Book Review of The Better Part of Darkness (Charlie Madigan, Bk 1)

The Better Part of Darkness (Charlie Madigan, Bk 1)
jai avatar reviewed on + 310 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1

In this urban fantasy series, the existence of races from other worlds became known when scientists discovered two parallel planes of existence called Elysia and Charbydon. Charlie Madigan works for Atlanta's Integration Task Force (the ITF) with her siren partner, Hank, to take down any off world offenders. Charlie and Hank begin to investigate an off-world drug called ash, and complications arise when the investigation unearths problems that personally involve Charlie and threaten those she loves.

This is one of those urban fantasies where the heroine has a dark side. Think Dante Valentine in the series by Lilith Saintcrow. The story is in the first person POV and her personality colors the story. There's a lot of angst in Charlie's life and although she has a support system to balance that, I never warmed to her character. She was too impulsive for me, and in her anger did things I found at odds with her job as law enforcement. And she often mouthed off too much for my taste.

It's too bad I couldn't warm to Charlie in the book because I did enjoy the writing and the secondary characters a lot. The side characters all had distinct personalities and depth. I think I was particularly fond of Rex and his sarcastic comments. The world building felt unique and interesting. And the plot and pacing felt like it had the right amount of action versus downtime.

A note on the romance: I saw reviews that suggest there is one, but although Charlie appreciates many men in this book, there really isn't a romantic interest for her so far. At least for this book, this is an urban fantasy without a romance for the main character, although there are complicated relationships and secondary romances to keep things interesting.

My full review: http://janicu.livejournal.com/98628.html