A bombing rocks the supernatural community, stunning them with fresh grief, anger and worry – who is behind it? Fingers instantly point to the human anti-supernatural hate groups who are growing louder and more vicious with each passing day. The newspapers engage in the worst kind of “journalism” and there have even been a string of rapes attached to anti-fae hatred.
But how much is it the human haters, and how much is it a new scheme by the demons, newly reinforced with forces of nightmare from both the demon world and one of the worst Sorcerers in Otherworld’s history coming to Earth to further their quest for the spirit seals.
In many ways, this book brought the series back on track to a degree. After a few books of endless distraction, personal drama and side-plots we returned partially to the main plot and partially to a dominant side plot. And, frankly, it was about damn time because the series was rapidly losing itself.
But now we have dramatic bombings and tackling of two major issues. Firstly - the human prejudice against the fae and the supernatural in general, how difficult that is making things and finally rallying to strike back against that and do something concrete to shift the tide of public opinion. I like that it was addressed and they finally did something rather than spend several more books wasting chapters on lamenting on it but not actually doing anything. I think it was generally well done with some very good ideas but also that it was rather simplistically fought and defeated. The big bad was too careless and too easily brought low, the general community was too eager and too easily rallied against hate (which, if history tells us anything, is rather dubious since the non-affected community is usually far more apathetic than that). It was good, it was nicely addressed – but it was a little simple.
The second storyline was the big one – Shadowwing! The big bad is actually on everyone’s radar again. We have bombings, investigation, killing off bad guys, alliances with the demonic underground and generally being back on track. As a bonus, I think we’ve also seen the last of at least 2 pernicious elements that were clinging to this series way past there should-have-been-dead-and-buried dates.
Of course, this wouldn’t be an Otherworld book without endless distractions: Chase’s heritage, Zachary’s new life, Shamas’s secret, Delilah’s completely failure to live like an adult and keep clean and Iris’s wedding. Some of them were good – like the wedding, but a lot of them were also really really pointless. There’s also a real problem with character and storyline bloat that necessitates a lot of recap. My bright spot is that I think a lot of these storylines are being closed.
A lot of this book is introspective and deals with how much the D’Artigo sisters lives have changed but also how much they have changed as people as well. And part of that is regretting the change. I’m torn on this – on the one hand, I wish it weren’t Delilah doing these musings while at the same time I have to admit that she is the one most likely to. The problem is that Delilah has always been rather immature and childish and she was coming out of that – some of these musings feels like a step back. I also have the least grasp of Delilah’s love interest Shade because he’s just… there. He dropped in from nowhere and became Delilah’s One Twu Lub even more abruptly and with even less screen time than Menolloy’s Nerissa. So when Delilah laments about the past I almost feel like she is resenting her sister’s happiness because I quite simply don’t believe hers.