Ahoy there me mateys! Those who have been aboard for a while know that urban fantasy and I are not usually friends. In fact we tend to be enemies. I can’t explain why. It’s just a truth. And yet I loved the first two books in this urban fantasy series. I was super excited to read the final book. While I try to post no spoilers, ye have been forewarned and continue at yer own peril . . .
So what is the series about? Well the books are set in a future Detroit after magic has returned to the world following a very long absence. The city is sentient. The protagonist is Opal Yong-ae who is a mage dealing with tricky magic and an even trickier relationship with her father.
While book two was certainly me favorite, this final installment was satisfying overall. The main criticism is that Opal (and everyone else) basically missed who and what the bad guy was and what he was up to. I don’t know how cause this reader knew pretty quickly. And lover boy makes a super dumb decision for the sake of plot. I also missed the Cleaning aspects of the last two books. The book also had some deus ex machina moments and Opal becoming a special snowflake. I missed her snarky attitude and banter from the prior books.
That said, I very much enjoyed watching Opal and her father’s relationship evolve even more. It was awesome to watch how each book added further depth and understanding of the father/daughter dynamic. This was the highlight of the books for me. I also enjoyed that there was no real relationship angst between Opal and her lover. There were external problems but the two are solid in a way that is refreshing. And, of course, I love the DFZ and many of the side characters. I would certainly read more set in this world.
If I could find more urban fantasy that felt like this series then maybe I would like it better. Arrrr!
I am leaving out the synopsis of book three cause of spoilers. Goodreads has this to say about book one:
The DFZ, the metropolis formerly known as Detroit, is the world’s most magical city with a population of nine million and zero public safety laws. That’s a lot of mages, cybernetically enhanced chrome heads, and mythical beasties who die, get into debt, and otherwise fail to pay their rent. When they can’t pay their bills, their stuff gets sold to the highest bidder to cover the tab.
That’s when they call me. My name is Opal Yong-ae, and I’m a Cleaner: a freelance mage with an art history degree who’s employed by the DFZ to sort through the mountains of magical junk people leave behind. It’s not a pretty job, or a safe one—there’s a reason I wear bite-proof gloves—but when you’re deep in debt in a lawless city where gods are real, dragons are traffic hazards, and buildings move around on their own, you don’t get to be picky about where your money comes from. You just have to make it work, even when the only thing of value in your latest repossessed apartment is the dead body of the mage who used to live there.
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