June 8, 2013

Review - Dark Serpent

Dark Serpent
Celestial Battle Trilogy, Book 1
Kylie Chan

Released: 01 May, 2013

Harper voyager, Trade, 468 p.
ISBN: 978-0-7322-9440-3

Back cover:

When the ancestry of Xuan Wu's fiancee, Emma, is revealed, it threatens the harmony of the whole Celestial realm.  The demons are gathering, powerful alliances are being made and stone Shen are under threat.  However, Xuan Wu is distracted - he must save Emma from the Demon King and give her the elixir of immortality, but at what cost?

I have been waiting on pins and needles for this book, for we finally find out exactly what Emma is!  There is so much I can't say because to go into all my favourite scenes will give away some good surprises.  What I can tell you is that if you have read the previous six books, then Dark Serpent is an absolute MUST!

"I've vowed to Raise Emma and marry her 
and that is all I want from life".

The story picks up what seems like years after book six, but I doubt it's that long ;-D  Emma is in her 40's now, and is still under the punishment that the Celestial handed down at the end of Heaven to Wudang.  No one can refer to her as 'my Lady', etc., nor can they talk to her about Celestial matters.  Quite hard for Emma as she was running the Northern Heavens for all those years that Xuan Wu was absent, but they're all handling it.

Emma gets into trouble again in this book, but this time the consequences are devastating **keep the tissue's handy** and all I will say is that George (our loathsome Demon King) has his hand in it.  There, enough said.  However, we do find out what George's interest is in Emma in particular, and what the appearance of the Western Shen, and East/West Hybrids have to do with George.

I motored through this book.  I just couldn't wait to find out what had happened to Emma and her celestial family.  However, now I have to wait another 18 months or so until I find out what happens next.... darn it ;-D  There was only one small issue I had with Dark Serpent, and that was the change in voices.  From the beginning we have been following Emma, and listening to things from her POV.  However, in Dark Serpent, Ms Chan has decided to add a new voice to the mix.  I was surprised to find myself following Xuan Wu and although novel, the change in POV jolted me out of the groove at times.  Personally, I preferred to see things through Emma's eyes.  But, even though I have had a quick gripe about that, don't let it put you off what is a fabulous book.

If you haven't yet read the series, then you need to start with White Tiger and work your way through the two preceding trilogies.  I would love for you to be able to just pick up this great book, but you do need know whats happened to appreciate, and get the most out of, Dark Serpent.

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