A Note from Alexis Hall:
Hello, and welcome to my second ever blog tour, celebrating Riptide Publishing’s release of Shadows & Dreams, the sequel to Iron & Velvet. Yay! Thank you so much to Fang-Freakin-Tastic Reviews for hosting me. And, to you, dear reader, for stopping by. If you’d like to come with me and keep me company on my virtual wanderings, you can find a full listing of when and where I am.
There’s also some kind of contest type thing happening. I had a bit of trouble choosing a prize for this one because most of the things Kate likes (booze, cigarettes, knives, women) are illegal to ship internationally. I thought about a fedora, but then I remembered people had differently shaped heads and there was no point sending somebody an item of clothing they wouldn’t be able to wear. So, basically, that leaves coffee and Bovril and nobody likes Bovril except people from the North East of England. I’m therefore going offer 250g of Jamaican Blue Mountain, the nicest coffee in the known universe, purchased from a wonderful speciality shop, ground or beaned to your specification. If you don’t like coffee, I’ll replace it with an equivalently lovely tea. I’ll also throw in a hard copy of Iron & Velvet (or the other thing I wrote) if that’s the sort of thing you’d like. I can even scribble stuff in it, thus reducing its re-sale value … or, y’know, not do that. I’ll announce the winner a handful of days after the end of the tour.
Second rule in this line of business: be careful who you kill.
My name’s Kate Kane. And right now, I don’t know which is more dangerous: my job, or my girlfriend. My job makes me the go-to girl for every supernatural mystery in London. My girlfriend’s an eight-hundred-year-old vampire prince. Honestly, I think it’s probably a tie.
A few weeks ago, I was hired for a simple missing person case. Next thing I know, I’m being arrested for murder, a vampire army is tearing up London, and even my dreams are out to get me. Something ancient, evil, and scary as hell is on the loose and looking for payback. The vampires are in chaos, the werewolves are culling everything, and the Witch Queen can’t protect everyone.
Which means it’s down to me. And all I’ve got to hold back the shadows is a stiff drink, a quirky sidekick, my creepy ex-boyfriend, and the woman who left me for a tech startup. It’s going to be another interesting day.
You can read an excerpt and, y’know, cough, buy the book, if you want, at Riptide Publishing.
I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Shadows & Dreams was a decent read. It didn’t blow me away with awesomeness, but I don’t feel like I wasted my time by reading it. It was a pretty good follow up to the first book in the series, Iron & Velvet.
I enjoyed the majority of Hall’s characters in both books. In my opinion, they are witty and sarcastic, just like I like my characters to be. I like the cynicism and snark. When I am introduced to new characters, I like for them to have life, not just sit there on a page. The majority of Alexis Hall’s characters are funny like that. Even the ones that are jerks still have some form of livelihood to them.
One of the things that bothered me with Shadows & Dreams (and with Iron & Velvet) is that I felt as though I missed one of the books in the series. There are characters from Kate’s past that we aren’t really introduced to, but seem to play an important part in her personality. Archer for example, there is a whole another story to that situation but it doesn’t actually exist. There are several situations like this where we are given tiny pieces of back story about a character, but not enough to really know what happened. It would definitely help keep the many characters straight (hahaha, not the ‘straight’ I meant!). Unfortunately, I did feel like this took away from the story a little bit because every time it got brought up, I spent the next 10 min or so wondering what the full story was behind that character.
Shadows & Dreams doesn’t just come right out and tell you the whole story right off the bat and ruin the surprise, and I am grateful for that. I liked that I couldn’t predict every move the character made before it was made.
I definitely think Alexis Hall has grown as an author between books one and two. There are far fewer repeated ideas/statements in the 2nd book than there were in the first. Do I think Hall is perfect? Uh, no, there is definitely room for improvement, but isn’t that true of all of us? I do feel as though there was quite a bit of unnecessary information within the pages that we could have lived without. I understand the idea of trying to set the scene and all that, but some things just aren’t necessary. As a reader, I can be happy as long as that author is continuing to grow and learn their craft. These things take time. I’m sure anyone could find a zillion mistakes in just THIS review alone if they wanted to!
Shadows & Dreams and the first in the Kate Kane series, Iron & Velvet are worth reading if you have the time for it, enjoy a variety of paranormal creatures, and don’t mind some lesbian intimacy. The “romantic” type scenes aren’t over done or try to take over the book, which I really like because most times I don’t pick a book based on how much romance it has within its pages.
Be sure to check out the first book in the
Kate Kane Series, Iron & Velvet while it’s only 99¢!