White Star by USA Today Bestselling author Elizabeth Vaughan is an excellent book. I was hooked from the very beginning and finished reading it at 4:18 AM. Ouch! The writing is fantastic the Vaughan got her hooks into me right away with tense scenes and snappy dialogue. She has so many great opening lines, and closing lines of chapters, which really impressed me.
Most importantly, the main characters: Lord Orrin and Lady Evelyn are very well done. Orrin is one of those bad guys who the girls fall for. He's dark, handsome, brooding and someone you do not want to make angry. Lady Evelyn, a High Priestess and a Mage, has serious power. She can throw down with the best of them and burn people to a crisp if need be. She's one of those really cool characters that you love to read about.
The secondary characters are great too. Lord Orrin's men are very entertaining, especially Archer, who can't use his real name because of the things he's done. I especially liked the fact that he had certain proclivities . . . no spoiler here.
The plot of the book involves the fall of Lord Orrin's barony, and the repercussions of what the Baroness did--which involves undead zombie-like creatures--which Vaughan calls odium. Lady Evelyn, "Evie" is right in the middle of it all and Orrin can't help but fall for the beautiful woman with white hair and piercing blue eyes.
The world was well thought out and I really liked the magic, especially the portals, which allow people to travel far and wide. It all fits together in a realistic way that I truly appreciated, as I can always tell when writers don't do a thorough job on world-building.
This book is sort of a sequel to Dagger Star, but you don't need to have read Dagger Star to get White Star, which should be considered a stand-alone novel. There are quite a few characters who appeared in Dagger Star though, so readers of that book will enjoy seeing some of their favorite characters return.
The ending of White Star was satisfying, and another storyline was opened, involving different characters. I look forward to the next installment and I'm definitely hooked on Vaughan's writing. I loved her Warlands trilogy, War Prize is the first book.