Cold Steel by Kate Elliott
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I rarely abandon a book, especially if I have been engaged by its predecessors in a series. And lord knows I was impatient for the release of this final installment of the Spiritwalker series.
Cold Steel was a high four, pushing a five. Cold Magic was a low four, but still had momentum, but by Cold Steel the fire has gone out.
It feels as though Kate Elliot fell out of love with what made her characters feisty and interesting in the first book, and that allowed us to forgive the danger signs in the character development in the second.
By Cold Steel the momentum has gone, as if two books burned away the freshness and energy, and in its place the author propped up the story telling with romantic filler and gratuitous sex.
The main character Cat descends from someone vital and potent to a sap obsessed with her husband’s body and laundry.
And because the characters have paled, suddenly the unusual cadence of their speech becomes annoying. I don’t need everyone to be constantly called by their full names and honorifics. And its a jacket, so why always call it a dash jacket and clutter up the prose, and frankly i don’t give a crap about the attire anyway, so why mention it at all…
And that is why I gave up. If the plot had been condensed into two books, rather than three, and the prose tightened and stripped, this would have been a stand out series. Which leads us to look with eyes narrowed at the money men at the publishers.
Unless, perhaps, I have missed the point and in the end this is a morality tale. However exciting or different, or intriguing something is at the beginning, it is destined to fade into a humdrum existence of petty distractions, small events and hollow victories.
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