Set in both Victorian-era Los Angeles and the Otherworld, Noli’s adventures among the Fae continue.
Minimal recap reminds readers that years earlier, Noli’s father had disappeared in San Francisco and that Noli spent the last book aboard the pirate steam-powered airship owned by her brother and his fiancee. Noli continues her romance with V, also called Steven and, in the Otherworld, Stiofán. When V’s little sister Elise, also called Ailís, escapes from pursuers into the Otherworld, the dark king, Ciarán, also called Kyran, enemy of the “earth court,” takes her in. There, she meets Aodhan, the little son of Creidmeamh, dead sister of the hunter Kevighn, who unites with Ciarán. While searching for Elise, Noli gets into a battle with V’s uncle, earth king Brogan, with unexpected results that Noli must learn to live with. Lazear’s imagination continues to bubble, creating a charming and dangerous fantasy world as well as an intriguing alternate-history mortal world with her steampunk version of Los Angeles. That creative vision helps the book overcome pedestrian writing and standard plotting. The book’s minimal action is interrupted by numerous and lengthy episodes of domestic chitchat and bickering. Noli and V, in fact, spend much of the book at odds, despite their undying love for each other. Major plot points, such as reassembling the fateful Staff of Eris, await resolution in another sequel.
Lazear’s fans have a high tolerance for convoluted nomenclature; anyone else will have given up on this series long ago. (Fantasy. 14-18)