Sagara does a good job of melding weird strong powers with human frailty. She has taken a tired old plotline--20 something with Mysterious Powers and a Destiny and turned it on its head. Some of the actions the various characters take can be a bit mellodramatic at times--especially at the beginning--but there is something about the main character Kaylin and her relations with the various other races that keeps the plot moving. And the twist 3/4 of the way through the book was actually surprising--and lent an unexpected depth to the storyline. If you like female protagonists, character driven plotlines and well-articulated alien races, (as I do) then you will find it a pleasant (and fairly quick) read.
I personally thought that the book started a little slow. However, about 5 chapters in, it really grabbed my attention and I couldn't put it down until the end. It was a fascinating story. Though I had to constantly reconsider what the area looked like. I never did get a clear "picture" of that. I'm greatly looking forward to reading the second book she has written.
This is the first book in this series by Michelle Sagara (aka Michelle West or Michelle Sagara West). Kaylin is a Hawk - one of the arms of the law in her world. She has an unusual ability for healing and also unusual tattoos on her arms which suddenly appeared on her when she was a child. No one can explain them. She is an orphan from the outer city (a very poor and dangerous area). When she was young she escaped this place by petitioning to be a Hawk. There is a reason she left, a really disturbing event that Kaylin wants to forget; but while Kaylin wants to leave her past behind, it follows her : suddenly children are being killed and found with tattoos on them similar to Kaylin's, and everyone wants to know why. Because Kaylin believes in justice and enforcing the law, she must get involved in solving these murders and dredge up her past. A very engrossing police procedural mixed with fantasy and very interesting characters. Probably one of the most interesting things is the different races and cultures in Kaylin's world and how they all interact with one another.
Kaylin is a survivor of a poor, crime infested city in a fantastical world where magic is real and there are several races of life. Children are being murdered again, just like when she was a child and all have the same odd tattoos that appeared on her own skin. However, now she is a Hawk, the police force trying to solve this series of crimes. Working with a mysterious Dragon lord, her old best friend who betrayed her, and dealing with a magic containing device will not make this task easy, buty Kaylin is not a weakling. Evil is near and lives are in danger and only Kaylin stands a chance to solve this mystery before she becomes the last victim. This story is a great fantasty with characters that I hope continue in other stories.
At first I was lost, had NO idea what was going on. But then I realized that Kaylin, our main character, was also clueless. She is a strong heroine, but also a young, somewhat naive woman. As Kaylin learns, so does the reader. The world in which she lives is fascinating and dangerous, and if she wants to stay alive, she has to start learning at a much faster pace than she really wants to. The journey takes the reader on quite a wild ride. I am looking forward to the next book in the series.
FABIL usually doesn't let me down but this one just didn't hold up to my expectations. Perhaps it was the style, b/c her use of imagery was amazing and allowed me to 'see' everything she was describing, but her narrative and disjointed sentences made it harder for me to read fluently. I didn't enjoy it at all until pg 200. By the end, I was just glad it was over.
I think she is a talented writer, just not my style. I love JR Ward, early works of Laurell Hamilton, early JD Robb, Rachel Vincent, Carrie Vaughn, Showalter, Kresley Cole and especially Nalini Singh, etc ... So fantasy and science fiction isn't the issue. Maybe it was the lack of romance?? I just feel Ms Sagara doesn't compare to them. If you like them as well, you may want to shy away from this.
I really enjoyed this book! At first, the dry narration - dry in humour, not in interest - was a bit off-putting. I think that this would not have been in the case if the book was written in first-person, rather than third, but as I became more accustomed to her style, I really loved it! And it's always so exciting to start a new series! In some ways, this book reminded me of what I remember from reading Maggie Furey's _Aurian_ a long time ago, and more recently, Maria V. Snyder's books. Either way, I am really enjoying this series and am quite excited to continue reading them!
Really enjoyable read - compelling characters and an interesting plot. There are three different species on the planet and the politics and interactions between them have been enjoyable. This has been a really good book. I will be getting the other books in this series. I like an honest, genuine, strong lead female character. Worth the time to read.
I have not only read the series through book 9, but they are on my keeper shelf. It is a wonderful on-going saga that really needs to be read chronologically for full enjoyment.
This book sounded really good after reading the back cover but from just about the first page, I was lost. It read very sketchy and vague. I had a really hard time keeping my attention on each page. And unfortunately, at the end of the book I didn't feel a whole lot more informed about what in the heck was "going on" than I did at the first page.
Seven years ago Kaylin fled the crime-riddled streets of Nightshade, knowing that something was after her. Children were being murdered -- and all had the same odd markings that mysteriously appeared on her own skin . . .
Since then, she's learned to read, she's learned to fight and she's become one of the vaunted Hawks who patrol and police the City of Elantra. Alongside the winged Aerians and immortal Barrani, she's made a place for herself, far from the mean streets of her birth.
But children are once again dying, and a dark and familiar pattern is emerging, Kaylin is ordered back into Nightshade with a partner she knows she can't trust, a Dragon lord for a companion and a device to contain her powers -- powers that no other human has. Her task is simple -- find the killer, stop the murders . . . and survive the attentions of those who claim to be her allies!