Thursday, July 28, 2016

Any Other Name by Emma Newman

Warning: while I will do my very best to avoid as many spoilers as I can, if you have not yet read Between Two Thorns you may want to skip the rest of the series reviews!

In spite of all of her efforts, Cathy's marriage to Will has proceeded according to plan - and early to boot. But with the wedding now over, Will comes through with his promise of a honeymoon in Mundanus, giving Cathy a glimmer of hope that she can somehow right what she sees as a very big wrong.

Meanwhile, Sam has managed to return to Exilium, freeing the women he and Cathy stumbled upon on their last trip. Unfortunately the women have been tainted and even Max won't get involved considering he's lost his entire Chapter, a matter he definitely needs to keep under wraps. As he and the Sorcerer continue their investigative efforts, it soon becomes clear that the recent conspiracy they've unearthed is much bigger than they originally believed.

If you couldn't tell, I'm currently binging on this series as I gear up for the release of book four on Tuesday. (Pssst, be sure to check out the blog that day for a chance to win a copy of the first Split Worlds book!)

This second in the Split Worlds series picks up immediately where Between Two Thorns left off, with Cathy waking from her drug induced slumber and made up for the wedding. It's fortunate, then, that I was able to jump right into it! And my synopsis above really only touches on the beginning of the book as a whole - a lot more stuff happens beyond those mentioned events as the book progresses!

Poor Cathy. When we last saw her she was fighting against the marriage with all of her might and had seemingly secured help in getting away. Alas her plans are thwarted at every turn by both her family and the Fae. And we still don't know why Lord Poppy and Lord Iris were so intent on the match between her and Will to begin with.

We do know that the Iris family is apparently even more controlling and manipulative than Cathy's own has been, though! So Cathy's fight isn't over by a long shot.

Any Other Name proves, too, that the discoveries of Between Two Thorns are only the beginning. Something wicked bad is brewing in the Split Worlds - and if every character would communicate with one another they might figure out what it is! Ugh!

Of course that's a big part of the plot: no one trusts each other. The Arbiter and the Sorcerer don't trust Cathy or Sam, Cathy doesn't trust Will, Sam loses faith in the Sorcerer when he discovers he's being watched. And all of them have things to deal with beyond even the most immediate mysteries - Max still can't reveal his entire Chapter has been murdered, Cathy has Will's family and Society to deal with, and Sam's marriage is falling apart. All of them are being fairly put through the wringer in this second outing!

As with Between Two Thorns, Any Other Name has a definitely cliffhanger ending. I'll just say it's fortunate that I have all of the books on hand!

I should note that for anyone who struggled with the many threads of Between Two Thorns, this second outing is a much smoother read. Now that we're comfortable with the worlds and the characters it's easier to simply enjoy the tale.

Rating: 4/5

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