“I continue to devour this series, my only disappointment being that there are no more to read right now. [Edit: Apparently this was the last book in the series.] In Blood Winter Max, Alexander, Kyle, Tory, and Carrie are preparing to go into town to see how the townsfolk have been dealing with...”see full review » see other reviews »
“I continue to devour this series, my only disappointment being that there are no more to read right now. [Edit: Apparently this was the last book in the series.] In Blood Winter Max, Alexander, Kyle, Tory, and Carrie are preparing to go into town to see how the townsfolk have been dealing with the Change when disaster strikes. An unknown witch has gathered followers around him, making himself into the next Jesus - but his self-proclaimed work as "the right arm of God" is to wipe out the evil among them, namely Witches and those who consort with them. He brings his mission to Horngate's doorstep - passing through their wards with four "witches" nailed up to burn. Of course Max and her crew resolve that something must be done about the unspeakable horrors he's perpetrating against the helpless, but the more they work to defeat him the more powerful they realize he is and the more hopeless the situation seems. The Angel's are still out and the Grimms (and Spike) take off, leaving the Coven ill equipped to fight without losing more of their family. Not to mention their still reeling from the loss of Niko. All the stress threatens to tear Max, Alexander, Tyler, Thor, Giselle, and the entire coven apart...
A really wonderful read. Diana Pharaoh Francis continues to weave incredibly unique fantasy with heart-wrenching and painful detail. 4 stars!”
“Max has to figure out how the witch is able to get inside their wards and also deal with her feelings for Alexander. Interesting series, looking forward to the next book.”Tami H wrote this review Tuesday, January 29, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“"NEW GAME. SAME RULES. SHE FIGHTS. THEY DIE." I stole the first line from the blurb because that just about sums it up. Max is definitely one kick@ss chick but the trouble is that she's been this way for so long, she doesn't really know how to open herself up for love.
I LOVE Max and Alexander and to be quite honest with you, I could care less about all the other stuff. Finally, this book brings all the emotional drama ~somewhat~ to the forefront. They still have to fight the bad guys after all.
I really enjoyed how everyone seem to come together and they finally seemed like a real team. All the fights and how they worked together were sooo good. But it's just like that saying...."When the going gets good, the good gets going".
This is suppose to be the last book in the series and going in knowing that, I had some expectations for things to get wrapped up but fortunately, they were not met. The book leaves you with the feeling that things could carry on and quite frankly, that couldn't make me happier. We can only hope!
♦ "You. Hit. All. My. Nerves."
♥ “You do not understand. What I feel for you is too big to stay in a box for long. It was not long after the locks broke open that I understood.” His mouth curved, his eyes full of memory. “I went mad. Or maybe what happened was that I woke up from my madness. I realized that I could never walk away from you. I could never want to. There is no sanity without you. I am whole only with you.”
“This was by far my favorite in the series. The story never stalled and the depth of the emotional connection among all the characters was realistically depicted and well scripted. As always, Max is quick with the one-liners. Some of the best scenes involved the easy going banter between Max and Tyler. And Max and Alexander are incredible together and apart. I want more of the Horngaters!”Kathryn wrote this review Monday, December 31, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Five action-packed stars!
The Horngate Witches series is set in a post magical apocalyptic America and features badass sword-wielding, not quite human, warriors, mildly sociopathic witches, not very angelic angels, and all manner of other weird mythological creatures and beasties. With a splash of romance enough to make me grin like a weirdo, worldbuilding that knocks my socks off, and action by the bucket load, you can see why this series is right up their with my other Urban Fantasy favourites like Kate Daniels, The Hollows, Mercedes Thompson and all those other great female-led UF series. If you haven't started this series yet and you are a fan of any of the above, add this to your TBR today! You will not be sorry.
The warriors in this series—Shadowblades and Sunspears—act as guardians for the witches and are, in fact, the main focus of books, despite the slightly misleading series name. They're woven with spells that make them nearly indestructible, as well as faster, stronger, more resistant to extreme temperatures, etc. But the downside to all that is eternal servitude to the witch who turned them. Which wouldn't be so much of a problem unless, say for instance, that witch used to be your best friend and did it to you without your permission.
Our main character is Max (that's a girl, btw), but at this point in the series, it's fair to say that Alexander is just as much of a main character as it's told in alternating third person POVs between them. Max and Alexander not only have to fight all manner of nasty things in this book as part of their role as leaders of the Shadowblades, but they're also fighting some more personal demons, as well as their increasingly complicated feelings for each other.
Following on from the giant waves of magic that erupted a couple of books back, and then Max's trials in Shadow City, she and her fellow Blades are reunited once again and decide it's time they get out from behind the safety and insulation of Horngate's wards to check out the aftermath and find out what's happening with the humans still out there in the towns and cities. Which is nothing good, as it turns out. Food is in critical demand, people are reverting back to their baser natures, and where there's chaos and panic, there's always some douchecanoe wannabe dictator ready to lead them all up the creek without a paddle. Which loosely sums up the premise of this book, in a very crude and ineloquent way.
I thought the use of the split POVs proved really useful once again; allowing us to see the action from all sides at once. The awkwardness that's developed between Alexander and Max was showcased brilliantly, too. Max, being Max, isn't handling the new dynamic with Alexander very well. She's been acting like Jekyll and Hyde with him and he is both perplexed and annoyed by it. I fully expected Max to make some mistakes at the whole "relationship" thing, and she certainly didn't disappoint! I thought that entire situation was really well-written, and with a few unpredictable twists thrown in for good measure.
Overall, I thought the story was engaging, well-paced, amusing, emotional, exhilarating, intense...I mean, I could just go on and on. It was just superb urban fantasy.
So what are you waiting for, hmm? Go grab yourself a copy right now!
5 Stars! ★★★★★
ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.