May 23 2006
From the desk of guest reviewer, Jaili.
Dear Ms. Leigh,
When I saw that Kiss of Heat is Book 3 in Feline Breeds series, I assumed that it would be a standalone, anyway, just enough for me to get into the story easily. I mean, how hard could it be to catch up? Pretty easy, I’d say, but I had no idea how wrong I was.
Kiss of Heat is the story of Kane Tyler and Sherra who have enough issues to fill a six-piece luggage set. From what I gather so far, Sherra has a serious grudge against Kane Tyler for not honouring his promise he made to her some years ago. For not returning to save her from a pit of nightmares. And for not being there when she alone endured a few more nightmarish incidents at a secret lab. For reasons unknown to me the lab blew up, killing everyone inside. Including Sherra.
But of course, Kane learnt six years later, Sherra survived the bombing and went to live on a compound built like a fortess against a malicious organisation known as the Council and some people who believe ‘freaks’ like her shouldn’t live.
While Kane and Sherra dealt with their issues and emotions about each other, they struggled to clamp down a wave of violence against the compound as a series of attempts to – as far as I can see –" kidnap two pregnant women and a little wolf-girl named Cassie who might be valuable for the Council. As the violence intensified, Kane and Sherra came to learn that there was more to being mates than a mind-blowing shagathon.
If my summary is muddled, it’s because I’ve never managed to grasp what was going on with the background story behind Kiss of Heat. When I read this story, I spent more time struggling to figure out relationships between various characters, how and why this or that happened, and what they were supposed to be than going along with the story. If I read this right, Kane Tyler is the brother of one of pregnant women and Sherra is the sister of Taber [or Callen?], a quick-tempered bloke, but I was never sure if I was correct. Basically, there is a strong sense of assumption that a new reader like me should know who’s who, what’s what and why’s why.
This is rather frustrating because I honestly wanted to follow Kane and Sherra’s story, but I was too distracted by so many questions about their world to feel their anger, despair, angst, lust, fear, sense of belonging, and other emotions they had for each other. I mean, it took me a while to figure out who Cassie is and that she’s a little girl, not a woman who’s lusted after Kane.
I wish there was a notice that readers ought to read Feline Breeds books in order or that there would some background details in the beginning of Kiss of Heat for readers like me to catch up quickly. In fact I was told that there are actually three series that take place in this present-day universe and that all books in these three series are closely connected.
I’m sorry to say that Kiss of Heat, as a standalone, is far too confusing for me to enjoy, let alone to grade. I think faithful followers of your series would enjoy it a lot more than readers like me who know next to nothing about the series.
Perhaps it would be nice if you’d be more sympathetic by including, either, a basic guide to back of your next story or some background details in the story itself to clue us in. That would be very much appreciated. Thank you. C+.
Jaili aka McVane