her, because he knew there was really nothing for him to forgive. I also thought the reason for a big part of his reluctance to be with her made a lot of sense. I never thought about what it would mean for a competitive guy like him to come after “the sexorcist.” I imagine anyone would have anxiety about that.
The setup for putting Strider and Kaia in close proximity was pretty weak, but once they were stuck in each other’s company it wasn’t too hard to ignore that and move on. The harpy games were exciting on their own, so throwing in a little extra heat with Kaia and Strider made it even better. The harpies were one of my favorite parts of the book! They were all so bloodthirsty and off the wall that any scene with them in it—which was most of them—really popped. The violence and heckling between them reminded me of the valkyries in Kresley Cole’s Immortals After Dark series and Shelly Laurenston’s characters in her Pride series. In other words, they were a riot.
I was surprised to hear the backstory on Kaia. I felt bad for her having such a rough life based on that one incident. Especially when they were blaming the wrong person! I was a little surprised she was so emo about her mom not being proud of her, though. How long has it been? Shouldn’t you be over this by now? Either way, her determination to be better was endearing and it was sad to see her be underestimated by those closest to her.
Kaia and Strider were great together. They were both cocky as hell and enjoyed their constant challenges, although Kaia had a tendency to use his inability to refuse a challenge against him when she wanted to get her way. Honestly, I have a sneaking suspicion that no one else out there would put up with their egos so it’s lucky they found each other. 😉
We get to see some of the side characters, but the author kept them from taking over, which has been a complaint of mine in the past. William and Kane get some page time and it seems like there will be an interesting storyline developing with them from the events we see here. We also got a peek at Legion and how she’s doing. I was really surprised with how she seemed in this book. Is it possible that I might actually one day like her now that she seems so different??? That would be pretty shocking. We also got to see more of Sabin and Gwen, which thrilled me because I really enjoyed their story. Plus, more Paris. His storyline really seems to be heating up. I haven’t had much interest in him in the past, but he seems to be getting a darker edge and a bitterness about his demon that quite intrigues me.
I enjoyed most of this book but it was not quite as action filled as most of the other ones, so I felt like I was spinning my wheels quite a few times. It slowed the pacing down and occasionally caused my attention to wander. Luckily the rest of the book pleased me enough that this was not a huge issue. I’m really looking forward to the next entry in the series.
That damn kiss had ruined everything. Had he kept his tongue to himself, he could have continued thinking of Kaia as a friend and only a friend. Now, he just wanted to convince her that blow jobs were a mandatory part of their arrangement.