Sep 23, 2013

Review--Tarnished and Torn by Juliet Blackwell

As the owner of a popular vintage clothing store, Lily Ivory can enjoy a day of antique jewelry shopping and still call it work. But as one of San Francisco’s resident witches, searching for hidden treasures can sometimes lead to dangerous discoveries…

When Lily arrives at an antique jewelry fair, her bargain sensors go off left and right—but she also picks up a faint vibration of magic. Could the hard-bargaining merchant Griselda be a fellow practitioner? It certainly seems that way when a sudden fire sends panic through the crowd, and Lily discovers Griselda murdered in a way that nods to an old-fashioned witch hunt…

A crime that hits close to home turns into an unwelcome flash from the past when the police bring in their lead suspect—Lily’s estranged father. Though he may not deserve her help, Lily is determined to clear her father’s name and solve a murder that’s anything but crystal clear.

Juliet Blackwell's Tarnished and Torn was yet another delightful mystery coupled with a good healthy dose of paranormal! In this one, Lily finds herself yet again in the thick of another crime, a murder...which seems to be the usual kind.

Ever since Lily moved to San Francisco, things haven't been exactly peachy for her. True, she has her shop and business is going's been all put back together after it was torn apart a few weeks back. She has great friends and life is going pretty well for her. Although, she is tormented with the knowledge that Sailor is gone, banished by Aiden.

The story opens up with Lily and her friends going to a Gem Expo where basically a variety of people/sellers hawk their wares of jewelry and jewelry bits. Looking to add flair to their shop Lily and her friends go. But the event ends in catastrophe! Not only was there a bout of chaos when Oscar in his pig form came in looking for Lily, but one of the jewelry sellers Lily had been talking to and bought a big ol box of mystery junk from, was killed. Pressed to death. An entirely brutal one way to go and one that was used a torture method for witches way back when. Is this the start of hate crimes against witches? Was Griselda even a witch? Too many questions for Lily to answer without doing a little investigating.

But the murder mystery is only the beginning of Lily's problems. She's also being hounded by two goons who seem intent that Lily has something that they want. Possibly something that she bought from Griselda in the box? Then there's also the knowledge that there might be another magic user in town, one who isn't on the nice side of things and Maya happens to be in the line of sight. There happens to be a group of fire-dancers in the park and might be the reason why has Maya been acting strangely lately, but there is something decidedly eerie about these fire-dancers that Lily can't quite put her finger on.

And to make Lily's day just a big ol' bucket of fun, her estranged father is in town.

This was quite the mystery and I truly did enjoy every minute of it! There were so many questions as to what was going on that I was itching for answers. Particularly the reason why Lily's father suddenly appears when the last time Lily saw him in Germany when she was seventeen he practically told her to get lost. Maybe not exactly in that way, but the meaning was clear that her father wanted her nowhere near him.

And while her father was in the "pages", I still didn't quite get a feel for his character. I was still under the impression that he was a bit of a douche, but I think there might be something more to his character. I can't be sure if any redeeming qualities will arise but only time and future novels will tell!

I was also very happy to see that while Sailor was banished, he did make an appearance about 2/3 through the book. I knew he couldn't stay off the page for long. His character still confuses me at times, but only in the sense that I can never tell if he really cares for Lily. He's a bit moody, but I guess that's just his character and there are plenty of times that we see that he does in fact, care for Lily! Yay!

Honestly, the who-done-it totally took me by surprise! I didn't suspect this character at all for some reason. And yet, that was only half the answer as well! There's still a lingering question about the second part to the murder and it's really unclear as to the correct answer. Perhaps Lily will figure that out next time around!

There was a good deal amount of Mexican culture woven into this one that I found particularly intriguing! I like mythology and know, the basis of where my favorite genre tends to stem from. And in here, we get a nice smattering of that in regards to opals, fire opals in particular. It was a nice little history lesson in some sense! And it was woven into the story wonderfully in a way that wasn't at all lecturing like.

Overall, this was yet another delightful mystery! I must urge again how incredible these kinds of reads are, because they are in heart a mystery series coupled with paranormal elements! Lily is sort of an odd witch, but she's a good, kind-hearted person and I have grown to love her character. I look forward to seeing what other mysteries fall in her lap and of course see how she manages to have Sailor as a boyfriend and figure out the impossible Aiden.

Overall Rating 5/5 stars

1 comment:

  1. I didn't know the author had another book. I have some to read I really need to get into them!


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