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Monday, October 14, 2013

ARC Review: Realm Walker by Kathleen Collins (Blog Tour & Giveaway)

 

REALM WALKER


Realm Walker Series #1


by Kathleen Collins


Publisher: Carina Press (Oct 28, 20013)
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Adult
Format: eARC (novel length)
Source: Free book from blog tour for honest review
Find It: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Rating: ★★★½☆ (3.5 stars)
Summary
An estranged mate, a mangled body and a powerful demon who calls her by name…

As a Realm Walker for the Agency, Juliana Norris tracks deadly paranormal quarry using her unique ability to see magical signatures. She excels at her job, but her friends worry about her mysterious habit of dying in the line of duty without staying dead. That's only the first of her secrets.
Most people don't know Juliana became the mate of master vampire Thomas Kendrick before he abandoned her seven years ago. Most people don't know the horrors she endured at the hands of the vampire he left in command. Most people don't know her true parentage, or why a demon on a world-threatening rampage has taken a personal interest in her…

Even as Juliana pursues the demon, it goes after all she holds dear—including Thomas, who is back to claim her for his own. But if she can't reconcile her past and learn to trust herself again, she will lose him forever.
At A Glance
I think Realm Walker was a solid urban fantasy. The action was great but the love interest was not.

The Good
Realm Walker is an action packed thrill ride from start to finish. I loved how the story progressed and how it all came together at the end. We got the whole picture in pieces when it came to the characters and the main plot which made the mystery that much more exciting.

Juliana was a fascinating character. She was so mysterious. We never really knew her whole story till the very end. And boy, what a story. She has had a troubled and sad past, some of which she still doesn't remember. Her breakup with master vampire Thomas only added to the misery. But she has grown into a tough chick because of it. She kicks supernatural ass and doesn't let anyone get too close to her. But she has created a family for herself with her friends. I respected Juliana for the way she always picked herself back up right after a beat down, be it physical or emotional. I just wish she could have withstood Thomas's charms longer, she deserves better.

Though Thomas wasn't my favorite character, I did love the few times we saw his true love for Juliana shine through. He may be arrogant and demanding, but he does have a soft spot, that that soft spot is Juliana.

The world in Realm Walker was gritty and dark. I loved the supernatural characters and freaky monsters. I think great world building is what sets good and bad urban fantasies apart. You need that amazing world building to really set the tone.

The writing was solid and the dialogue was smooth. The plot kept me interested and the pacing was perfect. The action was the best part. A lot of great action and fight scenes. Really kept me on my toes.

The Bad
The third person POV bothered me, it was confusing. I think this book would have been way better as first person with Juliana.

Thomas wasn't my favorite. As a love interest, I did not like him at all. I don't think he is good for Juliana, and I was rooting for her to get him out of her life completely. He's far too arrogant and selfish.

Though I liked Realm Walker, I found myself unsure if I would continue the series. I take my urban fantasies very seriously, and this one didn't leave enough for me to want to pick up book two, even though it was a good book overall. I know, I am being confusing, but I hope you guys know what I mean.

The Snuggly
Since I didn't care for Thomas, I didn't like him with Juliana. If I was Juliana, I could never forgive what Thomas did and what his decision led to.

There is some very hot kissing moments, but no sex. Fine for a new adult audience and up.

Final Thoughts
I was entertained the whole way through with Realm Walker. Definitely worth the read. Though it did not reel me in as much as a I hoped, because I am still unsure if I want to continue the series. I think not liking Thomas had a lot to do with that. But overall, recommended.
Quotes
It chuckled. “I grow tired of playing with you. You would have caught me eventually at any rate. You’re much better than the others. Maybe it’s because you’re female. You are, aren’t you?”
 

“Then what in the name of all the dark gods is going on?” She maintained her stance, waiting for him to answer.

He opened his mouth and froze, eyes locked on a point over her shoulder. His already pale skin blanched to a new shade of white. She reached for her gun. At the same time, a warm breeze caressed her neck like a lover’s tease. Her breath caught. Her pulse raced. She stayed her hand though part of her still ached to palm the weapon. She shut down her gift but left the glasses on. She knew this enemy.

