Book 2, A Novel of the Edge
This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.
Cerise Mar and her clan are cash poor but land rich, claiming a large swathe of the Mire, the Edge swamplands. When her parents vanish, her clan's long-time rivals are suspect. But all is not as it seems.
Two nations of the Weird are waging a cold war fought by feint and espionage, and their conflict is about to spill over into the Edge-and Cerise's life.
Love this serious and can't wait for the next!!
Ilona Andrews floored me with the amazing characterization in this book. William was so complex! He is a changeling-both human and wolf. There are times when he acts and thinks like a human. However, with every strong emotion, the wolf comes out-maybe not physically, but mentally. Whenever this happens his thoughts go from normal and rational to "I want...." and "Must have....." Very primal. Cerise notices when he switches to wolf-mode. She can see it in his eyes, but she doesn't know that he is a changeling. Andrews juggles the two mind-frames very well. Changelings, in their fundamental nature, act on instinct, not thought. William always has to remind himself that he is also human and he cannot just take what he wants; he has to ask for it and be ready for rejection if it comes. This was very sad yet admirable. He really wanted to be with Cerise for most of the book. He always reminded himself that women didn't want him; he was a monster that could not be loved. William had to deal with a ton of inner conflict, besides the wolf/human one. He was always scared that once Cerise found out who he was, she wouldn't want him anymore. Before he can be with Cerise, he has to come to terms with his past and that it does not define him-his actions define him.
I felt so bad for Cerise. After her parents are kidnapped she has to lead the family in a battle not only against their rival clan, but also Spider. Meanwhile, her younger sister is slowly going insane-thinking she is a monster who deserves to live in the woods. Because she is the new head, she has to hold her emotions in so that the family respects her. The only person she truly lets in is William. She trusts him, and loves him. Because he looks like a Blueblood, noble of the Weird, she calls him Lord Bill when she first meets him. Even though it was just used to mock at first, she continues to call him this as the story progresses. I love the nickname, its so cute. It has a teasing/flirty edge to it in the book.
There were a lot of different elements mixed into Bayou Moon. First, there was a lot of gore, violence, and family feuding going on. The action is suspenseful and bloody. The fight scenes were depicted with a great attention to detail. I felt like I was in the middle of them. There were times when I was definitely shutting my eyes and muttering "ew." Second, there was romance. William and Cerise's relationship was intense. There were a lot of "almost" scenes. They were both obviously attracted to each other. Cerise even admits to her family that she loves him, but he can't take a hint. William is very straightforward and doesn't understand flirting. He also doesn't believe she wants him so he always pulls himself back when he wants to kiss her (or more). This leads to many tension filled scenes that had me screaming "Just kiss her already!"
I liked On the Edge a bit better than Bayou Moon. Not too sure why, but Bayou Moon is still a great book. It's emotional, action-packed, and romantic. The other characters, besides William and Cerise, are for the most part three-dimensional. There were so many, I thought I'd get confused (especially within Cerise's big family) but Ilona Andrews did such a great job writing them, that it never was the case. Rose, Declan, and the boys from On the Edge appear briefly at the end-which was nice. All in all, I thought Ilona Andrews crafted an excellent book.
A great, breezy read
I am a huge fan of Andrews' Kate Daniels series, so I read On the Edge and Bayou Moon both to support them and because I think they write very well. I enjoyed On the Edge, but didn't gobble it up the way I do the Kate Daniels series. With Bayou Moon I was a bit wary and waited until the day after it came out to read it.
I loved it! William and Cerise are wonderful characters, both as a couple and as individuals. The supporting cast were intriguing and fun. I liked that the villain, Spider, is not a quintessentially evil villain, but one who has many layers (of course Andrews' specialty is amazing characters so I wasn't surprised).
All in all, I had a great time reading Bayou Moon. I spent the afternoon of my day off on my couch with it in my lap and was sad when I finished it, wanting more. You don't have to read On the Edge first, though I would recommend it as the hero is introduced in that book and the main characters come back in this one. Just pick it up and you'll be enthralled.