Saturday, August 1

Ann Aguirre - Public Enemies (Immortal Game #2)

"My mom would be horrified that I'd gotten myself into such a mess. There's no excuse for violence, Edie. It's always better to talk things out logically. Somehow I didn't think this monster would be interested in chatting."

Through a Faustian bargain, Edie Kramer has been pulled into the dangerous world of the Immortal Game, where belief makes your nightmares real. Hungry for sport, fears-made-flesh are always raising the stakes. To them, human lives are less than nothing, just pieces on a board.

Because of her boyfriend Kian's sacrifice, she's operating under the mysterious Harbinger's aegis, but his patronage could prove as fatal as the opposition. Raw from deepest loss, she's terrified over the deal Kian made for her. Though her very public enemies keep sending foot soldiers--mercenary monsters committed to her destruction--she's not the one playing under a doom clock. Kian has six months...unless Edie can save him. And this is a game she can't bear to lose.

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange of an honest review.

Mortal Danger, the first book in the Immortal Game series, left me with conflicted feelings but I hoped these will be sorted out in Public Enemies. Unfortunately, this did not happen. On the contrary I'm more confused than ever. 

The first thing I realized after starting the novel was that I had forgotten tons of things since I read Mortal Danger. Now, this shows that the first book didn't exactly leave a huge impact on me, despite that I liked it. I tried my damn hardest to recall everything but in the end I chose to skim through the previous book to sort out who was who, and what they did in Mortal Danger.

You'd think that Edie trying to survive, keeping her loved ones safe and trying to find a loophole to save Kian would make an exciting story. It did not. The plot was such a mess because it was basically all these things and more mixed together until there wasn't enough time to execute either of them properly. For example, Edie says that she has to find a way to save him countless times but does absolutely nothing to do so. She whines about him dying and is mad at Kian for sacrificing himself to save her but it's like Kian is her last priority which is funny because he always put her first. 

This takes us to the romance that left me without any deep feelings. It warmed my heart to see Edie and Kian together - many times acting like a normal couple - but at the same time I can't help feeling like their relationship isn't real. Kian pretended that everything was alright all the freaking time and Edie did little to make him show his real feelings. Again, it was like she had way more important things to do than be with her boyfriend who had less than 6 months left to live. This just made me SO ANNOYED because you can't say you love someone and then not do your best to save that person. Don't even get me started on the two other potential love interests for the next book.

"He probably wanted to yell at me, but he wouldn't. It might be better if he did. Clearing the air seemed like a good idea, but I'd learned he refused to argue, regardless of how much I provoked it. If I kept on, I'd just hurt him again. He was trying so hard to be my perfect hero when what I wanted was a real flesh-and-blood boyfriend who screwed up as much as I did."  

A few new characters were thrown in for no reason at all and old ones reappeared, again, for no good reason. Edie's father was my favorite who had no role but be another obstacle that stood in Edie's way whenever needed. He was also portrayed as an incredibly dumb and clueless person for someone who is said to be super-smart.

I feel like Ann Aguirre is trying to make a Kestrel like (The Winner trilogy) character out of Edie. She's making her seem controlled and capable of making decisions that might cost other people's lives, but at the same time she should stay someone who we can feel for and love and that did not happen for me. Edie came off as a cold and distant person who couldn't imagine how her loved ones felt and wouldn't even try to. Her mother died not long ago but Edie was not at all traumatized by this. Instead she was mad at her father for being sad and depressed AND for acting like a person who was actually hurt, unlike herself. Edie got on my nerves on this book all the time, which made me really annoyed because I used to love her.

"Sometimes I didn't like how logical I could be, how capable of making awful choices for the sake of my own survival." 

Something I really liked in Edie's portrayal was that finally her uncertainty was visible. I mentioned in my review of the first book that I felt like Edie became instantly confident after Kian made her beautiful which was very unrealistic. However, in Public Enemies Aguirre made sure to show us that while it might not seem like it, Edie didn't stop having thoughts of self doubt and she didn't always feel comfortable in her own skin. 

"Half the time I still didn't look at myself naked, even now that I looked good. Years of avoiding mirrors and dodging photos had a choke hold on my psyche and I wouldn't change inside that fast. So I'd go on faking it until the shift became real."

I think I can say that Public Enemies was worse in more than one aspects than Mortal Danger, and it does not deserve the same rating. I'm extremely confused by the game at the moment but I have hope for the final book to clear this confusion and make me as interested as I was while reading Mortal Danger.

The story idea: 4/5
The realization of the story: 2/5
The characters: 2/5
The cover: 2/5
Enjoy factor: 2/5



  1. ohhhhhkkkayyy
    i had the exact same feelings about mortal danger. i didn't understand what was going on in the least and i thought it sent a bad message - that you need to be pretty and skinny to be accepted. i tried to stay away from this one because of its cover [like why???] and because i knew that i wouldn't like it.

    i'm actually a little ticked off that edie didn't redeem herself in this book. i didn't think there was a big chance because i heavily disliked mortal danger but wishful thinking, right? unfortunate that we don't like it but i do hope your next read is better

    1. In that aspect Mortal Danger was one of the biggest disappointments of last year for me because I loved Aguirre's 2B trilogy and thought that she portrayed many things, including self-doubt, realistically. I honestly don't understand how these books can be so bad.
      Edie became a lot worse in this book, in my opinion. I'm afraid wishful thinking will make me read the final book. I'm just horrible at giving up on series that I rated two or more stars.
      Thanks, hope your next read it better too. :)


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