Sunday, June 28, 2015

Review: Public Enemies by Ann Aguirre

Public Enemies by Ann Aguirre
Book Two of the Immortal Game series
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: August 4, 2015
Rating: 3 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

In Book 2 of the Immortal Game trilogy, Edie must learn the rules of the game . . . and then play better than anyone else.

Through a Faustian bargain, Edie Kramer has been pulled into the dangerous world of the Immortal Game, where belief makes your nightmares real. Hungry for sport, fears-made-flesh are always raising the stakes. To them, human lives are less than nothing, just pieces on a board.

Because of her boyfriend Kian's sacrifice, she's operating under the mysterious Harbinger's aegis, but his patronage could prove as fatal as the opposition. Raw from deepest loss, she's terrified over the deal Kian made for her. Though her very public enemies keep sending foot soldiers--mercenary monsters committed to her destruction--she's not the one playing under a doom clock. Kian has six months...unless Edie can save him. And this is a game she can't bear to lose.

What I Liked:

I'm actually not 100% sure how I feel about this book. There was no doubt that I would finish it, because I was engrossed in the story while I was reading. But I'm not sure if I fully understood and enjoyed what I was reading. This series in general is weird... this book is weirder than Mortal Danger. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or bad thing.

In this sequel novel, Edie Kramer is desperate to find a loophole to save her boyfriend, Kian. He sacrificed his life for hers, and he will die in a few short months because of the deal he made. But Edie isn't going to take no for an answer, nor is she going to quietly do as she is told by the Harbinger (who is supposed to protect her, courtesy of Kian's deal). Armed with a new and deadly weapon, Edie is more dangerous than weak, and the immortal players of the game fear her. But Edie's battle isn't just with the gods and immortals, but also with Kian's deal to save her. Can she save him?

This book departs completely from the story of Mortal Danger - it's no longer about getting revenge on her classmates. Few characters from book one are present in this book. The plot is completely different - it's all about playing the immortal game, and staying alive. Everyone seems interested in Edie, but Edie is interested in spending time with Kian, trying to find a way out for him, and getting her dad to less of zombie, after her mother's murder.

I can't say I really enjoyed the story... Edie was an okay character, though I barely see any of who she was in Mortal Danger, to be honest. Her voice is just another bland YA female voice, to be honest. I liked her in Mortal Danger, but I was feeling kind of meh towards her in this book. I guess she's kind of kickbutt, but she's not a favorite of mine. Still, better than a whiny YA female.

One thing that I REALLY liked was the Harbinger. I am intrigued by that guy. He's probably a gazillion years old and he can take on any face he wants, but I like him. I bet his hair is soft (this is totally relevant). I would give him a hug! Yay lovable villains.

In general, the story is interesting and well, creepy, which I think the author wants. I don't know if it's this series is my thing (I don't do horror or even low-key creepy books) but I'm intrigued. I am HIGHLY interested in the third book, despite how this one went for me. The ending of this book is INSANE and then WACKY - two events are incredible shocking and I really want to know how things end!

What I Did Not:

One of my biggest issues with this book seriously hindered my ability to really enjoy the book - I couldn't remember much of what happened in Mortal Danger, and I struggled to keep up. The author didn't do a good job of slowly recapping events from book one, so there were a lot of times when I was like, wait. Edie's mom was murdered? Kian bargained away his life? Does xyz friend of Edie's know about the immortal game? Does Edie's father? All of these things (and more) happened in/were details of book one, and yet, I couldn't remember any of them! So I was surprised a lot as I was reading this book, and it had nothing to do with this book - more so, with book one. I needed to reread book one - or the author didn't recap things well.

So this really hurt how well I could enjoy the book. This could have been a "me" problem, I realize that. But I didn't enjoy the book was much as I'd hoped because I was hopelessly confused. Still, the story was good. I just didn't really follow where things were going. Especially since the few things that I DID remember - Edie getting revenge on her classmates - didn't show up in this book basically at all. 

In general, this book is strange. I didn't quite remember that this game involves immortals and gods and whatnot, so that took me aback. And spirits - there is a creepy plot associated with spirits. I didn't care for that and was totally weirded out.

I didn't really like or hate in Edie in this book. It's sad because I really liked her in Mortal Danger, but I didn't really like her in this book. She's lost what made her stand out in the first book, in terms of her voice. Now she just seems like any other YA heroine. 

