Love Love Love Max! And the Action is incredible!

Crimson Wind - Diana Pharaoh Francis

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.


My Initial Reaction...

Bitter Night was so refreshingly different and yet I was still shocked by how unique a plot Francis managed to weave inCrimson Wind. I was forced to put this book down by restraints like sleep, eating, and work - but I really didn't want to! Needless to say a must-read!


The Characters...

I continue to love Max. She's such a complex character, full of anger and so tough - yet somehow vulnerable and loving. In Crimson Wind she has a lot to deal with and somehow she's still trying to save everyone! And I mean everyone - every complete stranger, totally clueless about what's happening that she comes across is lucky to have met Max, because she just can't leave them to die. She has a huge heart despite being a hard-ass, and it just makes her so lovable.

I, unlike most the people around him, have no doubts about Alexander. He's such a great character - clearly very loyal to those he cares about and tough as hell. He's also so stubborn - perhaps too much, I know I wanted to shake him a couple times! But I guess you don't get to being a Shadowblade prime without being stubborn and least that relates to a stubborn determination to stand by Max, no matter what. I loved seeing their relationship develop in Crimson Wind - they're on a road trip for most of it, so there's a lot of development - but since disaster keeps striking at it seems to do around Max, it doesn't progress as far as I (and they) would have liked. Next book hopefully!

There's not a lot of interaction with the characters we met inBitter Night, but we meet a lot of new characters and it seems we're going to see a good deal of them in future books. I'm really excited for what all these new people will mean as the story progresses.


The Story...

Crimson Wind picks up just a little after the end of Bitter Night, with the Coven trying to recover from the attacks that left them barely standing.  Not to mention that tensions are high and the new additions are receiving mixed reviews from the coven, except Alexander. His reviews are unanimous distrust, since he alone hasn't been added to the coven and he alone could challenge the beloved Max for Prime. And Max has her debt to Scooter looming in her dreams, quite literally and painfully. Facing what he wants from her starts the countdown clock as Max races to save the lives of those she loves and a few others she's never met as the Guardians amp up their attacks.

Overall a really great, exciting, and unexpected plot. It's heavy on the fantasy and action elements, and perhaps seems even more so because so much of the fantasy elements are ones I've never read before. Although definitely not a romantic or erotic book, the relationship between Max and Alexander continues to develop and delight with sexual tension ready to burst at the seams.


Concluding Sentiments...

Even better than Bitter Night, which isn't an easy feat. Crimson Wind leaves you hanging at the end and desperate for the next. (I finished at 2am and immediately started the next one even though I was way past my bed time). I'd recommend having the next book handy before you reach the end of this one.