Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Review: Mixed Feelings (Empathy in the Preternatural PNW #1) by Olivia R. Burton

Published: May 31, 2016 by Peacock Deceiving a Suitcase
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Format: ebook
Source: Sent for honest review
Goodreads Summary

Being a therapist means dealing with other people's problems, but this is getting ridiculous.

Despite being an empath who tastes and feels others' emotions, Gwen Arthur's always managed to stay under the radar and out of the preternatural world. The worst she's had to deal with is a horny werewolf private eye named Mel.

Until now.

It starts with a terrifying visit from the monsters that plagued Gwen's childhood nightmares. They're back and they seem to think she's someone else entirely--someone very powerful. Someone capable of taking on the task they lay at her feet: find a group of kidnapped, magically gifted children before they're killed. Or worse.

She's got her smart mouth, her eerily competent best friend Chloe and, yes, even irritatingly attractive Mel to help her through this assignment. Hopefully that'll be enough, because she's also caught the attention of an invisible, candy-stealing interloper on top of everything else.

It's hard enough helping others sort through emotional turmoil, but now Gwen's got to rescue missing kids, figure out this whole “supernatural” thing, and treat Mel like a person? It's enough to give a girl MIXED FEELINGS.

The Good

Gwen is a great leading character. She's not the in your face amazing heroine here to save the day, she's here for the sugar. She has a lot of flaws and isn't super powerful. However as an empath, she has some skills to offer and she also can't say no to helping save some missing kids. I loved the look at reading people's emotions and how they felt to Gwen. There's plenty of room for growth both in character and in powers and I'm looking forward to that exploration.

Gwen has quite the interesting supporting cast. Best friend Chloe is a bit of an enigma to me, but she was an amazing friend. It is apparent that she's keeping something from us though and I don't know what that is yet. Mel gets a laugh out of riling Gwen up. He is constantly coming on to her and mostly it's because she says it drives her crazy. However, he's there for her in a pinch and is someone she can count on. There is also a mystery character that we haven't met yet that leaves Gwen notes and steals her sugar stash. I'm definitely wondering where that is going to lead. There are some other interesting characters as well that I assume we'll see more of.

Burton is excellent at keeping the pace moving. There is plenty of action along with some fun dialogue that kept me very entertained. The humor throughout was well placed and had me laughing often. I was never bored by this and am ready to move on to the next book in the series. It is filled with fae, demons, vampires, werewolves, and all other chaotic supernaturals.

The Bad

The only small nitpick I have is that Gwen is a therapist and yet doesn't think very therapist-like thoughts. I don't really know how to explain it, but she tells us what she can pick up from people regarding their emotions, but there are no 'ah ha' moments about someone's character that she derives from psychology. For instance, Mel is a lady's man hopping from bed to bed every night and Gwen hasn't once guessed that it's because he had an absent mother or no father's influence. I guess I expected some more therapist lingo in her head.

The Romance

Mel would jump in the sack with Gwen at the slightest implication. Could they be more than a good time in bed? Gwen hasn't given in yet, but only time will tell where their relationship can go. I will say there is plenty of tension there.


Mixed Feelings is fast paced and filled with a mixture of humor, crazy supernaturals, mystery, and action. I enjoyed the main character and how much growth potential she has as well. I loved the blend of different supporting characters and the excitement they offer. All in all, I was very drawn in to their world and look forward to seeing where the story goes from here. Very recommended. 

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