Author: T.L. Shreffler
Publish Date: April 12, 2012 by Runaway Pen, 250 pages
Get it here: Amazon
Lately I haven't had a whole lot of time to start, let alone finish, any of the number of books that are on my current reading list. As I got to thinking of other topics I could write a post about I realized 2012 is coming to a close and I definitely need to come up with a top 10 list of the best books that I've read in the past year (not limited to just those published this year).
My mind began to wander as I pondered which books I would put on that list. It's hard to narrow down the list and sometimes my opinion of a book can vary with my mood. However, there are a few books which are absolute shoo-ins as top contenders.
One of the slots I have to give away to a series by T.L. Shreffler called the Cat's Eye series. That includes "Sora's Quest", "Viper's Creed" and "Volcrian's Hunt" (yet to be released). The second book, "Viper's Creed" was released at the tail end of October and I had been waiting for it for a while.
As I began thinking about these books that I've absolutely fallen in love with, a realization dawned on me. I thought, "zoomg (that's OMG with a little extra oomph) why have I not declared my undying love for this series?" That thought led to this post where I will proceed to tell you why Ms. Shreffler is quickly becoming one of my favorite young authors.
"Sora's Quest" is the first of the series. The story opens with a young girl of noble birth, Sora, who is waiting to be hustled off to an unloving, arranged marriage. As she waits, she plots ways to get out of this situation. She figures the best way to solve this problem is to run away, have an adventure and find her long-lost mother at the end.
While waiting for the first opportunity to break free of the wedding guests, strip off her horrid gown and ride away on her horse she gets a little surprise visit from an assassin who brings about the death of her father. (This all happens pretty quickly so I don't consider that a spoiler.)
She is then kidnapped by said assassin and so the journey she always wished for begins, albeit a little differently than she anticipated. Through the rest of the chapters she meets two Wolfies, pointy-eared creatures of a different race thought to be long extinct, hikes through a swap, learns how to kick some ass and finds out a few things about herself along the way.
Reasons why I adored this book: For starters it had an assassin. I love books with assassins and the reason this one topped my list was due to the fact that Crash is and always will be an assassin. Shreffler doesn't follow the model of other authors who have a seriously bad ass character and then they decide to ruin him/her by having them fall in love and completely changing who they are. An assassin is a cold-blooded killer and falling in love doesn't turn them into a perfect boy scout and prince charming.
Crash continues his bad ass-ery throughout the entire book by pretty much being the face of death. He's a harsh man of very few words but he does have one redeemable quality. Once you're in his wolfpack (Hangover reference for ya there) then he's got your back. He's one of the most interesting, complex and multidimensional characters I have met in a long time and he hardly says anything at all.
The story continues in "Viper's Creed". I can't really say I lot about this one without giving away parts of the first book but I'll just say it's even better than the first. The plot line really starts to come together and you get to meet some more interesting characters.
The best part is the glimpses you get from Crash in the second book. He has small ways of letting his feelings for Sora come through. I think Shreffler did one excellent job of showing the struggles that both characters have in that relationship. You also get to learn a little more about how Crash became an assassin at the young age of 14.
Now that this post is done and way longer than it should ever be, I still don't feel like it did these books justice. All I can say is that I couldn't sleep at night for a week after reading this book because all I could think about was it's supreme awesomeness. Anyone know when #3 is set to arrive?
Happy reading to all.