Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.
I'm just trying to light up the world as much as I can one SciFi/paranormal/fantasy/space opera/time travel book at a time.
Ok, let's start this off by first going backwards. I was a HUGE fan and absolutely loved Blood Heir to itsy teeny tiny pieces. SO when I say that I feel truly lucky to have been gifted an ARC of its successor, I mean it! I wanted to go into Red Tigress fully cognizant of each and every minute detail from the first book and... I am not (completely) embarrassed to admit that... some tidbits may have slipped through the cracks in my memory. Since the wait between books was lengthy enough for my mushy brain (which, in the interim, was fed a bevy of arguably less awesome reads) to smudge some details... I decided to first revisit Blood Heir, this time I did so auditorily. Hearing that beloved book in another's voice (coupled with my undiagnosed amnesia) felt like I was experiencing the story nearly anew. I still enjoyed it but it was definitely a different experience.
Just like book #1, the characters were the main course in Red Tigress. Although the world building, action and twisty turns were yummy, the characters are what you come to the table for. The cast (secondary included), and the novel as a whole, were a slew of adjectives (that I normally would hit you with but won't) that all convey their beauty and scope coupled with a rich, diverse cast and see??? I'm doing it again.. I can't help myself... I'm a Descriptor junkie... Sorry (not sorry?). Anyway, I just wanted to say that those unnammed adjectives would say "Amazing" and "Robust" in 15 different ways.
One aspect that pulled me in and made sure I stayed fully present was the amount of kismet there was between all of the main characters. It was clever and seamlessly executed... they all just seemed to coalesce (for their own reasons), leading to bonds that seem(ed) ironclad. I also enjoyed getting to know new personas like Kais. There's always room in my heart for a well written, morally ambiguous, sharp edged (marshmallow centered) player on the scene.
With Red Tigress, the pace and action intensity ratcheted up the endorphin production... flinging my emotions about at the most climactic spots... especially during the last quarter of the book... what a ride!
AND then it ended... the ending was a bit cliffy, which is not always a bad thing. There was some resolution BUT, for the most part, most major things were not wrapped up neatly... not a deal breaker though. In fact, where once the characters, and each of their personal journeys, were harmoniously converging, some did so no more and it hurt. It was an unforseen, and (at least en mi casa) unappreciated ending. I'm not going to sugarcoat it... I wished, quite a bit, for another ending but it's a great hook to make sure you're here for book #3. That might sound harsh but I don't mean it to be because Red Tigress is just as good if not better than Blood Heir and really, what more could you want from a sophomore book? I loved Blood Heir and I really enjoyed Red Tigress. That might sound like a demotion in enjoyment levels but I am nearly certain that once I get over that ending... really ruminate, pick it apart and assimilate it... this book's rating will peak.
I truly enjoyed this book... ending and all... sort of... ok, I was triggered. I think it's going to take some time to reconcile what I believe should have happened vs the Reality of what did.
Even still, there are so many things to love about this book and more importantly this series. The writing is solid, the world building crisp and lush and the characters... the characters are evocative and are of varying moral hues, just how I like them.
I definitely reccomend this one and think you should give it a shot... ending be damned! At least it didn't go all George R. R. Martin on us... although it was touch and go there for a while!!
*** I was given a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ***