Thursday, July 24, 2014
BORN OF DECEPTION by Teri Brown
Budding illusionist Anna Van Housen is on top of the world: after scoring a spot on a prestigious European vaudeville tour, she has moved to London to chase her dream and to join an underground society for people like her with psychic abilities. Along with her handsome beau, Cole Archer, Anna is prepared to take the city by storm.
But when Anna arrives in London, she finds the group in turmoil. Sensitives are disappearing and, without a suspect, the group’s members are turning on one another. Could the kidnapper be someone within the society itself—or has the nefarious Dr. Boyle followed them to London?
As Cole and Anna begin to unravel the case and secrets about the society are revealed, they find themselves at odds, their plans for romance in London having vanished. Her life in danger and her relationship fizzling, can Anna find a way to track down the killer before he makes her his next victim—or will she have to pay the ultimate price for her powers?
Set in Jazz-Age London, this alluring sequel to Born of Illusion comes alive with sparkling romance, deadly intrigue, and daring magic.
My thoughts on the book:
I really enjoyed Born of Illusion because of the unique setting and world that Brown had created. However, the magic is gone with this second installment. The descriptions, world-building, and character development are seriously lacking in this novel. Also, part of the book, including the climax, were extremely boring. From about 25% until about 75% was fantastic, though. That's why I rated this a C instead of a D or an F. However, I'm not sure I want to continue this series.
In the last book, I fell in love with Cole and Anna and the world of magic that they created together. In this book, the chemistry is gone. Cole is one of the dullest characters I've ever read, and Anna is a whiny, emo brat. Bronco Billy had the potential to be interesting, but that was taken from him, and Brown tried and failed to create a love triangle. None of the characters was fully developed enough to actually be intriguing.
The world-building is lacking. Brown managed to somehow strip all the character out of London, and this story could have taken place anywhere in the world. I still don't understand the society, and I'm not sure I really got what Calypso's powers were, either. Everything was vague and nothing was delved into enough. Also, the climax of the story was so anti-climactic, I could have slept through it. I was riveted for about half the book (25%-75%), but the climax itself had no sense of urgency about it. The ending wrapped everything up in a nice little package, complete with bow, which was also disappointing. That makes me not care about the sequel that much at all.
Overall, I'd only read this book if you were in love with the first novel and really want to continue the series. Otherwise, you're going to be bored and disappointed.