Title: Cat's Claw
Author: Amber Benson
Genre: Urban Paranormal Fantasy
Rating: 2 or 4 Stars (another dual rating)
Description/Synopsis: Calliope Reaper-Jones is Death's Daughter. She owes a debt to Cerberus, the three-headed dog that guards the gate's of hell-a debt that involves a trip to Purgatory, Las Vegas, ancient Egypt, and a discount department store that's more frightening than any supernatural creature she'll ever encounter.
WARNING - SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT - REVIEW BELOW
Ah, another Amber Benson novel. I'll admit that going into this series I was a little taken-aback by the writing style. As I said with the last book in the series, you really can't go into these expecting a serious work of fiction akin to Harry Potter or The Hobbit. This is a lot like Piers Anthony's work with the Books of Immortality and Xanth: humorous, silly, and fun. In the right mindset, however, these books are very entertaining.
I must admit though, that I don't like Callie (the main female lead) much as a person. She's whiny, juvenile, and a bit self-centered. Her one redeeming quality is that she constantly puts her foot in her mouth whenever she opens it, and hilarity and crisis inevitably ensue.
I found the plot to this particular story a bit more complicated than the last one, which was pleasant though perhaps a bit too complicated to really be engaging. Even as the characters explained what was going on to the reader I had a hard time grasping just how complex it was. Too many characters, too many deceptions... at the end I was left saying "But it's all good now, right?" I got a little lost - though I'll admit part of that may just be that I was so exhausted yesterday I just couldn't retain the information.
I liked that several of the characters from the first book were once again in the second book, though they didn't seem to get as much screen time. I was overjoyed to see Daniel make another appearance - and pissed off at Callie for reacting to him the way she did. I'll admit I'm a little attached to Daniel as a character. He's too good for Callie - even if he is the devil's protege.
Another character (and a new addition to the story) that I really liked was Senenmut. The first impression I got of him did NOT do him justice, but by the end of the book, he was my new favorite "Daniel" of the group. I was half-hoping Callie would start falling for him, but then I was glad she didn't. She would have ruined him. *keeps Senenmut to myself*. There's just something strangely appealing to that kind of guy - the one who's only waking thought is "I need to be with the one I love." *girl sigh*. Okay, moving on.
Overall, I had an easier time getting into this book - now that I knew what to expect as far as Callie went, it was easier to ignore her annoying personality quirks and get into the meat of the story. Unfortunately, Callie is even less pleasant the second time around. I find myself disliking her more in this book than the previous one though I'm starting to like the other whiny characters more. Weird how that works out.
I'll be starting in on the third book in the series today - we'll see how that goes.