Fever, Book #6
Dani O’Malley, Book #1
By Karen Marie Moning
ISBN: 0385344406
Author’s website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Vicki

WARNING: This review contains possible spoilers for Darkfever, Bloodfever, Faefever, Dreamfever and Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning.

The walls have fallen and the Fae roam the world; killing and maiming and seducing their way through the human populous. Dublin, Ireland has long been the epicenter for all the major players and major events in this urban post-apocalyptic society and in Iced readers will continue to see her ripped apart at the seams.

Whilst fans of Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series are all used to sweet-and-sassy-come-fierce-and-ferocious MacKayla Lane, her adventures and sexcapades with the delectably animalistic and infuriatingly mysterious Jericho Barrons are over (for now.) Iced picks up straight after Shadowfever and hands over the reigns to Dani “Mega” O’Malley; the fourteen year old sidhe-seer with super-speed, super-strength, super-smarts and a super foul mouth. In the Fever series, Dani was like a sister to MacKayla and a hot commodity to everyone else. Her abilities are like nothing anyone has ever seen, even the millennia old Nine (or so they say.) Towards the end of Shadowfever it was discovered that Dani committed the worst crime against her sister-in-arms and was thus cast out.

Iced is the story of Dani as she tries to make her way in a world where the person she loves most has turned her back on her. Everybody wants to manipulate, control or possess her in one way or another. She is trying to keep Dublin safe, avoid Ryodan and the magical contract he made her sign and find out why random areas of the city are being destroyed by blankets of ice. All at the same time as navigating the tumultuous waters of teenage hormones.

I’d be the first person to admit that Dani annoyed me all throughout the Fever series. And, I’m definitely not the only one who feels/felt that way. I guess she annoyed me in the same way a kid sister would annoy me, which basically just means that I had the intended reaction towards her. When I found out that she was the one responsible for one of the big Fever series mysteries, I was so heartbroken – but that was when I realized I had a bigger attachment to her character than I previously thought.

Dani tries to lord herself all over the place with her boisterous personality, but she also likes to hide behind the facade of language she has adopted; language that was taken on to impress and emulate Mac, initially. Some readers will find her narrative a tough pill to swallow; others will love it. But her continuous and repetitive use of something that is so easily related to the relationship she had with Mac is a way for readers to covertly observe the fact that Dani is mourning the loss of their sisterhood.

Readers learn that, as a child, Dani was locked in a cage by her mother and that it was this neglectful and abusive upbringing that has contributed to the fact that Dani has never had a proper childhood and essentially never been a child. If we strip away Dani’s extrovert mask she is really just a young woman trying to find out where she belongs. And it really doesn’t matter if this is a person or a place; Dani’s ultimate goal is acceptance.

Yeah, she is still annoying in Iced, but that’s the whole point. She’s still trying to be the child she never was and she thinks that gives her a free pass to have an ego the size of the Hall of All Days. Moning is the queen of making her characters think that they have it all figured out, then she destroys everything they thought they knew about themselves and the world around them (probably in a horrifically violent way); only then do her characters begin evolving.

By now readers of Moning should have learnt to keep the faith as far as her storytelling, plot development and character development go. Dani’s journey is going to be epic and I for one am excited for the ride!

Don’t go into Iced hoping for romance and don’t go into Iced hoping that there won’t be romance. This spin-off trilogy will be as multi-faceted as the Fever series and while the Mac/Barrons romance was the ultimate pay-off there was so much more to enjoy. If you hope for romance you’ll be disappointed – Dani isn’t there yet – she needs to intimately learn herself before she intimately learns anyone else. If you hope that there isn’t romance, well firstly, you’re reading the wrong author and secondly you’ll be disappointed because Moning is obviously setting the stage for events to come. Unfortunately, the stage that is set is guaranteed to make a lot of people feel uncomfortable, but Moning has never been one to sugarcoat things – she’s always challenged her readers’ comfort zones – and that is what sets her apart from the rest.

The moment Moning stops challenging us is the moment that we need to start worrying; until then just enjoy the ‘feck’ out of it!

There were many things that I loved about this novel, like:

  • The Crimson Hag (YUCK-SLASH-AWESOME),
  • Trying to figure out the machinations of Ryodan,
  • Coming to terms with Christian’s new form,
  • The mystery of the Hoar Frost King,
  • Dani’s relationship with Dancer,
  • Dancer himself,
  • The tiny glimpses of Mac and Barrons,
  • Lor – oh my god – Lor,
  • The ZEWs,
  • Dani’s unintentional sexual innuendo,
  • The many, many one-liners,
  • The cliffhanger,
  • Etc, etc, etc…

But, the thing I loved most about Iced was just being in Moning’s imagination again. Somehow she has always managed to give me everything I want in a book, she ticks all the boxes and even ticks the ones I didn’t know existed. Iced will not disappoint readers if they consider the various paths that Moning could take us down. It is the potential of what the story is going to be as whole that is the exciting thing about Iced and the thing that I will forever respect Moning for.

Moning is and always has been a true storyteller. Bring on Burned!

‘Mega out!’