Fallen by Traci L. Slatton, STOP reading now! If you read Cold Light without reading book 1 in the series, it won't make any sense. Some books you can get away with reading the series out of order, but not this one. Fair warning, if you haven't read book 1, what I'm about to write will spoil it for you!!
In this post-apocalyptic world, deadly mists are still a huge threat to society. If the poisonous gases don't kill you, it will plunge you into madness. All around the world, people have banded together against the deadly mists. When we last heard from Emma, she and her daughter, Mandy, had reunited with the rest of their family. Haywood has rescued his wife and daughter, literally flying in like a knight and shining armor. In Haywood's mind, he is just reuniting his family. He and their older daughter Beth were in Canada when the whole world changed. But he doesn't realize Emma has changed, too. To survive, Emma joined an all-male camp, led by the handsome and brooding Arthur. Their relationship starts out very adversarial, but soon turns to love. And that love is still a part of Emma in book 2.
Arthur is never far from her thoughts. She loves Haywood, but, to me, her connection is much deeper with Arthur. Eighteen months have passed since the end of book 1. Living in Canada has brought Emma and her family some peace. But that peace is short-lived when Beth is kidnapped by a rogue group of men. The motherly instincts immediately kick in for Emma. There is no question, she has to go after Beth. No matter the dangers, Emma has to get her daughter back. Along the way she meets some interesting characters, and ... creatures. A cougar, yes a cougar, becomes Emma's protector throughout the book. Rather than attack each other, Emma and the cougar have an unspoken truce between them. She doesn't shoot him, and he doesn't attack her. It might sound weird to some, but in this world it is very normal.
Emma's determination to find her daughter will be put to the test when Arthur comes back into the picture. Emma has never left his thoughts either. He's a tough guy, he's a leader, and he always has to be strong. But he is vulnerable when it comes to Emma. He will do anything for Emma. His decision-making is sometimes driven by love instead of what's practical. After all, how much sense does it make to cross the Atlantic Ocean for love when the rest of the world is in turmoil? It has to be love. He helps Emma search for Beth, despite her pleas for him to stay away. I don't want to spoil too much, but the search will force Emma to make a choice.
I have to say, I like the first book a lot better. To me, the second book is more about the search than the relationships between the characters. The action starts right away. But I wonder what happened in those 18 months since the last book? That aspect is kind of glossed over. What was Emma's relationship like with Haywood? Did everything just go back to normal for them? What about Beth and Mandy? You don't hear their voices too much in either book. Book 2 ends in similar fashion to book 1. You are left wondering if Emma has made the right choice? Maybe when book 3 comes out, Emma will have a better grasp on her future.
Rating: Give it a try
Note: I received an e-galley from the author (Traci L. Slatton) in exchange for an honest review.