Tuesday, May 12, 2020

ARC Review: Weapons & Wonders (Jak & Leander #2) by Devin Harnois

From The Blurb:
Working on a military contract isn’t what Jak wanted, but he tries to look on the bright side. Enchanting several mechanical dragons is an exciting prospect, and more importantly, the project allows him to stay close to Leander. They’re even living together, but making excuses for it to Leander’s family and everyone else. Jak knows society is unaccepting, but he’s growing increasingly frustrated at the need to hide their relationship. 
Leander still can’t believe flirty, popular Jak chose him. Their romantic partnership is unlike anything he’s experienced before, and a small part of Leander is worried Jak will grow tired of him. 
When plans for the newest dragon go missing, suspicion falls on Jak, and Leander is terrified his lover will be taken from him. Then sabotage strikes the project, and it becomes clear a spy is in their midst. Far worse things are on the horizon, and this time Jak can’t run away. To keep Leander and his family safe, Jak is forced to make a terrible choice.

Karen's rating:




What's more exciting than one steampunk dragon? Well, several steampunk dragons of course...

...or at least it is as far as Jak and Leander are concerned... except when those dragons are being created to use as weapons in a war.

When Jak and Leander formed their partnership to create enchanted pets for people neither of them ever envisioned a dragon being among their creations but that's exactly what happened in "Mages and Mechanisms" book one of Devin Harnois's series "Jak and Leander" and now here in "Weapons and Wonders" Jak and Leander find themselves tied to a military contract to create not one but six enchanted, mechanical dragons and they also soon discover that not only do others want their plans for the dragons but the limits that they'll go to in order to stop Jak and Leander from creating them are not only dangerous but could be down right deadly.

I definitely enjoyed this second book in the 'Jak and Leander' series more than the previous book and I think for me it was due mostly to the fact that at times the story seemed to be a bit more focused on the mystery and intrigue surrounding the dragons that Jak and Leander have been contracted to create for the military and at this point in Jak and Leander's relationship having the focus off of their personal relationship for a bit just seemed right. I honestly felt like it would have been like watching a lot of gears spinning if this hadn't been the case...however, there were still times when the focus of the story clearly shifted to bring Jake and Leander back into the spotlight for a bit and I very much enjoyed those times as well, especially towards the end when the changes and growth that they were each making individually and as a couple was more evident.


Along with the intrigue of stolen dragon plans and sabotage to their workshop where they were creating the new dragons there were some minor plot lines that created a bit of additional interest in the story without taking the story over or making things unnecessarily confusing.

The dragons are definitely one of my favorite things in these stories. I admit it I'm quite enchanted with the idea of a magically enchanted, mechanical dragon and I really, really like how Jak goes about finding a spirit to enchant the dragon. This along with the glimpses of each dragon's unique personality...which I think would readily lend itself to a story or two that was maybe a bit more dragon focused...just a suggestion from a dragon loving reader.

So, while I may not be quite as enthusiastic about this series as I had expected to be. Neither am I anywhere close to wanting to give up. The writing is good and there are still so many things that could be explored in this steampunk world that I've got my fingers crossed that the author has at least one or two more stories planned for Jak and Leander.

After all I did like the first story and I've enjoyed this one even more so I'm thinking that things are getting better and it's too soon to give up on Jak and Leander or their  enchanted mechanical dragons...especially if there're more dragons to come.

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An ARC of " Weapons & Wonder" was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.




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