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Review: Silver by Rhiannon Held

Review: Silver by Rhiannon Held
Silver by Rhiannon Held
Series: Silver #1
Published by Tor Books
Published on: June 5, 2012
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Werewolves
Pages: 318
Format: Paperback
Source: Won
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Andrew Dare is a werewolf. He’s the enforcer for the Roanoke pack, and responsible for capturing or killing any Were intruders in Roanoke’s territory. But the lone Were he’s tracking doesn’t smell or act like anyone he’s ever encountered. And when he catches her, it doesn’t get any better. She’s beautiful, she’s crazy, and someone has tortured her by injecting silver into her veins. She says her name is Silver, and that she’s lost her wild self and can’t shift any more.

The packs in North America have a live-and-let-live attitude, and try not to overlap with each other. But Silver represents a terrible threat to every Were on the continent.

Andrew and Silver will join forces to track down this menace while discovering their own power and their passion for each other.

Creepy snoozer

I’m always on the look-out for new spins on werewolves so I decided to give Rhiannon Held’s a try by reading her debut novel, SILVER. My feelings on this book are pretty much split right down the middle; I loved the heroine and her mad ravings, and the mythology drew me in, but the story lacked in intensity and the romance just didn’t jive. I enjoyed the author’s lyrical writing style, and there are definitely more than a few howl worthy quotes however, the ending failed to deliver on what the build-up promised, and as a result, I was left feeling somewhat meh about the whole reading experience.

I liked the simplicity of Held’s world-building; she conveys enough details to keep things interesting without falling victim to the “book 1 information dump syndrome”. I enjoyed learning about pack hierarchy, the lore surrounding Death, the Lady, Weres and humans, and the religious aspects of the story. The author’s take on the werewolves’ wild vs. tame selves felt like a page out of a Psychology textbook, and demonstrated a good grasp of the genre. Death’s character was also an unexpected surprise; originally I thought he was just going to be part of Silver’s delusion, but he actually takes on a life of his own and left me wondering about his true nature.

Piecing together what happened to Silver through a series of clues and delirious babbling was part of this book’s charm. Held’s way with words turned the girl’s crazed gibberish into poetic prophecies. I was easily mesmerized by the author’s imagery, and at times I felt like I was sitting down to tea with the Mad Hatter. Both of the main characters are incredibly strong in their own right, but they are also irrevocably damaged. Dare is Roanoke’s pack enforcer, the butcher of Barcelona, and one of the more dominant wolves in North America, but all he really wants is to belong. Silver is certifiably nuts and yet, only the most tenacious could have survived her ordeal.

The story started off strong, but was unfortunately unable to hold its momentum the whole way through. The plot felt like it was barreling towards one pivotal moment only to fizzle where it counted. Dare leaves his pack, flies half-way across the country to avenge a girl he barely knows, challenges another alpha for leadership so that he can set his brilliant plan into motion, and then… nothing. I couldn’t help but feel cheated by the ending. There wasn’t much of a segue to the next installment either, no hook to entice me into reading TARNISHED. I wish the secondary characters had been a little more fleshed-out as well. I loved Andrew and Silver, but the rest just blended into the background.

SILVER is a character driven novel, and Rhiannon Held is undoubtedly a talented writer, but the story failed to live-up to its synopsis by omitting two key Urban Fantasy elements: action and romance. I don’t think I’ll be continuing with this trilogy.

Silver Series

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Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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  1. Too bad, the synopsis sounded good in this one. One thing I can’t have in UF read is the snoozing factor.
    Thanks Carmel 🙂

    • Yeah, snoozer & UF don’t go well together at all.

  2. Probably not going to make my list but at least it started out well. I just can’t do UF without Action!

    • I’m thinking I should have let this one sit on my shelves for a little while longer. LOL

  3. Sorry this one fell a little flat for you, that is too bad, it sounds like it has great characters and a lot of potential.

    • It happens something unfortunately. They can’t ALL be 5-star reads!

  4. Always a bummer when they are “meh”. Thanks for keeping the reviews REAL!

  5. I think I enjoyed this one more than you did Carmel, but I agree on the romance. I’m always someone who wants more of it in her books, so the subtle nature of the relationship between Silver and Dare left me wishing there was a bit more between them on page. MORE ROMANCE PLEASE:):)

    • I’ll have to check-out your review to compare notes!

  6. The synopsis sounds great but I can’t do just a character driven book not on the first book.
    Great review!

    • That was one of my problems with this one as well…

  7. Aww bummer! It’s always such a disappointment when it ends on a flat note 🙁

  8. Thanks for your honest insights, Carmel. I agree, there are so many werewolf novels out there now that we need something new. It can be pretty disappointing if the ones out there don’t live up to the mark. D:

    Faye at The Social Potato Reviews

    • I read a lot of werewolf books, so I expect there to be similarities from one author to the next, but this one was just overall meh. Oh well.

  9. Oh, hmm. I actually have this book, it caught my eye a while back and I remember snagging the ebook when it was on sale. Being light on the romantic elements isn’t usually a deal breaker for me, so I’ll still give it a try. I just hope the “not much action” won’t put a damper on things, on the whole I like character driven novels!

    • Hopefully you’ll enjoy this one more than I did!

  10. Little romance and action would be two reasons to put the book down and not finish for me, although the world building sounds interesting. I don’t mind character driven books if that is what it’s supposed to be, in UF not so much.

    • When a book fails to deliver in both the action AND romance departments; it never bodes well.

  11. I love UF but I don’t have good luck with werewolf books. Except for Hemlock…

    • I’d be more than happy to recommend you a few, just not this one. LOL

  12. I liked the sound of the premise-too bad the action was lacking in it. Thanks for the honest review, Carmel. 🙂

    • It wasn’t all bad, but yes, more action please!

