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Monday, December 01, 2014

Second Demon-Catcher Novel Not For Me, But Maybe For You? (With a Giveaway)

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

(Note:  Although this review will not contain spoilers for The Halcyon Bird, it may inadvertently reveal plot surprises from its predecessor, The Demon Catchers of Milan.  As always, I recommend reading books in a series in order.)

American teenager Mia Dellatorri has lived in Milan long enough to learn Italian, prefer her Nonna's homemade cuisine to anything else, and to feel almost more at home at her uncle's than with her immediate family in upstate New York.  And yet, the Della Torre's still won't let her out on the streets without at least one blood relative to protect her.  Inside the well-guarded home, Mia's safe from the vicious, ancient demon who desires to possess her.  Outside, she's vulnerable.  Too vulnerable.  The monster doesn't leave living victims, as Mia knows all too well.

When Mia meets Bernardo—the most beautiful man she's ever seen—she's ready to throw caution to the wind.  Anything to feel his strong arms around her one more time.  She knows that being with Bernardo means exposing him to the danger she faces every day.  If only she could tell him the truth about her family's demon-catching enterprise!  She hates deceiving her kindhearted boyfriend, but she has little choice.  The only way to keep him—and herself—safe is to get rid of her demon once and for all.  Challenging him means risking her life.  It's a chance Mia's willing to take if it means defending the lives of those she loves.  Even if the one person she can't save is herself.

It's no secret that I wasn't all that impressed with The Demon Catchers of Milan, the first book in Kat Beyer's urban fantasy series.  The novel sagged under too much detail and too little plot.  The Halcyon Bird, the second Mia Dellatorri book, picks up a bit, but still drags.  Again, Mia has no real story goal, which makes the novel feel episodic and aimless.  This, along with a confusing magical world, underdeveloped characters, and tell-don't-show prose made this a tedious, unsatisfying read for me.  It's more exciting than the first book, true, but not enough to entice me to stick with this series.  Bummer.

(Readalikes:  The Demon Catchers of Milan by Kat Beyer; similar in subject to The Mortal Instruments series [City of Bones; City of Ashes; City of Glass; City of Fallen Angels; City of Lost Souls; City of Heavenly Fire] by Cassandra Clare)


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for brief, mild language (no F-bombs) and violence

To the FTC, with love:  I received a finished copy of The Halcyon Bird from the generous folks at Egmont as part of the book's blog tour.


Even though I wasn't wild about The Halcyon Bird, it might be right up your reading alley.  What better way to give it a shot than to win a free copy of the book?  The good people at Egmont are generally offering one to one lucky Bloggin' 'bout Books reader.  If you'd like the chance to win, all you have to do is fill out the handy-dandy Rafflecopter thing-y below.  Please note that you must have a U.S. or Canadian mailing address to be eligible for the giveaway.  Contest ends on December 13.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This book sounds like it could be interesting. How did you like it compared to the Mortal Instruments series? I really liked those books and wish the series would of went on longer.

    1. It really doesn't compare to TMI. The subject matter is similar, but that's about it. Honestly, I didn't like this book or its predecessor very much for the reasons I stated in my review.

  2. I agree with Krystal - the Mortal Instruments series was fantastic, and anything that's even remotely similar tickles my fancy. Thanks for the chance to win!

  3. Also, I really, really want Santa to bring me the last three books in the Bloody Jack series. I've fallen behind and need to catch up! :-)

  4. I really want to read Winterkill by Kate Boorman. My library doesn't have it so Santa MUST bring it.


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