Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Review: Forged in Darkfire (Amber Lee Mysteries #5) by Katerina Martinez

Before Amber, there was Natalie

Damien Colt came from a dark place. Growing up in a Compound of twisted Witches, secluded from the world, was a harrowing experience for Damien and his sister Lily. But they escaped, and they made their new life in San Francisco, away from the strangling hands that would make them accomplices to their evil. Together, Damien and Lily carved out their very own uncomplicated life. That is, of course, until Natalie showed up.

Natalie, the witch of honey and cinnamon.

The pair had been getting close ever since her introduction into the Coven, but Damien forced himself to bury his emerging feelings for the witch for the good of the Coven; and because he didn't want to tell her the truth.

Now his hand has been forced. When a memory returns, the truth must be revealed. And at the end, Damien has to make the decision whether to give up a part of himself, or allow an entity known only as the Dark Fire to consume the soul of an innocent woman.

Buy:  Amazon

Review - 4 stars!


For a novella about the character I dislike the most in the Amber Lee series, I really enjoyed this.  Damien’s story really helped to soften my anger towards him.  Now I only think he’s a typical college aged man who thinks with his…. hormones.  Of course, how Natalie and his relationship (which we don’t see much in the series) develop after the fact he was unfaithful to her….  We’ll have to see, I guess.

As always, Katerina Martinez does NOT disappoint with her writing nor her unique blending of Wiccan magic and fantasy magic.  Darkfire turned out to be the most compelling read of the series.  The descriptive magic was almost realistic.  Excellent read especially if you’re more of a witch fan than a shifter/vampire fan of the paranormal or urban fantasy genres.

As for characterization, I was actually really amazed.  I shouldn’t have been, as the author never disappoints, but the fact I really like Amber and Damien was on my shit list after a certain previous novel made me wonder if I would be able to like Natalie at all.  I mean, I am completely aware this situation is not her fault, nor was she aware of it in the slightest, but it is a little like Amber is a friend of yours, so you end up being prepared NOT to like the other woman.  However, Natalie is soooo sweet, you can’t help but like her.  Admittedly her actual presence wasn’t in most of the novella.  Lily was awesome however!  So was Damien, if he is a little on the… softer side of the male spectrum.  Not that he isn’t male, it’s just he’s not as alpha as I prefer my men (in novels anyway), so he ends up being sweet in this story.

The actual plot is simple but it fits together with other hints of Damien’s past from series.  Things make more sense behind the scenes, though!

So after this short installment to the Amber Lee Mysteries, I have to say Damien is a bit of a sweetheart and I warmed a bit more towards him.  I’m trying to explain without giving too much away of the book, let alone the whole series, but let’s just say, he did something to save someone, which isn’t exactly a choice of the heart.  He’s probably doing the best he can, trying so very hard not to hurt anyone and couldn’t help how he felt about Amber.

So, I don’t hate him anymore.  He’s still not my favorite character, but for the space of a novella, I never even noticed!  Nice job, Kat!


Katerina Martinez is the pen name of a husband-and-wife writing duo living on the Rock of Gibraltar. By day Katerina (that’s her on the picture, by the way) takes care of their five year old daughter and three cats, brainstorming ideas and writing down story beats while Lee works his nine to five in a big office to bring home the bacon. But by night the pair team up to put their ideas together, and when their story is in firmly within their crosshairs they take to their keyboards and bring it all to life.

Pooling their individual strengths to create a single, unified force, Katerina and Lee vaulted into their very first series - the Amber Lee Mysteries, a Paranormal New Adult series - in September of 2014. Nine months later, they’re celebrating the release of their fourth book in the series, with plans to finish all eight books by Halloween of 2015. After that, who knows?

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