Author: M.R. Merrick
Series: The Protector #1
Publisher: M.R. Merrick (June 28th 2011)
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
“Chase Williams is a demon hunter in the Circle, or at least he was supposed to be. On his fifteenth birthday, Chase stepped up to the altar to claim his elemental power, but it never came. Elemental magic is passed down to a hunter through the bloodline, but on Chase's birthday, the bloodline stopped.
Exiled without the Circle's protection, Chase has spent two years trying to survive a world riddled with half-demons and magic. When he has a run in with a frightened and seemingly innocent demon, he learns the Circle's agenda has changed: the Circle plans to unlock a portal and unleash pure-blood demons into the world. Vowing to stop them, and knowing he can't do it alone, Chase forms a reluctant alliance with Rayna — a sexy witch with an attitude and a secret.
In their attempt to stop them, Chase and Rayna find themselves in the middle of the Circle's plan, leaving one of them to decide what their friendship is worth, and the other's life depending on it.” GoodReads’ blurb
For the record, I did enjoy this story. The world was fairly interesting, and though the Circle versus Underworlders sounded slightly familiar (specially after a The Mortal Instruments read-a-thon) the fact is that the similarities didn’t bother me much.
There was a lot of action, and that’s perhaps the best point of the story: fast paced, the plot never wanders too far off its course and you are constantly finding obstacles and solving them—or something to that effect. This didn’t keep the characters from having their own personal backstories and didn’t keep up from sharing in their tragedy, so it was well balanced.
I think the reason I didn’t like this book more than I did was the main character himself, Chase. I recall being his age and know that when you turn 18 you may have a tendency to believe you’re invincible and that’s impossibly for you to be wrong, but I truly wanted to grab this guy and start slapping some sense into his thick skull.
Chase kept picking fights even when they weren’t necessary, he made decisions on the fly even though they contradicted what he’d been told and what common sense might have supplied, and at least half the conflict in the novel could have been neatly avoided if he had only had the sense to think and listen instead of just waltzing around looking for fights he couldn’t win.
Could I look beyond that to the entertainment value? Yes, of course. But when there’s a certain twist at the end that you can see coming and which could have been entirely avoided... Well, I couldn’t help but feel that the poor guy actually deserved the ending.
I believe I was not supposed to feel that way.
So, would I recommend this read? Sure, if you have the time, do check it over. But I can’t tell you to drop everything else and grab a copy because I didn’t feel that kind of chemistry with Exiled.