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Tuesday, January 26, 2016
Mercury Retrograde by Laura Bickle (thoughts)
"Something venomous has come to Temperance …
It's been two months since Petra Dee and her coyote sidekick Sig faced off against Temperance's resident alchemist, but things are far from quiet. When an Internet video of a massive snake in the backcountry of Yellowstone goes viral, a chase for the mythical basilisk is on. Monster hunters swarm into the area, and never one to pass up the promise of discovery, Petra joins in the search.
Among the newcomers is a snake cult on wheels―the biker gang Sisters of Serpens. Unlike some, the Sisters don't want to kill the basilisk―they want to worship it. But things get complicated when the basilisk develops a taste for human flesh that rivals the Sisters' own murderous skills.
Meanwhile, the alchemical tree of life is dying, and the undead Hanged Men of Temperance who depend on it know the basilisk may be their last chance for survival.
With time running out for everyone around her, Petra will be forced to decide who survives and who she must leave behind in this action-packed sequel to Dark Alchemy."
I was absolutely thrilled when I heard that this book was coming out! I had previously enjoyed Dark Alchemy (the first book in this series) so much and had my fingers crossed that the author would be writing a sequel. So you can imagine my surprise and excitement when I got wind of this book. This series is so completely original and is just different from everything out there! I find it a treat to read and this has been my experience with both books in this series. I should say that you need to start off by reading the first book in this series because events in this book are a continuation from book one. Not all of it which means new readers could start with this book if they wanted but I just feel like they would be missing out a bit. And personally I feel like that this is such a great series and shouldn't be missed! I love how the author takes the impossible and makes it possible with these books. I just cannot emphasize enough how fresh and unique these books are. It is a mish mash of genres in the best possible way: a mystery mixed in with fantasy along with some steampunk elements and a western feel all rolled into one. I love it so much for all of these different reasons (and these are the same things that I loved about book one)!
In this book Petra once again finds herself caught up in a heap of trouble as she attempts to help investigate the mysterious deaths of a family that have died for no apparent reason. She is looking at the geological features of the area trying to determine if a hot gas spot is the reason behind these deaths or could it be the mysterious snake that was sighted in the area. Almost instantly things start to go wrong and Petra is forced to search for answers while trying to keep herself out of danger. I found myself immersed in this book immediately after starting it....it was just that easy to fall back into the world that Bickle had created in Dark Alchemy. I loved that we had the chance to meet up again with all of my favorite characters from the previous book. I especially loved that this book delved more into the mysterious hanged men and their fate after the way that things had ended in book one (trying not to spoil anything here so sorry if I'm being too vague). This book was just as fast paced as the first book and just as hard to set down. Basically I just loved this book as much as I did the first and am now a huge fan of this series! And the ending- what an ending! I loved that we got some answers but I also really loved the set up for the next book. There is going to be a next book!!! I cannot wait!
Overall, I just cannot say enough good things about this series or about this book! I hope that other readers are reading and loving this series as much as I have. Trust this author to take you on a wild ride that will keep you on the edge of your seat the entire time. Now I'm just going to have to patiently wait and wish for the next book in this series. Highly recommended!
Bottom Line: Such a great follow-up to the first book in this series! I cannot recommend it enough!
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss.