Friday, September 18, 2009

Review: On the Edge

Title: On the Edge
Author: Ilona Andrews
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy
Series: The Edge/Book 1
Published: September 2009

From the back cover ~

Rose Drayton lives on the Edge, between the world of the Broken (where people drive cars, shop at Wal-Mart, and magic is a fairy tale) and the Weird (where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny). Only Edgers like Rose can easily travel from one world to the next, but they never truly belong in either.

Rose thought if she practiced her magic, she could build a better life for herself. But things didn’t turn out how she planned, and now she works a minimum wage, off the books job in the Broken just to survive. Then Declan Camarine, a blueblood noble straight out of the deepest part of the Weird, comes into her life, determined to have her (and her power).

But when a terrible danger invades the Edge from the Weird, a flood of creatures hungry for magic, Declan and Rose must work together to destroy them—or they’ll devour the Edge and everyone in it . . .

One of my favorite authors and a new series to enjoy - I'm in heaven. Imagine my surprise when this little beauty landed on my doorstep last week. It was perfect timing since I'd been having a crappy day. This totally brightened my day and kept me reading late into the night. On the Edge isn't what I would strictly call a Paranormal Romance nor is it an Urban Fantasy novel but a beautiful blending of the two.

When we first meet Rose Drayton she is dealing with her drunken grandpa, again. And deal with him she does by nailing him between the eyes with a bolt from a crossbow. No, not everything is as it seems in the Edge. Rose is an orphan and the eldest of three, taking care of her younger brothers Georgie and Jack, who are 10 and 8 years old respectively. Rose is mother, father, sister and drill sargent to the boys. They're chock-full of the adventurous natures that are common in young boys. The big difference with these two boys is that they have special powers that can cause some major consequences. Rose is a heroine to admire and love. With her dry wit and determination I couldn't help but cheer her on whether she was taking on the neighborhood bully or fighting the big bad that was trying to kill her and her family. She is definitely one of my favorite heroines.

The boys ~ Georgie and Jack are absolutely wonderful. Andrews gets you into their heads and hearts and makes these two characters an integral part of the story. Georgie with his big heart and caring nature and Jack, oh Jack. I couldn't help but be reminded of Curran, from Andrews' Kate Daniels series. What would Curran have been like as a boy? Maybe a bit like Jack. :) The boys keep Rose on her toes but they also try to help her and understand more of what's going on than Rose thinks they know. Most importantly these brothers look out for each other. Georgie tries his hardest to take care or those that he loves and Jack is fierce in protectiveness for his family. They don't sit on the sidelines while the adults "do their thing". Not these two. Their special talents are utilized well and not once did I wonder why they were in the story.

Our hero is, well, a bit full of himself. Yeah, a lot full of himself. :) Declan is arrogant, overbearing, gorgeous, proud, intelligent, haughty at times and wicked deadly with a blade. He's also the best thing to happen to Rose in a long time. She, of course, doesn't think so but time will tell. Declan has his own agenda but he also has a code of honor and integrity that puts him in the path of the evil that has come to the Edge. He's determined to keep Rose and her family safe and destroy the monster that tries to kill Rose and the boys. Declan is a source of frustration, irritation and attraction to Rose, which just irritates her more. LOL

I enjoyed getting to know Declan and watching him and Rose dancing around each other, always wondering what the other was really up to. Declan and his sometimes peculiar Weird manner driving Rose crazy. They were such a treat to read and oddly perfect for each other. They way the authors reveal Declan in bits and pieces made me at times question what his real agenda was. Both Rose and Delan have difficulty trusting but are left with no choice and agree on a tentative alliance. And lets not forget the romance between these two. It's not the main focus, I'd say that would be their getting to know each other and fighting off the dangers that stalks Rose and her family. The romance is there and does come to a natural conclusion with Rose and Declan finally admitting not only their physical attraction but their deep affection for each other.

