Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Review: Shadow Kin by M.J. Scott

On one side, the Night World, rules by the Blood Lords and the Beast Kind. On the other, the elusive Fae and the humans, protected by their steadfast mages...

Born a wraith, Lily is a shadow who slips between worlds. Brought up by a Blood Lord and raised to be his assassin, she is little more than a slave. But when 
Lily meets her match in target Simon DuCaine, the unlikely bond that develops between them threatens to disrupt an already stretched peace in a city on the verge of being torn apart...

Solid world building and a fascinating protagonist. I can't wait to see what Scott will come up with next!

"Gray eyes narrowed at me, looking like she wanted to kill me.
She looked beautiful. Beautiful and deadly."

Lily is a wraith. She's a complex creature of mysterious origins who can move invisibly through the dark and walk freely through any solid object or magical ward. Wraiths are rare, dangerous and make perfect assassins.

As a child, Lily was sold to the viscious Blood lord, Lucius. A very powerful and effective weapon, she is Lucius' prize pet, hated and feared by all. 

Between Lucius' obsessive control and other creatures labeling her as an "abomination", Lily is isolated. She's without support or friendship and has reluctantly accepted her obligations to her brutal and remorseless owner. 

She lives a life of slavery and abuse, often humiliated and forced to kill on command.  

Between her twisted relationship with Lucius and the abandonment by her Fae mother, you can't help but to feel sympathy toward Lily's character and her unfortunate circumstances. 

She's a wonderfully entertaining contradication - a highly efficient killing machine who is emotionally fragile. She can slip into the dark and slice her target's throat, but she blushes fiercely when being seduced by a man. 

Lily is paired with a strong male character who compliments her nicely. I can't say with certainty that he feels entirely original, but there is something about Simon that I found compelling. 

He is a sunmage and a healer. He first meets Lily when she attempts to assassinate him in his bedroom, by Lucius' orders. 

Unfortunately, Lily isn't aware that her potential victim can call sunlight. Her wraith abilities are stifled and Simon quickly overpowers her.

As the story progresses, they must work together to expose Lucius' crimes, keep Lily safely out of his grasp and slowly begin to earn each other's trust. 

Lucius doesn't give up easily and he will do anything in his power to retrieve his pet assassin.

Despite all of the entertainment, I wasn't able to give "Shadow Kin" a full five stars. It definitely had the potential, but there was a deal breaker that presented itself more frequently toward the end. Typos. Not just a couple of typos, but several typos that brought along a lot of their friends. 

Then, there was the confusing jumps between points of view. I've read many books where the change was executed flawlessly, but unfortunately this wasn't one of them. The current narrator wasn't immediately apparent, and those moments of confusion were distracting and occasionally irritating.

But regardless, this was still an enjoyable read. 

Overall, this story was dark, sexy and exciting. Bring on "Blood Kin"

I should stop this. Now. 
"Forget I asked," I said.
He laughed. It didn't sound terribly amused. More torn.
"That's just it," he said. "I can't."


Braine said...

sounds more like a 3, you're generous with your stars. But yeah, shifting POV's can be tricky and if done really well can be exciting like the Stiefvater novels.

Addicted2Heroines said...

Apparently there were tiny symbols of a moon and sun under each chapter that indicated who the next narrator would be. I didn't notice this because it's not something that is typically done so how would I know to look for it, ya know?
But even with the problems, the story really was good. It's difficult to find heroines that stand out, but Lily did, in my opinion.

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