Thursday, May 28, 2009

"Hands of Flame" by C. E. Murphy

This is the third book, and possibly the end, of the Negotiator series by Murphy. (I highly doubt it's the end, though, as she has a forward in this book that makes it sound like she really wants to come back to this series!) I thought this was a very good ending to the trilogy, and if you haven't read the other two already, I'm going to tell you right now to go read them. Really, you have to read them before jumping into this book - there's just way too much history to start here.

Margrit Knight is still embroiled in the world of the Old Races in her final days at Legal Aid. When we last saw her, she'd asked Alban, her romantic gargoyle, to give her some space and time to figure things out. Unfortunately, Margrit doesn't have very much of either; she was instrumental in the death of a djinn, and the Old Races still believe you cannot kill one of their kind without consequences, namely your own death. There's also a territorial war brewing down on the docks as the djinn and selkies vie for leadership of the underworld that was once held by the dragon Janx. The dragonlord is licking his wounds in the tunnels held by Grace O'Malley, and she's none too happy to have him there. Eliseo Daisani, the vampire, is about to become Margrit's boss, but he's hiding a very, very big secret of his own, one that may turn the Old Races against him.

There's a lot going on here, of course, and it's all good. There are new characters introduced as well as the appearance of old favorites. And there are so many loose ends that I can't imagine Murphy won't go back to this series after writing a few installments of the Walker Files. Keep in mind that that series started as a trilogy as well, so there's definitely hope that we'll see Grit and her gargoyle again. I certainly hope so. I'd love to be able to give you more of a plot, but honestly, I just can't do that without giving too many things away. Trust me when I tell you that The Negotiator Series is a well-written from all angles - plot, character development, and just the right touch of romance. And remember to look up once in while...

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