The Immortal Circus: Act Two by A. R. Kahler
Vivienne is almost content with her new life in the Cirque des Immortels. She has moved up from selling cotton candy to telling fortunes, she has a gorgeous, magical boyfriend, Kingston...and no one has been murdered since the clash between the otherworldly Courts. Her life under the faerie big top would be perfect, in fact, if not for the nightmares and visions that compel her to seek and confront her half-remembered past. But for Viv, not knowing her past may well be a blessing. There's a reason she ran away. But can she truly escape herself?
Review by Brittany:
I read and enjoyed - and reviewed - the first in this series, so buying Act Two was a no-brainer for me.
This story is supposed to be about a magical circus, but about half of this installment does not take place at the circus. Instead, there is more focus on the different faerie Courts and what both Mab and Oberon - the Queen of the Winter Court and the King of the Summer Court - want with Vivienne.
One thing that was lacking from the first Act was answers to the mysteries of Vivienne's past. This book explores more of what she went through and why she ran to the circus, under the contention that her memory would be erased. More importantly, this book also explains why Vivienne is such an important player for both sides.
This book made me fall in love with Mab a little more. She's a character that intrigues me so much, largely because all of the other characters essentially fear her. She is also the most cunning of all the characters, understanding how to manipulate people and her surroundings to put herself in a prime position of power. There's something about her that leaves me in awe, even though I'm not really supposed to love the villain. I look forward to reading more about Mab in the Final Act, which I have already purchased.
I'm still not sold on the fey as supernatural creatures. For me, they just aren't my favorite, although this author has done a great job of making them more interesting to me. For those who are interested in supernatural stories, this series is a good choice. I would not recommend reading this one if you have not read the first, though.