Thursday, 13 September 2007

Ill Wind by Rachel Caine


Ill Wind follows Weather Warden Joanne Baldwin as she races against time and across country in an effort to find a cure for the infection that is consuming her. Pursued by the Warden police and a rogue weather system, Joanne needs to stay one step ahead if she's going to find the most powerful Weather Warden - Lewis Levander Orwell - and his Djinn, and hopefully save her life.

It's been quite a while since I've read the first book in the Weather Warden series. I think I've currently got book 5 on my TBR pile, but I've kind of lost track of where the story is going, so decided to go back to the beginning. (Something I have to do with most of the series I follow at some point).

I do like to re-read books, especially when they're part of a series. There are things you don't always appreciate on a first read through that make more sense on a second read, either after you've finished the book or read more books in the series.

I will mention briefly that there are two uses of literally (teeth gnash), which follow on consecutive pages, but if you read fast you can pretend you've missed them. :)

I love this book. I'd forgotten how much. It was completely different to any urban fantasy I'd read before. It starts with a bang, Joanne is on the run, and the story maintains that pace throughout. You truly get the feeling of being pursued and that if Joanne stops for a moment she'll be caught. Chapters are long though. The book is 337 pages but only five chapters. So I tend to stop at scene breaks rather than wait for chapter ends. LOL just a heads up if you haven't read this one yet.

The joy (for me) in this book is Joanne's voice - the way she tells her story. The book is packed full of great lines. Far too many to write here - Rachel Caine writes brilliant dialogue.

Okay one of my favourites:-

'I tried a hint. "Any preference? Trashy decor? Adult channels?"
He turned a page. "Indoor plumbing's a plus."
Bigger hint. "Two rooms or one?"
..."Kind of takes the mystery out of it if you ask," he said.'

Joanne and David are perhaps one of my favourite urban fantasy couples. I love the way they spar with one another, and the fact that they are as stubborn as each other. Though on a re-read there is also the dread of knowing what's coming.

Joanne calls what happened to her a rape, a rape which a Djinn takes part in. He holds her down whilst a demon is forced inside her against her will. Although he had no choice in the act and although he ultimately saves her, there is still a terrible sense of betrayal. And I think that is the hardest thing for me to get my head round in this book. It illustrates how powerful and powerless the Djinn are. The fact that if they are ordered to do terrible things by their masters they have to.

At the end I'm reading faster and faster as everything goes to hell. And at the conclusion I realize this could easily have been a standalone. But I'm glad I've got the next book to look forward to re-reading.


Nicole said...

I really enjoyed this one, too, though I've only read it once and haven't gotten to the rest of the series yet. (Want to, but am making myself Get Stuff Done first.) But I agree with the thought that this is different from most urban fantasy that's out there.

Nice review. :)

Anonymous said...

I remember reading this one, and going straight out to buy the next two. I really liked how it was so different from the other urban fantasies out there - unique concept, yummy characters, and like you said, great dialogue.

However, the last couple of books have put me off a bit - I don't really like how she has major plot twists in the last chapter and completely leaves things hanging for the next book. And you know, the suspense keeps building up and up... and up and up... and never quite gets there - she puts in a new twist or reveal or something.

That's the main reason why I haven't yet bought the latest in the series (Thin Air, think it came out last month?). I will get it at some point, but I'm in no rush - esp if the ending makes me grit my teeth again.

Okay, mini-rant for the day over.

LesleyW said...

I think that may be one of the reasons I haven't read Firestorm yet. I wanted to have the next one (yep - Thin Air) available to read. I think it was in the back of my mind that book 4 ended on something of a cliffhanger.

Naomi said...

God I love Rachel Caine's books. I have Thin Air on my TBR pile, but I'm putting off reading it because then I have to wait a whole year for The Friction Layer and that's just too long between books!

LesleyW said...

Naomi - I think that's exactl why I haven't read Firestorm yet. Trouble is, it's now been so long since I read the last book that I've lost track of the story. Hence having to go back and re-read the first few books.