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Banshee Charmer (From the Files of the…

Banshee Charmer (From the Files of the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency)

by Tiffany Allee

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*Book source ~ Many thanks to Entangled for providing a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Kiera ‘Mac’ McLoughlin is a Detective with the paranormal unit of the local Chicago Police Dept. As a half-banshee she’s an OW (Otherworlder) and considering the fear people have of banshees, she doesn’t have a lot of close friends. When she and her witch partner Amanda pull a case involving a murdered woman with no apparent COD Amanda decides to use a little witchcraft to try and track down the killer. While Amanda is off doing witchy things Mac goes home to find her house has been invaded by a hunky man named Aidan Byrne with a badge showing he’s from the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency (OWEA). He says he believes her case is connected to his and they should combine forces. But is he who he says he is and is this case what it appears to be? When Amanda is murdered and Mac is pulled off the case, she decides to find out on her own.

Oh, yeah! Another series for me to dive into. This story had everything I enjoy in a paranormal book: an alternate world to our mundane one where paranormal and mundane live side-by-side, many and varied paranormal entities, murder, villains, mystery, humor and hotness. Banshee Charmer is a great start to what looks like a very interesting series.

The characters are wonderful though I didn’t really get a good sense of Aidan. He’s almost a secondary character and that does bug me a bit. I’m hoping there will be more about him, at least in passing, in upcoming books. Several people are mentioned as working for the paranormal unit and I did get to meet a few of them. I look forward to their stories as well as meeting the others. Well-written with a decent plot, if you like paranormal with suspense and a cop for a heroine then this one should do the trick. ( )
  AVoraciousReader | Jan 3, 2014 |
Review posted here: http://offbeatvagabond.blogspot.com/2012/03/book-review-banshee-charmer-from-fil...

Banshee Charmer is about a woman named Kiera, but everyone calls her Mac. She is a homicide detective for the Chicago Police Department, specifically the Freak Division. She takes care of the supernatural cases. You see, the world knows about the paranormal. The witches, vampires, demons and more live and work out in the open. The case Mac is working on involves women drained not of their blood, but of their energy. Problem is, it might be the work of an incubus, a supernatural creature that no one believes in because they went into extinction a very long time ago. So Mac's hands are tied. And worse, a sexy OWEA agent winds up in her house to help her, but is he trustworthy? Mac doesn't know that either.

I was asked by Stacey O'Neale to review this book. I jumped at the chance since the book sounded so interesting. And it definitely was. This is Tiffany Allee's first book and she did a phenomenal job. The characters were great and had depth. Mac is a great heroine. She takes care of business and doesn't take a lot of crap. Aidan was hot and charming. This book was 137 pages long and Allee managed to get such an incredible chemistry between her leads. They were heating up the pages, let me tell you.

I liked the plot. I won't lie, I figured out the secret halfway through. It was predictable. That doesn't take away from the story, mind you. You still want to know where the secret plays into the story. I was still at the edge of my seat. But I do this a lot. You don't want to watch Castle or any cop show/movie with me. I always figure it out before anyone. Ever watch that super sad Sean Penn movie, Mystic River? I knew who the killer was in the first half hour. Trust me, no one would have thought of it. Sorry about the rambling there. Nonetheless, predictability is pretty much my only compliant.

This is a wonderful debut by Tiffany Allee. The world is incredible and well put together. I definitely got lost in this book. You really get a lot for a book that is a little over 100 pages. That is always my compliant with short stories, we don't get enough depth or they don't feel layered enough, this definitely doesn't fit that mold. Allee manages to mix police procedural, urban fantasy, mystery and paranormal romance beautifully. Allee is clearly talented and I will be keeping my eyes on her. You should do the same. ( )
  harleyquinn0887 | Mar 17, 2012 |
I received an ecopy of this book free of charge from NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

Have you ever read a debut novel that was SO good you couldn't believe it was really a debut? Where you had to go Google the author and find out for yourself if they had ever written and published a book before this one? Well, this is that debut novel! I loved it! Tiffany Allee has written a well thought out novel with a great plot, fully developed characters, a great romance, and enough twists and turns to keep you turning the pages throughout!

