Posted on April 18, 2008 by Matt-M-McElroy
I’m always on the look out for new, interesting urban fantasy novels. Claimed by Shadow sounded pretty cool. A hot young clairvoyant, vampires, demons and other supernaturals to keep things interesting…
This is book two of series, and admittedly I had not read Touch the Dark. I was hoping that there would be enough context to bring me into the story and setting without feeling lost. Although Ms. Chance does offer a few lines here and there of Cassie talking about past events, I still felt a little lost. Not huge deal though because the book starts off with plenty of action. Even with me not knowing exactly who some of the characters are…things were certainly interesting. Cassie is looking for a little help in her ongoing feud with some of the vampires. She is hanging out at a supernatural brothel and causing a little bit of trouble along the way.
We meet a bunch of supernatural characters and get to see a couple of cool fight scenes early on. The War Mages are certainly cool, I couldn’t help but compare them to the Wardens from Dresden Files. Pritkin is a great character. His world views are a bit different from Cassie’s and it was interesting reading dialog between the two of them. Another mage I would have liked to read more about is Mac, his magical tattoos are a great addition to the setting. I’m not going to give too much away here, but these interesting setting elements are what got me to keep reading the book.
This book needed at least another round of editing before hitting the shelves. Karen Chance suffers from the inability to end a sentence without a comma sneaking in there somewhere. There are run-on sentences throughout every chapter. Sometimes even an entire paragraph will be a single sentence.
I’ve seen this book promoted as “paranormal romance” and I’ll agree that there are a few pretty heavy scenes of lust mixed into the supernatural elements. However, there is a lot of cool mystery, intrigue and magic that makes this more of an “urban fantasy” story than a romance novel. The supporting cast really makes this setting cool. With a few more books of development this particular group of supernatural characters (and the politics, intrigue and magic that surrounds them) could be one of the better settings available.
Claimed by Shadow is not as interesting as the Dresden Files, but these characters and this setting…have a lot of potential. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next book.