Sunday, June 3, 2012
"Shadow Bound" by Rachel Vincent
NOTE: I received this book for review from Netgalley.
Gosh, what can I say??? No words are good enough to explain just how embarrassingly marvelous this book is!!! You'd ask why embarrassingly, I'm sure, and here's the answer: Because it puts to shame any other urban fantasy/paranormal novels I've ever read. Then again, Rachel Vincent is one of my most favorite authors out there, so yeah...
I just want to start off with saying that the world building was freaking awesome! And I mean that with no reserve. Even though book one - Blood Bound - already gave us a pretty good clue what things are like in the fictional world of events, it was sort of like one side of the story - Ruben Cavazos's side. Shadow Bound takes it west - to Jake Tower's empire. Seen through the eyes of Korinne Daniels and Ian Holt.
We learn of new Skills, new people involved in the whole business of binding, new life stories. And we learn just how ruthless a man can be. And that's a lot.
I hated chapter one, because as a woman, it made me cringe at every word, every freaking thought of pain. It simply got to me, and I can't deny how fresh and how realistic it all felt. Sure, the weight of the pages kept me on my side of the world, but Kori's side was also there. I could see it. I could feel it. And I hated it.
Until Ian showed with that shining armor of his, ready to conquer to world, just so he could rescue the princess. Who was no princess at all, but a broken thing with no future. Kori had suffered through so much that she couldn't trust even herself. She tried to be strong, and she was good at it, but at night, when darkness took over, the strength abandoned her. All she had left were nightmares that she couldn't escape, couldn't run away from.
Ian had no idea what he was getting when he requested a petite blonde to show him around Jake Tower's world. He'd bargained for one thing and gotten something completely different. But not for one second did he regret it. No, he played his game smartly as far as he could under the circumstances, given that he was slowly falling for the girl whose sister he was supposed to kill. And if that didn't complicate things enough, he was also being hunted down by the other syndicates, because his Skill was just that valuable.
The emotional roller coaster was the size of Hulk in this novel, and I wasn't sure at all how things would end until the last page was turned. And I love it when I can't predict a book's ending. It sort of makes it unique. Makes me think of it.
I also want to say that the characters never got out of their personality. Not even once. They followed their own traits throughout the novel, no matter how difficult it was. For example, Kori did not abandon her attitude, or her fighting spirit, even though she felt like she'd lost herself. Ian kept to his chivalry, even when threatened with death. Tower didn't waver from his ruthless self, despite all the problems that caused him. Nor did any of the minor characters. Rachel didn't even once compromise with their personal traits for the sake of the novel. No, she only described the way she saw them. The way they were. And that was what made Shadow Bound so intense, so incredible and entertaining. So much that I couldn't put it down.