I received this book for free from my own shelves in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Nancy Yost Literary Agency on December 20, 2016
Source: my own shelves
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Also by this author: Burn For Me, Magic Shifts, Burn for Me, Magic Binds, White Hot, Wildfire, Iron and Magic, Magic Triumphs, Magic Bites , Magic Burns, Magic Strikes , Magic Bleeds, Magic Slays , Gunmetal Magic, "Gerard Demille and Helen Meet", "Diamond Fire", Magic Rises , Magic Breaks, Magic Shifts , Magic Binds , Magic Triumphs, "Sweep with Me", Clean Sweep, Sweep in Peace, "Questing Beast", "A Mere Formality", Blood Heir, "The King of Fire", Blood Heir , Sapphire Flames, "A Misunderstanding", Emerald Blaze, "The Cool Aunt", Burn for Me , Sweep of the Blade, White Hot , "Silent Blade", Fated Blades, On the Edge, Bayou Moon, "George and Jack in School"
Third in The Innkeeper Chronicles urban fantasy series and revolving around Dina Demille, an innkeeper for the galaxy and set in Red Deer, Texas. The focus is on Dina and Sean and Maud and Arland . . . and Helen.
Do read the “Teaser to Sweep of the Blade” at the end of the story first; it should have been the prologue for this story.
The series arc is finding Dina’s parents. Her brother is searching the galaxy for them, and Dina became an innkeeper hoping for a guest who knows something.
That Maud is certainly proficient. She also carries a blood sword.
Oh, crack me up! I couldn’t help it. Helen squeaks “Yes, chef!” as she helps Orro in the kitchen. Oh, lordy, the fart gun! Then Orro’s explanation of Christmas. Oh man, oh man *lmao*
The Draziri are bad, the muskrats are weird, and that corrupted innkeeper is an abomination. And yes, we do learn a bit more about that. Scary stuff.
Andrews is using first person protagonist point-of-view from Dina’s perspective, so we experience her thoughts, emotions, and experiences. And yep, more scary stuff.
I love the inn! I want, want, want one! I do like that Gertrude Hunt has eyes everywhere. Very handy. Even better is the ability to change the building, add new rooms, change the decor at a thought, the war room, the inn’s healing ability . . . I love Orro too! Okay, so most of it is because I’d love for him to cook for me, but he’s also such a drama queen, lol.
There’s plenty of back history here, as Dina and Maud catch up on their lives and remember their childhood. Dina also learns some nasty truths about herself.
Aww, that Sean is so dang sweet! As for Helen, oh yeah, I do adore that child, lol.
The story is filled with fast-moving action — lots and lots of battle and plotting, and its characters drive it all. Yep, Gertrude Hunt is definitely a character.
It’s too intriguing for words, and I couldn’t stop reading it.
The one unbreakable rule for visitors to earth is to never let themselves be discovered.
Then the Ku arrives on his bike. Oh boy. Then the Hiru shows up with a stark plea to save his people.
There’ll be an invasion for sure. And the enemy has a very important hostage.
Dina Demille is an innkeeper for the Gertrude Hunt Bed and Breakfast. Beast is Dina’s tiny Shih Tzu-Chi. Maud is Dina’s sister who’s married to the stupidly ambitious Melizard, the second son of the Marshall of House Ervan. They’re living on Noceen in the Holy Anocracy. Helen is their five-year-old daughter. Klaus is Dina’s and Maude’s brother out searching for their missing parents, Gerard and Hellen Demille (“Gerard Demille and Helen Meet“, 0.1). Helen names the rescued Main Coon Olasard, a.k.a. the Ripper of Souls.
The Gertrude Hunt Bed and Breakfast is . . .
. . . a somewhat sentient three-story inn built in the 1880s that works with her innkeeper to cater to the needs of her guests. Her Grace, Caldenia ka ret Magren, a.k.a. Letre Olivione, is a refugee, a former galactic tyrant, and a permanent guest of Gertrude Hunt. Orro, a Quillion, is a Red Cleaver chef. Wing is a Ku with a message.
Sean Evans is an alpha-strain werewolf without a planet and recently back from the war on Nexus, a mineral-rich planet. He’d been the latest Turan Adin. His dad, Corwin, is a lawyer. His mom is Gabriele. Agran is a friend of Sean’s parents.
