Friday, July 12, 2013

REVIEW: The Bone Triangle by B.V. Larson

The Bone Triangle (Unspeakable Things, #2) The Bone Triangle by B.V. Larson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Despite the attention-grabbing fight scene, the beginning was awful because the explanation of what had happened during book 1 made me vastly irritated with the hero. I struggled to remember why I ever liked Quentin.

+ the characters

Deep in debts, Quentin took little effort to find a job. It never occurred to him that if there was no paranormal job, e.g. monsters that needed slaying, then he should have looked at the normal ones, e.g. flipping burgers. The one job he did have, a job that provided him with residence and staved off homelessness, he did not take seriously. Worse, because of the job’s precarious nature, he foolishly risked his survival and almost got killed. He took for granted that if the antagonists genuinely wanted to kill him, they could have simply bombed the place to ashes with him in it as opposed to mind controlling a person (or an alien or an alien monster) to assassinate him.

Quentin seemed to have a Loser Complex. Now, I could tolerate the bum act, but the stupid act really pushed the limit. Every chapter in the beginning of the book presented at least one headdesk example of his stupidity. What kind of a person gets into a car with a stranger or walks into a dangerous place with hundreds in cash on hand? A dumbass, that is who.

Thankfully, the stupid act tapered off by the middle of the book, and I finally remembered why I liked Quentin. When shit needed to be done, no matter how perilous it was, Quentin got it done without hesitating to use the power that his magical artifacts provided him. He was not one of those clich├ęd Urban Fantasy protagonists who had issues with power. Granted, he suffered little to no side effects from using the artifacts, even multiple artifacts. One artifact was hazardous enough for the other people who used them. Nevertheless, the psychological risks of dependency and hubris still remained.

As for the secondary characters, Jacqueline did not annoy me as much as I thought she would because she was a spoiled rich girl. To my surprise, I actually ended up liking her. Hell, the fact that she was not a damsel in distress and had some sense to avoid danger, even though she was mischievous, put her several steps above the two women in book 1 who were Quentin’s love interests. Speaking of whom, I was glad the love triangle crap from book 1 was completely done away, with those two characters gone, and that the new romance with Jacqueline, if it can even be called that, was casual. No damsels in distress, no love triangle crap, no unnecessary drama; these things alone undoubtedly made book 2 better than book 1.

Detective McKesson, I still did not know what the deal was up with him. The “foe or friend” schtick got old; one moment, he’s a foe and maybe trying to kill Quentin, the next he’s a friend and Quentin rescues him and willfully puts his life in the detective’s hand. Goddamn it, make up your mind. The schtick I could tolerate with Rostok because Rostok was a crime lord and his motives were not that particularly mysterious because of who he was. Speaking of bad guys, I liked how they continued to show character development, especially with attempts to make them understandable and somewhat relatable. One of the things I love about the series is how it never cops out in making a single character, be they human or otherwise, flatly evil. Everyone had their reasons for doing what they did; a heinous act from one character’s POV is a desperate act for survival from another character’s POV.

+ the plot

Due to Quentin’s lack of priorities, the plot zigzagged between various conflicts. However, I did not mind because the pace was fast and the transition smooth which respectively kept me from being bored and befuddled. Every seemingly disparate conflict converged to a neat package at the end and with some twists thrown in to keep things from being dismally predictable. I loved how things were hardly ever as they seemed.

I loved that Quentin still kept his search for his identity a priority and that the loose end of his amnesia was finally resolved. The way things ended in book 1, I thought there was little chance the loose end would ever be resolved, at least not so incredibly soon in the series.

In Conclusion

I rate The Bone Triangle 3-stars for I liked it. If you are looking for a different Urban Fantasy, one where the ubiquitous vampires and werewolves are not the norm but instead aliens and crime lords, check out this series. The Unspeakable Things series is Roswell crossed with the Urban Fantasy genre — highly intriguing.

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