*3.5 stars*The Elemental Mysteries series (4 books) *4 stars*
I’m sad that B and Gio’s story has come to an end in this final installment of the Elemental Mysteries series. I’ve come to love these characters, and certainly have enjoyed the world that Elizabeth Hunter has created. (In fact, book 1 of the Elemental World is next on my TBR list).
In this final installment, B, Gio and company travel to Rome to finally put together the pieces of the mystery that brought them together all that time ago in book 1. Old secrets are uncovered, new alliances are made, battles fought, and love and friendships grow to complete this story. It is a fitting end to a great series.
As much as I enjoyed the characters, the story, and the witty dialogue there were a few elements that could have worked better:
- Trilogies are a trend nowadays; however, readers often feel that those series can be cut down to lesser number of books. Even though this was not a trilogy, I feel that the same comment is still applicable – I can praise Elizabeth Hunter’s writing and creativity, but the story could have been told in lesser number of novels – certain parts felt a bit repetitive, if not unnecessary, but nonetheless I enjoyed this and prior books and would still recommend the series to those who enjoy a good PNR.
- As I mentioned above, the characters were well developed and I’ve come attached to them with the books’ progression. I’ve grew to enjoy Gio’s character much more since book 1. Carwyn never stopped to put a smile on my face. Even Tenzin and Ben had their moments that were fun, smart, and entertaining. However, I think I’ve found myself a bit disappointed with B, whom I really saw as a strong, independent and very interesting character in book 1. As her relation with Gio grew, and her transformation into a vampire complete – I found myself less and less interested in B. She became more selfish and one-dimensional – her whole world revolving around Gio. I would’ve loved to see B stay as independent, and not only smart, but also thoughtful in her actions, and perhaps a bit less “special.”
- This book did not lack in the steam department, as every other chapter or so, seemed to find B and Gio together, spending a lot of time between the sheets. Even though, I usually like a bit of steam in the story, some of B and Gio’s time could have been cut down a bit.
- The introduction of the ancient vampires was a convenient way to wrap up some of the mysteries – I did enjoy the part of the story when Gio and Carwyn spent time in Caucasus, but the rest of this arc felt forced. I wished there was a more creative way for the secrets to unravel.
- The battle: Twilight this was not – as the full blown battle, with blood and consequences waged full force on the pages. In fact, I half expected one of the major “good guys” lost in this battle; alas – I was surprised that we still got treated to HEA (it would have been an unusually interesting turn, perhaps sad although – unexpected).
- Lorenzo’s arc also finally came to end. Although, I found it refreshing and unexpected, that Ms. Hunter was able to make us, the reader, feel almost sympathetic toward our main antagonist, his demise, at B’s hands, with Gio watching felt almost anticlimactic. Perhaps, I couldn’t bear the fact, that B was suddenly very OK being the “lethal weapon” of the group, not that she did not have the reasons to do so.
In conclusion, with all the little remarks above, the story is still worth the reading. Elizabeth Hunter is able to create a very imaginative world, and very compelling characters. I am happy, that I have discovered these books, on the recommendation from a friend, and gave them a chance. If handsome vampires, feisty female heroines, witty dialogue, mysteries and action are your thing – give these books a try – I’m sure it will be worth your time. Happy reading! Quotes:
“You mean you’ve slept with all the attractive women nearby?” “Exactly. I’ve ruined them for all others, so it’s perfect for an old married man like you.” (p. 143).
“Well, when the coming zombie apocalypse hits and there aren’t any more grocery stores, I’ll just let you take care of the hunting and the gathering, all right?” (p. 148).
“Good thing I brought you some clothes then.” “Hawaiian shirts?” “Of course. We’re being men of mystery.” (p. 166).