Top critical review
One person found this helpful
As though a teenager had written it
on 14 December 2012
Apologies for the spoilers in this review; however, given how little plot there is and how badly written it is, you might prefer the spoilers and waiting for the next book, hopefully written up to the standards of the first, and of her normal work.
This really is like a rough draft fanfic written by a teenager, and I'm surprised at Carol Goodman's editors for letting it through.
Many promising plot lines were set up, and set up far more deftly, in the first novel. This novel is amazingly stingy on plot, and frustratingly implausible in places. The hearing/convocation is extensively trailed, yet, like a bad lawyer, suddenly and clumsily produces evidence (characters and plot) not mentioned earlier (only in the first book).
Callie herself is like a teenager, not only in her stubborn emo determination to do what she wants and not listen to any reasonable objections (which might have created more dramatic tension, or even plot), but also, rather sadly, in not seeming all that committed to what she supposedly wants: she repeatedly has sex with her incubus but without apparent desire, almost like a teenaged girl with no self-esteem who thinks she Ought To, because he wants it (or because he asks, as it's not clear he wants her, either).
The writing is shocking, too. Referring to her squeeze as "pretty" and effectively saying : "isn't he cuuuute?" is inane and boring in a teenager gossiping about her, like, boyfriend, but does nothing for a reader.
I'm very sorry to trash Carol Goodman in this way, as she is a good and suspenseful writer. Even though the first Fairwick book was not entirely polished and comfortable in the genre, her "usual" novels are great, and Fairwick 1 was at least a damned sight better than this (Water Witch). The Fairwick premise is an interesting one, and it's frustrating to see it devalued here.
Perhaps it was a fanfic, and Carol Goodman should sue?