Book Review: Brave The Tempest, Cassandra Palmer – Book #9

Author: Karen Chance
Book Name: Brave The Tempest
Release Date: July 30, 2019
Series: Cassandra Palmer
Order: #9
Genre: Fantasy/Urban/Romance
Overall SPA: 4 Stars
4 Stars

 

 

Blurb: Cassie Palmer has been chief seer of the supernatural world for a little over four months. In that time, she’s battled two gods, fallen in love with two men, and confronted the two sides of her own nature, both god and human. So it’s not surprising that she currently finds herself facing two adversaries, although they have a single purpose: to wipe out the supernatural community’s newest fighting force, leaving it vulnerable to enemies in this world and beyond.

To prevent catastrophe, the vamps, mages, and demons will have to do the one thing they’ve never managed before and come together as allies. Cassie has the difficult task of keeping the uneasy coalition intact, and of persuading her own two opposing forces, a powerful mage with a secret and a master vampire with a growing obsession, to fight at her side. She just hopes they can do it without tearing each other apart

Main SPA Evaluation Areas:

Characters: 4.5/5 Stars
Series Continuity/Expectations: 4/5 Stars
Personal Opinion: 3.5/5 Stars

This book showed me that I still love this world. There is so much to enjoy about it and it is incredibly well built. The common theme seen in previous books, the one where Cassie is constantly knocked down and isn’t even back on her feet to take a breath before she gets knocked right back down again, is, thankfully, not as prevalent throughout this book.

Sadly, in it’s place is a massive amount of rehashing the events in all the previous books. It isn’t all at once, more sprinkled throughout the book, but it is way more than was probably needed for the majority of readers since you simply cannot read these as standalone and not be utterly lost. Mentioning a previous event in another book is one thing, going into a lot of those details made this feel bloated.

For the first half of this book (maybe a little less), you spend a lot of time with Cassie either “remembering” some of those events or doing an awful lot of navel gazing. On one hand, this is a bit refreshing because the reader isn’t being constantly batted around by the events, but at the same time, it doesn’t feel like you are actually getting anywhere.

If you look back at Cassie from the first books in the series and compare them to the Cassie in this book and you don’t see much growth or change. Granted, all 9 of these books happen over an incredibly short period of time, but SO MUCH has happened, you think that how she reacts to all the stuff thrown at her would have progressed at least a little. That lack of growth has become really frustrating for me.

There is a point, later in this book, where you think this is finally getting addressed and you are going to get to see some progress with it. Then, in classic Cassie Palmer style, things start to get knock down, attempt to stand, but get knocked down again before you can get your balance and you lose that forward progress.

As I mentioned before, I still really love this world. I enjoy most of the characters, but the overall progress in the last few books feels like running in place a bit and it is frustrating. Yes, there is some change, but it feels sort of like a lateral move rather than a forward one.

 

Other areas of note (not included in the SPA rating):

Cover: 2/5 Stars

Why does it feel like the covers for these books have regressed the age of Cassie with each new release? I get that she might be on the young side (mid 20’s maybe?), but she isn’t a teenager. Please don’t make her look like one. This one seems to be the least fitting cover in the series.

 

Reap the Wind: Cassandra Palmer, Book 7

Reap the WindAuthor: Karen Chance
Book Name: Reap the Wind
Series: Cassandra Palmer
Order: 7
Genre: Fantasy/Romance
Rating:  Excellent
5+stars


Blurb:  You’d think that being chief seer for the supernatural world would come with a few perks. But as Cassie Palmer has learned, being Pythia doesn’t mean you don’t have to do things the hard way. That’s why she finds herself on a rescue mission skipping through time—even though she doesn’t entirely understand her dimension-bending new power.

Rescuing her friend John Pritkin should have been an in-and-out kind of deal, but with the near-immortal mage’s soul lost in time, Cassie has to hunt for it through the ages—with Pritkin’s demon dad in tow. He’s the only one who can reverse Pritkin’s curse, but with the guardians of the timeline dead set on stopping anyone from mucking about, Cassie will have to figure out how to get her friend back without ruffling too many feathers—or causing a world-ending paradox or two….

Review:  I’d had this book on my wish list for a really long time, or at least it seemed like it.  So much so that when it finally came out, I held off on buying it and chose to nab it from the library instead.  I kind of wish that I’d taken the time to refresh myself on the entire series to remind myself how great it actually is.  While a reread of the whole thing wasn’t necessary, there were a couple of places it took a bit to drag a couple of recollections up.

I had forgotten how much I love this world and the characters in it.  Cassie is pretty badass, but she is still kind of stumbling around and trying to figure out her power.  Getting to see a side of Pritkin before he became his own version of badass was a nice change of pace, especially since he is one of my favorites.

Cassie grew a bunch in this book and is beginning to find a more solid foundation to move forward in her role as Pythia.  It was nice to see her learning not to be everyone else’s tool.  She is still being run ragged and bounced from problem to problem with very little breathing room.

My one, sort of negative is that there were a couple of biggie issues that didn’t get resolved in this book.  It was really kind of a cliffhanger.  In this case, I’m not hugely bothered by that as I love the series and fully intend on reading the next book, but I generally prefer a cleaner ending.

I did cave and go ahead and buy this one, even after reading it at the library because, really, it was kind of a stupid, forgetful thing and obviously I wasn’t thinking straight by night just buying it right away.  Won’t happen the next time, though I do hope it doesn’t take as long to get the next book out (supposedly later this year).

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