Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Release Day Review: Wickedly Ever After by Deborah Blake

Wickedly Ever After (Baba Yaga, #2.5)
Wickedly Ever After
(Baba Yaga #2.5)
Deborah Blake
Release: Jan 12, 2016
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Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one…

Having triumphed over a powerful enemy and ended up with both a wonderful guy—Sheriff Liam McClellan—and an adorable adopted daughter to raise as a Baba Yaga, Barbara Yager is ready to welcome her happily ever after.

But first she must bring Liam to the Otherworld and get the Queen’s permission to marry him. The Queen, however, is not so easily persuaded. She gives them three impossible tasks to complete in two weeks’ time—and if they fail Barbara will have to watch Liam slowly age and die like all humans, and kiss her happily ever after good-bye forever.
Wickedly Ever After is set after book two in the series, Wickedly Wonderful, and features Barbara and Liam from book one. They've already had a wedding and a honeymoon, during which they appeared in Wickedly Wonderful, but those were for the human world. Now Barbara has to make it official for the supernatural world. And for that she needs the approval of the notoriously fickle Queen. Only with the Queen's approval can she share the magical potion that prolongs her life with her human husband. But rather than simply agree, the Queen sends them on a quest to complete three tasks. For each one, they stop in a different part of the country and consult a different ally.

I like the fact that this novella, like the first one in the series, incorporates all three of the Baba Yagas even though it's primarily Barbara's story. I especially enjoyed seeing Beka and some of the other characters from Wickedly Wonderful again. Even more exciting was the opportunity to learn more about Liam and meet his college roommate. And I love seeing their daughter Babs with her strange mix of matter-of-fact and childish innocence again.

There's just this one little thing that bugged me. I'm trying hard to overlook it since I might not have noticed if I had read book two when it first released. But it's only been a few weeks so I noticed and it's driving me crazy. Near the end of Wickedly Wonderful, Beka says "the Queen had allowed Barbara to share the Water with her new husband" to justify her own decision to share it. It had me really confused, thinking that this novella is actually set after book one. But then the Queen recounts the events of book two, and I thought there was a huge continuity problem.

Actually, Wickedly Ever After does an excellent job explaining the timeline. (I looked, somewhat obsessively, for anything out of place.) It's just that one line that throws everything off. I'm trying not to hold it against the novella, which isn't the culprit. And I realize Blake can't go back and fix the already published book. After I finished obsessing, I enjoyed Wickedly Ever After - I'm a big fan of road trip stories. It does make me wonder if each Baba is going to get a similar epilogue to her HEA.

You could read this novella as an introduction the Babas' world since it does feature all the key characters, but I wouldn't recommend it. It contains spoilers for both of the previous books.

Recommended for fans of: road trips and impossible quests

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley


My reviews of other books in this series:
Wickedly Dangerous and Wickedly Wonderful


  1. Oops! *author hangs head in shame* *author gives reviewer cookie to make up for it*

    1. How about we say the Queen just changed her mind...?

    2. Ooh! Cookies!

      Wait! What were we talking about?

  2. Every time I see a cover from this series I get interested because of the dogs. I haven't tried them yet, but I plan to sometime soon. I've got the first book on audio in my Audible wishlist. Great review.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads


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