Review – Goddess With a Blade by Lauren Dane

Publisher: Carina Press
Publish Date: Out Now
How I got this book: NetGalley


Armed with a blessed blade and blood from a goddess, Rowan Summerwaite’s got a divine mission. Embodying a Vampire’s worst nightmare is a big job, but someone’s got to do it.

Freshly returned from a political firestorm that erupted after she’d executed the last Scion, Rowan hopes for a period of peace and quiet with the new replacement.

But before long, human women are being found in and around Las Vegas and it’s clear to her the killer is a Vampire. Clive Stewart rules his Vampires with an iron fist in the wake of a spectacular failure on the part of his predecessor. He doesn’t make the mistake of underestimating The Hunter. He knows she’s a predator just like him so he agrees to help her investigation. Within limits.

But nothing between Clive and Rowan stays within the lines and before long, things are tangled and dangerous both personally and professionally.
*Blurb from Goodreads*


I wanted to love this book. Urban Fantasy is my first love, and I’m usually a fan of Dane’s work, but I have to say I was a little disappointed in this one.

Rowan is the Vessel for the goddess Brigid and her job as Hunter is to make sure that the vampires of Las Vegas stick to their treaty and not kill humans. But a mad vampire is on the loose, killing women in a graphic and horrific way, and it’s up to Rowan to solve these grizzly murders. But between having to keep secrets from the human police, and the new vampire master in town, solving this murder is even harder than she thought.

Clive wanted to come to Vegas, but was worried about the Hunter in town. With the protection of her foster father and Lord of all vampires, there are misconceptions that she gets away with murder, literally. But once he gets to know Rowan and spend more time with her, he realized that she has so much to offer both him and the community at large. But will they be able to come to some kind of understanding before the murdering vamp sets his sights on Rowan?

I hate when a book I’m really excited for has me feeling just meh the whole way through. I can’t say there was any one thing about this book that I particularly didn’t like, but there also wasn’t anything that I really loved either. It was just very average, on all fronts.

The thing I like the most about the book was probably the world building. I like the aspect of Rowan being the vessel for a goddess, and acting as the keeper of the treaty. It was a nice blend of mythology and vampires that was a fresh and new idea. I have to say though, I felt like there could have been so much more done with it. It seemed like a times scenes were rushed along and it could have been expanded on and explained better throughout.

I wasn’t a huge fan of the characters either. Don’t get me wrong, there were elements of both Rowan and Clive that I liked, but as a whole I just found myself not connecting with either of them like I usually do in UF series. Rowan is a fairly typical UF heroine; she kicks ass with a sword, has a takes no prisoners attitude, and yet has brief glimpses of vulnerability. I did like the few times we really got into her mind and were able to see her struggles with having to be so hard all the time.

Likewise Clive is a typical hero. He’s handsome, classy, a little pigheaded and possessive to a fault. But there were times I thought he acted out of character. For example, he and Rowan were beginning to build a relationship and Rowan was put into a situation where she has to defend herself against a vamp. When Clive finds out, he impulsively accuses Rowan of acting out of line. Yet he seemed to be starting to trust her, seeing things her way and was already having trust issues with his own people. To me, it felt out of line for him to not look into things on his own before blowing up.

Dane really does erotica best, and the sex scenes rocked throughout the story, of course. It definitely wasn’t as steamy as her normal stuff, but I applaud the fact that she can really shape the romance to the story. Although Clive and Rowan danced around each other for most of the book, I think she also did a great job of showing just how compatible they were, both in bed and out of it.

All in all it was a decent read. There were little aspects I liked here and there, but definitely thought it could have used some expanding on many scenes and ideas. I don’t know if Dane plans to make this a series, but I can only hope that we get some additional resolution to some of the sub-plots.

I give Goddess With A Blade a C

4 thoughts on “Review – Goddess With a Blade by Lauren Dane”

  1. The blurb/summary really catches my attention, but the lack of connection w/characters and unresolved plot stuff makes me want to wait to see if there is a sequel before trying this one. Thanks for the review

  2. @Mandi – I hate writing reviews like this, where the whole books was just meh… Not Dane’s best work, unfortunately. Cuz I love her other stuff!

  3. I’m in the middle of it, and feeling the same way. 🙁

    I usually LOVE Dane’s writing (especially her futuristics), but this one is just not working for me. Mostly due to Rowan, I think. I love kick-ass heroines, but she’s coming across as almost a caricature of one. I’m going to finish it, but am skimming quite a bit, at this point.

  4. @Renee – I feel for ya. I hate when an author you really like has an only so-so release.

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