Came complacent and found themselves desiring something new something different From this desire was born humans and animals The humans and animals were beautiful and varied and the original creatures found them remarkable in their way They did not mind that they ate the earth s plants and chopped down the trees for wood for they had worked for many years to create a vibrant and thriving world The humans were few and they believed the world could withstand many of their kind The creatures did not foresee the speed with which the humans would spread or how much they would take from the earth In despair they watched their world slowly recede The originals homes eroded as the humans took ust a little bit and then a little bit Some chose not to fight at all and they simply disappeared moving far from any human settlement Occasionally one might hear whispers about these original creatures rumors that they live still moving deeper and deeper into the wilds each year though centuries have passed since any have been seen Those that remained oined with the humans hoping to share some of their magic and tie the people to the land they were slowly destroying I looked back at Simon His head was tilted back and his eyes closed but he was still awake When he made no move to begin telling his story I continued After years of silent observation the originals found it surprisingly easy to assume human shape and move among them As now beautiful women had power and it was not difficult to lead the human men to their beds The men s seed uickened in their wombs and as the children grew the women whispered to their bellies speaking all the secrets of land and water By remaining in human form and carrying human children they found humanity imprinted on their bodies They were unable to return to their original forms and were forever stuck between their world and the human world Though they mourned their loss they found comfort in their children who possessed a magic nearly as pure as that of their mothers In this way the first elementals were born many thousands of years ago So far that matches the stories I have heard though perhaps mystical than is altogether necessary said Simon I would hear ust a bit hide spoiler I received this book for free as part of a goodreads giveaway I will be giving an honest reviewYikes WellThe book started off strongly And it had a lot of potential I grew to love the characters and their dynamics and I m a sucker for the Ragtag Bunch of Misfits trope The characters were also looking reasonably diverse Or at least diverse than I m used to seeing Vivian is mentioned early on to have dark skin and to have had a girlfriend but those facts aren t ever brought up again Sera is ambiguously brown though in my mind she s Latina Everyone else is white but that doesn t stop me from racebending them I ll admit the world building and info dumps were hard to sit through I m still not 100% sure exactly how the culture of elementals works or whether they re supposedly immortal if at all I spent most of the book trying to figure out how everything worked World building clearly isn t strength of the bookWhere the good stuff lies is with the characters Goodness I wish that this had been contemporary As I said the characters are wonderful and they re interactions are so fun to read The parts in which they weren t worrying about solving the case or working on their magic but instead Cinque indagini romane per Rocco Schiavone (Il vicequestore Rocco Schiavone Vol. 6) just talking like regular young adults Simon was hilarious and I hate how his character was pretty much shoved into the background after the first couple of chapters Vivian too I felt didn t get the attention that she deserved Her character felt very flat and wasn t much than the technology one Then there s Mac Now I loved Mac when he was introduced He was fascinating and I liked how he didn t disregard Aidan at all but genuinely took on her advice When Aidan indirectly told him that she was scared of him he didn t get all defensive or act like a douche about it He tried to calm himself down and apologise though his anger was perfectlyustified And then the romance happenedOkay okay so it wasn t a full on romance There was certainly some insta love involved though This is why I strongly dislike first person books as when romance comes up it s far prevalent and vivid than in a third person book Seriously the team was about the drive off to solve a case and Aidan was literally wondering about Mac s abs and I kid you not running her fingers over them The worst part is that I wouldn t mind so much if 1 they were actually together 2 it wasn t Professor Astro Cat's Human Body Odyssey just before they were going to solve the case Itust felt way too inappropriate and random There is a huge difference between a slow burn romance and stretching out romance that consists of nothing but exchanging one liners and describing the colours of ones eyes And that s how Aidan and Mac s relationship development felt Aidan seemed to be smitten with Mac at the most inappropriate times which made it extremely difficult to support their relationshipEg when Aidan witnessed Mac turning into a bear for the first time It makes sense in context What could she do Try to calm him down Step away Go and get help See if he s okay What does she do She Squash Basics - How To Play Squash juststands there It took her about two chunky paragraphs for her toust describe how his eyes remained the same despite the fact that his body was changing blah blah all of this stuff about duality and repression Really there are far important things to talk about in this situation rather then whether your crush s eyes look like honey copper umber etcAnd