Touch of Madness Mass Market Paperback – Dec 29 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
In Adams and Clamp's latest, psychic tough gal Kate Reilly returns to find trouble coming from all directions: her gorgeous boyfriend's werewolf pack is trying to break the couple up; she's being sued for her part in a gruesome death; and the Thrall—evil, parasitic vampires who, last time out, tried to make Reilly their new queen—demand her help in finding a batch of missing vampire eggs.[...] Reilly soon discovers that she's the target of a multipronged manhunt and must outwit killers bent on her destruction. Picking up where their bestselling Touch of Evil left off, Adams and Clamp jump straight into the action. Fans will happily rejoin Reilly's story, which features great chemistry between the leads and a swift pace; unfortunately, the overly complex plot will prove a challenge to those not already familiar with the unconventional rules of Adams and Clamp's world. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate Mass Market Paperback edition.
Adams and Clamp continue the paranormal romance series that began with Touch of Evil (2006). In this installment, Kate Reilly is on trial following a debacle involving a hospital study. Her brother, Bryan, is also in trouble. The leader of the werewolf pack wants Tom to reproduce, but Kate is sterile, and she keeps having dreams in which other Not Prey turn up dead. The great appeal of this series is that Clamp and Adams create a fully imagined world and bring multiple, disparate plots together to satisfying effect. Tixier Herald, Diana
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an alternate Mass Market Paperback edition.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Touch of Madness erupts with excitement from the very first paragraph and doesn't let up until the exciting conclusion.
Kate Reilly has had some pretty bad days, but life is about to get even worse. Still reeling from her last battle with the Thrall, parasitic vampire hives who tried to make her their Queen, now she is forced to deal with them again. When a meeting about a scientific experiment involving the Thrall hatchlings and a few Not Prey (explained in Touch of Evil) humans goes horribly awry, Kate finds herself on the witness stand, accused of murder and destruction of hospital property.
As if that wasn't bad enough, the Thrall want Kate to track down their stolen eggs before they die. Forced into a corner, Kate takes the case and finds herself facing an even more dangerous enemy. To top it off, her werewolf boyfriend Tom's pack will do anything necessary to split them up so Tom can fulfill his duty to help the pack grow. Still more is about to confront Kate as she makes some shocking discoveries about just what she can do with her psychic abilities. Can her life get any worse?
CT Adams and Cathy Clamp excel at world building and Touch of Madness is proof of this. Keep in mind it does help to read Touch of Evil first due to so many of the rules of the Thrall society being explained in great depth in that book. So if you haven't read it, you may want to pick it up first to avoid any unnecessary confusion. This second installment in The Thrall series expands on the universe introduced in the preceding novel while revealing some new facets to Kate Reilly's world. And I still have to say they have one of the most unique and fascinating vampire societies I have ever come across, and it's nothing like any others I've read.
Fans of fast paced adventure novels, coupled with strong paranormal elements, and a heck of a lot of relationship steam will love Touch of Madness. Kate sure doesn't have it very easy with everything thrown at her throughout the story and in turn, readers don't either. Every time I thought the pace was going to slow down long enough for me to catch my breath and relieve cramped muscles, another twist was thrown into the story that sped up the heart rate yet again.
While this is a plot driven story, relationships between all of the players are crucial to unfolding events. We are introduced to additional Not Prey cast members from all walks of life, and several countries, who add to the story. Even those ones who may not show up for very long affect the outcome of Kate's story. One of my favorite secondary characters is barely even explored, but still managed to catch my attention. We also get to visit with some friends from Touch of Evil and learn more about them. I don't want to say too much about what happens to these characters though because it will spoil the book for some people.
Of course, Kate and Tom play starring roles. There romance is still going strong, in spite of repeated attempts by Tom's pack and Kate's family to interfere. Their affair is sizzling hot; full of passion as we see them fall even deeper in love. However, as much as their connection drew me in, I actually found myself almost more emotionally invested in the relationship between Kate and her brothers Joe and Brian. Why? Well I don't want to say too much, but I felt for Kate in what she went through with them. Trust me, you'll find yourself a little choked up as well when you come to what I'm hinting at.
I'm very happy to say that with the way Touch of Madness concludes its chapter in The Thrall series it is very clear CT Adams and Cathy Clamp have plenty more in store for us with Kate's story!
