Reviewed: August 30, 2009
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Fever, Book 2
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Length: 303 Pages
Formats: Print, eBook
Disclosure: This rating, review, and all included thoughts and comments are my own.
Mac is coming into her own! I'm so glad I stuck with this series after being horribly annoyed by Amateur Sleuth Barbie, aka MacKayla Lane in the first book, Darkfever (Fever Series, Book 1). She's stronger, more assured, less naive, and far less...pink-and-pastel in Bloodfever, and I loved that change. She's not perfect by any means. She's still got some issues that get on my nerves, but the characterization was such an improvement in this book that I actually really started to like her.
Jericho Barrons, by the way, I've never had to try to like. I've always liked the enigmatic and mysterious...man?...who keeps saving Mac's life even while making her existence a study in frustration and lack of information. In fact, there's so much beneath that particular surface that I can't help but adore every delicious syllable of exchange between Barrons and Mac and every time he calls her "Mac" I just...well...do what Mac does herself...smile on the inside. He's the perfect incarnation of unimaginable-depths-beneath-the-urbane-surface. Love. Him.
There's not a lot of secondary character development, because there's just not a lot of secondary characters (however, a few potential gems were introduced here). I really want to find out more about the voice on the other end of IYCGM, the even more mysterious Ryodan, and his relationship with Barrons.
I wasn't as fond of the first book, Darkfever (3.5 stars), in more than just the characterization of Mac, either - Bloodfever drops what I think is a really annoying trend of prognostication storytelling - where the narrator, Mac, is speaking of things that happened in the past while incessantly alluding to what's going to happen instead of describing it as it's happening. There's almost none of that at all in Darkfever, and the story seems to unfold as Mac's living it, which is my personal preference.
It's been mentioned in other reviews that these books tend to end on a bit of a cliffhanger and are in no way stand alone books. That really puts some people off, and I understand that, but I started the series with the understanding that it's a five book arc and had been forewarned by the reviews that the books aren't encapsulated stories within that overall arc. That isn't my preferred type of series, but I'm okay with it here because in reality, the series and world in which it exists is interesting and well developed and exciting enough to make it worth it, in my opinion. It...uh...also helps that I started the series while the forth book was just being released so I've got two more to go through before I add my voice to the screams for the conclusion.
One thing I for sure want to mention, as I give total kudos to Moning for the excellence of the scene...the one in which Mac ends up in Fairy. What happens while she's there was so emotionally honest and realistic to my own emotional experiences that it had my heart in my throat with a renewed sense of grief and closure both. The emotional development in that scene and the affects from it struck a very deep, very honest cord in me and I thought it was brilliant, and not at all overwrought or overdone. A perfect perfect goodbye. I appreciated that unique sense of rightness and wanted to make sure I mentioned it.
All in all I think Bloodfever was just a much better book than Darkfever, and if the trend continues in the development of MacKayla's character and the sizzling, intense interplay between she and Barrons, I'm going to be a happy, happy chick. 4.5 Stars overall, with a half star taken off for the very beginning, because I'd read the first book just a few weeks ago and found the rehash for new readers to be a bit tedious, and even if I hadn't I've read other series that do it better, and for other minor dislikes about the still developing MacKayla.
Also, a question to loyal readers...is it just me or has Mac EVER seen Barrons during the day? Ever.
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