Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Royal Street (Sentinels of New Orleans #1)Royal Street by Suzanne Johnson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Let me preface this by saying that I have waited months to get a chance to read this book. I was able to obtain a copy through Netgalley's great e-ARC program. Royal Street is one of the books I have looked forward to since I was made aware that it was forthcoming early last summer. I have a love for stories based in New Orleans, especially urban fantasy.

Royal Street is an urban fantasy based in the time of Hurricane's Katrina and Rita and a lot of what happens has its basis in the vulnerability the wonderful city was left in because of those terrible storms. The author spent time reminding us of the devastation the different wards were left in, especially the Ninth Ward. Some of the areas continue to suffer from the results not just of the storm but also from the failure of the levees to hold. Even in 2011 there were stories of families still holding fund raisers to help neighbors repair their homes. Royal Street does a wonderful job of letting the reminding us what was lost.

This story is focused on DJ, a magic user in a level that is based more upon potions and spells along with her empathic gift. We learn about her relationship to her family, some of which she learns right along with the reader, which does a great job of helping us relate to her. There was a part of the book that I did not care for and it is not in any way related to how well the story is told. It is my personal preference to never read about certain relationships in books again. I would still read the the story even if I knew ahead of time, but, I have things I don't want to read about anymore, including things like love triangles or heroes/heroines so hard that I cannot relate to them. I won't delve any further into this because that would constitute spoilers. But, suffice it to say that it is just not a topic I like to read and has no reflection on whether the author writes a good story or develops her characters well. Alex and Jake are cousins and both have similar personalities but, we find that sometimes they are not always what they seem. I'm not particular about aspect of their competitive natures which ties into another part of the story, but, I like both of them very much. I especially like the support and love their family has for one another. DJ has another aspect to her magical abilities that is being developed in the books. Part of it was reminiscent of the Mercy Thompson series but, it took off enough and became Suzanne Johnson's story so I liked it. I also liked the remnants of Voodoo presented and would like to see more of the history of that religion developed in these books.

Overall, a good read and I look forward to the next one in the series.

Review can also be seen at http://LadyTechiesBookMusings.blogspot.c...

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