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I Belong

Review: Chaos Burning by Lauren Dane

Title: Chaos Burning

Author: Lauren Dane

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Series: Bound by Magick (Book 2)

Publication Date: June 5, 2012

Format: Paperback, 295 Pages

ISBN-10: 0425250822 (Penguin/Berkley)

ISBN-13: 978-0425250822 (Penguin/Berkley)

Reviewed by: Kristie


From the “always fabulous Lauren Dane”* comes her new novel of a treacherous family legacy, a temptation just as dangerous, and an evil so depraved it can only be spoken of in whispers…

The life of Lark Jaansen, hunter in Clan Gennessee, has been shaped by violence and unrest—and it defines her future. Well-trained and resilient, she’s met her militaristic match in Simon Leviathan, a warrior not of this world. Locked in mutual admiration, and a desire so hot it burns, Lark and Simon have something else in common: they love the dark, and as a shadow is cast over their world, they’re each coming into their own.

A mysterious war has been waged among the Others. As witches and humans turn against each other, as faes retreat in fear, and as vampires rise, Lark and Simon discover that an unseen force is behind it. A single, hungry entity older than recorded history has returned to gorge on the magick of his victims. It is the Magister, nothing less than the end of time. Finding it is Lark and Simon’s first hope. Surviving it is their last.

Quick & Dirty: Slow building romance set in a well-developed world with characters you just can’t help but love.

Opening Sentence: Lark shouldered her duffel and headed down the Jetway, hoping to avoid the cute and nice-smelling hipster college student who’d been trying to pick her up since they took off.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Chaos Burning starts off with Lark Jaansen arriving in Seattle to train the Owen clan of witches. Mages have been attacking and kidnapping witches across the United States and Canada draining their power, often killing them in the process. Lark is met at the airport by Simon Leviathan, a wolf shapeshifter from another world, where they quickly develop a friendly admiration for one another. Lark sets to work right away learning about the Owen clan, their Hunter team and teaching them new defensive spells.

Two months have passed since the events of Heart of Darkness. Simon still runs his nightclub with Dominic and Meriel is still getting used to her new position of leadership within Owen. Nell, the woman in charge of the Hunter team is pregnant. Lark is slowly filling in for Nell as the job just keeps getting more dangerous. Mages are working in groups kidnapping witches at home and off the streets. Lark is using everything she can to make sure she stops these killings once and for all. While Simon slowly comes to the realization that Lark is the woman for him.

Chaos Burning is definitely a Lark-centric book. Lark has a crazy sense of style and hair colors. She is an independent woman who really loves her family but needs some space which is one of the reasons she is in Seattle. The action really follows Lark around. She likes to get in fights and is constantly bruised to the dismay of Simon. All of these things are what Simon was leery about Lark but in the end was how he fell in love with her. Simon is very much the Alpha male. He is a Lycian, wolf shapeshifter, from another plane, Lycia. He has lived for over 600 years and still has some old-fashioned gentlemanly ways about him. They often butt heads about Lark’s chosen field of work but when it comes to her doing her job, Simon gives her all the space she needs which really impressed her.

The beginning of the book is a little slow and the romance is set to a slow broil but when it kicks in the book really fly’s from there. The world building in Chaos Burning was not near as confusing as it was for me at the beginning of Heart of Darkness. In fact, even though the story once again involved clans all over North America, only a few clans were actually involved or discussed. There was more insight into the vampires and werewolves and how they operate. It was nice having Lark and Simon visit Lycia and learning some of the strange customs of the land.

Lark and Simon are both written in the third person and it is pretty easy to decipher whose head you are in but I still had a little trouble with the conversations and knowing who is speaking. I didn’t have as hard a time with this book like I did the first one. One thing I have learned about Lauren Dane’s writing is that she mainly attributes who is speaking by actions within the conversation. There are not many “says” or “exasperated” or “yells” which makes for excellent writing but can still be a little confusing.

Overall, I like the development and well-roundedness that Lauren Dane instills in her characters. The world is dark and dangerous while the characters have a well-developed sense of goodness and love. Chaos Burning can be read as a standalone but the repercussions of the ending will definitely reflect on the next book and I can’t wait to see what is in store for Gage and this world.

Notable Scene:

She released the one who seemed to be in charge.

“Here’s how this will go. I will ask and you will answer. If you lie to me, I’ll shoot you. Not to kill you. At first.”

“Fuck off.”

She shot him in the right leg. In the thigh. He buckled on a howl of pain.

“Lots of blood to be lost with a wound like that. So, do you need me to go over the rules again?”

He kept whining so she shot him in the other leg.

Finally the fear seemed to get him thinking clearer and he managed to sit up against the side of the couch.


“You bet. And I’m really mad at you. So you know, oopsie and stuff. But I’ll shoot you again and again and you won’t die until I’m ready. I know a few things being a witch and all. So, how about you tell me about this house the pregnant witch has been taken to. Because if you don’t, I’ll get in your head and take it and then I’ll leave you to bleed out.”

“I don’t know anything.”

“Yes, you do. You see, I know the rest of you all act as small cells. This is a headquarters of some type. It was totally stupid of you to pick Tweedledum over there up and bring him back. Even if I hadn’t been following, he’s bound to get caught again and spill all he knows.”

“I don’t—”

But before he could say another thing she simply dove into his head, not bothering to be slow or careful. She didn’t give a shit if she broke his brain. She just needed the info and she needed it right then.

The Bound by Magick Series:

1. Heart of Darkness

2. Chaos Burning

3. Going Under (February 5, 2013)

FTC Advisory: Penguin/Berkley provided me with a copy of Chaos Burning. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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One Response to “Review: Chaos Burning by Lauren Dane

  1. Tammy HallNo Gravatar

    Loved the review of Chaos Burning. I had not heard of this series before now but I will be checking it out. Can’t wait to go find the books so I can read them. Thanks for the review. Really enjoyed it.

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