10 August 2012

ARC Review: J.C. Daniels - Blade Song

File Size: 726 KB
Print Length: 257 pages
Publisher: Shiloh Walker, Inc. (August 1, 2012)
Series: Colbana Files
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Main Characters: Kit (half-breed), Damon (Cat shifter), Jude (Vampire), Es (With)
I received an eARC from the author for review.

Summary from Goodreads:
Kit Colbana—half breed, assassin, thief, jack of all trades—has a new job: track down the missing ward of one of the local alpha shapeshifters. It should be a piece of cake.

So why is she so nervous? It probably has something to do with the insanity that happens when you deal with shifters—especially sexy ones who come bearing promises of easy jobs and easier money.

Or maybe it’s all the other missing kids that Kit discovers while working the case, or the way her gut keeps screaming she’s gotten in over her head. Or maybe it’s because if she fails—she’s dead.

If she can stay just one step ahead, she should be okay. Maybe she’ll even live long to collect her fee…


When I read Blade Song I was caught in the middle of my likes and I cannot even say dislikes, but rather the inability of certain elements to truly pull me in to the story. The beginning was intriguing. I got introduced to the main characters and a plot was initiated with enough mystery to trigger my inquisitive mind. The more chapters I read though the more the story kept at a level of interesting and me really liking the characters. I found nothing really unique that set me on fire which would keep me completely focused on the story at hand.

The world building felt very formulaic with the witches, the shifters, vampires. This isn’t bad but if I don’t find anything to make them stand out; whether this is in culture, rituals, magic or even physique it remains basic ingredients. The world around them was nicely envisioned, especially the outdoors. Then the plot of kidnapped children and the Alpha cat’s nephew, Doyle was intriguing. The tension was good and definitely brought along enough action with it to get the blood pumping. It also was a tool to introduce the various races and supporting characters. In which T.J., Goliath and the Green Road witches were instantly likable. Strong women to the core, each have an enigmatic personality and Goliath, is a friend I would have at my side any day of the week.

The characters were the strongest element in Blade Song and something that J.C. Daniels excels in. I really liked Kit from the start. She has attitude, backbone, knows how to work her sword and her past brought a gritty side to the story I loved. Even though sometimes I felt the balance off in terms of a little too much focus on her weaknesses it was necessary. Her past has formed the amazon warrior she is today and a part of me liked the fact that her weaknesses were real and made her vulnerable. Each time she chooses to fight it is because her heart was also in it, that is something that truly resonated with me.

Damon is a cat shifter that was ordered to keep Kit safe during her job at solving the mystery of Doyle’s vanishing. He has a sharp tongue and a caring heart with a strong willed personality to make him stand his own next to Kit. If there is another thing I enjoyed from beginning till end is the sarcastic bantering and enigmatic dialogues between Damon and Kit. They were evenly matched and the fast paced interaction was titillating at various times. There was an attraction and a sultry heat was growing between them. This doesn’t have the main focus but as I loved seeing these two together it was an added bonus to get some hot and sexy time as well.

The challenges for Kit and Damon also lie in dealing with the vampire, Jude Whittier and the cat Alpha, Annette. I didn’t like them at the beginning and there was a sparkle of ‘loving to hate these characters’ at the end. Jude, he irked me in so many ways but his ‘I’m king of the world’ attitude really put him on the list of unlikable persona’s. With his scheming, Jude adds a tension to the plot and overall story that kept me on my qui vive. Towards the end the plot accelerates in action but the conclusion was a little bit easy. There was no ‘aha’ moment but the possibilities for future stories are interesting to say the least. I think Kit will surprise me in so many more ways in the future. I know Damon definitely surprised me in Blade Song!

So, while the world may not have the engrossing or contain the “pull me in’ factor, the plot was nice and the characters were the ones that kept me engaged. I loved the grittiness of Kit’s emotions, the power of Damon’s character, the friendship from the secondary characters and the evilness of Jude and Annette. Enough to make Blade Song an enjoyable read!

3.5 stars
My sword arm is mighty
I will not falter.
I will not fail.
My aim is true.
My heart is strong.

I’m the descendant of some truly legendary badasses and I’ll damn well make myself wake up-

She sent me back a smiley. Hey, don't let the sexy asshole bite you. I think that’s their sign they’ve accepted it.

Quote Damon;
“Your mouth was another problem for me,” he muttered, leaning in and licking my lower lip. “You fucking smart ass. Mouthing off from the get-go. I've never found a smart ass so appealing until I met you.”

J.C. Daniels aka Shiloh Walker on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Buy @ ARe


  1. Very nice review, thanks. I was sort of the opposite as you. I felt the first third of the book was tough, and I couldn't connect with the characters. But then something clicked and I couldn't put the book down. It was hard to say exactly why that was, but I became engrossed. I completely agree with much of what you say in your review, but I ended up loving the book. It will be interesting to see what will happen next and where the series is headed.

    1. The ending really opened up the possibilities and I really liked what happened with Damon. Also I think Kit will evolve in surprising ways as well! I was waiting for that click for a very long time but I never felt it on the intensity to make me rave. It happens... :(

  2. Interesting you both had opposite feelings about this book. I'm off to read more reviews. :)

    1. When I posted my review on GoodReads I saw a slew of 5 star reviews. Read many compare it to the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews. I don't know if it has anything to do with me not falling so hard for Blade Song but I couldn't finish the first Kate Daniels novel 0.o


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