Friday, March 13, 2015

Review: Djinn and Tonic by Jasinda Wilder

Djinn and Tonic (The Houri Legends, #2)Djinn and Tonic by Jasinda Wilder
Series: Houri Legends #2

My Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Sultry Scale: 3 of 5 stars

Pub Date:  March 13, 2015

Detective Carson Hale knows Leila is hiding something from him. He's in the hospital after a strange and inexplicable attack destroys his favorite bar, the Old Shillelagh. While the attack leaves Carson with stitches, bruised ribs, and a concussion, Leila is mysteriously uninjured, and she either can’t or won’t offer a satisfactory explanation. While her lies and evasions are setting off his detective instincts, her body sets off other alarms.

Leila Najafi has a lot of secrets and a complicated past. She ran away to Detroit to get away from her family, but she's been been discovered by the one man that could destroy her. Sexy detective Carson Hale blows into her life at the worst possible time. Now Leila is forced to make a decision that could both cause heartbreak and war. 

I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Djinn and Tonic picks up where the first book, Jack and Djinn, left off.  Detective Carson Hale is in his favorite watering hole, talking to his favorite bartender, the beautiful Leila.  As soon as Carson finishes telling Leila about the supernatural case he just closed, another supernatural issue falls on his head.  Literally.  

Like Miriam, Leila is another Arab-American, whose very traditional parents immigrated from Kuwait.  Leila is rebelling against her old school parents by not doing as she is told, refusing her arranged marriage, consorting with men, and not wearing the hijab.  But we learn that Leila is refusing to do her duty to her family due to the evil nature of her betrothed, Hassan.  We also learn that Leila is an Ifrit, an elemental wind being. Ifrits are at the opposite end of the spectrum from djinn, and there is a longstanding feud between two groups (who live very very long lives).  I have read about Ifrits before... but they were always secondary characters, and usually fire elementals.  So this was something new and interesting.

We first met Carson in Jack and Djinn, when he was investigating the death of Miriam's abusive ex-boyfriend, Ben. In this book, we learn about Carson's past and why he became a cop.  So he has a bit of the tortured hero thing going.  The relationship between Carson and Leila escalates quickly, then fizzles, then escalates, then fizzles, then has a head-on collision.  Carson, being the trained investigator, knows that Leila has secrets and wants her to trust him enough to share them.  Leila thinks she is protecting Carson by not sharing them.  And that reasoning feeds into the on-again off-again aspect of their relationship.  

Unfortunately, I read this book while I have a crazy swan flu.  And I say this because I have had to blow my nose so much that I sound like a honking goose.  So nothing was appealing to me - be it books or food or anything besides laying on my couch.  And I think that tainted my reading and feelings about this book, because I just could not connect with the characters for some reason. I'm a fan of Jasinda, so I hate that I read this book when I felt less than stellar. So if this review sounds a bit "meh" - don't let that discourage you from reading.  This series is a bit different than other paranormals out today in that it is more of a contemporary romance with paranormal aspects.  The relationships are between a supernatural and the mundane.  There is drama, mystery, action and magic. I am excited for the next installment of the series which I think will be about Nadira, the super powerful water elemental, and a quiet giant type man, Juice, who made a brief appearance in this book.  

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