I can't recommend this book. The writing is clunky and the heroine is not particularly likeable, not to mention uneven and contradictory. I liked the idea of "therapist to the vampires", but it's just not well done.
This novel crosses several genre; paranormal romance, political thriller, military sci-fi, perhaps a few more. Aside from the fact that it perhaps tries to do TOO much, it's a pretty good read.
From back cover:
Meet Gillian Key. She's a Paranormal psychologist who can treat the mental distress of nonhumans. And she's a Marine Special Forces operative who can get physical with them when the situation calls for it . . .
I did not have very high expectations when I picked this book to read, and still I have to say I was disappointed. The characters were not particularly compelling to start; it seemed like the author chose dumping many minor or background characters unnecessarily into the story over giving readers a few well fleshed personalities. In attempting to make the female protagonist appear tough and competent, she instead comes across as unduly antagonistic, combative, and petulant. The storyline itself was poorly timed with weeks and months passing with barely a mention, and the transitions themselves (when they happened) were jarring as well as confusing.
This is not a book I would recommend, even to someone whos a fan of the paranormal genre. I genuinely had a very difficult time immersing myself in this story or relating at all with the characters. I was frankly peeved and put off by the confounding behavior of the female protagonist and wont been reading any more of the authors books if this is a demonstration of the quality of her writing.
Maybe I shouldn't have, but I read some of the other reviews before I read the book. Honestly, it made me a little hesitant to read even though I had been looking forward to it. I'll be honest, the third book is probably my favorite of this series, but I enjoyed this one too. Maybe this is a series that shouldn't be read in order, but I didn't see what the problem was with it. I had read about some of the things that were going to happen, and yet, it was still different than what I had expected it to be. All in all, I enjoyed this book. I thought it did an excellent job of establishing characters. However, it is definitely a unique twist on the paranormal genre, so if you are looking for more of the same...this isn't going to satisfy you. If you love paranormal books and are looking for something a little different, then I think you should give it a chance.
I had high hopes for this book based on the back cover, but I was terribly disappointed. The plot has a lot of neat ideas, but the execution really left a lot to be desired. The writing was choppy and I couldn't tell if it was written as a Paranormal Fantasy or a Paranormal Romance, which has different rules for the genres. I didn't like the female protagonist [I can't bring myself to call her a heroine], mostly because she was contradictory and rude when she should have known better, a fault in female characters that drives me crazy. Nor did the male romantic lead interest me. I wanted to like it, but it was written in a way that ensured that I wouldn't. I hate when that happens!
In theory, I think the book was a great idea. In actuality, the execution left a lot to be desired. I couldn't get into the book. The writing was choppy, you jumped straight into characters that were quite shallow for an old vampire and a psychologist, and the situations and conversations were just unrealistic(and thats from someone that reads fantasy/paranormal almost exclusively). In all fairness, I did not finish the book, it may have gotten better, but I just can't recommend it.
Dr. Gillian Key is a Paramortal Psychologist and a United States Marine Corps Captain, Special Forces Operative. The story is the first in a series that includes four titles, so far.
Gillian is a small sexy woman with a ballsy attitude.
She starts out the book meeting Count Rachlav, a master vampire, who requires therapy in his home in Romania. This job serves another purpose as Gillian's covert Special Forces assignment - collect information about the war Dracula and his allies are fomenting.
I enjoyed the book overall, however, I found Gillian's character annoying and flawed. For a psychologist, Gillian acts immature and rash. She's not convincing. As a soldier, she does better, but I never was able to see why she was such a good leader. I don't want to give away story details, so I will leave it to you to decide.
The book has plenty of sex and action scenes. The dialogue was entertaining. The characterizations were pretty shallow, but still interesting. I hope the next book improves.
Here is the deal... I love this series. And I have to admit Gill is alot like me when I was younger head strong and full of it. I laughed everytime the two vamps tried to coddle her. Reminded me of Edward in the Twilight series trying to keep Bella safe and her reactions.
Don't let the above get you down and if you do read the book keep going the first is mostly to help you learn about the characters and hey its her first book give her a break!!!!
Marla C. reviewed Key to Conflict (Gillian Key, Bk 1) on
I suggest a drinking game--take a shot every time the author tells you that Gillian Key is a Marine, and therefore totally badass. You'll die of alcohol poisoning about halfway through the book.
The paramortal psychologist premise is promising, though. Because I read quickly and will tolerate a lot of clunky prose for an interesting idea, I'll probably check the other Gillian Key books out to see if Gryphon manages to do it justice later in the series.
Horrible! I couldn't finish it. It was like the author was trying to make the main character every badass female hero, rolled into one person. She ended up just being completely unlikable and totally unbelievable. And the writing, ahhh, don't even get me started on the hogwash the author had this character saying, and repeating over and over and over again. Pass on this one, if you are looking for strong female characters, read Keri Arthur, Karen Chance or Patricia Briggs.