Genre: Urban Fantasy/Multicultural
“She’s out for vengeance. He’s seeking justice.
Exiled and alone in a strange land, Rhinemaiden Gwen is still traumatized from her capture and torture by mortal monster hunters. To exorcise her demons, she doles out vigilante justice on mortal criminals—until former cop turned private investigator, Kwame Johnson, stops her in her tracks.
Captivating and enigmatic, Kwame is more than another mere mortal, and he's just beginning to understand the nature of the special sense that helps him track down missing persons. Gwen can help him reach his full potential, but can she trust a man who was hired by the monster hunters to track her down?”
“Award-winning author D.B. Sieders was born and raised in East Tennessee and spent her childhood hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains, wading barefoot in creeks, and chasing salamanders, fish, and frogs. She and her family loved to tell stories while sitting around the campfire.
Those days of frog chasing sparked an interest in biology. She is a working scientist by day, but never lost her love of telling stories. Now, she’s a purveyor of unconventional fantasy romance featuring strong heroines and the heroes who strive to match them. Her heroes and heroines face a healthy dose of angst as they strive for redemption and a happily ever after, which everyone deserves.
D.B. Sieders lives in Nashville, Tennessee with her husband, two children, three cats, and her very active imagination.”
River Spell is the fourth book in the Southern Elemental Guardians series. It looks like each book is about different related guardians, so I had no problem jumping into the middle of the series. The world is Earth which is divided and ruled accordingly in different realms. Gwen is one of the Rhinemaiden sisters, a mermaid with shapeshifting abilities and other magic. She has exiled herself to the New World, which is what they call the mortal realm, because she doesn’t feel like she fits in her own domain. However, she still protects her river. It’s during one of those acts that Gwen meets Kwame, an ex-police officer turned PI. Kwame recognizes energy levels, which he doesn’t fully understand, but has never led him wrong. So he is aware that Gwen is something other than how she appears.
The plot is original and flows at a good pace. The characters are well developed. Gwen and Kwame are both flawed, and seeking their own purposes in life. The storyline follows their budding interracial romance and turmoils. The dialogue is realistic and engaging, with the exception of the coupling scene. Kwame annoyed the hell out of me, and if I had been Gwen, I would have disappeared for good. At any rate the twists in the plot are extreme and lead Gwen to face her own demons. The fight scene was pretty awesome and revealed a lot more than I was expecting. The result took a surprisingly logical turn that I found satisfying. I would be interested in reading other books in this series.
River Spell is book 4 in Ms. Sieders Southern Elemental Guardians series, but it can be read as a standalone. There are several F-bombs dropped, so if that word offends you, this book may not be a good fit for you.
I found a small number proofing errors. They consisted of missing, extra, or wrong words
Rating: **** Four Stars
Reviewed by: ?wazithinkin
Approximate word count: 70-75,000 words