Title: Night Blade
Author: J.C. Daniels a.k.a. Shiloh Walker
Publisher: Shiloh Walker Inc.
Release Date: 4th March 2013
Series: The Colbana Files, Book 2
Source: My Personal Copy
Blurb from Goodreads:
Kit Colbana is always biting off more than she can chew. She has a knack for finding trouble. This time, though, trouble finds her. Someone from her past drops a case into her lap that she just can’t refuse…literally.
People on the Council are dying left and right and she’s been requested to investigate the deaths. The number one suspect? Her lover, Damon. If she doesn’t clear his name, he gets a death sentence. Even if she succeeds? They still might try to execute him. Oh, and she’s not allowed to tell him about the case, either.
The stakes are high this time around, higher than they’ve ever been. Kit may be forced to pay the ultimate price to save her lover’s life…a price that could destroy her and everything she loves.
First Line: 'I am aneira. My blade is strong. Strong enough to handle a lot of things but not enough to handle the four shifters who had been trailing me all day.'
Ok, first of all, stop right here if you have not read book 1 in the series BLADE SONG. In fact, stop and go buy it. Like now. Just so you can read NIGHT BLADE, seriously, do it now.
Secondly, I must forewarn all future readers of NIGHT BLADE. Have tissues ready, or at the very least some chocolate to see you through. Jen at Red Hot Books, tried to warn me...I was a fool and didn't listen. I'm begging you, please have some form of comfort ready. I'm still in shock as I write...my heart actually hurts right now.
But before we get to the part that makes me want to hunt down J.C. Daniels and get her to say it wasn't true, we must go back to the beginning.
Kit and Damon are right where we left them, happily annoying the heck out of each other and going strong despite the Cat clan and, well, basically the entire shifter community thinking it's a bit of a joke. Damon's still the Alpha Cat and he's finally reaching the end of cleaning up the mess Kitty-Cat Barbie (the previous Cat Alpha) had left the clan in. Basically he's forcing the pack crazies to change their ways and killing those who won't. As for Kit, well Kit is still running Colbana Investigations, doing the jobs brought her way by other non-humans. Including little things like couriering two severed heads for the local wolf Alpha Alisdair MacDonald. Only that little trip shows us how much things have changed for Kit now that she is dating Damon. Kit is babysat on her courier job by a wolf because MacDonald is afraid of the reprisals should Kit get hurt while working for him. That chafes Kit's ego somewhat. So does Damon's need to check up on her and defend her at the littlest slight. But all in all, everything is going well and their relationship is standing strong....
...Then we meet her ex-boyfriend Justin, and this happens:
Justin leaned forward, elbows braced on his knees. “I can see what you’re thinking,” he mused. “It’s written in your eyes. You never have learned how to control that, Kitty-kitty.”Ah heck.
“If you keep on calling me that, I’m going to punch you,” I said, smiling at him.
He snorted. “Won’t be the first time.”
“Probably won’t be the last. Now, why don’t you finish spouting whatever crap you have to spout, so I can tell you no and kick you out?”
“You can’t,” he said and the gravity of his voice served to ratchet up the tension building in my chest. “And I think you already know something is fucked up. Because I can see that, too. I know you too well.”
“If you know me, Justin, then you know I don’t like games. Tell me what the hell is going on and quit screwing around.”
He nodded, a slow dip of his head. “You don’t want to tell me no, Kit. You can’t. You have to do this job…and you can’t fuck it up, because if you do, it’s very, very possible an extermination squad is going to be sent after your man, Kit. And I don’t think you want that.”
Justin works for the Banner unit, and they think Damon has killed 5 assembly members without just cause. Now Damon's got a target on his back and the only one who can help him is Kit. Only she can't talk to Damon about it...no seriously...she physically can't talk about it, because the sneaky witch that he is, Justin puts a binding on Kit that causes her agony when she tries to tell anyone...including Damon, what she's investigating. Now Kit has to prove Damon is innocent of what the the Banner unit is accusing him of...oh and did I mention she's got a deadline too...it's a race against the clock, and she can't even tell the man she is falling in love with. What could possibly go wrong...?
Kit is such an amazing character. I have some serious respect for her. She's tough as nails, we've heard of some of the abuse she suffered from her Grandmother and Aunts in BLADE SONG but I don't think we even scratched the surface of her past. This fight, this strength stems from her ordeal there...however, Kit is also a very vulnerable woman. Her nights are plagued by horrific nightmares of the very events that gave her her steel core. No matter what, she will not break. She pushes through the memories and with Damon's help has been able to love again. Had he not shown himself so worthy of her heart, I don't know if Kit would have ever reached out to Damon the way she does, though she still isn't quite strong enough to share the full extent of the horrors that plague her.
These characters blow my mind.
Which is why the last 25% of the book absolutely killed me.
I am not going to spoil this for anyone, and I know I wouldn't be able to do it justice anyway. All I can say is that I cried like a baby. Wiped my eyes. Read another page. Cried some more. Started talking to myself like a lunatic, saying 'no no no no'. I'm still reeling even as I write this. There is a hollow feeling in my chest now, but at first there was only pain. I feel like a little bit of my book lover soul died. That bit reserved for those characters I love with all my heart. There really should be a neon sign stating that this book will render you emotionally stunned for at least 3 hours after (that's how long it's been since I finished it).
I genuinely don't know how to sum up this book. It's so good...but it's so heart wrenching it makes you feel like you are drowning in your emotion. J.C. Daniels might as well have just walked up to me and hit me over the head with a baseball bat...that's how stunned I am right now.
...I'm so gonna need counselling...
My Rating: 4.5/5