Ravencliffe by Carol Goodman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Reading the first in this series would have helped, because there were few "previously" moments to explain the world of Ravencliffe and the characters. Once I got into the world, the idea of a half-breed was nothing new (there have been so many in fantasy worlds by this point) so the bigger question is, did this book do anything really new with that? Not really. Had we delved more into that aspect, or into the worlds of the other creatures, it might have worked better (for me).
One example? Etta, a religious Jew, is brought into this world. Rather than spend any time on her differences from the other people, we get one or two sentences about her eating habits (keeping kosher proves difficult in Blythwood). The similarity between Ruth's possession and a golem would also have been interesting to explore. Etc.. I'm also not convinced about Van Drood (really?) being such a Big Bad - perhaps that's explained more in Book One, or will be dealt with in Book Three? And the potential love triangle? Yawn. Again, nothing new.
Perhaps this suffers from Middle Book Syndrome, which is too bad.
ARC provided by publisher.