Peace talks are always tricky, especially when a key diplomat gets stabbed. This rudely interrupts a top-secret summit between the warring dragons and Fae. As a neutral party, Librarian-spy Irene is summoned to investigate. She must head to a version of 1890s Paris, with her assistant Kai and her detective friend Vale, where these talks are fracturing. Here, she must get to the bottom of the attack – before either the peace negotiations or the city go up in flames.
Suspicions fly thick and fast and Irene soon finds herself in the seedy depths of the Parisian underworld. She’s on the trail of a notoriously warlike Fae, the Blood Countess. However, the evidence against the Countess is circumstantial. Could the killer be a member of the Library itself?
Review of The Mortal Word
In Chapter One of The Mortal Word, Irene steals one token book, which serves only to illustrate Irene’s magical and physical abilities, not so much to glorify her librarianship. Librarian is Irene’s title. But her job, well…. Spy, yes (and she admits it), detective, most definitely (even though she pretends only to assist other detectives), task master – well just ask her fellow investigators.
The Mortal Word takes place in the setting of a peace negotiation between the dragons, the ultimate creatures of order and the fae, who introduce chaos into every possible situation. Why would two such dissimilar races want peace? That question will be asked many times in The Mortal Word.
Soon after the peace ‘conference’ starts, one of the primary dragon negotiators is murdered. Irene’s friend, detective Vale, is asked to investigate. Irene’s job: manage the detective along with the dragon and fae representatives to the investigations. Plus, her close friend and former apprentice Kai (dragon) shows up to assist in a very unofficial way. I love how Irene has taken charge more and more throughout the series. She has become quite the formidable taskmaster.
But while Irene is able to delegate, there are some things she still wants to do herself. Irene’s interest in Sherlockian detective stories means she wants to follow up on some clues herself. I have read enough of Irene to know that anytime this happens, trouble will ensue. And anytime this happens, Irene will use her brains, and maybe a bit of magic, to get out of trouble. While all her friends and associates are quite capable, Irene is the superhero of this series.
The Mortal Word can be read as a standalone and will appeal to anyone who appreciates a great mystery solved by a brainy detective, with a mix of myth and magic. Though if you think that sounds pretty good, why not read the entire series!?
Thanks to the publisher (Berkley, Penquin, Random House, whoever – they are all on the letterhead) who held a giveaway and sent me the prize of an ARC of the The Mortal Word. I had read books 1-3 and had decided not to continue the series, not because I did not like the series, rather I had other books I wanted to read more. However, having received a free book, I had to read it! So glad I did!
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