that s not all that brought this book down for me Oh no As I said it was doing well for the most part About 34 of the way through Yet as soon as the reveal happened the uality of this book rapidly declinedBooks involving creepy possessive guys are one thing It depends on how the book itself treats it Is it romanticized Or does the book clearly show that it s wrong and does the character get called out on itSadly while the book makes it very clear that view spoilerBrian s hide spoiler I have been suffering a bit from series hangover I have finished the completed novels of 2 series I really REALLY loved Mercy Thompson and Kate Daniels and have really struggled to find another And then I found this little gem I often find myself lukewarm about the first book in a new to me series After all the author has to introduce us to new characters and set up new situations and create the world within which we are going to immerse ourselves This is no easy task Ms Marshall however manages this ably She umps us almost immediately into the action and unfolds the world and characters slowly throughout the novel Therefore I never really felt like any particular section is an info dump but rather everything actually made sense in the progression of the narrativeOur heroine Aidan suffered a personal crisis 10 years before the start of our story Since that time she has locked herself away from the world preferring to live isolated away from other people not even allowing contact with those who loved her As the story begins her former best friend appears on her doorstep to tell them the deaths have started again one of their dearest friends has been found murdered This then is they mystery set to solved in the remainder of the tale We discover exactly what happened 10 years previously when Aidan tells the rest of the gang so that they can understand exactly what they are facingI love the relationship between Aidan and Sera The repartee between these two is priceless and freuently brought to mind my sister and my best friend Which means that even if the conversations were not precious in their own right the memories they inspired were And I think that
is one of the biggest gifts in this storyThere is a love interest And there are werekin But nary a one of the biggest gifts in this storyThere is a love interest And there are werekin But nary a to be seen and no love triangle at least yet The heroines magic is in being able to control an element While not a totally original concept it is the first I have seen it in this setting so that alone makes the book stand out It is written in the first person which I tend to enjoy for the simple reason that it puts me in the narrators head I like playing head games With characters in novels Not with people in my lifeI hate giving glowing reviews of self pubbed books as they tend to be unhelpful to the reader because so many appear to be friendsfamily of the author So please understand I do not know in any way shape or form the author I absolutely loved this book I d probably rate it 45 stars but as that is not an option I rounded down I may adjust this as the
Book Picks Up Reviews Broken Elements Has picks up reviews Broken Elements has promising start then it loses its way in the middle before coming back for a strong ending The beginning and the end are Die Hardbut the middle is 100% Hudson Hawk There are some good moments in this book but they were too few and far between and I found myself struggling to finish It might have even been a 2 Star book if it wasn t for the last 20% which was pretty goodMany thanks to Match Books and Netgalley for providing me with this ARC. Ler grows increasingly fixated on Aidan her past and present begin to collide To defeat the killer she must learn to control her power before her broken magic fails her for the final timeBROKEN ELEMENTS is the first book in the award winning Elements urban fantasy serie. ,
Giddy and excited about a book but I truly can t help myself I thoroughly enjoyed this so damn much and y know there IS one thing I didn t likethe fact that the second book isn t out yet I wonder if Ms Marshall would consider a bribe of Tim Tams to publish the next one RIGHT NOW grin The brilliant last uarter of this book with three major twists by my count or a triple twist with a bunch of secondary twists raises my rating from a very weak three stars to a weak four Before that happens although the story begins uite nicely with an unwanted reunion bad news and a plunge into radically different species it proceeds to writhe its way through the emotional issues of the first person narrator Aidan Brook who doesn t seem terribly mature despite her age of 65Aidan is an elemental you see destined to live for centuries so even though she lived on an island in Puget Sound or Georgia Strait among her own kind for the first forty years when she shucked that life and chose Lake Tahoe it seems she was barely ready for college and psychologically somewhere in unior high That s Of Magic and Mating New Canton Republic just my interpretation of the backstory that s brought out in sporadic references as she takes us through her adventure which or less resembles what s said in the publisher s back cover blurbThere are repeated references and flashbacks to that horrible night ten years before the events that drove her into self imposed exile deep in the Oregonian forest An elemental killer is once again murdering her friends the blurb correctly states Just don t expect everything to be as it seems on the back cover Most of the present mystery and the past events lie deep in spoiler territory and much of the world that the author has built and this is the meat of the story is revealed piecemeal throughout the