Margaret and Ramirez are neighbors. Asad is Ramirez’s Rhodesian Ridgeback. Officer Marais is one suspicious, meticulous cop, which makes events more “exciting”, lol.
Casa Feliz is . . .
. . . one of the largest and best known inns in the southwest. It’s run by Brian Rodriguez. Tony is his son.
The Holy Anocracy is . . .
. . . a group of aristocratic vampire Houses, i.e., clans. Arland of House Krahr is a friend of Dina’s, who’d like to make it more, and a Marshall of his House. Knight Sergeant Lord Soren is the son of Rok, son of Gartena, Baron of Nur Castle and Arland’s uncle. Knight Ruin accompanies Arland. Lord Cherush, Soren’s second cousin, was on Karhari.
Kahari is a closed planet deep in Holy Anocracy Territory. The Road Lodge is a bar/inn. House Kor had a base there. Other Houses include House Ilun, House Wrir, and House Morr. Eren of House Phis (the Northern branch), Lord Kaylin‘s ward, is of marriageable age. Eren’s mother is of House Toran.
Baha-char is . . .
. . . an intergalactic market place. Wilmos Gerwar, a werewolf and neurosurgeon, sells weapons and armor and brokers deals. Another shop is run by Aka Lorvus. Muckrats are disgusting magpies of the galaxy. Four-feet tall, they look like upright weasels, and they wear little leather kilts. Nuan Cee is a powerful Merchant who specializes in rare goods. Cookie, a.k.a. Nuan Couki, is Nuan Cee’s thrice-removed cousin’s seventh son. There is a Took merchant who sells shoes. Michael Braswell had been Klaus’ best friend and an innkeeper who went wrong.
The peace summit (Sweep in Peace, 2) had been between the Holy Anocracy, the Hope-Crushing Horde, and the Merchants of Baha-char.
The Hiru look . . .
. . like they’re composed of garbage and look vaguely humanoid. Sunset, a tari whose family doctored trees, is the Hiru who shows up at Gertrude Hunt. Moonlight-on-the-Water is the next to show up; her family studied the pathways between stars.
The Draziri are . . .
. . . a martial theocracy that is moderately xenophobic; the Hiru were the first the Draziri tried to exterminate.
Kiran Mrak translates as . . .
. . . the First Bird of the Flock Wraith, and the flock plays dirty, dealing mostly in arms dealing, espionage, and assassinations. Kiran Mrak za Ezara za Krala-Kric is its leader. Rookar Mrak za Ezara za Krala-Kric is Kiran’s great-grandfather. Mekrikzi is Kiran’s beloved mother. An onizeri is a high priest. Caldenia claims Draziri are very tasty.
The inns are a way station for aliens passing through. Ku are mostly reptilian and don’t give a toss for rules. They need to perform a great deed and bring proof. The Oporians are a larger version of the Ku whom they regard as a tasty snack. The werewolves of Auul were poets (Clean Sweep, 1). Kolina is a planet far, far from Earth. The Khanum of the Hope-Crushing Horde had been one of Dina’s guests. An ad-hal is an enforcer on Earth, serving the Assembly and the Galactic Senate. Londar Len Teles is a killer plant, a world killer.
George is an Arbitrator who stopped on Kahari (Sweep in Peace, 2, from The Edge series by Ilona Andrews). The Archivarius is a multipart being with a hive mind. The Sanctuary of Eno, a group of prophets, is the location of one of the Archivarians. The Holy Seramina, a Kelah, wants to see Dina. A Gardener’s web is a parasitic organism.
Buc-ee’s is a chain of gas stations with restaurants and travel centers in Texas.
The Cover and Title
The cover is a graphic with part of a grayish Victorian house in the background — a white porch, a mansard roof, and a widow’s walk at the top of the tower. In the far background, it’s a galaxy sky of stars in blues and purples with some of those stars crossing Dina’s thighs. Dina herself, with her long blonde hair waving in the wind, is wearing her gray innkeeper’s cloak swept to the right, a grey T-shirt, and jeans. In her right hand she holds a gleaming sword. At the very top is an info blurb in white. Below that and above Dina’s head is the author’s name in yellow with a black outline. The title sweeps across Dina’s waist and thighs in a pale blue outlined in yellow.
There are a number of possibilities for the title, One Fell Sweep, from the “ease” of their escape from Karhari, Arland’s reaction to Maud and Helen, Sean’s tumble, and/or Dina’s collapse.