Karen Marie Moning set the gold standard for brooding alpha male heroes with Jericho Z. Barrons in her Fever novels. She also crafted a remarkably complex world of Seelie (light) and Unseelie (dark) fae, their war with each other, their intentions in our world and just what happens when they come to the mortal realm.
Now she’s going back to that world with her spinoff Fever World series, and I’m trying to prepare for my journey back to fae-infested Ireland in Iced. One that doesn’t include a whole lot of on-page time with Barrons.
In the Fever novels, we watched MacKayla Lane transform from pink-wearing party girl into the dark, Unseelie-eating, sword-wielding badass of Mac 2.0. She hardened, and became who she needed to be in order to protect others and get answers. This makes me wonder in which direction Moning will take the young Dani O’Malley.
Dani isn’t new to this world. She’s done some pretty horrific things (see ending of Shadowfever) and been used. The fae have manipulated her in the past. Roweena, head of the Sidhe-Seers group, had Dani doing her bidding and lied to her over and over. The only person that was upfront with her was MacKayla, and she still had a hard time seeing her as more than a 14-year-old who shouldn’t be dealing with this kind of drama.
I hope to see Dani mature, but also soften. Even if that’s not in fighting, but emotionally open up to someone. I want transformation. I wouldn’t expect that to happen all in the first Fever World book, but I want a hint of where Dani will be progressing to by the time I finish Iced. And, really, I want a more grown-up Dani when I start the book (which I think is the case).
As someone who ground her teeth together during every segment of the Fever novels narrated by Dani, I’m going into Iced skeptical. I didn’t like reading anything from her point of view before. To be honest, I didn’t exactly like her. I didn’t dislike her, but found her more like an annoying kid sister of a friend. I didn’t mind her around, but didn’t want her running the show.
I almost considered waiting a week after release to read reviews before signing on to read Iced. I know, that reads like sacrilege to any Fever fan. I should have trusted Moning from the start. She started posting excerpts from Iced on her Facebook page and my opinion immediately changed. The teases were dark, sexy and funny. All things I expect and love about Moning’s writing.
Speaking of sexy, Barrons isn’t going to be a romantic lead—can we call him that?—in this novel. However, from the excerpts I’m aware we get Ryodan. That is not a bad thing. He’s loyal, vicious and undeniable eye candy.
I don’t know if he’s a romantic interest for Dani. If she’s old enough in this series for that not to be creepy is a BIG hope for me. I remind myself that Moning is a master of sexual tension, and it got me through more than one Fever novel. Perhaps the same will be true of Iced?
I hope so.
While Chelsea Mueller runs Vampire Book Club, she won’t turn down a sexy werewolf, demon or faerie. Her appreciation of Alexander Skarsgard is well documented. Bother her on Twitter — @ChelseaVBC — she likes it.