novelHere s what we know near enough to the beginning to avoid spoiler tags Elementals are enough like humans to interbreed but they live for centuries or longer they inherit their powers over one of the four elements earth water ice and fire not air and they prefer to breed within their own kind and may live side by side with their many times great grandchildren Aidan is a strong water elemental like her mother but views herself as broken blaming her unknown father for making her partly human so that her powers desert her at critical times To solve the mystery and stop the killer she mustoin old and new friends back at Lake Tahoe but must also uncover the truth about her own pastHer elemental friends there are Sera strong fire Vivian low level earth and Brian weak ice two new friends are Simon a cat shifter and Mac a bear shifter see the front cover and find Simon and Mac The six occupy a cabin owned by Sera s father strong fire as they try to prevent murders Aidan learns that shifters have a natural history similar to that of elementals and a prehistoric origin in common with them The heavy information load is fairly deftly distributed through story telling and conversations including arguments among the six friendsThere are also two barely believable FBI agents remember Tahoe is an interstate lake shared by California and Nevada naturally baffled by murders that could only be done by elementals frozen hearts lungs full of earth no further evidence The agents have very interesting interactions with Aidan and SeraNo spoilers but to keep you from putting down the book before you get past all the parts that should have been edited out I need to tell you that much of Aidan s inner torment and mystification and many of her seemingly irrational actions make sense at the end For me those major twists were worth the slog through the rest of it A cracking mystery with great characters and a fascinating world of elemental magic users I really enjoyed this The mystery element was so very strong and compelling You could get away with calling it Urban Fantasy but perhaps Paranormal Mystery would also work as it was so centred around that aspect It had a great cast of characters awesome magical abilities and some surprises you ust won t see comingThe story is presented in the 1st person through Aidan Brook f a water Elemental someone who can control water call it from the air or from a direct source and basically make it do anything she wants who has been in exile for the last decade after a tragedy forced her to leave behind everything she once knew including her best friend a fire Elemental called Sera I was pretty much hooked from chapter one After a brief introduction to Aidan and her current situation a blast from the past in the form of her one time BFF sends her whole world off kilter and the mystery that drives the book is revealedI thought the writing
Was Excellent Intelligent Witty Thoughtexcellent intelligent witty thought It immediately showed the interesting but highly awkward friendship dynamic that is left after Aidan s 10 year absence Even starting out cold not knowing these character at all yet I felt the tension and lost years stretching between the two Watching the former best friends walk that shaky line between wanting to fall back into their old familiar habits and camaraderie but holding back through fear of being hurt again It was great stuffI found the character voices were very clear and distinct It ended up being a really diverse bunch of people and supernatural races once the motley crime solving crew was fully assembled and I enjoyed each character in turn The secondary ones were ust as well drawn as the main two and I particularly grew fond of Simon The reason for their gathering is that they led by Sera have all decided to Bloodleaf join forces to end this mystery Elemental s killing spree once and for all The killer is not being careful about revealing them to the human population and that puts them all at risk It was bad enough when it was happening 10 years ago and Aidan s been having nightmares about it ever since She can barely believe it s happening again But when Sera reveals that another of her close friends second only to Sera has been murdered Aidan has no choice but to return to the scene of the killer s and her crimesI thoroughly enjoyed learning about the magical abilities of the Elementals and Shapeshifters complete with their full and fascinating origin stories There were several expertly dispersed sections of backstory and species history I could see the sections coming but rather than feeling like I needed to prepare myself for a dispassionate info dump it was done deftly through conversation sometimes in a story telling format or other timesust through the narrative and felt perfectly natural Also cleverly interspersed were the clues suspicions and conjecture regarding the elemental killer s identity and motivations "I did manage to correctly guess one of the big surprises " did manage to correctly guess one of the big surprises was TOTALLY side swiped by another Which was awesomeIf I could wish for anything it would have been for indications of the budding romantic feelings between Mac and Aidan I don t mind a slow forming romance at all but while I m waiting I love watching all the little clues gestures and lingering looks etc So there could have been a whole boatload of that for me Also a bit emotional connection to Aidan which may come naturally over the series as I get to know her To sum up if you love a good mystery and powerful magical abilities and can appreciate well crafted characters get this bookHighly recommended to fans of Amanda Stevens Graveyard ueen series UF for grown ups4 Stars Review Copy Received