The exciting third installment in the Cin Craven series begins with the four members of the Righteous (Cin, Michael, Justine and Devlin) in France, 1862. Cin finds herself being strangely compelled to go to a particular location. Though fairly certain a spell is being used to call her, Cin does not know why or the person behind it. The four all make their way to Ravenworth, Cin’s family estate in England, where they learn of the death, from old age, of Cin’s longtime friend, Fiona. They also meet Cin’s cousin, Raina, the witch who summoned them via the spell.
It seems that Raina’s daughter, Claire, has been kidnapped by a man, Boucher, who wants an urn she was entrusted with and refused to relinquish. A locator spell performed by Cin and Raina together indicates that Claire is being held on an island off the coast of Georgia, which unfortunately is currently embroiled in the Civil War. Despite the difficulties this situation presents, Cin and the others agree to go and rescue Claire. Upon their arrival at the aptly-named Devil’s Island, the four cohorts manage to wrest control of Boucher’s plantation home away from him, legally, and are surprised to learn the contents of the urn that Claire so carefully guards, and what Boucher’s intentions are. Aside from ensuring that Boucher does not succeed, Cin must also contend with inheriting slaves and thereby participating in an institution she abhors.
Maclaine’s plot and words flow effortlessly across the page, which, combined with the suspense level being ratcheted up even higher this time, ensures that the reader will stay glued to the page. Cin and Michael are terrific protagonists, and as the author excels at characterization, all of the secondary players come to life to join them in their adventures. As before, Maclaine’s historical knowledge shines through, and setting much of the action against the background of a war enables her to both explore a particular time period and location, as well as the characters’ reactions to the events surrounding them.
Cin continues to learn about and adapt to both her limitations and her capabilities, and when she worries that she may turn into someone or something she does not wish to become, Michael tells her, “Our experiences lead us to where we are, they don’t make us who we are. Only you can decide who it you want to be” (51). Losing people she loves causes Cin to reflect upon her purpose and her choices, adding depth to the narrative. This excellent book earns a well-deserved spot on the must-read list in the historical urban fantasy field, and this reviewer will enthusiastically follow Cin and company into their next adventure.
- Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks; Original edition (December 29, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 031294618X
- ISBN-13: 978-0312946180
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