This book really didn’t grab me; I found the pages of narration about how the main characters wanted to fall all over each other sexually to be overkill, and the plot meandered toward what seemed like the major point – and epic quest – that is finished rather quickly and easily and then the plot just takes another corner and wanders on.
I also found the blonde, green-eyed Amazon (an immortal Night Hunter) from ancient Greece rather jarring, especially when nearly every other woman and female demon or werebeast in the book is described as blonde as well, and blonde werebears? Really?
I counted only three female characters with other than blonde hair – the goddess Artemis with red hair, the Chinese Night Hunter with black, and a demoness with black hair.
The book is set in New Orleans, and the only character described as humanly non-white (some demons are blue or purple or red) is a Chinese Night Hunter. One would think if werebeasts can be blonde and blue-eyed, they could be black, especially if they are in New Orleans – and there are normal humans present in the Sanctuary bar.
Throughout the book, several women are described as unreasonable and/or incompetent. The male main character has a mother who blamed him as a child for his brothers being murdered by a rival werebeast clan – she blamed him for surviving, although they instructed him to save his sister, which he did. Not only did she do this in her grief at the moment, but she held it against him all the centuries of her life. His sister frequently has moods all the men of the family just ignore, and she is responsible for erasing the memories of oblivious humans who see what they shouldn’t in the family’s bar – and she is not competent, and harms them, and they let her do it anyway, and just feel sorry for the people.
When the epic quest comes around in the latter part of the book, the werebeast, the Amazon Night Hunter, and two male Night Hunters go to achieve the goal – the female Chinese Night Hunter is left out for no apparent reason, although she is at least as capable as the men, and was responsible for the Amazon’s protection detail as much as the men were (she’s the focus of the quest).
I did like the description that is given of Amazonian society, freedom and security for men and women alike to do what they want. It is described as very egalitarian in some ways, although the women are in charge – not like some of the legends.
Also, the two female Night Hunters kick ass quite well on their own, and the Amazon only needs help because she’s become the focus of some serious bad guys none of them could fight alone. The story does focus on her letting go of some pain from the ancient past – but does not focus on her learning she needs a man.
I do not know how common in the genre are stories based entirely outside the Christian mythos, but I found that part refreshing. Everything was located within the fantasy and Greek mythos – gods, demigods, demons, Daimons, werebeasts, etc.