from the author for an honest review Broken Elements had a lot of biases to overcome with me I ve always maintained that I don t like first person PoV I don t like urban fantasy I pre DNF 25%Show don t tell The dialogue is awkward and way too wordy Speaking of wordy the info dumps are no oke and it comes up around 7% through the book Example of one of the worst info dumping nightmare I have ever come across in a long time gonna put this under a spoiler because it s way too long view spoilerI turned off the music and began to tell the story I could almost hear my great grandmother speaking through my voice Magic existed at the dawn of time and it manifested as life This life formed alongside the lands as they shifted and the waters as they rose and fell The first creatures were a part of the land and the water and they came to know the earth s ways to understand them to the very root of their being They learned how to make the tides ebb and flow to cause the desert sands to billow across the dry earth to make lava spew from mountains and reshape the land I paused checking to see if my audience was still with me No one interrupted so I continued The land and water sustained life for the first creatures by offering a continual source of magic the same magic that first created this world and everything in it The creatures in turn cared for the land and water They helped the trees grow lush and tall and let the waters flow from mountain to stream to ocean They brought rain to parched fields and burned forests whose time had passed letting new life blossom in their place In this way our world grew rich The earth and water so healthy and satisfied be. Ck to the scene of her crimes In Lake Tahoe she only finds trouble An estranged best friend a dangerously attractive landlord and a couple of FBI agents are determined to complicate her lifeand for the first time in years she doesn’t mind a few complicationsAs the kil. Source I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read to review basis Thanks to author Mia Marshall and NetgalleyAidan is 65 but she looks like she s in her twenties A semi powerful Water Elemental Aidan has the ability to control water but she s not as powerful as her full blooded Water Elemental mom10 years ago Aidan and her best friend Sera investigated a series of murders in which people were killed by an Ice Elemental who froze their hearts It didn t end well and Aidan has been feeling guilty about the conseuences of her actions ever since and has been hiding out alone in a house where nobody knows where she isNow Sera has found her and has disturbing news her human boyfriend Chris has been killed by having his heart frozenWorrying that maybe their murderer of ten years ago survived and has struck again Aidan and Sera try to find out what is going on and to stop further murders Can Aiden and Sera stop the murderer for good this time Why does Aidan find it so difficult to control her element And what does her father s identity have to do with any of itThis was a bit of an odd one for me It had a clearly paranormal element to the story but the majority of the storyline was concerned with the crime mysteryAidan female this confused me was a uite hard dark character She was still feeling guilty about the events in her past and had basically hidden herself away for the best part of a decade I m sure psychologists would have had a field day working through her issues Aidan had a really hard spiky shell metaphorically speaking and desperately tried to keep people at arms length It was uite difficult to really know her but not difficult to understand why she was like thisAidan s interaction with her friends was similarly distant and at times her observation skills were likewise hinderedThe storyline was mainly focused on the murders with the paranormal element woven in For this reason I d say that this series is probably best suited to those who like crime novels and reminded me of Rachel Caine s Red Letter Days seriesI liked the world building with regards to the paranormal aspects of this book and thought that the two genres were mixed well I also liked how clueless Aidan was with regards to the shifter community showing how the paranormals kept things so uiet that different camps were not necessarily aware of each otherThere were a couple of moments in this book where I thought what though firstly when Sera described someone trying to burn them alive as a bit discomforting ust a bit and then later when Aidan happily goes off for a moonlit stroll totally alone with the man who she has Mismatch just discovered is the murderer Stupid muchThe ending did shed some light on certain aspects of the storyline and explained a bit about the murderers true motives though which did help to explain things a lotOverall an interesting paranormalcrime novel7 out of 10 This is pretty darn good I hope the next book isust as good or better full review to comeupdate Also posted over at Lekeisha The BooknerdWasn t sure what I was expecting from this book My first time coming across it a couple weeks ago I immediately started reading after I downloaded it There are little things that irked me but not enough to turn me off completely from the story The writing world building and characters are all very well set upIn the beginning with Aidan being tracked down after ten years in hiding I was kind of hesitant to keep reading Only because I was afraid that I wouldn t get enough backstory on the whys and hows of her sudden drop from society I didn t have to worry for long because along the way there are Aidan s recollections of what happened all those years ago and why she is wallowing in self hatred and doubt I really wanted to get to know her as a