Source: NetGalley and publisher for review
Centuries ago, the barriers between our world and the Otherworld were slashed open allowing hideous fantastical monsters to wreak havoc; destroying entire cities in their wake. Now, people must live in enclosed communities, behind walls that keep them safe from the evil creatures constantly trying to break in. Only the corps of teen Hunters with lightning reflexes and magical abilities can protect the populace from the daily attacks.
Joyeaux Charmand is a mountain girl from a close knit village who comes to the big city to join the Hunters. Joy thinks she is only there to perform her civic duty and protect the capitol Cits, or civilians, but as cameras follow her every move, she soon learns that the more successful she is in her hunts, the more famous she becomes.
With millions of fans watching her on reality TV, Joy begins to realize that Apex is not all it seems. She is forced to question everything she grew up believing about the legendary Hunters and the very world she lives in. Soon she finds that her fame may be part of a deep conspiracy that threatens to upend the protective structure built to keep dark magic out. The monsters are getting in and it is up to Joy to find out why.My thoughts:
The first part of the book is a bit hard to get into. I think it is because it is establishing the world and just doesn't quite do it smoothly. I also had a hard time with Joyeaux who starts in this rambling way (we are in her head) but is supposed to be quite zen when it comes to dealing with the "folk" (fae). I see why that it is necessary to calm your mind, but what we got was anything but calm. You can't just say it is one way and then present us with something else. It makes the world more confusing and you tend to wander.
I also picked this book up for the cover. I love dragons, but while there are dragons in the book, they don't feature prominently within the story. There are a mash up of fae folk and we get all sorts. Mostly of the European variety, but her hounds (or otherwoldly helpers) seem to come from all sorts of worldly mythic stories. Again, this can be a bit confusing.
While I was not a fan of the beginning I did like Joyeaux. I loved that she was smart and capable and willing to learn. She was also kind and compassionate. Although her rambling mind tended to put me off, I did like her actions and so that is what kept me interested throughout the book. I loved seeing how she worked through a problem and opened herself up to others even when she didn't know who was a friend or enemy.
The ending leaves you with a lot of questions but it isn't a cliffie. And although I didn't enjoy the beginning of the book, I did enjoy it in the end. I am looking forward to reading the next book. I give this one 3 stars.