Monday, December 20, 2010

Review: Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble (Jolie Wilkins #1) by H.P. Mallory

Synopsis (via Goodreads):
Life isn’t bad for psychic Jolie Wilkins. True, she doesn’t have a love life to speak of, but she has a cute house in the suburbs of Los Angeles, a cat and a quirky best friend.

Enter Rand Balfour, a sinfully attractive warlock who insists she’s a witch and who just might turn her life upside down. Rand hires her to help him solve a mystery regarding the death of his client who also happens to be a ghost. Jolie not only uncovers the cause of the ghost’s demise but, in the process, she brings him back to life!

Word of Jolie’s incredible ability to bring back the dead spreads like wildfire, putting her at the top of the Underworld’s most wanted list. Consequently, she finds herself at the center of a custody battle between a villainous witch, a dangerous but oh-so-sexy vampire, and her warlock boss, Rand.
My Thoughts: This is one of those books that I wanted to like far more than I did.  I had seen so many positive reviews and there were so many people telling me how much they enjoyed these books that the fact that I was barely able to get through the first 40% of the book took me by surprise.  In fact, it wasn't until Jolie moved to England with Rand and things started heating up on that front that I felt a spark of interest.

I feel like I have to clarify that last sentence.  I like hot, spicy, sexy romance books.  I like dirty, sweaty sex in my romance books.  There was nothing wrong with the kisses and fevered hands in this book.  None at all.  I just happen to like it a little more explicit.  That's my thing, though.  Does that mean that this book was a bad book?  No.  It just means that I like salsa on my quesadilla.  And there's nothing wrong with salsa.  This book just didn't happen to have it.

Anyway.  Once Jolie moved to England, things did start to pick up.  The different factions of supernaturals she met were interesting.  I did reach a point where I was ready to punch Rand in the face for his bi-polar waffling over whether or not he and Jolie could be together, but once he explained why ... no, I still felt like I wanted to punch him in the face.  But I'm all about the things that get my heroes into bed.  I also didn't particularly care for Christa.  I could NOT fathom why Jolie would want to bring her along into this nightmare of a life she suddenly had thrust upon her.  I may be a bit of a selfish bitch but I'm pretty sure I'd never drag my best friend into what could potentially be mortal danger just so I wouldn't be lonely.  Do you hear that, Lacey?  I'd never do that to you.  Consider it a promise!

So here's the thing- the book isn't bad.  There were things I liked, mostly of the Rand and Sinjin variety, and there were things I didn't care for.  I do wish the supernatural creatures had been more fleshed out.  I feel like we barely touched on one species before we were being introduced to a new one.

After all that, I still find I'm a bit curious to see what happens in book 2.  *face palm*  There's a big, old cliffhanger and a lot of threads that need to be tied up.  And the main storyline isn't close to being done.  Yeah, I'll have to bite the bullet to see how things get resolved.

More books by H.P. Mallory

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