Oh boy. I was so very wrong once again. What I was expecting from Steel’s Edge by Ilona Andrews: an honourable knight in shining armour and a pretty damsel in distress. Yeah right. I forgot we’re talking about Ilona Andrews here.
During Bayou Moon and Fate’s Edge, I paid close attention to Richard. I could not figure him out. One moment I’m sure he’s an icicle with an iceberg-sized honour, no sense of humour and very strong morals; the next, he says something funny and sarcastic. And so, I expected a knight who would think that he doesn’t deserve a princess because of his background. Riiiight. In reality, underneath all that ice, is scorching fire. The things he did for his previous wife, the things he does for his niece and the things he does for Charlotte, the lovely heroine… Oh boy. Declan, William and Kaldar might be extremely handsome, loyal, caring and loving, but none of them can ever be a better husband than Richard. Seriously. That man is the perfect husband material. And although he seems like a creature without emotions, he just needed the right woman to uncover them. Because really, even William didn’t climb a rope in a fit of jealousy…
Then there’s Charlotte. She’s amazing. All these heroines of the Edge before her were girls. Inexperienced, feisty, spunky. Charlotte is inexperienced, too. And she can be quite naive. But she is no girl. She is a woman. A truly feminine and elegant woman, wise and mature, astute, beautiful, graceful, caring. A perfect mother. A perfect lady. She can’t hold a sword or a knife, she can’t flash and she can’t steal, but she will take your breath away.
And finally, there’s Jack, George and Sophie. These characters neatly tie all four Edge books together and make you crave their own story. You see those precious boys from the first book mature from adorable babies into young men. You see their falls and rises, you see their growing up and you see them be affected by other characters. Sophie, on the other hand, plays a major role in some characters’ development. And after Steel’s Edge you can’t help wishing to see her get her own HEA.
But even more engaging than these lovable and memorable characters is the plot. So far, it is the most interesting and rich in the series, in my opinion. In the previous books, the enemy and the mission is clear. The good guys attack the bad guys because the bad guys attacked first. In this book, everything is much more complex because there is a complex slave trade network that needs to be taken down. Easier said than done. So Richard, Charlotte and the boys embark on a journey. They visit an island filled with criminals, they steal a ship, they see some very unexpected characters from the past, they learn many things about themselves and each other, they play with identities, they come up with a mastermind plot, they enter the high society, they lie and seduce, and they pay a price for their victory. Because no victory ever comes cheap.
All in all, Steel’s Edge by Ilona Andrews is a perfect conclusion to the arc that neatly ties all strings together yet leaves the possibility for more. In a way, the first four books create a perfect stage for Jack and George. Their world is now filled with wonderful, now familiar, characters, they are beginning to realise their roles in society and they even get flashes of romance. Those cute little boys from the first book are finally ready for their very own journey. So despite minor issues with the ending, I still say this is a fantastic read worthy of many rereads in the future. Amazing. Simply amazing.
Steel's Edge by Ilona Andrews
The Edge #4
on November 27th 2012
Romance, Urban Fantasy
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The Edge lies between worlds, on the border between the Broken, where people shop at Wal-Mart and magic is a fairy tale—and the Weird, where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny…
Charlotte de Ney is as noble as they come, a blueblood straight out of the Weird. But even though she possesses rare magical healing abilities, her life has brought her nothing but pain. After her marriage crumbles, she flees to the Edge to build a new home for herself. Until Richard Mar is brought to her for treatment, and Charlotte’s life is turned upside down once again.
Richard is a swordsman without peer, future head of his large and rambunctious Edger clan—and he’s on a clandestine quest to wipe out slavers trafficking humans in the Weird. So when his presence leads his very dangerous enemies to Charlotte, she vows to help Richard destroy them. The slavers’ operation, however, goes deeper than Richard knows, and even working together, Charlotte and Richard may not survive...
What are some of your favourites whom you’ve watched grow from mere kids into teens and adults?