Review: “Orion’s Kiss,” Claire Luana

Pros: Interesting setup
Cons: Some details
Rating: 4 out of 5

Claire Luana’s Orion’s Kiss introduces us to Meriah Carmichael. She’s a modern-day teenager who runs track in high school, and whose mother is the school psychologist. She’s also the reincarnation of the half-nymph half-Titan Merope, who’s cursed to watch Orion kill her sisters over and over again in every lifetime. Thankfully she has a friend, Zoe, who believes her–after all, Meriah sometimes has visions of the future, which have helped her to prove that she’s something beyond the normal. This time, Meriah determines that she’s going to kill Orion before he can kill her sisters. And she’s just had a vision of the first death. When she heads off to kill him, she witnesses him getting into a car wreck and ends up taking him prisoner instead. While Mer and Zoe try to figure out what to do with Orion, who might or might not even have any idea of who he is, they have to dodge the police (who are looking into the car accident) and Mer’s parents.

It’s painfully obvious that Mer won’t be able to bring herself to kill Orion the moment she takes him prisoner (and, well, because of the title of the book–there would be no kiss involving Orion if he died right away, after all). Which means, of course, that he isn’t the bad guy she believes him to be. The question of whether or not she’ll kill him, given that the answer is obvious to the reader, is stretched out for a ridiculous amount of time. Particularly since Mer and Zoe have to dodge their parents, Ryan (Orion) will obviously be missed, and since Mer called 911 when she came across the accident–from her phone, of course–the police are looking for her. It just felt… staged.

I give the author props for working Mer’s background on who and what she really is into her narrative interleaved with her conversation with her mother–it nicely kept it from feeling like a static infodump.

I had a hard time believing Mer would keep some of her visions from Ryan given that he was in them–after all, she’s trying to change the outcome of her visions. Wouldn’t telling him about them make it more likely that he’d be able to avoid them? If it’s possible, mind you, but still.

The relationship between Orion and Mer (presaged by that title, again) is warm and natural-seeming. I had no trouble believing in it as things progressed.

This tale was fun and interesting, and I enjoyed reading it.

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