Tuesday, December 22, 2015

BURNED by Karen Marie Moning

Karen Marie Moning

            Mac is back! Okay, so that may not be original, but it truly was one of my first reactions to Burned, the latest installment in Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series. I had a problem with the last installment, Iced – I like Dani, but I am not so much a Dani fan to want to read a Dani book. I am a Mac-and-JZB fan, and I was thrilled to be sitting down with another Mac book. It was so nice to be back in Mac’s world. When I finished Burned, I immediately restarted the book so that I could remain in her world a little while longer.

            Nonetheless, the book was disappointing. There did not seem to be much of a plot. The book included more of the same that we have experienced with Mac, and there did not seem to be much to move the story along. The book involves the continued pursuit of Christian, the question of Dani’s whereabouts, and Mac’s continued angst about Dani. We do learn some more about the players, but other than this character development, the book felt like a sort of picture of the status quo.

            I was surprised at the number of excerpts I had previously read that were included in Burned. Certainly, I expected to see the parts or chapters that Moning had released early as “teasers”; other parts, however, surprised me. For example, I had thought that the “sex scene” with Mac and Barrons was a sort of internet only “present” for fans; I was astonished to find it in Burned. Even though Moning did a decent job of working it into the plot, Burned felt pieced together or choppy – as if Moning were trying to take these previously written parts and smooth them together into a cohesive plot.

            One thing that I really liked about Burned was Moning’s increased mix of the Highlander and Fever series. I am a fan of both. However, what she did to one of my “favorites” felt unforgiveable – and, I might have quit on her had I not suspected the ending. Moning included a lengthy guide, at the end of the book, entitled “People, Places, and Things”. The guide is very impressive and nice to have.

            In general, Burned is not very well written. For example, there are references to people “that” (instead of people “who”….), there are typos, and there are questionable grammatical structures (such as “me and _____”). I understand that some of these writing faux pas might have been intentional on Moning’s part, for a certain character, but the prevalence of these writing gaffes led me to wonder about the editors.

            Burned is not going to win any awards for its literary prowess – so, if you are looking for a high quality literary fiction, this is not the book. Nonetheless, as a devoted fan, I devoured this book. Despite its shortcomings, I will read it again, and, along with the other devotees, I impatiently await Moning’s next release in her Fever series. I cannot wait for Mac to come back again!


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