When I first discovered that Kristin Cast was writing a new series I was so excited to see what she had in store for the fans of the House of Night series. The concept intrigued me as I have always loved Greco-Roman mythology. As soon as I read that description to find it was going to be about an Oracle I was sold and had to read it.
Unfortunately Amber Smoke sort of fell short of my expectations. The action and real story didn’t pick up until about half way into the book, and even then it wasn’t intense or captivating. Alek is the hero warrior of the story destined to save Tartarus by discovering the new Oracle, and thus one you would think readers would want to love and adore.
Wrong. To me until later in the book Alek was nothing more then a meathead with magical powers. This whole theme in fantasy romance novels is so overdone I had to nearly suppress a yawn and my expression of disgust. I was really wanting Alek to have some substance, but alas he did not.
Thankfully, Kristin Cast has saved the story by introducing Eva, the girl destined to be the oracle. I found Eva to be one that was quite likable and sweet. The entire presence of Eva in the story was one that saved the book for me. Eva’s existence as a character is what makes me intrigued for what happens next as there is a cliffhanger at the end. Mind you I use the word cliffhanger ever so loosely.
As for the romance… well… sadly the romance and bond between Eva and Alek seems forced. Shoved down the throat, you must love me because we are bound forced. If not for the dream that Eva has when she was unconscious the entire affection between the pair would be weak.
For me the book seemed one where the author was trying too hard to create adventure and romance but didn’t have all the seams tied together to make it a fantastic story. Amber Smoke seemed lacking. In fact, the title of the book is only once referenced to and not even in great detail.
With this being said I am interested to see what happens next with Alek and Eva as she discovers and learns what it is to be an Oracle. I will keep my fingers crossed with this being a fresh start in a new series that the story line is better developed in the next book. All the same it was a light, quick read and one that I will keep my hope ups for since I do love the House of Night books. Until next time readers, happy reading!