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  • Writer's pictureGeoff H.

Review of Unrelenting

How far would you go to find someone who’s been missing? What if that person was your sister? In Unrelenting, Bridget Keene is about to find out just how far she’s willing to go, especially when it seems like the Cleveland Police Department has given up on finding her sister Dahlia. Even when Bridget receives a grainy video that seems to show her sister is alive the lead detective, Detective Ivanova, brushes Bridget aside. So, Bridget begins to investigate on her own with the help of James, the person that made the video. As Bridget and James dig deeper into Dahlia’s disappearance they are soon confronted by a mysterious group whose members can use magic. Bridget’s search for her sister leads her deeper and deeper into a carefully guarded plot and a world filled with age-old magic. The situation spirals out of control for Bridget and James as they are soon caught between two waring factions of powerful magic users and Bridget must put her own life on the line to save her sister.

I was very impressed with Unrelenting, the first book in The Grigori Cycle. Jessi Honard and Marie Parks have created a wonderfully complex, detailed, and quite ordinary (on the surface) protagonist in Bridget Keene. Bridget is, well… she’s unrelenting in finding out what happened to her sister, despite the risks and odds that seem to be stacked against her. Confronted by the realization that magic is real and controlled by very-powerful magic users, most people would be unable to adapt, but Bridget manages to surprise even herself as she navigates the machinations of friends and foes alike. That Bridget manages to do this while remaining an ordinary human, with no magic of her own – only her wits and determination, even at her own expense – is another thing that makes her an attractive character.

The other thing I loved about Unrelenting is the world that Jessi and Marie have created. There are many unique urban fantasy settings, each with their own take on magic and magic-users. What is hard these days, when there is a saturation of many good such settings, is to create something that is new and different. And that is just what Jessi and Marie have done. The magic used by the Grigori is both limited and powerful. They act more like superheroes with unique powers than the typical “spellcaster” you might encounter in other settings. Combine this with a well-crafted conspiracy of mysterious origins, lost and forgotten powers, and a hidden agenda among the Grigori, you have a setting that makes you want to turn the pages to learn more.

Unrelenting is a fresh offering in the urban fantasy genre with a unique take on magic wrapped within a finely-crafted conspiracy. Jessi Honard and Marie Parks are rising stars within the urban fantasy genre with a character that readers will be able to relate and connect with and a story that will keep you turning the pages.

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