I understand the concept of dangling a carrot in front of your audience and then using it to reel them in. In this series, since about book two, the carrot for me has been a pairing of Cassie and Pritkin. Every time I crack open another installment, I think to myself, this is going to be the one where the story really advances. Some have been more impressive than others. I loved Hunt the Moon. Others, like this one, don’t really take us very far from where we started. To which I say, just give me the damn carrot. I’m tired of chasing it. I am tired of feeling jerked around with it. It’s time to give readers a payoff and come up with something new to keep us excited.
Two books back, Karen Chance ended Hunt the Moon on the epic cliffhanger of Pritkin being dragged to hell. Nearly the entirety of the next book was spent with Cassie trying to rescue him, only to have the Demon Council send his soul back in time, leaving us hanging again. Guess what happens at the end of this book. Guess if this thread is resolved. Guess whether you’ll be able to walk away satisfied.
It’s not like I didn’t enjoy the book. It would be so much easier if I didn’t. Because I don’t want to give up the stupid carrot, yes, but also because I like Cassie. She is such a great underdog. She is completely underestimated by everyone around her. Yet she is always left standing in the end. I like that she is slowly starting to build a team of her own, that she is relying less on the resources provided for her. Her first acolyte, Rhea, is a great addition. Cassie is not only growing stronger, but she is also recognizing that in herself, which I love.
I’m still interested in the vampires and the senate, and even Mircea. But I am getting downright disturbed at the love scenes between him and Cassie. The last two books have been spent with Cassie’s heart and soul devoted to saving another man and Mircea is there for a about 5% of the story and she is shagging him. I understand there is a Mircea team, but they can’t any happier with this disparity than I am. It feels like Chance is trying to play both sides and it doesn’t work anymore, if it ever did.
I liked seeing Dorina, though again, we’ve been coyly pulling this thread for too long.
Believe it or not, I liked Rosier. I enjoyed his interactions with Cassie. And boy, did I love 24-year-old Pritkin. There are some great scenes. But it’s like taking a scenic drive for 6 hours that ends a mile away from home. The ride is good, but I also want to get somewhere. To be fair, I think Cassie has some good character building. I think her relationship with Rhea and her ties to the other girls she rescued will have an impact moving forward… as will her determination to seize the respect and power she is due. But, despite copious amounts of action and a few bits of sexy time, we just don’t get anywhere.
Do I really want to see what happens in Ride the Storm? Of course I do. The cliffhanger has done its job. But how many times will it keep working? The carrot is getting old.
*ARC provided by publisher
Click to purchase: Amazon
Reap the Wind
by Karen Chance
Release Date: November 3, 2015
Publisher: Signet Select