The world building is intricate and pulls the reader into this place of the ordinary and the magical. The worlds of the Broken, the Edge and the Weird are at once familiar and still so very different from our own. The beings of the Weird are aware of the Edge and the Broken. The people who live in the Edge know of the other two worlds while the inhabitants of the Broken remain ignorant of the worlds of the Edge and the Weird. The Broken is without magic, once a being with magic enters the Broken they loose their magic. It can also be very painful for a magical being from the Weird to enter the Broken. It's one reason they tend to stay out. The Weird is full of magic, of mystical beings and humans for who magic is the norm. With creatures of great power and horrific guise and people who are not always as they appear. The Edge is the in between, the great divide. It is not for the inhabitants of the Broken or the Weird but for those who don't quite fit into either place. The Edge is for the forgotten, the misfits. It's where Rose and her family make their home and where they feel the safest until the evil that hounds them comes to their door.

I know many of us have numerous series that we keep up with so why start a new one? Because the writing talent that is evident in the Kate Daniels series shines through in this new series as well. The pacing kept me immersed in the story - balancing the fighting and violence with the character development and the progression of the plot. This is probably one of the strongest first books of a series that I have read. It left me satisfied but still wanting more of this fascinating new world that Andrews has created. On the Edge is set for release on September 29th.

The husband and wife writing team that makes up Ilona Andrews can be found hanging out at their LiveJournal blog and information on all their novels can be found on their website.

Rating: A


  1. This one sounds interesting. You've been on a paranormal kick. Not my preferred genre usually... but this one sounds intriguing.

  2. I still haven't started on the Kate Daniels series, even though I have the first two books in my TBR.

    I don't want to add another just yet, but your review makes me almost consider it. I'll definitely be keeping this one in mind for when I take myself off my book buying suspension.

    Nice review!

  3. For as much as I enjoy the Magic series, I will read whatever Ilona Andrews writes. And it only makes it better when I read reviews like this:)

  4. Lori ~ I tend to go through phases. LOL This is really good - you should give it a try.

    Brie ~ Book buying suspension? You're a brave woman Brie. :) Start Kate Daniels - they just keep getting better.

    Mandi ~ Ditto! I can't pass up anything by Ilona Andrews.

  5. I pre-ordered this from Amazon. I love the Kate Daniels series so much, anything Ilona Andrews writes from here on in is a 'must-read'. You're review has me seriously pumped for this new book (is there potential for this to be a series, or is it strictly one off?).
    The idea of one of the characters being a young Curran is seriously awesome, BTW.

  6. Ohhhhh, Leslie!! On the Edge sounds great! I want it NOW!! LOL :)

    I love younger siblings characters and Georgie and Jack sound like a riot LOL :) What I hope is that Ilona Andrews don't jump to their stories next... but let them grow in the series.

    By the way, how old is Rose?

    Brie - You're on a book buying suspension? Poor sweetie :( Good luck with it!

  7. Danielle ~ It is the first in a new series. The next book in The Edge series is due for release September 2010. The next Kate Daniels (book 4), Magic Bleeds is due for release late May 2010.

    Andrews is definitely on my “must read” list. And Jack just reminded me of what a young Curran might have been like. The Edge series takes place in a different world than Kate Daniels.

    nath ~ I don’t think Georgie and Jack will be growing up any time soon. Their such wonderful, well written characters, I think they'll stay young for a while.

    Rose is in her early/mid 20s. It was probably mentioned in the book but I don’t remember her exact age. :)

  8. Leslie, I want this book NOW! I've become such an Andrews fan this year after reading the Daniels series... and subsequent work. I can't wait!

    Great review. :)

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  10. Hils ~ thanks! With this new series we should now get *fingers crossed* two books a year - one from each series. :)

  11. I love her Kate Daniels series, and from the snippets she's posted and your review, I think I'm going to love this series too!

  12. Glad you liked this one! I too wondered WHY start yet another series. I've got too many going now. But this one - on man. All I could think after finishing was "why not??".

  13. Patti ~ Anyone who likes Kate Daniels should definitely read On the Edge. It's a great read.

    KMont ~ I was so tempted to read it again right after finishing because it was so good and such a fun experience.

    So many series going already and many I want to start. The first 5 of Kim Harrison's Hollow series has been sitting on my shelf for a while now. Really need to start that one. :)

  14. aaaarghhhh, why won't it show up in the bookstore? LOL :)