Reviewed by May
For a librarian with a focus on rare magic books, Olivia’s new job is a dream come true. She has been hired as part of a team to help manage the safe transportation of the collection of books owned by the Vampyre sorceress Carling Severan. The fact that the library is located on a mysterious island in an Other land only heightens the adventure.
Head of security for the expedition, Sebastian Hale is tired of his rootless life of adventure and finds himself attracted to the calm, beautiful librarian. But he is living a personal nightmare. He has been hit with a curse that is slowly taking away his sight, and he doesn’t know if he will survive the results.
I’m very sorry to say other than the general skill of Harrison’s writing I don’t have anything nice to say about this story. The pages are eaten up by painfully detailed passages that have nothing to do with the overall story arc in this world, or the couple in particular. In fact, the entire first chapter could (and should) have been cut. Why we needed to see a breakfast scene play out with Olivia and her friend’s family I really don’t know. I couldn’t even remember who many of the people were or why I cared – and I’ve read all the books in this series.
Sebastian is such an interesting hero – I wanted to learn more about him as an owl Wyr, and I enjoyed that while he’s clearly powerful and badass, he’s a short man! We never get short heroes – especially in PNR, and I really liked that about him. I did have a hard time believing he could compete with Tiago or the other top ranking Wyr, mostly because we don’t ever get to see him in real action which was disappointing.
I couldn’t figure out what was interesting or great about Olivia – sadly we don’t get to see much of her capabilities nor why she is so compelling to Sebastian. Oh, we get a few scenes where she acts strong and such – but not enough to build a happily ever after on.
What really frustrated me is that there could have been a very interesting story about the other land library, island, and creatures who live there. There could also have been a really cute romance between Olivia the librarian and Sebastian the cursed owl Wyr. I felt like too much tried to fit into this novella, and because of that nothing quite worked or was satisfying.