Netherworld (The Chronicles of Koa #1)
By K.N. Lee
4 out of 5
Welcome to a world where vampires must “register,” humans sell their services as pets, and angels patrol the Earth. This is Koa’s world. Koa Ryeo-won is a half-blood. She works alongside her best friend Halston in the Netherworld division. With her legendary, enchanted Lyrinian sword, Koa and the other agents keep order in the mortal world.
Someone is letting rogue supernatural creatures out of the Netherworld and Koa is determined to find out why. She is missing memories of her early teen years, when her vampire father brought her to the Netherworld. Koa will stop at nothing to retrieve those memories and break her mother’s curse.
Koa had it all, an attractive human pet, a sprawling manor, and the ability to walk in the sun. A Netherworld serial killer, with a craving for little girls, threatens it all. Is Koa ready to return to the Netherworld to release the one creature that can protect all that she holds dear? Is she really ready to reclaim those lost memories?
Koa is a young woman living near Paris; she likes popcorn and movies, reading Jane Austen, and spending time with her cat. Oh yes, and she's a vampire (or half-vamp, anyways) who hunts creatures of the Netherworld for a living, and has a boss/best-friend that is sinfully good-looking and too good to be true.
The story follows Koa as she decides to move to England after her home in France being targeted by Syths (Netherworld thugs). She decides that it's time now to find the answers the the questions she's long held: what is her connection with the Netherworld? Why is her mother a cat? Who killed her father?
The good stuff:
Koa. She is awesome. Strong, independent, and lethal. (I have a confession to make - writing this review the very American term of "Kick ass" entered my head for the first time in my life. I'm not sure that is a good experience...)
Koa is a vampire. She makes no apologies for this, nor does she shove the fact down your throat, which I find refreshing after too many brooding vampire characters.
Halston. Yes please. Um, I mean, he's a perfectly acceptable character, a good friend to Koa, and has his own secrets.
The whole idea and telling of the Netherworld is bold and imaginative, although I got a little lost amongst all the many monsters that were suddenly added when Koa and Halston finally got to Netherworld.
Alice - there was a brief glimpse of her, but I have a feeling she's going to be pretty amazing later in the series.
The not-so-good stuff:
I wanted to smack Koa for being so annoyingly naive about Halston. They spend all their time together, hold hands and flirt constantly - jump on him already!
When Halston very nearly gets angry in the Netherworld. Did I miss something? What actually made him boiling hot angry?
The Americanisms. Koa is Korean/French and living in the UK with her English boss, but the story is dotted with American terms and expressions. Not enough to ruin a perfectly good story, but enough to catch my attention.
That ending - what the *#@#! How can you leave us hanging there?!
So, all in all, a book I'd highly recommend to others. When is the next one out?