Rating: Disliked (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)
I read the first book in this trilogy back in 2014, and loved it so much that was saving this second one for when I really, really needed a good one to read. That time finally came, so I started in on this book. A few pages in, and I couldn't believe it was part of the same trilogy.
Everything I loved from the first book was gone. Instead of a semi-steampunk-y feel, it felt like our world. Gone was the magic mixed with the real world. In the first book we had lines like His mother was in the kitchen putting the finishing touches on her last batch of Breathe Easy potions while Charlie was in the living room watching The Simpsons. but nothing at all like that in this book. Worst of all, this book was boring. Also gone was one of the things I loved most about the first book. From my last review:
The author would do something that made it clear we weren't in this world, but without adding any confusion. Now and then multiple words would be made into one. Riverboatpolice (police who patrol the river on boats), lionchamber (big room with all the lion cages in it), lionboy (the boy who assists the lion tamer). It was enough to give it an exotic twist without it taking even a moment of thought to figure out what it meant (thus not knocking you out of the story). So perfect!
In the first third of the book, that happened ONCE.
In addition to those things that were lacking, the first third of the book took place in Italy, and so much of the dialogue sometimes whole pages of dialogue were in Italian! Seriously, what the hell? There's giving flavor to a story and then there's whole pages of stuff you can't read.
The plot was soooooo slow going. I finally went to Amazon to see what other reviews had said. One wrote:
A book that ends in mid-stream, with the words "To be continued"? This book contains a cardinal sin in publishing. I have absolutely no problem with continuing action across several volumes, but like the Harry Potter series, at least make each of the volumes capable of standing alone. There is absolutely no resolution at the end of this volume. Maddening.
Nail in the coffin. I didn't finish this book, I won't be picking up the last book in the trilogy.
Currently reading: The Woman Who Loved the Moon: And Other Stories by Elizabeth A. Lynn. It's a book of short stories, so I'm reviewing them as I read them so I won't forget how I feel about each one. After the first one I wrote "I might just have to move to a state where it's legal to marry a book." :D