Summary: This sequel picks up where The Demon's Lexicon left off, but the point of view shifts to Mae, a supporting character in the last book. Mae is concerned: Despite all the trouble they had with magicians in the previous volume, her brother Jamie is drawn to them. At her wit's end, Mae enlists the help of Alan and Nick, whose brotherly bond has grown strained since the last volume. Mae's life grows ever more complicated as Alan is offered a bargain that might save the world but would hurt Nick, Nick asks Mae for lessons in acting like a normal person, the Goblin Market is revisited, and Mae is torn between her attraction to both brothers and the handsome delinquent Seb from her school. And that's just scratching the surface.
Yay!: Mae comes into her own. The underdeveloped character of before is gone, and instead we have a fully realized and realistic heroine. Admittedly, she makes bad choices at times, but they are within character. And sure, I'm irritated with her for having a crush on Nick. In Demon's Lexicon, I felt like Mae could teach him to love, but seen from her point of view, he's a jerk. On the other hand, who doesn't have a crush on Nick? No hands? That's what I thought.
Mae's brother Jamie is also more clearly defined this go-round, and the reader gets a look into their sibling dynamic instead of Nick and Alan's. At its heart, this series is about family and the lengths humans will go to for one of their own.
The plot is fast and full of action. This book definitely does not suffer from middle-book syndrome like most second volumes of trilogies. The one-liners are thicker on the ground than before, providing a nice offset to the darker and deeper emotions that keep creeping up on Mae.
I loved the resolution of two parts of the romantic quadrangle. Mae definitely gets her comeuppance for thinking it's all about her.
Nay!: I hated the resolution of the final point of the love quadrangle. It made no sense. I can see where all the love relationships are headed now, and it's stereotypical and less than I expected from this series.
Future nay!: The third book will be told from Sin's POV. I actively dislike Sin (which is short for Cynthia, how affected is that?) and am unimpressed with the excerpt I read on the author's website. I hope the final installment isn't a huge disappointment.