The setting was very interesting - the intertwinement of faeries and werewolves and all sort of supernatural creatures living in a modern world where people know about them but generally treat them as inferior to them. It allows for some interesting exploration of themes of racism, intolerance and stereotyping. (Though the protagonists tend to indulge in such behavior as much as the seeming villians.) But it was different and I thought it could have really taken the story in a great direction.
What I got was angsty whining over Gwen's relationship with Zach. And their entire relationship was based on what exactly? Clearly not honesty and any sort of lasting affection or understanding since after Gwen sleeps with Zach and tells him she is half-pooka he dumps her like a hot coal. Ick. Gwen was sort of a moron with that whole situation. Sure, she is "feisty" and "rebellious" and "independent." What that meant was she was willfully stupid and kept running off into danger before ever using a whit of common sense. She was totally prejudiced against the werewolves and vampires, seeing them all as inferior to her since they were "bloodborn" and assuming they were all killers and criminals. And then complains about how everybody is so biased against paranormals. Like she has any right to be affronted when she treats those she considers somehow less than her the same way she dislikes being treated. And she is so determined that a werewolf is the serial killer even when it becomes increasingly clear he isn't. And who is? The rabid, fanatical, bigoted Christians of the story. Of. Course. What other motive is there than righteously exterminating these misbegotten creatures and freeing their souls from damnation. Spare me. The next book that uses Christians (and also refuses to show one decent Christian through out) is only going to confirm the a) lack of creativity and b) lack of tolerance that exists. It is bad if anyone else is treated so, but the Christians? Never a good word to say about that lot.
Tavian was all right, though a bit bland and he and Gwen fell "in
love" way too quickly. The prose was direct and very dry.
So, premise and setting were liked. The cover fits the story very well - gets hair and eye colour correct, the wood setting very accurate and reflective of many of the scenes in the book. I like how what I had thought was the shoulder of a dress is actually feathers showing a shifting into a bird.
But the characters, content, and style were not to my liking.