Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Review: Double Cross by Carolyn Crane

Title: Double Cross
Author: Carolyn Crane
Genre: Urban Fantasy  
Series: Disillusionists Trilogy #2
*Sent to me by the author to read*

This review may contain some spoilers if you haven't read Mind Games
Justine Jones has lived her life as a fearful hypochondriac until she's lured into the web of a mysterious mastermind named Packard. He gifts her with extraordinary mental powers-dooming her to fight Midcity's shadowy war on paranormal crime in order to find the peace she so desperately craves. But now, serial killers with unheard-of skills are terrorizing the most powerful beings in Midcity, including mastermind Packard - and his oldest friend and worst enemy, Midcity's new mayor, who has the ability to bend matter itself to his will.  As the body count grows, Justine faces a crisis of conscience as she tests the limits of her new powers and faces an impossible choice between two flawed but brilliant men . . . one on a journey of redemption, and the other descending into a pit of moral depravity. (From goodreads)

Disclaimer: I had a nice, long introspective review written and trashed it for this very long train of thought.

If I could describe this book in one word it would be wow! Carolyn Crane has written an amazing story that will have you laughing, crying and shaking your head in disbelief. 

Most head shaking moments of disbelief came from Justine.  I also might've yelled at her a time or two for being a  complete moron, idiot, ditz, indecisive heroine who doesn't know which guy should have her heart:  the mysterious, slightly jerkish, but totally swoon-worthy Packard, or Otto, the nice, respectable guy who she can tell her deepest fears to him and have him understand what she's going through.

On the surface, it seems like such an easy choice for her to make. It would seem obvious that Otto is the perfect choice for her. I mean what girl wouldn't love a hero like that? He is a hero not only to her, but to the entire city. However, Justine has her doubts about Mr. Wonderful. She can't stop thinking about Packard and how much he's helped her get over her fear. She also can't get passed the fact that he lied to her and stole her trust to make her apart of the disillusionists. Justine wants so badly to trust him again, but just can't get over all the lying he did to her. She goes through a gut wrenching, heartbreaking, soulful  journey to discover which guy is worthy of her love. 

I have to say that her journey had me wanting to hurt the girl a lot. I found myself shouting at her so much that I had to put the book down and remind myself that if I were in the same situation I'd probably be making the same choices she did.  Justine was not alone in making me shout. Packard and Otto both had their fair share of shouting and cursing done at them. Then darn if the two of them didn't make me sigh right after the cursing. There might've even been a little book tossing involved.

I've made this sound like a love story, but it's not. The struggle Justine has for Otto and Packard encompasses a much bigger story: who is killing highcaps like Packard and Otto in MidCity. All of our favorite characters return, and like Justine each of them are going through their own journeys. I could feel the turmoil each of them was going through as they struggled with these issues: personal freedom vs. loyalty, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil, and can everything be defined in black and white terms or are there shades of gray?

This is a story of redemption, love, friendship, justice and so much more. This is such an amazing story-I just want everyone to fall in love with the characters and story as much as I did.

Favorite quote: 
..."And I touched you." He runs a finger along side of the cart. "Your skin was electric. I half thought there should be sparks." He lowers his voice. "I know you felt it. You looked so beautiful. And then you came closer." He starts to roll the cart sideways, I clamp down hard on my side, stopping it, shocked that he would talk to so dirty to me in an office superstore. Then I realized he hadn't said anything dirty at all. 

This book made me feel so many different emotions-that I had to add a new meter: The Curse Meter. I can't name it yet, but if you've read the book you know who it's named after. :) I want to thank Carolyn for graciously sending me a copy of this book after I nervously asked her for an ARC! Check back on Friday when Carolyn is guest posting and we are giving away a copy of the book!

Curran Crush Meter: Super High 
Sigh Meter: Pretty Darn High 
Ethan/Merit Sizzle Meter: Sooo High 
Barrons Hero Hotness Meter: Way High (I love Packard!) 
Sleep Meter: Low...do not start this before bed. You'll be up all night. 
Food Meter: Medium. Everyone ate a lot in this book. 
Action Meter: High
Curse Meter: High