Thursday, January 29, 2015

[Review] - Burned (Fever #7) by Karen Marie Moning

Release Date:  January 20, 2015
Publisher:  Delacorte Press
Genre:  Urban Fantasy/Fae
Buy Links:  Amazon | B&N
Author Links: Goodreads | Website

It’s easy to walk away from lies. Power is another thing. MacKayla Lane would do anything to save the home she loves. A gifted sidhe-seer, she’s already fought and defeated the deadly Sinsar Dubh—an ancient book of terrible evil—yet its hold on her has never been stronger. When the wall that protected humans from the seductive, insatiable Fae was destroyed on Halloween, long-imprisoned immortals ravaged the planet. Now Dublin is a war zone with factions battling for control. As the city heats up and the ice left by the Hoar Frost King melts, tempers flare, passions run red-hot, and dangerous lines get crossed. Seelie and Unseelie vie for power against nine ancient immortals who have governed Dublin for millennia; a rival band of sidhe-seers invades the city, determined to claim it for their own; Mac’s former protégé and best friend, Dani “Mega” O’Malley, is now her fierce enemy; and even more urgent, Highland druid Christian MacKeltar has been captured by the Crimson Hag and is being driven deeper into Unseelie madness with each passing day. The only one Mac can depend on is the powerful, dangerous immortal Jericho Barrons, but even their fiery bond is tested by betrayal. It’s a world where staying alive is a constant struggle, the line between good and evil gets blurred, and every alliance comes at a price. In an epic battle against dark forces, Mac must decide who she can trust, and what her survival is ultimately worth.

Do you ever get that feeling in the pit of your stomach while reading a book?  That feeling of butterflies, and anxiety and hope and love all rolled into one?  That's what I feel every time I read a book by Karen Marie Moning.  I'm excited and anxious about what's going to happen next, and at the same time, I'm dreading coming to the end because I know I'll have to wait for another book.  I can admit that I am a Moning Fan Girl.  I could read about the Fever world for the rest of my life and still want more.  This book was fantastic, and I think it's a very important installment in the Fever series.  It might not be what we are used to, but it was needed.  So EFF the haters.  

While Iced was my least favorite book in this series, I can honestly say that Burned was one of my favorite.  There are so many review that aren't giving this book its due.  A lot of whining about how this story doesn't have the same feel as previous Fever books, or that Mac isn't the same, blah, blah, blah.  This is what I think...this book is the linchpin of the entire series.  This is the book with the events, problems and solutions that will ultimately hold the entire series together.  I think it also goes a step farther to show that MacKayla Lane is the character linchpin of the series.  Sure, she's always been a main character, but there are many notable characters in the Fever-verse.  Mac deals with insecurities and coming to terms with herself and her feelings in this book, and I think that it will become obvious by the end that the entire Fever world hinges on Mac's actions, or lack thereof.

 There is so much going on in this story and Moning weaves it all together masterfully.  Dani is a story in and of itself.  Mac and her inner struggles take center stage, as well as her feelings of trust and betrayal in regards to Barrons.  Barrons is doing what he does best - speaking with much action and very little words.  Ryodan takes center stage throughout much of this book, making him a major player moving forward.  The Kelters are a heavy presence in this book, as well as many Seelie and Unseelie characters.  The Sidhe-seers Jo and Kat, as well as one of the Nine, Lor, also have pivotal roles that move the plot forward.

Mac has a lot to deal with.  Ever since Cruce was entombed, she's had these nasty, stinky Unseelie flying around her.  She cannot figure out how to get rid of them.  She also has the wee teeny problem of the Sinsar-Dubh urging her to take actions that she is not ready to take.  Mac is at a crossroads in her life.  If she embraces the Sinsar-Dubh, she could lose herself to the Book.  She is terrified of being controlled by the Book, and is focusing on getting the Book out of her body.  She only begins to realize that it might not be possible.  She goes through a long list of insecurities, compounded by what she sees as a betrayal by Barrons.  Mac came to Ireland to find out what happened to her sister.  She accomplished that goal, and fought to save the world from Cruce.  Now that this is over, she's not quite sure where she belongs.  Her inaction, although frustrating at times, is based on good intentions.  But you know what they say about good intentions....

Barrons is, thank God, in this book a lot.  He still doesn't speak much, but when he does, it is with great purpose.  Barrons is a man of action, not of words.  He is the beast, the wild animal, always calculating.  Barrons never once tells Mac what he thinks she should do.  He urges her to do something, anything really, than to sit around inactive.  But he never tells her what actions she should take.  I think this is a smart move on his part.  Mac needs to understand herself on her own terms.  I think it is clear that Barrons loves Mac as much as a creature like himself can love anyone.  There are many actions throughout this book that point to his feelings for her.  There is a conversation between himself and Ryodan about rule breaking that is one of my favorite parts of this book.  Barrons knows what Mac is feeling and thinking, even if she doesn't.  He does something HUGE towards the end of this book that has Mac very upset, until she calms and thinks about his actions and realizes what her feelings were towards the fae that hurt her.  Barrons knew her inner feelings all along and how she held past events against him.  I love this basic component of their realtionship.  Barrons and Mac "get" each other on a basic, primitive level.  Barrons will do things that Mac hates if he thinks it will protect her.  

Dani, oh Dani.  You annoyed me so very much in Iced.  I want that smart talking, egotistical, goofy girl back.  Dani is missing for a good chunk of this book, and when she returns, she has transformed.  Moning makes good on her promise to age Dani, even if I'm not happy with the circumstances.  Dani's interactions with Ryodan are off-the-charts hot.  There are secrets about Dani that we didn't know about, and I suspect secrets that we still are not privvy to.  Ryodan is more than her protector.  He is more than just one of the Nine.  He is more than what Mac thinks he is.  Ryodan is just MORE.  He really comes into his own in this story, and I loved the interplay between him and Barrons.

Okay - this is too long as it is, so I'm going to stop.  I loved this freaking book.  I cannot wait until Book 8, Feverborn, is released.  KMM is shooting for a release this year, so my fingers are crossed.  If you are a fan of this series, read this book NOW.  Do not wait.  If you were disappointed by this book, then I would say to not give up on it.  This is the linchpin folks.  Mac will not remain the way she is in Burned.  I have all the faith in the world that she will come out of this funk.  Mac will be back and better than ever.  I am just as excited about that as I am to delve deeper into the minds of the Nine.  

If you are a fan of urban fantasy, this is an absolute, top must-read series.  I can't put into words how much I love the Fever world and KMM's writing.  If you are a fan of distant, alpha male creatures, Barrons is the apex predator.  He is by far my most favorite character in urban fantasy literature.  Mac is by far my favorite heroine, for her humanity and for her kick ass-ness.  If you are looking for an epic story, full of fae lore, twists and turns, misdirections and game changers, this is the series you must read.


Talk Supe said...

I didn't hate it, loved it actually, but I'm one of those readers who felt this was inconsistent from the rest of the books. My 2cents is that this is needed in terms of making Dani & Ryodan a better match. Overall it's good, love Fever

Anonymous said...

I've heard incredible things about this book. It kind of intimidates me that there are already 7 books out but I'll start it eventually!

Ps. I have a blog as well, if you want to stop by I'd appreciate it so much! It's both in Italian and in English :3 ->

Anne Hannah said...

I've heard good and bad things about this one, so I've been a little scared to read it after Iced. I'm so glad you liked it, Jamie! Makes me feel better about diving in.

Jamie said...

Mac and DAni are both out of character - agreed. But I think it HAD to happen. Just a hunch.

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