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Uncertain Allies (Connor Grey) Mass Market Paperback – 26 Apr 2011

2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Ace Books (26 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0441020402
  • ISBN-13: 978-0441020409
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 2.1 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 884,599 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Mark Del Franco lives with his partner, Jack, in Boston, Massachusetts, where the orchids tremble in fear since he killed Jack's palm plants.

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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The last three books in the series have been far too similar in story and plot. I really do like the character of Connor Grey (god knows why) but with no magical powers at his command he is drawn very weak. I am so tired of the bloody dark mass in his head that stops his powers. We are five books in with one on the way, and still no progression as to why he has a dark mass in his stupid head! The lead character has to rely on others far too often and in my opinion it is just not credible. Connor is not a good detective, lover, druid, friend, enemy or ally! With all these flaws this should make the book at least an interesting read but each book has become too similar to the last. The females in the book are not fully fleshed out and they simply become what their job is; they do not feel like real people. I would like to see in book 6 an end to the dark mass in Connor's head and a real progression in relationships between all character's in the book. I do like the action sequences in the books but again they are all too similar. The series needs a new dynamic and getting rid of the dark mass in his head would help. I will read book 6 and hope we are on our way to moving on pass dull female characters, dark masses, similar story and plots, and a far more interesting lead character who is just not as depressed as he is at present.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars 26 reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Progress..maybe 1 Jun. 2011
By J'aime - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I really enjoy this series, but it also frustrates me. I could not put this book down, but still felt like the series hadn't made much progress after finishing it. I did feel that all the chess pieces are finally in position for the end game. Sometimes authors get too caught up in multi-book plot arcs, such as Connor's still mysterious black mass. In this book, Connor does finally get an answer of sorts, but it's wrapped up in existential technobabble. The Wheel of the World turns, but evidently there's a gap. Oh, why didn't you say so!? Connor does undergo a major shake-up regarding the mass after the climactic battle (these books always end with a climactic battle, and it's always the best part of the book); he gets something else in his head. *sigh*

What really kept me turning the pages was how all the political factions resolved into opposing forces, and readers finally see what (and who) all the sides are: Eorla in the Weird, The Elves, Maeve/the Guild, Ceridwen and the Dead. They all want to manipulate Connor to their own ends. Connor also finally dumps the whining "poor me, I lost my abilities" and becomes a contender. The mystery of the disappearing people is intimately tied into the political infighting, and he actually investigates like a real PI. Moreover, Murdock gets involved and the two become true allies and friends. I was also happy to see the return of Shay. I do love these characters.

Overall, this book satisfied enough that I am anxious for the next installment. Once again the ending was action-packed and fantastic, but also left readers hanging. I'd really like to see the black mass be resolved, and move onto some stand alone stories. This is an excellent, gritty urban fantasy, but waiting book after book for resolution is wearing extremely thin. I'm hooked on this series, but with so much always hanging, I'm unwilling to try the spin-off series set in the same world.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well written, moves the hero's story along 27 April 2011
By Garyius - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The series to date has been good. I would recommend reading at the least the first series book before this one to understand the setting. This book does a good job of updating what happened in the last two books, but not the whole setting.

The book was well written, good characters. It did pull the reader along to the ending, just short of being a page turner.

A weakness in the series is the black mass of magic blocking in the hero's head. It does drive the hero and provide the setting, because it prevented the former highly skilled magic cop from doing magic while still allowing him to sense it, and turned the hero into a 'down on his luck' PI trying to help the little guy. It also started to get boring.

At the end of the last book the author had the mass do some magic on its own, but it was thrown in at the end of the book. I was afraid for the first half of this book the same would happen, but the story here moved along. Not enough to make the hero into a superman, but enough to keep the reader interested.

There was also a weakness where too many highly placed people want to screw over the hero without enough good cause in the setting.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great addition to a great series 28 April 2011
By N. Gargano - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a little surprised at the other ratings for this book, I loved it. I thought it was an exciting page turner, and an exciting addition to this great series. I will say if you are reading this review and have not read the other books in the series, you should go back and read this from book one. Each book builds on the one before it so much, you feel as if you know the characters so well. This leads to surprises, which Mr. Del Franco has given in each book by the way. This series is different from so many other urban fantasy series, there is a lot of politics involved, and so many characters, that at first you think you will have a hard time keeping up. I never found this to be the case though. Also this series reads a little slower, since there are so many characters, and the politics of the different factions is so much a part of the story, it reads a little slow. Not uninteresting slow, just that you have to really pay attention to what is going on..you will see it or the character again.
Again, I just loved this latest book in the series, I hate to have to wait too long for the next one!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Urban fantasy proper 2 Nov. 2011
By MacGhille - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I picked up the first book in this series after reading all the Dresden Files, Mercy Thompson and Weather Warden books available at the time. So let me say, this is not a sex-fuelled romp through vamp/wolf world (Sookie), 'What Not To Wear-While Having Sex' (Sookie, Weather Warden) or the 'my life is so hard...despite every man I meet desperately trying to sleep with/take care of me' (Mercy, Sookie) dreck that most urban fantasy seems to have become.

This is more procedural cop drama/noir detective with a fantastic fantasy backdrop that is served up as simply the reality Connor and his compatriots have to cope with every day. The setting created here has tremendous potential and a wealth of lore available that Del Franco does not shove down your throat or drone on about excessively.

Instead, you are given just enough background to keep your head above water as you frantically dash through a tarnished city trying to stay apace with a hero that can barely keep pace with his enemies. It's good stuff.

Del Franco also walks the thin line of making his protagonist just likable enough to keep you around. Connor evolves as a human fitfully, and with ample protest. Much like a real person.

I love Dresden to death, but where Butcher gives us Magnum PI and magic, complete with a know-it-all housemate and 'I know what you're thinking...' moments, Del Franco has us walk a mile with a downtrodden jerk harboring serious spotlight issues...and finds a way to make us like it.

Don't miss this series.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Bad, Not Good 6 May 2011
By Marijr - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love the character Connor Grey, as well as Murdock, Meryl and Joe, which makes it difficult to review this book. Nothing really happens. Or at least nothing memorable, since I finished the book 2 days ago & can't recall much of the plot.

Connor's asked by Eorla to look into some peculiar deaths in the Weird and his investigation overlaps /w Murdock's, so they work together. There's Elf, Dannan, Guild politics in overdrive; the Dead are running wild; everyone is out to get Connor; his black mass is acting up; Bergin Vize is up to no good; Joe is drunk; the Murdock family hates Connor . . . pretty much business as usual. We still don't know what the black mass is, or maybe we do and I missed it. I find the author's descriptions, particularly about the Wheel of the World and of action scenes, difficult to follow. Once again, the climax is a sort of "fade to black" moment involving Connor and his mysterious powers, which drives me crazy.

But, all that being said, I could not put the book down b/c I can't get enough of Connor and his friends (except for Braillen, who really bothered me in this book). I guess I'd give this installment 2 1/2 stars. This is the fifth book, though, and I'm ready for some concrete, coherent answers.
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