Phew! Death's Mistress is an exhausting book. It seems to be non-stop action with relentless, page-turning plot lines and an enormous cast of characters of various preternatural types.
I enjoyed reading Death's Mistress, although
parts drag and I have some reservations about the overall book. However, there’s much to like about our heroine, Dorina Basarab, and her action-packed life: she’s a
dhampir who is a vampire-slayer. She also keeps running into vampire Louis-Cesare, who seems to be the only one not afraid of her.
A romantic subplot between Dory and Louis-Cesare slows the pace occasionally,
giving readers time to catch their breath. Then off it goes again on a rush through the world of vampires, fey and more.
I enjoyed the book and Karen Chance's writing style; I also found the plot too complex and the cast of characters too wide for my comfort.
After finishing the book, I wasn’t entirely sure how everything had hung together, not helped by putting it down for a month after reading the first hundred pages (which
aren’t as exciting and lost my interest). I’d forgotten about the initial plot threads which reappeared later.
This being the second book in a series may account for the large number of characters, and perhaps I would have found it easier to keep track of them all if I’d read that book. However, this
is still an exciting read that reaches a reasonable resolution (although there are hints of another book to come).
Where Karen Chance excels is in the action, the swiftly-changing scenery and the relentless pace, which makes it almost seem like modern action films with
their one explosion after another. Perhaps she’s less successful with characterization
and helping her readers feel that they know what’s going on. Still worth a read, though.