MacKayla Lane was just a child when she and her sister, Alina, were given up for adoption and banished from Ireland forever.My Thoughts: Just in case you don't know this going into this review, I pretty much love this series. It's everything I want in a book and so much more. I'm just warning you because, you know, I'm probably going to go a little fangirl crazy here and start composing symphonies to the beauty that is this world.
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 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.
Since that's out of the way... Wow. This series as a whole has been one fast-paced, incredibly well-plotted ride. I expected nothing less of this book and I can still say that it blew me out of the water anyway. Things move quickly but you never feel like the action is being pushed forward so rapidly that it takes away from the overall story. It happens as it's meant to happen. The battles are brutal and bloody, the deaths hit hard and fast and you accept it. This war is devastating for both the Fae and the humans fighting against them and more often than not it's thrust out in such vivid detail that you can feel the dirt and the smell the blood and feel the heartache.
And, oh, the betrayals. The way Mac has to reinvent herself time and time again to find the strength to keep moving forward and fighting. I never would have believed after reading the first book that she would become such a sharp weapon. She was soft and fragile in the beginning and these terrible experiences tempered her into someone who did what she had to do to survive. Her transformation surprised me more than any other character I've read in a long time. At the same time, it didn't feel forced. She became what she was meant to become.
What of Barrons? you ask. Barrons. Barrons. Jericho Z. Barrons. The powerful, mysterious man who the Fae fear. He didn't miraculously become a good man. He is and will always be wreathed in shades of gray. His strength is that he's true to himself. Always. He fights for what he wants. He kills when he needs to. He is unbending in his drive to do what he needs to do. He is both sword and shield to Mac. He protects her and he cuts her to teach her how to protect herself.
The mythology of this entire series is incredibly well developed. The characters are explosive. The action pulls you in and twists you around until you don't know which way is up. This book itself gave me exactly the ending I needed. It gave us the ending the series needed.
It was hard and heartbreaking and beautiful.
I really don't think I can recommend this series enough.
Other reviews in this series:
Book 1: Darkfever
Book 2: Bloodfever
Book 3: Faefever
Book 4: Dreamfever
More books by Karen Marie Moning
Reading challenges: The Horror & Urban Fantasy Challenge, The Morbid Romantica Challenge