On her 30th birthday, Catherine Sharp has a lot to celebrate: a great IT job in Las Vegas, a growing mastery of technomancy, and a deity or two on speed dial. She’s barely had a chance to blow out her candles when she finds a half-dead body on her doorstep. Marius. For centuries, the satyr has lied, cheated and swindled the upper crust of several pantheons in service to Eris, the Greek goddess of Discord. However, he has angered his mistress and found himself vulnerable. With bloodthirsty gods and monsters after him, Marius runs to the only person he hopes he can trust: Cat. Despite his previous betrayal, Cat still harbors a soft spot for Marius. Helping him means taking on demons and deities, but telling him to fend for himself leaves Cat wrestling with feelings she’d rather not think about. The birthday girl has a choice to make, and it isn’t a simple one. She must weigh the sins of his checkered past against their strange chemistry. Matters of the heart clash with the politics of divinity and family business. Everything hinges on the answer to one question: can she trust him?
As the third novel in the series, this is the perfect book. Not only does it introduce a favorite back into the storyline but most of the novel centers on Marius and his history. I was eager to read this book and loved it as much as the other two, possibly more. Let me tell you why.
Most of the series has been a progression of growth in the character of Catherine Sharp. This novel is no exception. While the second book dealt with the evolution of her powers and her relationship with her best friend, this book puts her romantic life front and center. Not only does Catherine have to deal with her feelings for Marius, she must also work through her old issues over trust and feeling vulnerable, none of which is easy for her. Even better, working through the issues normalizes the character’s bisexuality. While she doesn’t have feelings for her past lover still and she currently cares about a man, we never hear that she’s lost her attraction to women and her sexuality never focuses just on a man. Her affections do but never in a way that diminishes who she is or her sexuality.
The other aspect that I truly loved was more exploration of Marius, his family and issues, and Greek Mythology. I love an author that can blend mythology into a realistic portrayal of characters and Jamie Wyman does so expertly. None of the Gods or Goddesses portrayed in the novel comes across as two dimensional or flat. Every character feels like a real person and not just a depiction from the tales from a mythology book.
I love the action, the wit, and the pacing. The action and the solutions to the problems are realistic and yet interesting, engaging and clever. This story’s focus might be romantic in nature but there is plenty of mystery, intrigue and action to go around. It is an edge of your seat, thrilling story that kept me up way into the wee hours of the morning. And while this is a perfect ending, if the author is concluding the series, I really hope for more. I love the characters, the world, and can’t quite shake the idea that Catherine has more stories to share.
Rating: 5 stars.