Kate Reading's reading was excellent as always. Kay's writing was full of the beauty and emotion that as a frequent reader I have come to expect.
Ysabel is similar in style and tone to all of the other Kays books that I've read - Tigana, Song for Arbonne, Lions of Al Rassan - but also very different. It isn't as historical in flavor. The elements are there, but the setting is modern-day with talk of iPods and the Internet. Also, the main characters are teen-agers, so it has something of a young-adult feel to it.
I think I enjoyed the final wrap up the most. Normally, I am disappointed at the end of a book, but I think the destination made the journey worthwhile in Ysabel.
How long will your love last?
It often takes me a bit to get fully engaged in a new Kay novel. Ysabel, however, was probably the hardest for me to get in to. I think that since the setting and main character ran counter to my more traditional fantasy expectations, I had reservations on how much I would like the book. Also, the action is sparse. I am glad, though, that I stuck with it. The second half of the book was beautiful and worth the extra effort.
This was by far my least favorite book in the MHI series. About 90% of the book was Hollywood-style actions scenes. There is a tiny amount of character development for Franks, but mostly we just get his backstory. The best parts of the book are the parts that advance the overarching plot line of the series and that mainly happens in the last two POV segments. It wasn't the worst thing I've read lately but it was a big disappointment.
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