Sunday, February 12, 2012

Review: Heroes at Odds

Heroes at Odds
Heroes at Odds by Moira J. Moore

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love this series, and I was saddened to learn that book #7 wasn't going to be out in paperback. Moira Moore is still writing it so that the series gets its proper ending, but the publisher has dropped the series.


As for this book, I didn't enjoy it quite as much as I did the earlier books. We do get a lot of fun characters and amusing interactions and a deeper look at a fascinating world, but I felt like there was something missing. Lee and Taro's relationship lacked the tension of earlier books; I felt like they were reluctantly going through the motions. That may have been the point.

In this book, Lee and Taro's relationship is tested when Lee's family shows up to tell her about a marriage contract made before she became a Shield. The contract is null and void because of her obligations, but that doesn't make the other side of the contract any less tenacious in seeking to force Lee to honor it. To that end, Taro challenges Marcus Pride, Lee's would-be husband, to a set of three challenges. Meanwhile, Flown Raven is threatened by outside forces in a bid to take Fiona out of power, Lee joins this world's equivalent of a coven, and Taro's mother tries, ineffectually, to get between Taro and Lee.

Where the narrative felt like it was missing something was in the three trials. Lee complains bitterly that her future is up to these stupid tests, but I never felt like she was invested in the outcome. During the final test, it comes down to a nail-biting finish, and yet I never felt the tension in Lee, nor did I feel it was terribly important to Taro that he win.

The rest of the story was good, and a lot of the things that happened in earlier books are tied in. This book does an excellent job of starting to bring things to a head for book 7.

Which is why it's so frustrating that I'm not going to be able to hold a paper copy in my hands to read the seventh installment. It promises to be a good one, and I'm sure I'll enjoy reading it online, but I'd much rather be able to pick it up off store shelves, and pay the author for all the world-building and work she's put into this story.

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