Kian is pathetic in this book! I didn't find him strong or brave or kind or even swoony. He knows he has a time limit, but literally all he and Edie do is argue and fight, and it's annoying.

So, the romance is... meh. No real swoony scenes, though Kian and Edie take their relationship up a notch. The bickering and fighting and miscommunication really turned me off. Edie doesn't trust Kian for whatever reason, though he loves her so much. Ugh!

Would I Recommend It:

Meh. Maybe. I don't think this book was disappointing, but I didn't really enjoy it as much as I'd hoped. I really, REALLY liked Mortal Danger though, and I'm really, REALLY excited to read Infinite Risk, despite not liking this one much. So, sequel slump?


3 stars. The meaning of sequel slump! When you want to like the book because you liked book one, but it just isn't happening. But I absolutely will still read Infinite Risk - I must know what happens!

Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!


  1. Oh bummer! Despite not loving it, glad to hear you liked it. Or feel middle man over it! Like you, I LOVED Mortal Danger! Though...yeah...I can't remember much about it at the moment! I usually can remember more when reading when the author throws out helpful recaps. But yeah...I didn't even remember that Edie's mom was murdered either! I remembered her wanting to get revenge on everyone and then she started feeling bad about it for some reason. But still went through with some stuff. And her dad? Yeah, don't remember much with him either! LOL!

    Hopefully more will trickle back once I read this one! I do remember vague bits about the ending! I really liked Mortal Danger as well and still look forward to seeing how this one turns out! And yay for the third book having a title! I haven't checked that out yet since I still need to read this one! ;)

    Great review!

    1. I still don't really know how I feel about this book! I'm not sure if it's just my overall feelings about this type of genre - or the book. I would highly recommend you reread Mortal Danger before reading this one.

      In any case, one of the biggest reasons why this book got the "high" rating that it did, despite all of my negative comments, is because I neeeeeed to read the third book! So that's a huge plus. I hope you like Public Enemies, Jessica! ^_^

  2. I SO AGREE WITH YOU! it's like sometimes you run across an awesome book and then its sequel fails to impress but then you NEED to know what happens in the rest of the story so you continye busing the books. Tee hee it happens to me all the time! Sorry you didn't care for this one too much.

    1. YES! I'm glad you understand the feeling! It was very difficult to put into words lol. That's okay - I'm still looking forward to reading book three!

      Thank you for commenting, Keoinda!

  3. I hate when you can't remember what happened in the first book! The last book I read made me feel exactly the same way! I wanted to like it, but I couldnt remember anything about book one and there were like zero helpful recaps!

    Nice review! :)

    1. It's so bad! And the author didn't really help with that process, as many authors try and recap events slowly in the beginning of a sequel. It really detracted from my enjoyment of the story. But oh well!

      Thank you <3

  4. This is actually the absolute first time I've heard of this series. I HATE it when a series traps you like that - the sequel falls so flat but it's not enough to make you want to quit the series altogether.

    1. RIGHT?! I'm in limbo! But I must read the next one... I wouldn't necessarily recommend this series, Zoey, if you hadn't heard of it before!

  5. Gorgeous review Alyssa. <3 Thank you for sharing your thoughts about this one. I'm reading it next, sigh. But I also don't remember much about book one :( It was a three star for me. But I'm hoping that I might like this one too, like you liked it a little :) But aw, she doesn't trust him? That is never a good thing to read about :( And you didn't like her much either? Sigh. But glad you didn't hate the book at least :)

    1. I hope you like it more than I did! That's true, at least I didn't hate it ;D I'll be looking out for your review!

  6. I really don't like it when events of the previous books are recapped. It's very irritating to me which is why I prefer binge-reading series sometimes.
    I wasn't interested in this series in the first place, tbh, but I don't think I'm missing out on anything.
    Sorry this wasn't the best book, Alyssa!

    1. I agree! I was a bit lost O_O And I'm starting to really like the idea of binge-reading series - I'm doing so with the Shatter Me series!

      Probably not the series for you, but thank you for visiting and commenting, Nick! <3


I love comments! I will always try and reply to your comments, as well as leave some comment love on your blog! :)

Also, this an award and tag free blog. While I am flattered that you would think of me, I really do not have the time to follow up. Thank you!