Rating: 3 stars
Series: Nikki Glass #2
I have no idea why I rated this so highly the first time around. Maybe it was just that UF was new to me back then and I was more forgiving. This book irritated the hell out of me on this reread. Nikki is a great character, but she didn’t seem as smart. There were a few times she did something, and I just knew it was a bad idea. It was mentioned often that she was rebellious during her rough childhood. It seems hard to believe since she is generally very cautious as an adult. Nothing about her comes off as reckless.
For a smart woman Nikki has piss poor judgement when it comes to people. She only sees what she wants to see and has no interest in learning more, which is probably why many characters are underdeveloped. Emma is a raging bitch and treats Nikki like crap. Nikki’s dislike of her makes sense, but it bothers me that she completely lacks empathy for her. Emma died every day for 10 years just to be brought back to life to experience it all over again. Considering what happened to Nikki in this book, I would have thought she’d understand on some level how traumatizing that could be. Loki is a trickster. Pulling pranks is what he does. Nothing he has done is really bad, but Nikki thinks he’s such an asshole. Why does she feel this way? Jamaal is an asshole, and she lets it slide. So why not do the same for Loki? Her fear of Anderson doesn’t make sense either. He is not someone to fuck around with because of his powers, but if he really wanted her dead it would have happened long before now. He’s always been reasonable. How does she not see that?
Anderson has several liberi living in his house, but what is the point of most of those characters being included in the book? After two books virtually nothing is known about them. Nikki mentioned that Maggie was her best friend. In the last book she was nice but no history was given, and she had almost no page time in this. Then there’s the computer geek whose name I can’t even remember because he is so insignificant. Apparently Loki is just a trickster and nothing more. Her sister barely had page time. Her sole purpose in the series is for her to be used as leverage against Nikki, so apparently an interesting personality isn’t needed. A few minor things were learned about Blake, but it wasn’t enough to make me care. There are a few other characters who I literally remember nothing about, and I just read this book yesterday.
My biggest gripe with this book is Jamaal. I can’t stand him. Everything he does irritates me, and he had so much page time. The dude has serious anger issues. Why would anyone want a relationship with an angry, violent person? Is Nikki a masochist? Because being in a relationship like that isn’t fun. Nikki feels bad for him because he’s controlled by his death magic. It makes his life so hard. Cry me a fucking river. It does suck that Jamaal has dangerous magic that is hard to control, but I really doubt him being such a dickhead all the time has to do with his magic. In the last book he was physically violent with her because he passionately loathed her, but I guess it’s all good now because he’s suddenly gotten over it. I don’t understand why Nikki forgave him for all of the shit he put her through. Why does she give him a pass on his behavior but doesn’t do it for anyone else? When any of the other characters behaved poorly, she expected them to be responsible and control their behavior.
“It didn’t matter that he sometimes bore a disturbing resemblance to a raving lunatic; Jamaal was hot, hot, hot.”
The moral of this story is it’s okay to date abusive assholes if they’re hot. Nikki hadn’t seemed like the type to fall for an asshole because of a pretty face. And Nikki liked him because according to her they were similar in some ways, but in reality they couldn’t be more different. Just because they both were abandoned by their parents doesn’t make them alike especially since the circumstances were completely different. I’m sure it won’t happen, but Nikki needs to take off the rose colored glasses and see Jamaal for the guy he really is.
The mystery aspect of the story was good. The killer was interesting. I actually felt bad for the guy. The murders caused some chaos and big changes in the world of the liberi, so the book wasn’t a complete loss. And there’s Anderson. I love Anderson! He’s smart and isn’t quick to judge. There is a dangerous side to him, but he’s got it under control. So he unlike some other characters isn’t a threat to be around.