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Tempt the Stars
Karen Chance
Signet, 432 pages

Tempt the Stars
Karen Chance
Karen Chance is from Orlando, Florida. After getting a degree in history, she spent two years teaching in Hong Kong. Touch the Dark was her first novel.

Karen Chance Website
ISFDB Bibliography
SF Site Review: Curse the Dawn
SF Site Review: Touch the Dark

Past Feature Reviews
A review by Katherine Petersen

Karen Chance's Cassie Palmer series was my second foray into urban fantasy, and while I still enjoy the series, I have to say that I'm getting frustrated with a few things. Not enough to stop reading the books, of course, but enough to not have to have them on publication date. That said, Tempt the Stars, the sixth installment, starts out where Hunt the Moon ended. John Pritkin has been taken back to hell in order to save Cassie's life, but she in turn, wants to rescue him.

As per usual, she has a half-assed plan at best which starts with the idea of going back in time to ask her mother how to wrest Pritkin from his demon father's clutches. Nothing goes as planned, and the book has the nonstop action that fans have come to expect and enjoy. Chance throws in some humor for balance and also gives hints to the growth in Cassie and Pritkin's relationship. Mircea, on the other hand, hardly makes any appearances in this installment. Growth in relationships is important, but so too is Cassie's growth as a character.

What frustrates me most is that Cassie isn't learning more about her pythia powers. While I don't expect her to all of a sudden become responsible, I'd like to see her have a better handle on what she can do. Knowing more would come in handy when she steps into a battle between gods and demons and humans that started long, long ago.

Pritkin is his solid warmage self, trying to protect Cassie as best he can, and I have to say I'm in Camp Pritkin if there is such a thing. While some popular characters don't show up, other not-so-popular ones have fairly large roles: Casanova provides interesting comic relief. We also meet some new characters including three witches and a pythia acolyte who likely will show up in future books as their roles aren't fully understood at this point, at least not by me. And underneath the action and humor are hints of darker matters like betrayal.

Chance has always done a nice job describing Cassie's world and here too, she gives a good description of hell albeit an eerie and undesirable one. She continues to excel wit her fight and time travel scenes as well. I picture her mapping them out, and I'm sure if I did, they'd always be accurate. One other downside to this book, for fans, will be the cliffhanger ending. Hopefully it won't be another two years for Reap the Wind.

Copyright © 2013 Katherine Petersen

Katherine Petersen started reading as a young child and hasn't stopped. She still thinks she can read all the books she wants, but might, at some point, realize the impossibility of this mission. While she enjoys other genres, she thrives on fantasy, science fiction and mysteries.

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