Review: Night Myst by Yasmine Galenorn (Indigo Court Novels, #1)
Author: Yasmine Galenorn
Release Date: June 29, 2010
Other Title In Series: Night Veil (coming June 2011)
ISBN #: 978-0515148145
New Forest, Washington is home to humans, magic-born, shifters, vampires and fae. Each race fills a specific, well balanced role in the makeup of the town. Night Myst begins with the balance shifting dangerously by a new, dark entity, and a desperate call to the prodigal daughter to return home.
Cicely Waters is magic-born. Raised by a mother who ran from her own ability, Cicely had very little proper training, relying on street smarts and a strong survival instinct to hone her skills. She’s also been gifted with a Wind Elemental, Ulean, who is bonded to her. Together, they’ve stayed one step ahead of most threats, until now.
Cicely arrives home to find family members and friends missing, a dark fog suffocating the pure forest magics, and even the “top of the food chain” in town on edge. Aeons ago, an attempt by a member of the Crimson Court (vampire royalty) to enslave the dark fae backfired, creating a new, powerful enemy. Myst is the queen of the Indigo Court, the first turned, and the most deadly of the vampiric fae. She’s brought her army back to New Forest for revenge. A prophecy places Cicely in the precarious position of being both a catalyst and a weapon in the war between the Indigo Court, the Crimson Court, and the displaced Fae queen.
One of the things I loved about this book is the incredible world building. The histories, the characters, and the conflicts are all brought to life using the most fantastic imagery. Yasmine has a way of writing that makes it so easy to picture the scene in your head. I have to admit, as much as I enjoyed the attention to detail, it sometimes seemed a little overdone, but I think that’s a common problem for a “first in series” when trying to create the basis for an entire story.
The relationships in this story are incredible. There are clear cut, obvious relationships like Rhiannon and Leo, Cicely and Grieve (oh, Grieve *sigh*). But there are so many bonds running just under the surface of the story. Romantic and familial ties are both created and uncovered during the course of the story. I love how the characters interact, and the push and pull of what they feel versus what they’re “supposed” to feel. The main relationship, Cicely and Grieve, is filled with real emotion, and real conflict. Forced onto opposing sides, they share a history that makes them fight everything to be together. The power of what they feel for each other is evident in both the smallest touch, and their complete surrender to passion.
There is also an amazing amount of growth for each of the characters, again, a sign of an effective “first in series” book. They learn to test the strengths and limits of their powers, their allegiances, and their consciences. All making choices and dealing with the consequences. Cicely learns things about herself that make her stronger, but at the same time, make her question her foundations. The “bad guys” are ugly, and beautiful, and utterly terrifying. They’re also not always who you think they are.
I love that the secondary characters become increasingly more important throughout the story. They don’t stay on the sidelines, they emerse themselves in the fight and earn places among the hero and heroine. They all have their own endearing qualities and quirks that add both substance and entertainment to the story. (Although Kaylin seems to be overly concerned with his age, considering he mentions it what seems like once in every conversation. We get it, yummy Kaylin, you’re older than you seem, but not as old as others of your race, *noted*.)
The end of this book is most definitely a launching point for a dynamic shift in the power struggle. And the established relationships are on equally, unsteady footing. There is so much information, and so many things left open for the next installment. I can easily see 4 or 5 different storylines that will be carried through the series. I really can’t wait to find out how things unfold. I’m certain of two things, though. First, it WON’T happen the way I think it will, and second, I’ll love it anyway!
Yasmine has been incredibly gracious with her time for us. Not only has she answered the author questions, but she’s agreed to award a $10 Amazon.com gift certificate as a prize in our FIRST EVER CONTEST!!! Check after the Q&A below for how to enter!
1) When you write, do you prefer quiet, or do you listen to music? If you like music playing, what is your preferred genre? Do certain characters have their own personal “soundtrack”?
About thirty percent of the time in silence, the rest of the time with music. Genre—varies but generally alternative. And each book has its own playlist—you can find them on my site under each book’s description and recently, I’ve started including them in the backs of the books.
2) Where do you write? In an office, at the dining room table, at a local coffeeshop? Do you prefer to write alone or with a group? If you write with a group, do you also read/critique each other’s work?
My office, primarily. Now and then I’ll work in the living room with my laptop or on the bed with my netbook, but I am most comfortable working in my office. And I’ve never been one comfortable writing around other people, I’ve always preferred solitude for my work.
