BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Bea Reviews Night Owl by Lauren M. Roy

Publisher:  Ace
Series: Night Owls #1
Format Read: paperback
Source: publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: February 25, 2014
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | ARe* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

Night Owls book store is the one spot on campus open late enough to help out even the most practiced slacker. The employees’ penchant for fighting the evil creatures of the night is just a perk…

Valerie McTeague’s business model is simple: provide the students of Edgewood College with a late-night study haven and stay as far away from the underworld conflicts of her vampire brethren as possible. She’s lived that life, and the price she paid was far too high to ever want to return.

Elly Garrett hasn’t known any life except that of fighting the supernatural werewolf-like beings known as Creeps or Jackals. But she always had her mentor and foster father by her side—until he gave his life protecting a book that the Creeps desperately want to get their hands on.

When the book gets stashed at Night Owls for safe keeping, those Val holds nearest and dearest are put in mortal peril. Now Val and Elly will have to team up, along with a mismatched crew of humans, vampires, and lesbian succubi, to stop the Jackals from getting their claws on the book and unleashing unnamed horrors…

Bea's Thoughts:

Okay, how could I resist that blurb? Roy had me at 'book store" and "late night"; heck she had me at the title as I'm a night owl myself. Throw in vampires, succubi and werewolf-type beings and I was sold. :D There wasn't nearly enough time in the book store but maybe in future books.

The werewolf-type beings, known as Jackals or Creeps, are a cross, sort of, between vampires and weres with some zombie thrown in, but are closest to vamps. I actually didn't find them all that creepy but I did like seeing them in their different forms and how they are capable of conning and hypnotizing humans. They were interesting beings promise to be strong foils for future stories.

Roy sets up several threads - Val's history as a hunter, her conflict with the nearest group or coven of vampires, Elly's devotion to her foster father and her hunger for a home, Chaz's unrequited feelings for Val and his devotion to her, the war between vampires and Creeps, and the oh-so-interesting secret semi-religious group, the Brotherhood - some of which are resolved in this book and some are left open-ended. I found the beginning of the book to be slow despite starting with a bang. I almost gave up on it a few times but then somewhere around a hundred pages in, I was hooked. I wanted to know more, find out what happened, and spend time with the cast. There's a good-sized with a sort of Scooby Doo gang feel. We get a mix of clich├ęs and originality, some predictable events and some genuine twists.

Being a first book, there's a lot of laying the foundation, though as I mentioned, Roy doesn't answer every question. The pacing is slow at first and the head hopping (there are multiple POVs) might be too much for some readers but if you stick with it, the story is worth it. There are secrets galore, lots of action, humor, a hint of romance, and a nice mixing of mythologies. "Night Owls" is a good start to a new series and I’m looking forward to the next book.

8 comments:

  1. I agree with you partly, Bea. It was a slow start, and unfortunately I'm not sold on this series :(

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    1. I can see that. It did have flaws. I like the character interactions enough to give the second book a try.

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  2. I've had this one on my tbr pile. Glad to hear it was good even with some slow bits and pieces. Still sounds like a good start to a series :)

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  3. The blurb had me at "bookstore" and "night owl" but "succubi" gave me second thoughts. (Not a fan, for some reason.) Given the already-overwhelming size of my TBR pile and list, I think I'll put this on the "maybe someday" list until the series is a bit more fleshed out, then see what I think.

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    1. The sex aspect of the succubi is minor in the story though there are some jokes made around it. I liked them, they were sweet actually.

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  4. I agree this one establishes a solid foundation for what hopefully will be a great new UF series. I struggled a bit with pacing and I wish the author had explained things better.

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  5. I've been reading this one but reading it around other things, the slow start has me almost giving up too. Nice to know it picks up, I think I'll give it a renewed push and see if I can get into it more. There are things I like, the blurb had me right off the bat too. :)

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