Conspiracy of Ravens by Lila Bowen

Conspiracy of Ravens by Lila Bowen

Conspiracy of Ravens by Lila Bowen
Series: The Shadow
On Sale Date: October 11, 2016
Adult Fiction \ Fantasy \ Historical
Orbit, 368 pages
Source: Publisher
My Rating: 4 Stars

Nettie Lonesome made a leap -- not knowing what she'd become. But now the destiny of the Shadow is calling.

A powerful alchemist is leaving a trail of dead across the prairie. And the Shadow must face the ultimate challenge: side with her friends and the badge on her chest or take off alone on the dangerous mission pulling her inexorably toward the fight of her life.

When it comes to monsters and men, the world isn't black and white. What good are two wings and a gun when your enemy can command a conspiracy of ravens?

Conspiracy Of Ravens, the second book in Lila Bowen's The Shadow series, once again takes readers to the Weird West as monsters, magic, and the supernatural call the wild west home. 

I think Lila Bowen must have a magic pen, one that helps her write grit and dust! One of the standout features in this series is the vivid and believability of the setting and its characters. Supernatural happenings right alongside your typical western shenanigans. 

The story opens with Rhett on a quest against an alchemist who is leaving a trail of dead across the prairie, and along the way, picking up a motley crew of stray characters who join his posse. Just as the sands blow across the prairie, you can count on Rhett to find supernatural happenings. As the Shadow, he is reminiscent of a bounty hunter chosen to take down dangerous supernatural creatures that cross the line into the human realm, threatening them. 

Speaking of grit and dust, out protagonist, Rhett is known for his stubbornness and kickass-ness, and like I've mentioned before, calling bullshit when needed to. I loved the no-nonsense attitude and behind it a vulnerability of a complex hero. Unapologetic, completely loyal, Rhett is one unique character to follow.

A big part of the story is a transitioning of the protagonist from Nettie to Rhett and Ms. Bowen creates a character that is empathetic and admirable. The overlapping supernatural and gender identity was something very different for me to read about, one I don't think I've come across before, but it's done with honesty and heartfelt attitude. 

Now, having said that at times I felt the story got a bit muddled with the varied romantic relationships Rhett experiences, threatening to overshadow the all the weird Western kickass and supernatural goodness I kept wanting to get back to. But, it was understandable as Rhett is still figuring out his way.

A mix of western and supernatural, a lot of grit and heart, Conspiracy Of Ravens ends on a great note, if somewhat of a cliffhanger. I was expecting this to wrap up the series but have since discovered Rhett is in for much more adventure with upcoming books next year.  

As Rhett would say, "this ain't over."