I have a couple of projects under way, one is a quilt and a new tutu for Ava. Once I am finished, I will have to post pictures and a tutorial! What I have mostly been up to this past week though, is reading. Sometimes I get obsessed with a series or book, and I just can't stop... not even to post on my blog! Between last week Wednesday night and Saturday night, I read 6 books. The good news, is that means I am back on track with my Goodreads challenge! The bad news is that although I really loved this series, a lot people I know would not be into these because they are considered paranormal fantasy. I am an indiscriminate reader, however, and I enjoy pretty much every genre of book. It is rare that I find a book I do not like.
With that disclaimer, I will review the series as a whole, rather than each book separately. The series I read was the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning. I would classify this as a paranormal/supernatural fantasy series, also as a supernatural romance, although the romance part is different from your typical romance novel. The series also has a apocalyptic edge to it.
This series surrounds MacKayla, or Mac for short, who travels to Ireland to try to find out more information about her sister's murder after receiving a frantic voicemail from her the night that she died. Upon arriving in Ireland, Mac starts asking questions that land her in a bit of trouble, and she meets Jericho Barrons. Jericho becomes a mentor of sorts, and begins to show Mac the way of the sidthe seer or a person who is able to see the Fae. Ok... now don't roll your eyes... yes I said Fae. Not the tinkerbell fairies, but the Fae of Irish lore. I told you this is a fantasy novel. Anyway, throughout the series, we follow Mac as she finds our more about the Fae, and about herself as one who can see the Fae. We watch Mac as she grows from a sorority sister type who wears pink to someone a little more grown up, with the weight of the world on her shoulders. We watch her struggle to find a way to save the world from a growing population of Fairy who are threatening her world, while trying to wade through a web of lies, deceit, and hidden agendas. Barrons grows in his ability to trust Mac, and as someone with a hefty dose of... shall we say, "tension" with how he feels about Mac. Throw, V'Lane in there as the Fae who is also competing for some of Mac's attention, along with an undercurrent of suspicion for all of the characters and their motives, and you have a series that is hard to put down.
I thought Moning did a good job developing characters. The characters grow and change throughout the series, so the people you see in the beginning of the series are not the same characters by the fifth book. She also does a great job with world-building, so you feel like you can see the Dublin that Mac is living in. Moning is a master of plot twists and turns galore, you are kept on your toes and wanting more. The story line is interesting and involving. That being said, these are not young adult novels... they are adult fantasy fiction, so there are some elements of the book that some might find disturbing. There is quite a bit of sexuality throughout, as apparently this is part of who the Fae are. Now I did not have a problem with this, but I know some people do not like books that have this in there. I suppose one could also make an argument against the sexualization of Mac, and what another reviewer called the "romanticizing of an overly aggressive alpha male" in Barrons, but really I felt that Mac was smart, despite her looks, and Barrons always had an undercurrent of "otherness" that sort of made me look past all of his alpha male-ness. That and the description of how good looking most of the male characters in this book were, made me look past all of the potential negatives :) I really enjoyed this series, and am glad I picked a book that was one of the top books in the Goodreads Choice Awards 2011 (it was # 2 out of all the books, and rated the #1 best Paranormal).
So having enjoyed the Fever series so much, I also picked up the first book of her Highlander series. It was supposed to have an element of paranormal in it, some time travel, and romance... so I thought it would be right up my alley. Unfortunately, after reading the Fever series, this book really sort of fell flat for me. I have heard that beginning with the fourth book, these series pick up, so I may go back... eventually. I rated this as two stars. Mostly a typical romance novel with not too much substance... lacking character development and a bit of a boring story line. Overall not the type of book I usually read unless I am out of books and it is free :)