character and she opened up and as the story unfolded I m glad to say that she is really a fun character once she drops that wall she s built around herselfAidan is an Elemental Water to be exact There were lots of killings of people who were associated with Elementals years ago and Aidan along with her friend Sera Fire set up a trap for the persons responsible It all turned horribly wrong in the end and Aidan cut off all communication with everyone and turned tail Now ten years later the killings are happening again Only now the victims all have a connection to either dating Aidan or Sera at one point in their lives The other connection is that the victims are all Shapeshifters They are being killed by a powerful Elemental Earth and being left in various locations near Lake Tahoe With the help of some local Shapeshifters and Elementals Aidan and Sera try to once again find the killer The problem The FBI is keeping a close watch on Aidan and Sera now that these killings seem like no coincidence How can Aidan and Sera do there Going All the Way Planning for a Marriage That Goes the Distance job if the humans have eyes on them Thisust got harder than Aidan thoughtSecondary characters seem to hold as much of the story
As The Main Characters Simonthe main characters Simon one that I really liked His wicked sense of humor and what he shifts into made me smile a lot while reading I won t spoil it but you will laugh when you read it Who would have thought he could be of any use to them He held his own perfectly I especially love Mac Think of a mactruck and you can ust about imagine his shifting abilities I love the romance building between him and Aidan I knew from the moment that they met that they would be drawn to each other She handles like no otherThe drawn to other She handles him like no otherThe between Sera and Aidan is very well drawn out At first introduction you don t know what will happen because there is obvious tension between them And after you get to the point of why that tension is there you understand both girls pain It was nice to see them getting back to their old selves and that bond that they share is hard to come by I love the backstory of both the Elementals and Shapeshifters Aidan is kind of a spitfire when we first meet her which put me off a little You d have thought that she was the Fire and not Water But after Sera and Aidan both start to loosen up their personalities mesh good with their magicIf you want a good urban fantasy to read I definitely recommend this book If you like Elementals Shapeshifters and magic in your reading give this book a chance I ust got book two and can t wait to read it Definitely recommended Yep that s right I m going for the full 5 stars for this one There was not one single thing in this book that I didn t like or had me rolling my eyes or calling Bull shit Mr Han man special cookies if you get the reference thereI loved the characters Aidan the lead heroine had spunk snark and was broken at the same time Her best friend Seraoh how I wish I was Sera I like to think I AM Sera but that s Two Badges The Lives of Mona Ruiz just me MarySue ing myself I think grin Sera is a Fire Elemental and that sums her up Fiery sarcastic get up and go ready toust DO IT She takes no guff from anyone and I ust adored her You know that feeling you get in your gut the butterfly one the excitement when you suddenly realize that by crikey you are REALLY going to love this book Where it hits you about page 5 or so I get that oh so rarely I had it with Ben Aaronovitch s Rivers of London series and have it with pretty much all of Stacia Kane s Downside Ghosts books I got it with Mia Marshall s Broken Elements Big time See I knew absolutely nothing about this book or the author In fact I m not even sure why I chose it the blurb really didn t tell me much But I took a chance for some odd reason and oh am I glad I did When you read as many books as I do and as fast as I do you end up with some stinkers And when you get a few stinkers in a row it s enough to make you cry I live for reading My nose is constantly in a book and I m always on the lookout for the next Book I Shall Cherish and Love It s rare So many books I ll sort of like I ll think that meh it was ok I ll try another one of the author s cos it was kinda good although I wouldn t say I love it so many books are ust so so And then comes along a gem like Broken Elements There s not a damn thing I would change about this book I wouldn t change the ending I wouldn t change any of the characters I wouldn t change the mystery at the heart of it How bloody rare is that How often do you stumble across a book that you enjoyed every single word of it Not once did the pace flag not once did I feel it dragging not once did I think why the heck would the character do THAT not once did I want to put it down and wander awayThe writing is snappy and bloody good The characters ALL of them are well fleshed out and real The world building is brilliant Aidan tells us the story of the origin of the Elementals but not in an info dump way And yes I was giggling when Simon added the origin of the Shapeshifters to it which Aidan was unaware of D Simon is my new Book Crush btwI hate to say this cos I know how overused the phrase is and I know it smacks of uberhype but seriously I did NOT want to put this book down There were a couple of days where I was a bit bleary eyed at work cos I was sitting up reading I don t often get so. Magic murder and mayhem on the shores of Lake Tahoe For Aidan Brook manipulating the power of water is as easy as breathing until the awful night her magic fails with deadly conseuencesThough Aidan tries to outrun her past the grisly murder of an old friend draws her ba.