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VeganCleopatra

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Moonglow (Darkest London)

Moonglow  - Kristen Callihan 2.5 stars

*sigh* Firelight, the first in this series, was an excellent and fun read. I felt the novel had just the right amount of paranormal and romance mixed with historical. One of the few issues I had with the novel was the explanation of the paranormal aspect of Archer. Unfortunately for Moonglow, it felt like an endless Harlequin romance with a great deal of the iffy paranormal explanations I disliked from Firelight.

Overall Moonglow was not as original as Firelight and the plot was weak. The characters, which were well-drawn and easy to root for in Firelight, were dull and lacking depth in Moonglow. We were told details of Ian's life but it never came across as genuine. Plus, are we truly supposed to believe that the ass of individual Ian is in Firelight completely disappears in Moonglow only to be replaced by a misunderstood noble? Explanations for Ian's decisions also elicit confusion, further adding to the lack of attachment to his character. Daisy was feisty in speech and apparently quite horny. But this is about the only depth we gain from her, as she lacks the heart that her sister, Miranda, exhibited so well in Firelight.

The plot was weak with many periods where little to nothing is going on (or being added to the characters). The "twists" were often able to be seen ahead of time and the one at the end felt very much like a deus ex machina. This installment lacked the suspense and intrigue that Firelight exhibited due to us already knowing both main characters and having previous knowledge of Ian being a werewolf. The only suspense was in who was murdering women who also happened to share the same perfume as Daisy. Unfortunately even the murder mystery aspect took a back seat to the over-done romance.

In Firelight we had a slow, charming romance between Miranda and Archer. However, Ian and Daisy appear to be horny teenagers, ones that insist on irking the other as well. We are essentially bashed over the heads with the romance, including an extremely lengthy sex scene which actually never goes anywhere and just left me rolling my eyes. In Firelight I felt Callihan had a good ability of giving her novel depth while also adding in romance, but in Moonglow the depth leaves and the romance moves in full force.

Also, while I love paranormal books, Moonglow is heavy-handed as it is meant to include a strong historical element as well. But the historical is all but left behind to make room for far too much paranormal, an aspect I do not feel is Callihan's strength. Her explanations for paranormal elements were lacking in Firelight and unfortunately they were weaved throughout Moonglow. The explanation of weres and lycans was weak and left me with more questions than answers. The inclusion of the GIMs felt unnecessary and simply odd and only were found to be useful in a "twist".

Overall Moonglow is much less original than its counterpart and focuses entirely too much on the romantic element. Callihan also should focus more on the historical element as her paranormal explanations largely leave me feeling unsatisfied. I also would like to not that as a reader of the Parasol Protectorate (Soulless) series, I could not help but see the similarities in terms of the werewolves. As both series are set in Victorian England and include Scottish werewolves, the very least an author could do is choose different names right? There are more than just a handful of names in Scotland, correct? But Callihan chooses to use names such as Lyall, Conall and Maccon which are predominant names in the Parasol Protectorate series. This is disappointing Callihan, but then again Moonglow was overall.