  13. Hopefully the next couple of books are more refined. I’d give her a pass as this is the series intro and her debut? It does sound like it has some great things going for it, just needed to streamline the threads

    • I might give book 2 a try someday, but it took me SO long to squeeze this one in, and then I was disappointed by it. I’m not rushing out to get Tarnished, that’s for sure.

  14. I remember seeing the cover for this one and I really like it. I’m not sure the story would be for me though.

    • It does have a nice cover. The full moon calls to the wolf lover in me.

  15. First books are always hard, if they don’t snag you, it is hard to continue. There are plenty of elements I am interested in, but overall if this wasn’t a WOW book for you, I think I will pass. I am growing tired of mediocre books.

    • There were more negatives than positives which makes it even harder to continue with this series.

  16. certifiably nuts huh…well I’m not always jonesing for new werewolves like you but I’d consider giving it a try even considering the romance might not jive so well. Since we all do have our own take on them. I’ll keep the peepers open for a sale on this one or maybe used book store.

    • I loved Silver’s craziness, it was one of my favourite aspects of this story. Unfortunately, it made the romance a little creepy. LOL

  17. A creepy snoozer – lol. I don’t know why that makes me laugh. Well, this book probably wasn’t for me to begin with, so … yeah. 😉

    • Well, when you put it that way it does sound kinda quirky. Hehe

  18. Aw sorry to hear that it started well but just didn’t end that way

  19. UF without action and romance?…mmm … I think I’ll pass on this one. Thank your for the honest review.

    • It’s definitely not your typical Urban Fantasy. I expect there to be minimal romance, but action as well? That just doesn’t work for me.

  20. I read the second one without reading the first. I admit I was a bit lost but I think that one was a bit better than this one. I’m only guessing since I haven’t read it, but it seems that you are not alone in your disappointment. Well, hopefully the next book you read is great! 😀

    • Now you have me curious about book 2. Damn you! LOL 😉

  21. Too bad this book didn’t work out for you, I hate when that happens. Ugh…but they can’t all be amazing, right? 😉 Have you ever read the Caged series by Amber Lynn Natusch? It’s definitely entertaining. It’s up to 5 books at the moment (the 5th book was my absolute favorite) and 6 is coming soon but overall it’s solid.

    Anyway, I hope your next read is AMAZING! Fantastic review Carmel! ♥

    • I started reading Natusch’s series, but she was putting ’em out faster than I could keep up so I got discouraged & stopped. Maybe I should pick it back up…

  22. Sorry this one fell flat for you Carmel, it sounds like it had a lot of potential its just a shame a few key elements were missing.

    A great, honest review.

  23. These are tough reads when aspects are good and others are meh. I have read one too many lately. Great review Carmel 🙂

  24. Oh, I do love the werewolf stories. (what is it about them??) But I’m not sure I could make it through a whole story that makes you think of the Mad Hatter!

    • I LOVE the Mad Hatter, but I wouldn’t want to date him. LOL

  25. Aww…sorry you found this one a bit “meh” Carmel! 🙁 I agree…there’s just so many werewolf books out there that sometimes it’s almost impossible not to compare one to another or to get bored by them. Thanks for the honest (and absolutely brilliant!) review though! <3

    • I don’t mind similar elements, but the story needs to be good too.

  26. Blurb sounded good, think I’ll pass on this one.

  27. I’m all for new and different ways to write about shifters and mythology, too, Carmel. But if the ending leaves you feeling meh, the lyrical style and the originality just can’t save it 🙁
    Great review, thanks for sharing.

    • And, unfortunately that was the case here. Oh well…

  28. Well Silver sounds awesome. I love mad characters. But if the ending left you feeling cheated, then this is a no go. I am tried of meh endings.

  29. Ah yes it’s difficult about this one. I love books about werewolves as well but I didn’t know this one. While some points sound good like the myths and the heroine, mainly the myths because it’s what intrigues me the most lol, it’s sad about the romance and the intensity of the story… Well if it’s not that good I think I’ll pass and try something else. Thanks for your review Carmel.

  30. I bet nothings more frustrating then a plot crashing and burning, just when it had a lot of potential.

    • I wouldn’t go so far as to say that it crashed & burned, but it wasn’t very good either.

  31. No thanks to a snoozer

  32. Ya know I’m tempted to read it because I really love character driven reads and the crazy rambling sounds fun. But the way it fizzled out is suck a disappointment. Maybe I’ll wait and see if anyone really likes book 2 – if it turns out to be a lot better, then I’ll go for it. Great review Carmel.

    • I might read book 2, but it won’t be moving to the top of my TBR pile anytime soon, so you might want to look elsewhere for reviews. 😉

  33. I quite enjoyed the first book and the second really got the action and relationship going, while keeping Silver’s crazy relevant, making it well worth the read. Unfortunately, I’m now stuck in the middle of the third book and the focus is largely on a secondary character from book 2 who is hitting all my TSTL buttons. I’m inclined to recommend reading the second book and then stop!

    • Thanks for sharing! It’s good to get an idea of what’s coming next in this series.

  34. I am sorry this one fell flat for you Carmel, it does sound good at first.

  35. I’m sorry this one didn’t live up to the expectations it set, Carmel. It’s always so disappointing when a story is driving towards something big and then it fizzles. Nice review though. 🙂

    • I haven’t had a 3 star read in a couple of weeks, so I was bound to get one sooner rather than later. Hehe

  36. It sucks when you feel cheated by a book that looks so promising! It’s a shame this wasn’t as good as you hoped. Lets hope things pick up in the rest of the series!

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

    • That’s just the way it goes sometimes. Life as a book blogger… LOL