 
“I left everything for you. My money, my home, my coven. It’s all yours. It always has been.” He pushed both hands through his hair. “I gave you what you wanted. As much as it killed me to do it, I gave it to you. I only wanted you to be happy.”

 “Yeah, my life’s been a regular carnival.” She sighed. “You just left me, Thomas. You left all of us. They assumed I was no longer under your protection. I assumed that. You left me alone under the authority of a vampire who resented my connection to you from the moment you brought me into the coven. There was no protection there for me. No home.”
Author Bio
Kathleen Collins has been writing since Kindergarten. And while her ability has drastically improved, her stories are still about monsters and the people who play with them.

The rare instances that she actually finds some spare time, she spends it playing with her two boys. Three if you count her husband.
She is currently hard at work on her next book.


Enter this tour wide giveaway for a chance to win:
1 Halloween Theme Prize Pack open to US Shipping:
A felt owl bag 
A cool Skull sign
A skull glow in the dark ring 
Charms - including the vampire themed "Blood Donor Wanted"
Fuzzy socks 
A cool woven bracelet with silver skulls
A skeleton voodoo doll key ring
Vampire themed cookie cutters
and last but not least Vampire shot glasses
8 ebook copies of Realm Walker by Kathleen Collins
 



27 comments:

  1. Oh, sometimes, the love-scenes can be icky if I don't like the love interest. And if there is romance at all, I want to enjoy both of the characters well enough to want them together. I love action, though, so I might still pick up Realm Walker.

    Great review, Jenniferl :)

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. Yeah, luckily there wasn't many lovey scenes. But the action does make up for the love interest.

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  2. Well, shoot, I was looking forward to reading this book. I'll still pick it up, but I won't set my expectations so high the way I do when reading urban fantasy.

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    1. Just don't expect a great romance part (which isn't as important in UF) and you will be fine.

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  3. His soft spot for Juliana sounds redeeming and good to read about

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    1. It is somewhat redeeming but I still don't like him.

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  4. hmmm, sounds interesting and kinda crazy (my fave). The first book in UF is tough for me a lot of times. I have to like the world and the main character and I figure everything will eventually fall into place.

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    1. This UF was definitely tough for me. I like it a lot but I still don't know if I want to continue the series.

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  5. Great review! Juliana sounds like my kind of girl...but I'm sad to see that you didn't like the love interest. And I completely understand what you mean by taking your UF very seriously.

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    1. At least the heroine was cool. That is more important.

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  6. This does sound like a good urban fantasy, shame about thomas though! he sounds irritating.

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  7. I love a good action-packed urban fantasy so I'll have to add this one to my list.

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  8. This sounds like it might be pretty good even with the romantic love interest issue. I love how honest you are, stating that you totally recommend the book, but aren't sure if you want to continue the series. I've totally been there before. It gives this book your approval and allows your readers to decide for themselves about the series.

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    1. Thanks. It was odd recommending it when I was still unsure about it. But that's how it turned out so what are you going to do? :)

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  9. I completely get it! I'm so glad you enjoyed this one the way you did though. I can't read just one though, I have to enjoy a series so if it's not a series read it's prolly not for me. Great review! Jaclyn @ JC's Book Haven.

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    Replies
    1. Ugh, I had a hard time with this one. I guess with all the great UF series out there 3.5 stars isn't enough for me, you know?

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  10. Great review Jen, I love urban fantasy, and book one can be rough, I usually try to wait until the end of book two before decided to nix it or continue. The cover looks kick-ass though...LOL but I wish it was first-person like you.

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    1. First person POV would have really made a difference. And yeah, if I was offered book #2 I would read it, just not sure if I would buy it.

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  11. Hmm, sounds good. I might have to look into it. :) Thank you!

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  12. Hey Jennifer, Will you be posting the names of the winners? 'Cause I did win a copy of the book, but I'm not sure from where. :( I just lost track of all the giveaways I enter! :(

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    1. Actually this is a tour wide giveaway which means I have no control over it. The tour host or author is in charge. Here her the url for her website and you can contact her through it: http://bewitchingbooktours.blogspot.com/

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  13. hmmm... the blurb originally sounded good and the cover looked nice enough to try it out. I liked the excepts :) Great review Jennifer!

    Chanzie @ Mean Who You Are.

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    1. Not sure how you would like this one but it' worth a go.

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