Claimed by Shadow by Karen Chance

(Cassandra Palmer Series, #2)
Published April 2007
Urban Fantasy

Clairvoyant Cassie Palmer has inherited new magical powers-including the ability to travel through time. But it's a whole lot of responsibility she'd rather not have. Now she's the most popular girl in town, as an assortment of vamps, fey, and mages try to convince, force, or seduce her—and her magic—over to their side. But one particular master vampire didn't ask what Cassie wanted before putting a claim on her. He had a spell cast that binds her to him, and now she doesn't know if what she feels for him is real—or imagined…

I’m just not a time travel fan, so the first part of the book didn’t hold my attention as much as I’d like. There was shifting that seemed almost constant and I had trouble following the storyline due to the almost non-stop action, frantic pace, and not slowing down for me to care about much. Instead of staying excited, I grew bored and tended to skim when yet another shift scene happened that came out of nowhere with information overload to soon follow.

The second half grew more interesting as it slowed down to breathe (slightly) and there was some returns of characters from the first book, as well as interesting new ones, and the ending excelled with how she finally becomes Pithia.

I’m curious about what is going to happen with the geas and where that’s going to lead the story. It being tied into the dreamy Mircea helps. There must be some rule somewhere that almost any story with fairies, they’re pretty bad and cruel in Urban Fantasy. Billy the ghost is always funny and I’d like the author to explore Cass’s connection with the spirit world in a more in-depth way. The Consol is just yicky and disturbing, but I suppose the cold leader of the Vampire council would likely be anything else.

I didn’t really care at all about the Mircea and brothers Dracula angle, which is one reason I think I wasn’t as interested for the first part.

Cass is a good character – she’s funny, sympathetic, determined, independent, with realistic vulnerabilities. She doesn’t have a huge chip on her shoulder that makes you want to break it off. She does the best she can in whatever situation she lands, so the story getting dull at times doesn’t lay on poor characterization.

While the action being too frequent may hurt the story, Karen Chance is excellent with writing action scenes in general, I just think they may go on a bit too long and become overwhelming. She’s excellent with writing dialogue as well.

The end isn’t really a cliffhanger, but more of a major development that makes the potential sequels seem exciting. I now know there are at least two major plot points that will continue, both of them intriguing, so even though this book didn’t wow me much, I am definitely going to continue into the third to see what happens with the geas and the major changes for Cassie.

   Book Quotes:

“He had the look of an atheist who’d just had a visit from God: stunned, disbelieving and faintly ill.”

“Any day that starts off in a demon-filled bar in a casino designed to look like Hell isn't likely to turn out well.”

   Author Extras:

Download the full tarot pack from Karen Chance's Website 

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