Blade Song (Colbana Files #1) by J.C. Daniels

Blade Song (Colbana Files) - J.C. Daniels

Kit Colbana is a member of the Aneria - a race descended from the Amazons. Because she is half human, her people don't fully recognize her, leaving Kit essentially alone in the world. As a trained assassin and killer, Kit is more than able to make a living.  When Kit is contacted by the werecats to help find a missing kid, Kit cannot resist taking the case.  As someone with a history of being abused, Kit cannot help but get emotionally invested in the case, even if it means she has to deal with the Cats main enforcer Damon.

Blade Song is a PNR/UF which means that while this story could very will exist without the romance angle, it is weaved into the plot.  Unfortunately, at times the romance feels quite forced.  From the very first meeting between Damon and Kit, it's clear that they are going to move from hating to each other to loving each other.  It makes Blade Song extremely predictable as far as that storyline is concerned. It's one thing to portray the dislike between two characters and another to make the love interest actively abusive.

No fear, damn it. I could still breathe…barely…and he wasn’t trying to kill me. He just wanted me afraid while he yelled at me.My blood is noble. My heart is strong. My aim is true. I am aneira…my heart is strong—No fear, damn it. I could be drowning in it, and he damn well could smell it on me, but I sure as hell wouldn’t show it.

This above passage is very heavily framed as saving Kit from her own stupidity but it sets the tone of things to come. There are several times in the story where Kit asks Damon to back away and give her space. At one point she becomes so desperate, she hides in the bathroom and sleeps in the bathtub. Then there's the fact that Damon simply refuses to respect her wishes when she asks him not to touch her.

His hand spread open over my neck and despite my intention to ignore it, I almost groaned at how good that felt. I was tempted to lean into—And then I realized I was—“Damn it,” I snapped. “Would you stop? I thought I made it clear, I’m a little freaked out by the fact that you keep touching me even though just an hour or so ago, your Alpha was telling you that you might be killing me soon.” (pg 46-47)

Damon spends much of the time in the book trying to convince Kit that he is not going to hurt her and with good reason. Because Damon bruised Kit's neck so badly, she could barely swallow.  He claims he didn't know how fragile she was and that is why he didn't hold back his strength but the fact still remains that he hurt her so badly that he bruised her.

One of the things that irks me about the relationship between Kit and Damon is that she spends so much time saying that she doesn't want a relationship and that he wouldn't be good for her. Since Daniels was determined to force these two together, we never get to see Kit follow through on this. Given the fact that Damon physically hurt her, violated her trust and didn't respect her enough to stop touching her, this all should have been reason enough for Kit to refuse a relationship, particularly given her history of abuse.

Much of Blade Song is filled with Kit being triggered by different events. The descriptions of her abuse are quite graphic but it makes sense given that she is remembering what happened to her and trying to find a way to put it behind her. The years of abuse not only place Kit into a position to be triggered, they effect her daily life. Kudos for Daniels for actually portraying PTSD rather than having her character live through horrific events and remain untouched by them.  After being told repeatedly how dirty she was as a child, Kit showers almost compulsively.  Not only does she want to wash the past away but any suggestion that she might be less than.  Often in this genre we see that a protagonist has a troubled past but rarely do we see the follow through with how said protagonist deals lives with the pain. As much as this was difficult to read, it made the story feel real to me and made Kit relatable.



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