Tuesday, February 7, 2012

REVIEW: KATANA by Cole Gibsen



The opening chapter of Katana really captured my attention. The book had been touted as "Buffy meets Kill Bill" and from  the opening dialogue I really enjoyed Rileigh's spunky personality. What began as a simple trip to the mall with her best friend becomes an unexpected showdown between Rileigh and 3 would be robbers.

Rileigh hears a voice whispering advice  in her head and is surprised to find herself using fighting skills she shouldn't posses to take the bad guys down. Soon after Rileigh finds herself the center of attention from a variety of people: there is the creepy doctor who insinuates himself into her life through her mother, the attractive Kim, a martial arts expert who claims to know the secrets of Rileigh's condition, and their is Rileigh's long time crush who is suddenly available and craving alone time with her.

I was really intrigued with these  story elements, and the source of Rileigh's powers was very intriguing. However Rileigh's strong, cocky manner soon turned to whining and bratty behavior. I know the changes she was going through were intense but she was initially portrayed as too smart a character to suddenly succumb to avoidance and pouting.

Kim was the highlight of the book for me. He was a  well rounded character and it was nice to see an ethnically  diverse male lead. Rileigh does pull it together in the end but many of the plot points  in the book were predictable. Cole definitely has writing skills and the pacing of her action scenes is excellent, but overall the book wasn't very cohesive. I also felt the book would have benefited by being a bit shorter with a lot more action. Still a promising debut and I was glad to see a female in an action centered role

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