The fourth book in this fantasy series that began with The Storyteller, The Smile of the Cat allows readers to see exactly what occurred in Julietís life, and the horrors she must battle in order to find eventual peace.
A series that is located on the odd planet of Kansas, Juliet is a young girl who has already been through a great deal. Her mother, Soryl, has always seemed far more interested in her Ďmateísí needs than in her daughterís. And one of those mates was Aldan - a Harvester who was far more interested in Juliet than he ever was in her mother. In fact, it is Aldanís one happy thought that when Juliet was just a child, she sat on his lap and he brought forth a smile from her sad, little face. Although seemingly kind and parental, Aldan also jumped into bed with the young Juliet at one point in her life and earned a knee in the groin for his efforts.
It has been eight years, but Aldan has returned, and Juliet is now the mate of Spencer. She is the concubine of a man who is attached to a Banli woman. It is his human side that is attached to Juliet, and he is only able to be a part of her household for three days a year - the duration of the moonís smile. This is the time it takes to produce a slim Cheshire-cat like smile in the sky and for it to recede back to nothing.
Juliet is happy with this particular situation. She is also pregnant with another of Spencerís children. Derres, Spencerís Banli mate, is never jealous of Juliet, because she has his children as well, and Juliet does not exactly get much time with him. So simply put, they are friends.
Quickly into the story, Aldan forces himself upon Juliet and, in doing so, destroys the baby that grows inside of her. Juliet and Spencer must bury their lost son, while Aldan faces judgment. Juliet is a kind woman and wants Aldan to pay for what he has done but death is simply too easy, she wishes him to feel the grief and agony that flows through her. Aldan goes to face his punishment, while Juliet tries to get her life back in order. Not only must she deal with a mother who still doesnít seem to care about anything but herself, but Juliet also comes to the realization that she and Spencer will not last. Rushing into the woods, away from humanity, Juliet abandons her child, family and mate in order to find a way to solve her lifeís difficulties.
With separate storylines regarding Damon, a Head Custodian who arrives in Kansas with a doctor who has a great deal to talk about with Maryan the Storyteller; to Maryanís own look at finding a new life with someone while still pining desperately for her true Banli love, Vendan, who has left the real world but comes back to be with her and speak with her about having a romance in her future - the readers are brought into a world full of fantastical plotlines that will have their minds spinning.
My only advice? Start with Book I to make sure that you have the illustrious cast of characters all mapped out before you begin, and also keep in mind that the spelling of some of these charactersí names are a bit difficult, particularly because they are spelled various ways throughout the book.
Quill Says: A pleasant fantasy series once everything is understood.
On a single Page (10) the horrific character Aldan is spelled Aldan and Alden - and this issue continues.
Page 37 talks about Baby Ourrie that belongs to Spencer and Derres, and Page 42 talks about the same Baby Ourres, and this issue continues.
On Page 17 the character is Paul Spencer Zimmerman (the baby who died from the rape). Yet on Page 47 they bury Paul Mardan Zimmerman.
I have to admit, you can get very lost with the editorial issues in the book. She offers a glossary of characters in the back but she doesnít spell them right throughout the story. Having to put this up against other fantasy novels that are out there now - big publishers and self - she couldnít really get over a 2. Iím sorry. I tried to be as balanced and fair as humanly possible and still be honest.
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