The Immortal Circus: Act Two (Cirque des Immortels #2) by A.R. Kahler

the immortal circus, act two, a. r. kahlerSynopsis: Vivienne is almost content with her new life in the Cirque des Immortels. She has moved up from selling cotton candy to telling fortunes, she has a gorgeous, magical boyfriend, Kingston…and no one has been murdered since the clash between the otherworldly Courts. Her life under the faerie big top would be perfect, in fact, if not for the nightmares and visions that compel her to seek and confront her half-remembered past. But for Viv, not knowing her past may well be a blessing. There’s a reason she ran away. But can she truly escape herself?  The second act of the fantastically evocative Cirque des Immortels series, The Immortal Circus: Act Two draws readers further into a world that’s at once wonderful, seductive…and deadly. Step right up…

Review: I purchased this one as a kindle serial when it’d started, but I didn’t read it until it was completed. I’m very glad I made that decision.  I was excited to finally read this as I was very impressed with the debut.  And while I thought it was still a fairly strong read, it didn’t quite hit the mark for me as much as book 1 did.  There were a lot of revelations and plots twists that weren’t always predictable, but I didn’t necessarily enjoy where they led.  Its short page count tends to limit character development as well, so some characters (villains especially) came off as more two-dimensional. Kingston is probably my favorite character in this series. His magic abilities are always interesting and the story really comes alive when he’s on the page, but his secrets could lead to steep consequences so trusting him may not be very easy or smart.

The plot lines relating to the circus were good, but when Viv gets more involved in faerie politics it kind of lost me.  It wasn’t necessarily bad and it does answer lingering questions, but it wasn’t very engaging or as unique.  It also finishes with an open end. I wouldn’t quite call it a cliffhanger, but it wasn’t totally satisfying either.   It would not surprise me if this series is a trilogy because this book felt like a trilogy’s second book, providing new developments while still leaving a lot on the table.  Gripes aside, I am looking forward to Act 3 next year. I doubt I will read that one as a serial either because certain chapters were total cliffhangers.

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