dimanche 14 octobre 2012

Royal Street ( Sentinels of New Orleans 1) by Suzanne Johnson

Hello to all,

                  I hope you had a great weekend, for my part i enjoyed my reading time. Like i told you already, this month i will choose mostly urban fantasy book to review and there is one author i really wanted to share with you: Suzanne Johnson. If you follow my blog you know she is an author i really admire and that she is also writing an paranormal romance series : The Penton Legacy under the name Susannah Sandlin.

As Suzanne Johnson she is writing urban fantasy and i love her writing style in any of those genre really, she is writing with her heart and you get to feel it a lot in " Royal Street" first book of the series Sentinels of New Orleans. For the fans out there now  it also exist an UK version of this book and both edition of book 2 River Road will be released in November ( US 13th, UK 27th) so you just have to the time to discover this book to be ready.

Happy Reading

Publisher: Tor Books
Publication: 2012
ISBN:  0765327791
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Violence: mild

Language: normal
sex: none
Public: 18+
Source: received from the author

Short description from goodread :

 As the junior wizard sentinel for New Orleans, Drusilla Jaco’s job involves a lot more potion-mixing and pixie-retrieval than sniffing out supernatural bad guys like rogue vampires and lethal were-creatures. DJ's boss and mentor, Gerald St. Simon, is the wizard tasked with protecting the city from anyone or anything that might slip over from the preternatural beyond.

Then Hurricane Katrina hammers New Orleans’ fragile levees, unleashing more than just dangerous flood waters.

While winds howled and Lake Pontchartrain surged, the borders between the modern city and the Otherworld crumbled. Now, the undead and the restless are roaming the Big Easy, and a serial killer with ties to voodoo is murdering the soldiers sent to help the city recover.

To make it worse, Gerry has gone missing, the wizards’ Elders have assigned a grenade-toting assassin as DJ’s new partner, and undead pirate Jean Lafitte wants to make her walk his plank. The search for Gerry and for the serial killer turns personal when DJ learns the hard way that loyalty requires sacrifice, allies come from the unlikeliest places, and duty mixed with love creates one bitter gumbo.

My opinion:

          I’ve waited a long time to get this book so when the author sent it to me I was ecstatic and could not believe my eyes. I was in Paradise however I’ve not started to read it immediately I needed to made another review before and I felt this book was more appropriate for this month..; I guess I was in fact anxious and a bit afraid to be disappointed. I’ve read so many wonderful excerpt, saw so many compliments  I wanted to take my time and make my own opinion because I really admire the author but it’s not a guaranty I will love all the books she writes.
Now I can’t wait to read book two and I’m feeling a bit stupid for having been apprehensive. I really loved this book even if it’s not yet one of my favourite series; it could easily become one since I want more and this first book is really promising.

First, if I want to be impartial I have to admit that it’s not overly, completely original. We are finding the big lines of the Urban fantasy genre and some allusions to other series too ( walking staff anybody? Staff with his own mind?  Yes you got it! There is a walking, sentient staff in the  Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs one author that Suzanne Johnson loves and admires- no it’s not exactly the same at all)
Now that’s quite normal too, when you write in a genre you have to keep the standards of it and such but what will make the difference is how it’s writing and the story in itself.

On that side, Suzanne Johnson did really well. She put the story in a city she knows well and more important one she loves very much and you can feel this love when reading. Also she used a real event for the starting point; the story starts and develops in parallel to the Katrina hurricane and its consequences.  We get the feeling of the population and it gives us another point of view about this events. I particularly loved the small excerpt of newspapers above several chapters that gave me more complete understanding of the events. Living in Europe of course we learned about the hurricane and saw the disaster in the news days after days but for example we weren’t told another tempest came shortly after and I can understand the feeling of despair of people who had already been truck once and had to see that coming once again. I really admire they courage and persistence in rebuilding. The author managed to make us feel part of this drama and feel compassion and respect for theses survivors.

That gives a special elements to the story and the fact it takes place in New Orleans a city with such a rich history, really well introduced in the plot, just make it more believable. If there is some magic somewhere in the States it would be there it makes sense.

The characters are well constructed, but still mysterious. We have learned a bit more about DJ's past but we don’t know all the consequences yet. Alex we have learned about his family but just got a glimpse of his past and there are so many questions about Gerry like how it happened, when etc. Then they are all the historical figures, I really loved those and learning about their history it’s a great asset for this universe. The characters still having so many secrets it’s really promising for the rest of the series because I want to learn more as well as the other readers I’m sure. After all, we will see more of Jean and that will be fun.

I’ve spent an excellent time reading this book even if the ending give us more questions than closure it did not bother me like other books, in a way it even seems normal and I really want to see how the relationship between the characters will evolve.  There are some fun parts but few and it’s normal: we meet with DJ when she is living a dark time after all but we can hope  for more fun in the future and a lot of potions surprise in bonus  ( who knows^^).
Second book River Road comes out in November and I can’t wait

Score:  4/5

Source: a copy in exchange for a honest review, no other compensation was received.

If you want this book you can buy it on  amazon or on  Bookdepository

You can find more informations on the series and Suzanne on her Blog


This book enter in the Romance and Me Challenge

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