Monday, August 15, 2011

Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning

Publisher: Delacorte Press
Age: Adult
Species: Unseelie fae/ Seelie fae/ Demon Book/ Damned Men/ Sidhe-seers/Druids/Human/Hunters
Rating: 4/5
Interest: Karen Marie Moning/Fever Series/ Mac and Barrons

“Evil is a completely different creature, Mac. Evil is bad that believes it’s good.”

MacKayla Lane was just a child when she and her sister, Alina, were given up for adoption and banished from Ireland forever.

Twenty years later, Alina is dead and Mac has returned to the country that expelled them to hunt her sister’s murderer. But after discovering that she descends from a bloodline both gifted and cursed, Mac is plunged into a secret history: an ancient conflict between humans and immortals who have lived concealed among us for thousands of years.

What follows is a shocking chain of events with devastating consequences, and now Mac struggles to cope with grief while continuing her mission to acquire and control the Sinsar Dubh—a book of dark, forbidden magic scribed by the mythical Unseelie King, containing the power to create and destroy worlds.

In an epic battle between humans and Fae, the hunter becomes the hunted when the Sinsar Dubh turns on Mac and begins mowing a deadly path through those she loves.
Who can she turn to? Who can she trust? Who is the woman haunting her dreams? More important, who is Mac herself and what is the destiny she glimpses in the black and crimson designs of an ancient tarot card?

From the luxury of the Lord Master’s penthouse to the sordid depths of an Unseelie nightclub, from the erotic bed of her lover to the terrifying bed of the Unseelie King, Mac’s journey will force her to face the truth of her exile, and to make a choice that will either save the world . . . or destroy it.


Shadowfever could have been split into two books. In fact, I would have preferred that to the 594 page monster I read through. Too much happened to take it in all at once. There were betrayals, hook-ups, alliances, secrets, pain, grief, fighting, love, history and deception. It was impossible for me to read Shadowfever in one sitting no matter how hard I tried. (I made it 400 pages in one night, took a break to read another book the next night and on the third night I made it through the last 194 pages.)

As much as I gripe about the length, I still really enjoyed Shadowfever. As the conclusion of the series, Moning had to stuff in a whole bunch of details and plots in order to make it a fitting end. So many things were unexpected and that made the book even more interesting. I never would have guessed V'lane's history, Barron's secret under the garage blew me away and the truth of what Mac was kept me turning the pages. At times it did feel like Moning was packing in way more information or subplots than necessary, but looking back on it now all of the plots feel right. Honestly, she's been leading up to all of them throughout the first four books but I couldn't see it.

One pleasant aspect (at least to me) was the involvement of the McKeltars in trapping the Sinsar Dubh. Anyone who's read Moning's The Highlander series knows Daegus, Drustan and Cian McKeltar.They are some seriously mouthwatering men. I enjoy it when characters I know get to meet on the pages but I want them to get along when they do. Drustan is so nice, Daegus is tough but caring and Cian has his sweet moments, which I got to see through reading the Highlander series. In Shadowfever, they pretty much all sound like big bossy assholes with superiority complexes that Mac, Barrons and all the Sidhe seers dislike. That seems so wrong to me, I mean I know they have to act tough outside of their families but still, it was hard to listen to Mac judge them without knowing them.

Getting to know more about Barrons was kind of a double-eged blade. Understanding his motivation was fabulous since he's always been the wild card. However, I hate all of the men he works with. Ryodan especially gets on my nerves, almost as bad as Rowena who I want to throw down a flight of stairs. I never could have guessed why Barrons wanted the Sinsar Dubh. I can't imagine the kind of strength and pain he had to go through to deal with all he had to deal with. Seeing vulnerability in Barrons of all people was staggering, I almost couldn't wrap my mind around it. The best quote to sum him up is  "There is always some madness in love. But there is also always some reason in madness," by Nietzsche. Everything he does has a reason and every reason goes back to love.

Mackayla... I can't think of much to say about her. She's gone through so many rebirths, deaths and heartache that it's nearly impossible to understand the person she's become. Her "voice" in the book is mostly the same, you can still catch glimpses of the sweet girl who came to Dublin. Mac has become so fierce, strong, independent, though that her entire philosophy and outlook has changed. I'm proud of her, but sad for her too. She never should have had to become this person. However, when the decision came to break or become stronger, Mac always chose to become stronger. Hope strengths, fear kills that's how she operates.

Dani definitely became a much more central and interesting character than I'd ever given her credit for. I could not believe how she fit into Mac's life; what she did and what she was forced to do. The girl's got balls of steal. She's cocky as hell about it, but she's got the guff to back it up. Christian McKeltar changed. After what he went through, I hope he still has a good heart. I don't want him to become someone I could hate, I love him too much. I would be ecstatic if KMM wrote another Highlander book featuring the lovely Christian. (Actually I kind of have this secret fantasy that Dani grows up and gets with him. I mean come on that would be fecking hilarious.)

Overall Shadowfever was a fantastic cap to a scorching series that every Fever fan needs to read. It is an intense and long book, but very well worth it in the end. It's kind of like a diet; you have to rigorously stick with it to get the results you want. To those who haven't read the Fever series, I highly suggest it. Mac is a kick ass heroine and Barrons is a sexy beastie. Any paranormal or specifically fae lovers will love this series.

Teaser Lines: Desire makes life happen. Makes it matter. Makes everything worth it. Desire is life. Hunger to see the next sunrise or sunset. To touch the one you love. To try again.

Series Order:
1. Darkfever
2. Bloodfever
3. Faefever
4. Dreamfever
5. Shadowfever

 Happy Reading,

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