Published April 12th 2012 by Createspace (first published July 1st 2010)
This is book #1 of the Maurin Kincaide series. I was lucky enough to meet the author and purchase a copy for her at the Baltimore Book Festival.
Amazon (where you can get it for FREE using the Kindle app)
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Book Depository (currently unavailable)
I’m Maurin Kincaide, a psychometric, and until a few days ago I was working for Salem’s Preternatural Task Force as an interrogator. I cracked more cold cases and got more confessions than anyone else in the department. Of course that was before I traded in my badge for an ancient Celtic sword. Now, I’m the Special Liaison for the Council, the governing body of the Others, and I take my orders from witches, werewolves and vampires. I didn’t just make a career change though. I’m not the same person I was before. I’m stronger, I can heal from wounds that would kill a normal person. I’m developing latent psychic skills at a breakneck speed. Oh yeah, and it would seem that a Pagan goddess has taken permanent residence in my body and mind. Crazy thing is, I’m starting to feel normal, like this is who I’m supposed to be. Of course, there are those who don’t agree. Morrigan and her sisters for example. Actually, I’m pretty sure they’d like nothing more than to see me dead. And if I can’t stop them and the demons they’ve raised, they just might get their wish. (Goodreads)
I was overjoyed when I met the author and got to speak to her first hand about her book series. I asked what her books were about and her very brief synopsis was the main character Maurin is a psychometric, meaning she see things in the past using fingerprints. With that ability she is recruited to work for the Salem Preternatural Task Force, and works on cases involving supernatural creatures (vampires, witches, demons, etc.) I was sold. October seemed like the perfect time to read about supernatural creatures.
The Characters: The main protagonist is of course Maurin Kincaide, the psychometric. Maurin’s partner at the SPTF, Masarelli makes a brief appearance in the first part of the book. The rest of the cast are witches, vampires, and other super natural beings (some of which I have never heard of before). While I enjoyed the witches and the vampires there were very few trustworthy characters, which made it hard to connect with anyone. Maurin was very kick ass at the beginning, but overtime she became annoying. She retained her humor throughout. In the end I feel that the events that took place in this book made Maurin a stronger character and I am eager to see what happens to her next. My biggest complaint about the characters were their names. I could hardly pronounce any of them and a lot of them were similar. The most confusing part was between “The Morrigna” and the main antagonist Morrigan. I often got the two confused until I finished reading a paragraph, and then I would have to go back and re-read the paragraph with the right frame of mind. Half of the time the demons and special beings had such weird names I wondered if they were typos.
Setting: There were a few different settings scattered throughout the story, but my favorite without a doubt was the Witch’s Closet. It was only in a few scenes, but thanks to Twitter I was able to get insider info about the inspiration behind it from the author. The majority of the time Maurin finds herself at Baylen’s house where the majority of the events unfold and then lead to the final show down at a castle on the outskirts of Gallows Hill.
Plot: I struggled with the plot. The beginning pulled me right in and I knew right away who and what Maurin was. Then the ebb and flow completely changed. I felt many scenes dragged on. There were strange bits that were so far fetched it was hard to completely imagine the world and what was happening. The non-action scenes were my favorite because in the heat of battle it never felt urgent and the names were confusing.
Conflict: The conflict in this book is nothing new, defeat the bad guy or we all die. The way Rawlings handled the conflict was different and put a new spin on it. The coven of witches, the family of vampires, and the packs of werewolves, etc. made navigating those social orders a part of the underlying conflict and it worked quite well.
Resolution: The ending had some unexpected twists that I did not see coming and really blew my mind. We’re not sure the results of the twist, but I am hoping to find out more in the next book. Evil was defeated this time, but as you know there’s always evil lurking, So the adventures of Maurin will continue.
Random Thoughts: Some terms are either unexplained, explained poorly or explained several chapters later. The spells used were awesome and seemed realistic. Maurin was quite funny. I’ve never heard someone refer to themselves as looking like “crap on toast”. As I progressed in the story I could tell this book was setting up the rest of the series. There were typos littered throughout the book as well as on the book cover. Another thing that annoyed me was the use of unnecessary quotes around words.
I know it might seem like I hated this book, but I didn’t! It was actually quite different than I expected and I enjoyed many aspects of it. I wish it were more polished, but I plan to continue with the series and see how it evolves. I rated The Morrigna by Rachel Rawlings 3 stars.