Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Review - Kiss of Frost (Mythos Academy, Book 2) by Jennifer Estep (5/5 stars)

Reading level: Young Adult
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Size: 368 pages
Publisher: K-Teen
Release Date: December 1, 2011
ISBN: 978-0758266941
Stand Alone or Series: 2nd book in the Mythos Academy series
Source: Bought
Rating: 5/5 stars

This is the second book in the Mythos Academy series by Estep. The third book in the series, Dark Frost, is due out May of 2012 and the fourth book in the series, Crimson Frost, is due out in Jan 2013. I really enjoyed a lot of elements in this book: I loved the mythology based magic system, I love the world and the characters. This book was just such a fun read.

Gwen is recovering from all of the ordeals that happened in the first book and trying to come to term with being declared the Champion of the Goddess Nike. She is studying weapons training from the guy who broke her heart, Logan, and slogging through her job at the Library of Antiquities while trying to get through all of her other classwork. Problem is, someone is trying to kill Gwen. As Gwen's class takes off for their Winter Carnival festivities the plot deepens and Gwen's life is at even greater risk. Gwen has to figure out who is trying to kill her before they make good on their attempts.

I love a lot of things about this book. First of all I love how the whole Mythos academy and the magic is based on mythology; this makes the story a lot of fun and you keep wondering what interesting myth you will bump into next. I also love Estep's writing style; it is easy to read and just generally well done. I love her adult series as well, so this isn't a surprise.

Gwen is a wonderful female lead; she is tough but still easy to relate to...she has strengths and weaknesses and isn't a perfect heroine. The fact that she has such passive magic, psychometry, makes the story interesting because she has to use her magic in creative ways to make it useful. Watching her develop additional abilities that stem from her psychometry is a lot of fun and keeps things interesting.

Logan isn't my favorite male lead, especially in the beginning of the book, as the story continues though he kind of grew on me as a character. Gwen's circle of friends are highly amusing and add a lot of humor to the story; especially her Barbie-like hot-tempered Amazonian roomie. Many of the side characters are very well-developed and have interesting histories and stories of their own.

There are a lot of awesome action scenes. Although there is also some teen angsting going on; the story remains much more urban fantasy than paranormal romance. It was fun to have to majority of the story taking place at a ski lodge; this took the characters into a new and interesting setting and was great to read especially in the winter time frame.

I loved how the plot is branching out in this book, getting broader and exposing the characters to increasing amounts of danger and peril. We are finding that Gwen's position as the Champion of Nike is part of something much bigger, in fact something so big that it could mean the end of the world. I love how there is a main plot in this book (figuring who is out to kill Gwen) but that all of this is part of a much broader story. In fact some of the things in this book explain many things that happened in the first book; so far the series has been very well planned and thought out.

Overall I just loved this book. I loved the characters, the story, the world, the action, and the way the story is broadening out. Fans of urban fantasy should definitely give this book a read. It is kind of like Harry Potter, but based on mythology and aimed more at the teen set. I think urban fantasy fans young adult and older should give this a read. I can't wait to read Dark Frost when it releases in May of 2012.

This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
- Horror and Urban Fantasy Challenge
- 100+ Reading Challenge

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