Author: Carrie Vaughn
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Kitty Norville #12
Mass Market Paperback, 305 pages
Publication: July 30, 2013 by Tor Books
As Denver adjusts to a new master vampire, Kitty gets word of an intruder in the Denver werewolf pack’s territory, and she investigates the challenge to her authority. She follows the scent of the lycanthrope through the mountains where she is lured into a trap, tranquilized, and captured. When she wakes up, she finds herself in a defunct silver mine: the perfect cage for a werewolf. Her captors are a mysterious cult seeking to induct Kitty into their ranks in a ritual they hope will put an end to Dux Bellorum. Though skeptical of their power, even Kitty finds herself struggling to resist joining their cause. Whatever she decides, they expect Kitty to join them in their plot . . . willingly or otherwise.
In the 12th installment of the Kitty Norville series, we find Kitty in a whole new scary situation. Kitty just heard word from Washington that one of her allies and strong key player was taken out when he went after Roman/Dux Bellorum on his own. Roman is searching for an object of power in his home territory, and so far the group has no way of pinpointing Roman or an idea of how to defeat him. He is amassing powers and followers in The Long Game and Kitty and her allies need to hurry up and figure out a plan before he gains more power than he has now. With everyone on the defense that Roman will change tactics and strike at them first; Kitty get nervous when she gets a report that two weres trespassed on her territory. Kitty and one of her pack-mate goes out to the territory boundaries to search for the two trespassers, but things takes a turn for the worst when Kitty gets knocked out and taken prisoner.
About 80% of the book, Kitty is held prisoner by what seem like crazy fanatics/or some New Age-er (her captors think they’re avatars for greater beings). They try to brainwash Kitty into joining their fight against Roman as well. The captors believe that through a ritual they can find and destroy Roman once and for all. Kitty isn’t so sure of the whole ritual idea, but one part of her wants to escape and another part of her wants to see if it is really possible. So many lives have been affected and lost against the war with Roman, and what she wouldn’t do to stop it all. Kitty is going through an internal fight in this book. She is fighting whether she believes they can do what they said, and whether she is willing to sacrifice herself like her ally in Barcelona. This was a slower book than the previous novel, not much action and the characters are all mostly talking things out. We learn a lot more about Roman, where he came from, why he was made, what he thinks of immortality, and his main goal for The Long Game. I think the history/background we learn about Roman and the new characters really make up for the lack of action this time around. I found it all fascinating and loved how the author incorporated many myths and cultures into their background.
Overall, Kitty in the Underworld was another great addition to the series. I may be new to this series, but I can’t help but admire Kitty’s character. She is so developed, not only herself but her relationship with her mate, her pack, and her allies against Roman. She’s a strong leader, and know what she is and isn’t capable of…she never pretends to be anything other than who she is now. With a somber cliff-hanger ending, I can’t wait to see what happens in the next book!