Published by Harlequin, MIRA on June 26, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Urban
Joanne Walker has two choices: Defeat the enemy…or lose her soul trying For over a year, Joanne has been fighting the Master—the world's most abiding evil entity. She's sacrificed family, friendships, even watched potential futures fade away…and now the Master is bringing the final battle to Joanne's beloved Seattle. Lives will be lost as the repercussions of all Joanne's final transformation into her full Shamanic abilities come to her doorstep. Before the end, she'll mourn, rejoice—and surrender everything for the hope of the world's survival. She'll be a warrior and a healer. Because she is finally a Shaman Rising.
In 2005, I picked up URBAN SHAMAN, the start of a new urban fantasy series. Nearly ten years later, I read the last book in the series, SHAMAN RISES.
Joanne is definitely one of my favorite urban fantasy heroines. She’s bad-assed when she needs to be but she’s so very broken, especially at the beginning, that she has this tenderness and deep caring that is really the essence of her becoming a capable shaman. She wants the best for people, she doesn’t want to hurt anyone though she is forced to do so at times. Still, she causes injury only as a last resort. And, really, isn’t that the essence of shamanism? Working in concert with the land and in harmony with the world around you?
This last installment was a bit bittersweet. It’s been such a long, hard journey for Joanne but, with the help of the fabulous Gary, her mentor Coyote, her spirit animals, Morrison and everyone else in her life, she moves from being completely resistant to the mere idea of her being a shaman to a woman capable of great things because of her ability. SHAMAN RISES just didn’t let up on poor Joanne. She’s put through the wringer as she battles the Master for her city and, yes, the world. Disaster upon disaster piles on Joanne’s shoulders so much so that I got exhausted just reading about it.
It’s been a long, hard journey for Joanne Walker, going from a police grease monkey to the confident, knowledgable shaman she is in this final book but it’s been an amazing journey. If you haven’t yet dipped your toe into the urban fantasy subgenre, I highly recommend starting with this one. In fact, I have the urge to reread the entire series, now that it’s all over, just so I can spend more time with Joanne.
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