The first in an all-new futuristic fantasy series from Keri Arthur—the New York Times bestselling author of the Souls of Fire novels.
When the bombs that stopped the species war tore holes in the veil between this world and the next, they allowed entry to the Others—demons, wraiths, and death spirits who turned the shadows into their hunting grounds. Now, a hundred years later, humans and shifters alike live in artificially lit cities designed to keep the darkness at bay....
As a déchet—a breed of humanoid super-soldiers almost eradicated by the war—Tiger has spent her life in hiding. But when she risks her life to save a little girl on the outskirts of Central City, she discovers that the child is one of many abducted in broad daylight by a wraith-like being—an impossibility with dangerous implications for everyone on earth.
Because if the light is no longer enough to protect them, nowhere is safe...
Keri Arthur has made a career of writing about half-breeds, and has hatched some rather interesting combinations over the years, but my favourite will forever be her werewolf/vampire hybrid, RILEY JENSON. In CITY OF LIGHT she tweaked her prized formula by changing up the shifter type, then proceeded to give her heroine all of the upgrades that come with being a genetically engineered super-soldier, and finally thrust Tiger into a Dystopian Science Fiction universe that beat everything that I’ve read in this genre to date.
For the most part, the author avoided of all of her usual patterns which has been my biggest critique of her past two series (DARK ANGELS and SOULS OF FIRE); the primary culprit being the romantic thread. The protagonist knows from the onset that both of the men in her life are bad news and acts accordingly instead of succumbing to hormones. Can I get a HELL YEAH!? Tig resists her attraction to one while using the other to her advantage which admittedly, led to a few too many sex scenes for a first installment, but it also put an end to any potential love triangle which was an acceptable trade-off.
The female lead was equipped with so many advantages that it almost seemed unfair to the rest of the characters; she can modify her appearance, blend with the night/day, is resistant to poison, can converse with ghosts, gleam peeps’ thoughts/emotions, and seduce anything with a pulse. However, Tiger is also a champion of children, her entire race was eradicated, she’s confronted with extreme prejudice on a daily basis, and has lived in complete isolation as a result for 103 years. She was just such a level-headed heroine, that when coupled with awesome fire power, made her an easy protagonist to get behind.
Most of the secondaries SUCKED, not because they were poorly developed, but by reason of their superiority complexes. The shifters won the war, and have re-written history so that it paints them in a favorable light when in reality everyone’s guilty of being a monster. Nuri threatened Tig’s loved ones in order to save others, and Jonas couldn’t come to terms with having a déchet as an ally even though she’s pulled his tail out of the fire twice. Still, they all have a chance to absolve themselves in future novels which is in part what makes OUTCAST so thought-provoking. Well, except Branna. He should die.
It may be a little premature to label CITY OF LIGHT a top pick of 2016, but it was DAMN GOOD!
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About Keri Arthur
Keri Arthur, New York Times bestselling author of the Souls of Fire, Dark Angels, and Riley Jenson Guardian series, has written more than thirty books. She’s been nominated in the Best Contemporary Paranormal category of the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Awards and has won a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for urban fantasy.