Year of the Demon
Fated Blades #2
Author: Steve Bein
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Mariko is now in the NARC department, with a new partner. She crosses paths with a delusional psycho cult leader who is in possession of a magic mask that has an affinity for weapons and her blade specifically.
The 2 historical storylines are about the making of the mask and an encounter between Victory Unsought and the Mask later on.
I have to admit, I read the first book, Daughter of the Sword, because the cover showed an incredibly cute asian woman with a sword. Well, the cover for this book is even better in my opinion.
I think this is classified as Urban Fantasy, but the fantasy part is so slight that you might miss it if you sneeze. Plus, 2 of the 3 storylines take place in Historical Japan, not modern day.
Mariko’s storyline about the psycho cult leader was pretty good, but was more of a “plucky girl gets her mojo back” storyline than anything else. And there was no sword fighting. Also, the whole Sword and Mask thing didn’t seem to be a big part of this line of the story.
Which brings us to the second storyline. About Daigoro and his continued fight for his and his house’s survival. The Mask and Sword were focused on much more and there was lots of intrigue, fighting, politic’ing and moments of “ah ha!” that I enjoyed. We get to see how the Mask really affects its wearer.
And that leads us to the final storyline. The young girl Kaida who is a diver. Her little village sees a huge shipwreck and several days later some very scary men come to look for something specific in the wreck. One of the men makes the Mask and it is very evident that Arcane Powers are used and infused into the Mask.
All 3 storylines wrap up satisfactorily. Unfortunately, as I noted earlier, Mariko doesn’t get any sword fighting time. I was hoping for another sword fight duel in Tokyo, much like in the first book. Oh well, maybe in the next book.
Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot.wordpress.com