Friday, December 18

Evelyn Vaughn: Seventh Key

When the wife and daughter of one of the wealthiest men alive are kidnapped, the ransom requested is not money. The abductors want the woman’s expert knowledge of ancient artefacts and are holding her daughter, along with several other children, hostage. If she complies with their demands to deliver the Black Madonna mosaic they will use its power to destroy the world, if she doesn’t her child will die.
With the help of her husband, and a small group of hereditary priestesses, she has just days to find the key to the mosaic’s power and use it to save, not only her child, but the world as we know it.
This is the final in the seven book Madonna Key series and to be perfectly honest, it was less than I had hoped for.
My disappointment isn’t with the writing which was fast paced. Nor was it with the plot, which while not entirely to my taste (I don’t like the presence of children, particularly young children in a romantic adventure setting), was action-packed and tied up the series nicely. It was with the characters and their relationships to each other.
Having read the entire series I was familiar with all the major players and their behaviour didn’t seem consistent with the personalities presented in earlier works. In addition there was obviously a negative history between at least two of the characters that was not explained and their interpersonal issues seemed to be overcome with relative ease.
If not for the fact that Alex had recently read a book by this author from another series, a book I read quite some time ago, and was able to refresh my memory about these women and their past conflict I would have been completely confused as to what was going on between them.
I’m all for recycling characters and cross referencing series, it’s always nice to find out what old friends are up to, but in this case it simply didn’t work and left me confused for much of the story.
I really liked the idea of this series. The quality of individual instalments was variable and I am a bit disappointed that the series didn’t finish with the same bang that it started with. Overall not a bad series but not one I’d be quick to recommend or reread.-Lynn

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