Title: Madison's Song
Author: Christine Amsden
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Standalone, companion novel to the Cassie Scot series
Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Publication: Out now in eBook, September 15, 2015 (paperback)
Source: I received a review copy from the author in exchange for a honest review.
Her voice is enchanting; his soul is black…I was sad when the Cassie Scot series was over. There were only four books in the series but I thought there was still so much to explore and stories to be told. However, last year the author revealed that she too, wasn’t ready to leave Cassie’s world and thus was writing two companion novels in the same world focusing on Cassie’s best friends Madison and Kaitlin. And I’m happy to say Madison’s Song did not disappoint!
Madison Carter has been terrified of Scott Lee since the night he saved her from an evil sorcerer – then melted into a man-eating monster before her eyes. The werewolf is a slave to the moon, but Madison’s nightmares are not.
Despite her fears, when Madison’s brother, Clinton, is bitten by a werewolf, she knows there is only one man who can help. A man who frightens her all the more because even in her nightmares, he also thrills her.
Together for the first time since that terrible night, Scott and Madison drive to Clinton’s home only to discover that he’s vanished. Frantic now, Madison must overcome her fears and uncover hidden strengths if she hopes to save him. And she’s not the only one fighting inner demons. Scott’s are literal, and they have him convinced that he will never deserve the woman he loves.
Madison’s Song focuses mostly on Madison, Scot, and werewolf hierarchy and dynamics. Madison’s brother Clinton gets bitten by a werewolf and imprisoned and the first person Madison seeks help from is Evan’s best friend, Scot, a powerful sorcerer and alpha. What they thought was just a newbie lone wolf attack turns out to be a sinister government black operations gone wrong…and only Madison can save them all.
Amsden did a wonderful job expanding on Madison and Scot’s character as well as delving deeper into the werewolf society; since Madison and Scot played minor/secondary characters before and we only knew the minimum about Scot and his pack. Werewolves are one of my favorite paranormal creatures, so I had no problem getting sucked into the story. Readers will not only meet Scot’s pack but other territories alphas and see how things are run differently than the sorcerer’s covens/families. I really liked Madison’s character, she’s relatable in the sense that she’s shy, quiet and like any girl has some insecurities but by the end of the book she learns to love herself and embrace her powers and see that she can use magic not only to help others but also as self-defense without hurting anyone. Scot was the perfect alpha, he’s a fair and understanding leader and doesn’t shy away from getting his hands dirty if it means protecting everyone for the greater good. I also liked that Scot and the other werewolves weren’t shown as timid swoon worthy boys/girls next-door. These werewolves are dangerous and vicious and at the end of the day they’re killers ….not some cute little pup; which is usually depicted as-so in other books.
All in all, Madison’s song is another great read by Amsden. If you loved and read Cassie Scot, then you’ll definitely love this book too! Madison is a great heroine who can no doubt carry her own story and keep the readers engaged and entertained. This can’t be said for all spin-off/companion novels. They either work or they don’t and in Amsden’s case…we have another winner! I can’t wait to read Kaitlin’s book next! I highly recommend this to all UF readers, you won’t be disappointed!
“Silence,” David commanded.
Her throat continued to work, but no sound emerged. She felt like a fish being gutted, choking and spluttering as David returned to the work of cutting into the soft, sensitive flesh of her belly. Yet even as tears refilled her eyes and fear devoured her heart, some part of her recognized that her guts remained intact. Whatever David was doing to her with the dagger involved tracing shallow patterns across the surface of her skin.
Fight the pain. Take deep breaths. Ground and center. She was not in the empty living room of a house she had not quite moved into yet, she was at church, singing in the choir. Above her, Jesus hung from a cross, a crown of thorns atop his head, a soft glow surrounding him. She usually found the magic within that glow. She reached for it...
“Stop that!” David slapped her hard across the face.
Once again her eyes flew open. She saw the dagger dripping with blood – her blood. Had her feeble grab for magic actually made a difference? David seemed to have noticed something, but what?
“You're just making this harder on yourself,” David said.
“What do you want?” Madison tried to ask. Her mouth moved, her lips forming the question, but no sound emerged.
She didn't think he would answer; he couldn't even have heard the question, but to her surprise he only hesitated a moment before saying, “Your soul.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Christine Amsden has been writing science fiction and fantasy for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.
Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children, Drake and Celeste.