3) How do you prepare for release day? Are you calm and focused, or do you get stressed? Do you like to make promotional appearances or stay at home to watch lists and numbers?
More like release month. I spend a month gearing up for a release and each one gets more nerve-wracking than the last. I do a lot of online promotion—a lot of guest blogs and interviews. Not too many in-person appearances (they really expend time and energy and usually aren’t a big draw), and I’m usually also working on another book at that time so I’m frazzled by the time release day hits and want nothing more than to hibernate.
4) What was your favorite Halloween costume (or other costume party costume)?
I don’t really have a favorite that I’ve worn…they’ve all pretty much been makeshift and not what I really wanted. But I love dressing up to go out with full makeup, etc. And I prefer low cut tops—not comfortable with anything around my neck, and everything goes better with cleavage. ~wicked grin~
5) If you could go anywhere on vacation (and not interfere with your deadlines), where would you go, and what 3 items (besides food and clothes) would you bring with you?
Hawai’i—Big Island, eastern side near Hilo. I’d take with me, besides food/clothing: camera, netbook, and my husband. *grins*
6) What song best describes your life? If you can’t think of one, who would you want to write/perform a song just for you?
That depends…I have more of a personal soundtrack that fits my persona, and the main artists on it: Gary Numan, Beck, Air, Ladytron, Nirvana, Bowie, Beck, Gorillaz.
7) If you could spend a day with one of your characters, who would be it and what would you do all day?
Okay, Trillian, I think. I love his style, his blunt nature, his sexuality. He’s smart, he’s fascinating, he’s daring and passionate and likes fine dining and luxury, like I do. And he’s just downright gorgeous.
8) What world record would you love to set for the Guinness Book of World Records? (Remember, they take ALL KINDS of interesting talents into account. Some world records include *fastest 100m sprint, barefoot, on ice = 17.35 secs… *fastest pumpkin carving of a face = 24.03 secs… *longest distance pogo stick jumping = 23.11 miles)
Um…author to sell the highest number of books? LOL…other than that, if it could be anything? Person to advance from an out-of-shape state to a black belt in Kung Fu in the fastest amount of time. *koffs*
9) If you could have one word removed from the English language, from all dictionaries and out of everyone’s vocabulary, what would it be, and why?
I wouldn’t. Because censoring language and thought is anathema to my profession. When horrid thoughts cross into action, then we need to take down people who are hurting others—child molesters, rapists, murderers…but the thought of censoring word and thought makes me queasy. Now, when copyright is infringed upon, then I have no problem forcing the person to remove the offending work.
10) What is one thing about you that your friends know and you would love your readers to know as well. Or… if you’re in a giving mood… what is one story that your friends LOVE to talk you into telling that you don’t generally volunteer?
I think my readers know entirely too much about me, as it is, but let’s see. My love of makeup goes back to when I was a very young girl. When I was three (the same year I decided I wanted to ‘make books’) I wanted to smell all pretty like my mother. So I drank some of her perfume. Thank gods it tasted so bad I stopped after a few drops, and managed to spill a bunch on me, but I guess that’s how I thought perfume worked. I also painted one thumbnail with nail polish before she found me, along with most of my hand. So I’ve always been a gurly gurl, and have been a makeup junkie since before I was allowed to wear it. ~grins~
Big THANK YOU to Yasmine for taking time out of her hectic schedule to answer some questions. *hugs*
And now, CONTEST TIME!!
All you have to do to enter is comment below with which one of Yasmine’s characters you’d like to spend a day with, and what you’d do. You can choose someone from the Sister’s of the Moon series, like Yasmine did, or someone from her new Indigo Court series. If you haven’t read any of her books yet, you can simply enter with your name and email address as long as you remember to go put the books high up on your TBR list *grins*.
So, to enter, your comment must include:
1)Your name (first name and last initial).
2)Your email so I can let you know if you won (you’ll have 48 hours to respond).
3)Your choice of which one of Yasmine’s characters you’d like to spend the day with, and what you’d do. *OR* A promise to add her books to your TBR list 🙂 (Trust me, you’ll be happy you did!)
Winner will be chosen at random, notified, and their information will be passed along to Yasmine and her assistant to be awarded their prize. Prize is a $10 Amazan.com gift certificate. Contest ends at midnight, eastern, on July 23rd. Good luck, everyone!