Friday, July 5, 2013
Review: Fate's Edge by Ilona Andrews
Title: Fate's Edge (Edge, #3)
Author: Ilona Andrews
Rating: 4 Stars
If you've come to expect nothing short of sheer perfection from Ilona Andrews, then you're still expecting too low. No matter how utterly incredible I think these novels are going to be, they always manage to deliver far above my wildest expectations. It's hard to come across many authors like that, so take my word for it and hold this writing duo close. Fate's Edge delivers a steaming and action-packed addition to the Edge Quartet, one whose overarching plot becomes increasingly obvious as the series wears on. Now, slowly, all the threads from the past two books are coming together and combined with the events of this novel, are sure to make for a stunning conclusion. For fear of veering into a realm of spoilers, I will keep this short. Just know, plain and simple, that if you haven't already read this series then you're wasting your time.
Kaldar Mar may not have been my favorite character in Bayou Moon, but that didn't mean he wasn't on my radar. If anything, I was excited that he would finally be getting a novel of his own, all with an ass-kicking lady thief to steal the show from under his feet. No pun intended. Fate's Edge starts off slow, establishing the world of Audrey, a thief who has been forced to steal in order to keep her older brother returning to a rehab center. When our story begins, Audrey has made a new start for herself, one that doesn't involving stealing. Until, that is, her father finds her and begs her to perform one last heist for him. Unknowingly, Audrey steals an artifact that has all the dangerous organizations of the Weird after her - the Hand, the Mirror, and even the deadly Claws of Bast. Kaldar, thief extraordinaire, is sent in by the Mirror to return the artifact, all while fulfilling his plan of extracting vengeance on the Hand for what they did to his family. Kaldar and Audrey, though striking an unlikely alliance, expect everything from their wacky adventure except...finding their hearts stolen by one another too.
From the beginning itself, Audrey is the type of heroine I love. And we know what heroine this is now. Ilona Andrews writes strong, independent women with difficult pasts who manage to make their life work despite the hurdles in their way. Not only are they all gorgeous, but their wit is unrivaled and the banter between them and our hero is the type of entertainment we eat up with buttery popcorn. I am pleased to report, then, that Andrews doesn't fail to deliver - not in the least. Audrey and Kaldar are two broken adults, but their attraction to one another, their joint love - and talent - for heist, and their underlying understanding of one another make these two a formidable team and an even more frustrating couple. Out of all the books in this series, this one easily has the sexual tension notched up the highest. It's both exhilarating and painful to have to keep flipping frantically, waiting for these two to realize what's been in front of their eyes all along.
Yet, despite the sexual tension, Fate's Edge focuses heavily on the plot with the romance veering toward the backseat. A non-stop delight, this novel tracks on heist after heist, clever mission after clever mission, wyverns and shapeshifters. Perhaps best of all is the inclusion of two old favorites - Jack and George. Ever since reading On the Edge, I've been convinced that these two brothers were some of the most interesting characters Ilona Andrews drew up - and I was right. Jack and George, the younger brothers of Rose, play a heavy role in this novel, dominating the front in growth and action alike. Seeing them change and deal with their new roles in society, not to mention their evolved relationship as siblings, was a journey in and of itself. I can only hope we see more of them in the future as their role in the plans, action, and book in general made this all the more sweeter.
While Fate's Edge is fast-paced and action-packed, it does suffer heavily from a rushed ending. As do all the books in this series, but this is perhaps the worst. In the last ten percent of the story, Kaldar and Audrey - quite conveniently - have epiphanies that they love each other and, moreover, rescue each other from the villain within pages. It was simply too fast and too unbelievable, especially taking into account the amount of time and planning and effort every other idea or rescue mission in the novel took. Nevertheless, despite that small bump, the overwhelming majority of this novel was perfect. Kaldar and Audrey are perfectly balanced for one another and their romantic story arc was developed perfectly. Additionally, seeing old characters - Cerise and William, not to mention Rose and Declan have a line or two as well - mesh together with a new plot was thrilling. All in all, I simply cannot wait to see how this series ends. If the rest of the books - and Ilona Andrews in general - is any indication, it is sure to be mind-blowing.
Summer Series Reading Challenge: 3