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Reviews of books in a series, with a focus on urban fantasy.
Other genres include mystery, paranormal romance, and crime thrillers.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Review: Kitty Goes to War (Kitty Norville, Book 8) by Carrie Vaughn


I am constantly amazed at how Carrie Vaughn manages to create plots that keep this series hopping. The Kitty Norville books are not "different book, same stuff". Each book heads off in a unique direction, each is a surprise. 

I complain in some series about the lack of character growth. There are no such complaints in Kitty Goes to War. And it isn't just Kitty growing - Ben has spent a couple of books growing into a confident werewolf, Cormac is out of prison now and we get to see how the experience has changed him and how he is going to deal with a life where he can't walk around armed all of the time. And Kitty's pack continues to evolve into a healthy pack. Oh, and Kitty keeps making friends, in some cases powerful friends, which I think someday is going to be a really big deal.

Kitty Goes to War has two major plots - one that is also part of the ongoing series arc, and one that is probably mostly restricted to this book.

Here's the blurb:

Kitty Norville, Alpha werewolf and host of The Midnight Hour, a radio call-in show, is contacted by a friend at the NIH's Center for the Study of Paranatural Biology. Three Army soldiers recently returned from the war in Afghanistan are being held at Ft. Carson in Colorado Springs. They're killer werewolves—and post traumatic stress has left them unable to control their shape-shifting and unable to interact with people. Kitty agrees to see them, hoping to help by bringing them into her pack.

Meanwhile, Kitty gets sued for libel by CEO Harold Franklin after featuring Speedy Mart--his nationwide chain of 24-hour convenience stores with a reputation for attracting supernatural unpleasantness--on her show.

Very bad weather is on the horizon.

The blurb gives a decent idea of the two plots - the out-of-control special forces highly trained bad-ass werewolves, and a disagreement with the CEO of Speedy Mart.

But there is also the human part... Kitty and Ben's relationship, Cormac fitting back into society, Kitty and Ben as Alpha couple over the pack. And.. more. Maybe human wasn't the right word... but calling it the 'touchy feelie' parts didn't work, either. Also, I don't want to give spoilers.

As for my usual rundown: both of the major plots are excellent, pacing is exceptionally well done, prose and dialogue are always beautifully done with Ms. Vaughn. I can't say enough good things about the character development in this series or in this book. Seriously, character building is incredible for every character who gets more than a few paragraph's mention. And finally, while the world-building may not be terribly unique (it's basic werewolf and vampire rules with some wizards and such thrown in), it's very well done, and draws on mythologies and legends enough to give it that hint of believability.

I can easily give Kitty Goes to War a 10 of 10, and I'm moving the series from a 9 of 10 to a 10 of 10.

Book Rating: Kitty Goes to War: 10 of 10
Series Rating: Kitty Norville: 10 of 10

1. Kitty and the Midnight Hour (2005)
2. Kitty Goes to Washington (2006)
3. Kitty Takes a Holiday (2007)
4. Kitty and the Silver Bullet (2008)
5. Kitty and the Dead Man's Hand (January 2009)
6. Kitty Raises Hell (February 2009)
7. Kitty's House of Horrors (2010)
8. Kitty Goes to War (2010)
9. Kitty's Big Trouble

1 comment:

  1. I've enjoyed all the Kitty books but...the last few were a bit much. I hope Carrie gets back to Kitty at home in CO.