12 May 2011 (Kindle)
When New York City jewelry designer Garet James stumbles into a strange antiques shop in her neighborhood, her life is about to be turned upside down. John Dee, the enigmatic shopkeeper, commissions her to open a vintage silver box for a generous sum of money. Oddly, the symbol of a swan on the box exactly matches the ring given to her by her deceased mother. Garet can’t believe her luck and this eerie coincidence until she opens the box and otherworldly things start happening. . . .
That evening, the precious silver box is stolen. When Garet begins to investigate, she learns that she has been pulled into a prophecy that is hundreds of years old, and opening the box has unleashed an evil force onto the streets of Manhattan and the world at large. Gradually, Garet pieces together her true identity—one that her deceased mother desperately tried to protect her from. Generations of women in Garet’s family, including her beloved mother, suffered and died at the hands of this prevailing evil. Does Garet possess the power to reclaim the box and defeat this devastating force?
On her journey, she will meet the fey folk who walk unnoticed among humans and a sexy vampire who also happens to be a hedge fund manager that she can’t stop thinking about. But the fairies reveal a desire to overpower mere humans and the seductive vampire has the power to steal the life from her body. Whom can Garet trust to guide her? Using her newfound powers and sharp wit, Garet will muster everything she’s got to shut down the evil taking over her friends, family, New York City, and the world.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This is the first book in an intriguing Urban Fantasy trilogy. I enjoyed it.
Garet James is an intriguing character. I liked her a lot, but wanted to shake her on occasion. She is a jeweler, who makes necklaces out of old signets and seals. After hearing some bad news and getting caught in a rain storm, she stumbles into an antiques shop where she meets the proprietor. When he asks for her assistance in opening a sealed box, Garet is thrown into a world she never knew existed and finds out that she's one of a long line of Watchtowers, guardians of the Fae.
I was recommended this book by Amazon in 2014 due to my reading/browsing history. I was intrigued by the synopsis so I bought a copy. Unfortunately, due to my rather large reading list, I haven't been able to read it until recently.
I enjoyed meeting a few of the fae, such as Oberon and Puck, as well as the vampire Will Hughes (could have done with more interaction between him and Garet though). Garet's friends, Becky and Jay, are likable too. However, it was the villain of the story, Dr. John Dee that I struggled to get a feel for, as I felt he wasn't as well developed as he should have been. He came across as insane rather than evil.
I started to read this story and quickly became hooked. Unfortunately, although I enjoyed the story, there were a couple of things about it that didn't grip me as it should have in my opinion - some characters were not as well developed as others, and confusing story lines that didn't seem to weave into the main plot nicely. Although there was excitement and danger in some scenes, as well as romance, I struggled to feel anything but ambivalence for most of the story. I must admit I did get a bit excited during one scene where a gargoyle attacked Garet and Will came to the rescue. Other readers may have a different experience to me, so I will leave it up to you, the reader, to decide for yourselves. I reached the end of the book with mixed feelings. I may change my mind in the future, but I am not sure if I will be continuing with the second book in the trilogy.
Lee Carroll has written an intriguing YA Urban Fantasy. Although I didn't find it particularly fast paced, it kept me interested enough to keep turning the pages. Due to there being too much going on, I felt that the flow became jerky in places and didn't flow as much as it should have.
Due to some scenes of violence, I do not recommend this book to readers under 15. I do, however, recommend this book if you love YA urban fantasy. - Lynn Worton
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Lee Carroll is a pseudonym for the collaboration between Hammet Award-winning mystery novelist Carol Goodman and her poet and hedge fund manager husband, Lee Slonimsky. Goodman and Slonimsky live in Great Neck, New York.