Title: Owl and the Japanese Circus
Author: Kristi Charish
Publisher: Gallery Books
Release Date: January 13, 2015
Pages: 433
Book Source: Library

5star

You know that old saying, Don’t Choose a Book by It’s Cover? I usually don’t. I often pick a book by it’s title, that’s why I chose “Owl and the Japanese Circus” by Kristi Charish.
Owls in a Japanese circus act? What are they doing? But wait, this is an Urban Fantasy, so that can’t even be close to what it’s about. I flipped the book over and started reading the back.

“Fans of Kim Harrison, Jim Butcher, and Linda Hamilton will flock to the kick-ass world of Owl, a modern-day “Indiana Jane” who reluctantly navigates the hidden supernatural world.”

Harrison and Butcher’s books are ones that I read as soon as they come out. And I’ve never heard of Linda Hamilton, but maybe they meant Laurell K. Hamilton, and I used to read her books… sounds excellent so far.

Then I read “modern-day “Indiana Jane”. What is that meme? Shut up and take my money.
I have watched the first three Indiana Jones movies more times than Kate Chapshaw screams in the Temple of Doom. Plus my mom always wanted to be an archaeologist, which meant a part of me growing up wanted to be that too (as well as a veterinarian or a detective).

Yeah, the advertising team knew exactly what to say to get me to pick up this book.

Before I go farther into this review, here is a brief synopsis for the first book in the Adventures of Owl series taken from Kristi Charish’s website:
“Ex-archaeology grad student turned international antiquities thief, Alix—better known now as Owl—has one rule. No supernatural jobs. Ever. Until she crosses paths with Mr. Kurosawa, a red dragon who owns and runs the Japanese Circus Casino in Las Vegas. He insists Owl retrieve an artifact stolen three thousand years ago, and makes her an offer she can’t refuse: he’ll get rid of a pack of vampires that want her dead. A dragon is about the only entity on the planet that can deliver on Owl’s vampire problem – and let’s face it, dragons are known to eat the odd thief.”

This is a fast paced book with Owl, her friends and her cat (whose breed is used to hunt vampires) going from an archaeology dig to an encounter with dangerous supernaturals to another action scene. But Charish still leaves time for great character development, and the start of a romance.

I am not an online gamer myself, but I have some friends who do. So I really enjoyed how Charish incorporated a second story line, that is essential to the main story, with the gaming world. Although Owl has a strict rule of keeping the two worlds separate, one of the people on her team doesn’t care to follow that rule. And this saves Owl’s life.

It was mentioned quite a few times in the book about Owl being socially awkward. But for me it came across more as being young, not having had a lot of experiences with guys, and in general, not giving a F*** what people (especially supernaturals) thought of her.
We do see some growth of Owl by the end of the series, which was wonderful, especially in the romance department. One of my rants is when one or both of the main characters keeps going back and for with, I like you, but I don’t/can’t like you. There was a touch of this, but it was handled well, and didn’t make me want to put the book down.

So if you like your books with dragons, nagas, vampires, cats, incubuses, samurai ghosts, thralls, nymphs, archaeologists, or online gamers, then you’re in luck. Even if you don’t I would still recommend reading this book.
Go get yourself a copy and then come back here and tell me what you thought.
I’ll be here, waiting patiently for the next book to come out.

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