I was first drawn to the book because it was about a half-banshee cop, and I was curious to see how that would work. I can't remember the last time I read a book about banshees, so this was a nice change for me. What I got, though, was a whole lot more than just the banshee: there were other supernatural creatures in the book as well - succubi, incubi, vampires, witches, and more! It's set in a time where supernatural creatures are protected by the law, which makes things a bit sticky when they revert to character. You'll learn that that is when being a supernatural being yourself can really come in handy!

Kiera “Mac” McLoughlin is the female MC and I found her to be a very likable character. She's a loner, due to her being a banshee and creating a bubble around herself so as not to accidentally hurt anyone. Then there's Aidan Byrne, "an investigative counterpart from the enigmatic Otherworlder Enforcement Agency", similar to the FBI. As explained in the book, they generally take on paranormal-related crimes that cross state lines. Mac is investigating a possible serial killer when she comes home to find Aidan sitting at her kitchen table reading one of her secret supply of romance books! Sparks fly, and continue to fly throughout the book between these two.

I liked everything about this book - it had a great plot, lots of action, and character development from start to finish. What's even better is that this is the first book in a new series! Yayy!! I look forward to reading more books by this very talented debut author :D ( )
  jwitt33 | Feb 25, 2012 |
BANSHEE CHARMER was an easy to read, fast paced paranormal Romance. The length of the book is kinda short. I didn't feel like information was lacking but I would have liked to have a little longer of a book.

Kiera is a half Banshee detective who can use her scream to harm, kill or stun someone. There are not a lot of Banshee type books out at the moment and it was nice to read about a different paranormal type. The romance part of the book was kinda lacking. Kiera was easy to like and get to know. There was a love interest (sexy mysterious Aidan) and there was some nice hot scenes but there was more investigating and mystery than there was romance and getting to know each other. I love investigation types book so I really enjoyed the "police investigation" parts of BANSHEE CHARMER. I liked following the evidence that was revealed and trying to follow along in where Kiera thought the leads were.I didn't feel like the mystery of the story was predictable. I knew what Aidan was from a pretty early point but the bad guy was a mystery throughout.

BANSHEE CHARMER ended up being a great mystery and I will read book 2 to hopefully get some more romance between Kiera and Aidan. ( )
  STACYatUFI | Jan 27, 2012 |
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

BANSHEE CHARMER, the novella length first installment of the new Files of the Otherworld Enforcement Agency starts off with an interesting premise; Kiera “Mac” McLoughlin, a half-banshee police detective, must track down a serial killer who isn’t human and shouldn’t even exist anymore according to her boss. Banshees are not your typical protagonists, even in paranormal fiction, so I was excited to see Mac’s unique brand of supernatural powers in action.

Banshee mythology portrays them as screaming harbringers of death. In BANSHEE CHARMER, Mac’s screams can stun or kill when necessary. This is a rather handy skill to have in her line of work. Potentially lethal screaming aside, there wasn’t a lot about Mac to connect with. Whether this is due to the shorter length (novella), or not, I don’t know but there just wasn’t enough. That observation is unfortunately true for both the romance and world building. Too often I felt like I was being told interesting things about characters and this world without being able to really absorb them appropriately before something else happened.

One thing you can’t rush in a paranormal romance, is the romance. I would be tempted to categorize BANSHEE CHARMER as urban fantasy since the romance wasn’t very strong. Mac’s love interest, Aiden had potential to be an interesting character with his mysterious background and his job with the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency but I was mostly left wondering what Mac saw in him besides his attractiveness. Their romance seemed rushed and I felt like I was missing scenes where they were connecting with each other on a level that was more than lust.

Overall, the great premise and supernatural serial killer plot in BANSHEE CHARMER were strong enough to help balance out the shortcomings with the romance and characterization. A lot of my criticisms are probably due to the novella length restrictions. I’m hopeful that the next installment will be a full length novel that really takes advantage of all the promise in the Files of the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency. There is definitely something here.

Sexual Content:
Explicit sex scenes, kissing ( )
  pollywannabook | Jan 24, 2012 |
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