© Kelley A. Hartsell, May 2007. All rights reserved.
Miles introduces his colleague Dr. Samantha Greeley, who explains she has 100 parasite incubated eggs of the late Monica. This shocks everyone attending and most leave. Samantha becomes infected and disappears while videographer Mason Watts is killed. While someone steals the eggs and Kate's significant other Tom the werewolf is having trouble with his pack as they want him to mate with one of their own and not a purebred human, the new vampire queen P. Douglas Richards and his top aid ex NBA superstar Lewis Carlton want Kate to discover who stole the eggs.
Readers will root for the strong heroine as she searches for the missing eggs and struggles in her personal relationships with her lover and her older brother, as both object to her independent nature. However, the key to the exciting second Thrall thriller is the werewolves and vampires seem real with their respective complex societal customs. Fans of enthralling supernatural thrillers will appreciate this fine stand alone tale, but reading the previous novel helps the audience better understand the mythos and relationships.
'Touch of Madness' starts a month after the end of the previous book and Kate finds herself once again in the thick of a load of trouble. Some eggs have been stored and while Kate and the other Not Prey are in a meeting to discuss further studies the eggs escape. Kate and police detective Brooks do what they must to stop the infestation and find themselves being sued. At the same time Kate is approached by the vampires to find some other eggs that have been stolen, her relationship with Tom looks like it might have problems because he may be needed to sire more werewolves and Kate is sterile, plus her brother, who is in an almost-zombie state, is proving difficult to handle and may lose his place in the care facility; not to mention two evil and insane women are on the run and they both have it in for Kate.
There are several threads of plots all overlapping and that's what makes the book interesting. There are also several different 'baddies' who are after Kate or those whom she loves, as well as the confusion over good and bad with regard to the Thrall. Kate considers them evil parasites but she's beginning to discover this may not be entirely correct.
The relationship with Tom was well established in the first book and in this book it continues and deepens. Her relationships with other people, such as her brothers Joe and Bryan, come under more scrutiny and we see a lot of heartache amongst them. Kate does come across rather like an early Anita Blake, always in the thick of things, internally conflicted about her actions but brave and almost suicidal at the same time. Fortunately the people around her take care of her and seem amazingly supportive - most of the time.
I initially found this book rather difficult to get into, mainly because I hadn't read the previous book in the series. However after the first couple of chapters I found myself drawn into Kate's world and learning about the events that have made her the person she is. There was an awful lot of backstory from the first book and it was doled out in small portions and that meant I didn't always understand everything but I found the book very enjoyable nevertheless and the non-stop action made it an exciting read. The fact that it was written by two people was never apparent as the writing style felt congruent and smooth without the odd jarring notes that twin authorship can sometimes bring. In conclusion, this is an excellent book and very exciting but it is probably worth reading 'Touch of Evil' first so that there is less complicated plot to work out.
Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book, [...] © Helen Hancox 2007
In this novel they removed most of the corny dialogue but also removed plot, action and interesting characters. In my opinion, very little happened in this book compared to the first one, which was nonstop action. They seem to have replaced the action with romance. I would have been fine with a little more romance but NOT instead of plot and action and sheer bad assness. For instance, the main character becomes wishy-washy, losing her assertiveness as she worries more about everyone liking her. This really changed the character and tone of the book...needs mas chingon.
If you like a little action with your romance, I think you will enjoy this book very much, especially if you enjoy corny, old-fashioned couples, dialogue and traditional values. If you prefer action, something a little outside the box to make you think, and really interesting characters...which the first book had...you may not enjoy this book so much. You decide.
Because of her experiences with the vampiric parasites called The Thrall, Kate Reilly is asked to take part in an experiment. But things go wrong in the worst possible way, and Kate has to face several powerful enemies as a result. As if that weren't bad enough, she is blackmailed by the Thrall-queens to try and find a batch of their young who were stolen as a result of the experiment. And while things have been going great with her werewolf-boyfriend Tom, his pack wants to break them up because they want him as a breeder and not with someone like Kate. Will she manage to survive her old and new enemies and save her relationship with Tom?
Just like the first part of the trilogy, this is an excellent book with a great plot, excellent world-building, lots of originality and interesting characters. It's one of the best books in the paranormal / dark urban romance genre and definitely worth buying.