Tuesday, March 14, 2017

ARC Review: Hisses & Honey by Shannon Mayer

Series:     Venom #3
Pub. Date:March 7, 2017
Length:240 pages

In this final installment of the Venom trilogy, things are going to come to a head between our sssuper duper heroine, Hera, and half of the Greek pantheon. Alena Budrene, Drakaina and baker, has moved on from being the reluctant savior of Seattle and is taking charge on multiple fronts. Not only does she have to worry about Hera's next hero, but she also needs to deal with the vampires, her relationships (both love and familial), a raging Aegrus virus, and the latest psychopathic monster created by Merlin. At least her divorce is over and done with, even if her lousy ex is still hanging around.

I was happy to see that Alena has accepted her new supernatural status and let go of some of the hangups she had as a good girl and Firstamentalist. She is finally coming to terms with the new and dangerous world in which she lives, and that violence will sometimes be necessary in her life. I liked that she stood up to various foes and faced situations head on, even going so far as to protect her family and friends when it was warranted. Her guilt did surface time and again over certain events, but I cut her some slack because her life changed very fast and she has only been coping with this new aspect for a few short weeks.

So there was a lot happening in this last installment of the trilogy, and I felt like the story lacked cohesion at times... like we were just jumping from one event to the next a little too quickly. I wish there would have been more filler moments to build and strengthen relationships, particularly between our love interests. I was also hoping to see the romance amp up between the sinfully yummy Remo and our heroine - but it was not to be. 

That being said, I love the mix of supernaturals and mythological figures in this series. In this story we touched on a large part of the pantheon including Zeus, Hera, Aphrodite, Narcissus, Hades, Hermes, Eros, Hercules and Hephaestus. When you take all the Greeks and throw in vampires, werewolves, warlocks and monsters - you get a melting of supernatural diversity. The social issues in this installment are resolving, with humans more easily accepting the supernatural species, and even showing a small amount of hero worship for Alena, the protector of their city. 

While all of the questions are wrapped up by this final episode, there was room left for a spinoff in another part of the world. I would like to see that happen, so I'm hoping Mayer gives us more of this supernaturally diverse universe in the future.

I voluntarily reviewed an advanced copy of this book that I received from the publisher, 47North.

Venom Trilogy