Owl and the Japanese Circus + Giveaway by Kristi Charish

Owl and the Japanese Circus appears to be the start of a fun new urban fantasy series.  I’m looking forward to the next installment!

Owl and the Japanese CircusTitle:  Owl and the Japanese Circus
Author:  Kristi Charish
Series: The Adventures of Owl Book 01
Publish Date:  January 13, 2015
Genre:  Urban Fantasy
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s Description: Ex-archaeology grad student turned international antiquities thief, Alix—better known now as Owl—has one rule. No supernatural jobs. Ever. Until she crosses paths with Mr. Kurosawa, a red dragon who owns and runs the Japanese Circus Casino in Las Vegas. He insists Owl retrieve an artifact stolen three thousand years ago, and makes her an offer she can’t refuse: he’ll get rid of a pack of vampires that want her dead. A dragon is about the only entity on the planet that can deliver on Owl’s vampire problem – and let’s face it, dragons are known to eat the odd thief.

Owl retraces the steps of Mr. Kurosawa’s ancient thief from Japan to Bali with the help of her best friend, Nadya, and an attractive mercenary. As it turns out though, finding the scroll is the least of her worries. When she figures out one of Mr. Kurosawa’s trusted advisors is orchestrating a plan to use a weapon powerful enough to wipe out a city, things go to hell in a hand basket fast…and Owl has to pick sides.


The Adventures of Owl 2-Book Bundle Giveaway!

Owl PairAuthor Kristi Charish is giving away both Adventures of Owl books!  Your choice of signed paperback ARCS (US Only) or ebooks with Authorgraph (US and International). The winner will be announced on October 5, 2015.  Click the Rafflecopter link to enter or enter on our Facebook Giveaway page.

What is an Authorgraph?

Our thanks to Kristi Charish for providing the books for this giveaway event!

KristiCharish1_credit_VancouverPublicLibraryKristi is the author of OWL AND THE JAPANESE CIRCUS (Simon and Schuster Canada/Pocket Books), an urban fantasy about a modern-day “Indiana Jane” who reluctantly navigates the hidden supernatural world. She writes what she loves; adventure heavy stories featuring strong, savvy female protagonists, pop culture, and the occasional RPG fantasy game thrown in the mix. The second installment in the Owl series, OWL AND THE CITY OF ANGELS, is scheduled for release Oct 5th 2015. THE VOODOO KILLINGS, book 1 in her second urban fantasy series, KINCAID STRANGE (Random House Canada), about a voodoo practitioner living in Seattle, is scheduled for release mid 2016.

Kristi is also a co-host for the popular Adventures in Sci-Fi Publishing Podcast and also has a PhD in Zoology from the University of British Columbia. She is represented by Carolyn Forde at Westwood Creative Artists.

Twitter: @kristicharish
FB: http://www.facebook.com/KristiCharishAuthor
Website: http://www.kristicharish.com
AISFP Podcast: http://www.adventuresinscifipublishing.com

If you like Owl and the Japanese Circus, be on the lookout for Owl and the City of Angels coming out in just two weeks, October 5th.  We’ll post our review of Owl and the City of Angels on October 5 along with the winner of the Adventures of Owl Giveaway.


Invested_Ivana 50So, what did you think of Owl and the Japanese Circus?  I thought it was a lot of fun.

Nervous_Nell 50I swear I was watching and Indiana Jones movie.  I started the book and I could not put it down.  Owl frustrated me with her attitude, but in the end I guess I understand her messed up brain.  Was this a predictable story for you?

Invested_Ivana 50Not at all.  Several times I thought I had it figured out, but then the story would go somewhere else. I was really upset when I thought for a while it was her best friend, Nadya, who was going to be the bad guy.  I’m glad that one turned out not to be true.

Nervous_Nell 50I am amazed that Owl kept her friends.  She blew them off time and again.  I can’t imagine why Rynn didn’t cut his losses and just go.  *shrug*  Whatever.  Anyway, I was totally being led along by my nose the whole time.  I didn’t see any of the outcomes at all.  The writing was really good and the story rocked.  Who was your favorite character?

Invested_Ivana 50I agree, I couldn’t have put up with Owl very long were she my friend.  She continually ignored their concern for her and acted very stupid.  I think she survived from pure luck more than anything else.  But, it made for a great story!  I can’t say I had a favorite character, really.  I thought Owl’s interaction with the smarmy vampire Alexander was fun.

Nervous_Nell 50That was very much fun.  I think he enjoyed playing the game with her more than he let on.  I really do think he was flirting with her.  In his own way.  I think that if he really didn’t want to interact with her, he’d never had answered the phone.  I liked Owl’s ballsy attitude – standing up for herself even when it wasn’t in her best interest.  I was glad you suggested this book – I must apologize, though.  I thought you were getting me into something I was going to hate.  The title really threw me off.

Invested_Ivana 50Aha!  Vindication!  See, I occasionally DO know what I’m talking about. 😛


Nervous_Nellie_100Nervous Nellie says…

“I hate this espionage shit.  That’s why I’m into antiquities.  More money, and I get blindfolded a lot less.”

The good:  Owl is a female Indiana Jones….oh, and she doesn’t like snakes either.  The only thing different about Owl is that she is a thief selling relics and artifacts to the highest bidder.  Indy never hunted for profit.  She was blackballed from her profession and now makes whatever living she can.  She finds booby traps, solves ancient puzzles, decodes old text and throw in a few supernatural creatures and you have the story.  Archeology is a dull science with hard won achievements, but Owl’s adventures make the ride much more exciting.  She has knowledge of all sorts of foreign places and takes “Captain” the cat along.  Captain was my favorite character.  Not that he is a cat, though.  It was because of his versatility.  He is vampire hunting cat.  He is also a cat that will listen to commands.  That’s a new one on me, for sure.

The bad:  Owl, at times, can be a real jerk.  She really does treat her friends badly.  More like a servant than a friend.  Her friends want her to be careful, stay safe and watch her back.  She is wrapped up in the hunt for the relic that she blows them off time after time.  There was a lot of death associated with the relic that Owl was assigned to retrieve.  Assigned is a loose term as if she didn’t retrieve the relic, she would be eaten.

The ugly:  There are some supernatural creatures that Owl encounters that are just plain scary.  Vampires don’t sparkle and Dragons don’t fall head over heels in love with humans.

badge3v4The take-away:  This is a suck-you-in with tons of adventure.  It was a book that kept me reading until the wee hours……and it wasn’t because of the scary monsters.  I am looking forward to the next Owl story.  I just hope she learns from her mistakes a little quicker.  Rynn is a pretty good guy, I hope he doesn’t get fed up and leave..

Invested_Ivana_100Invested Ivana says…

What I liked:  The first book of Owl and her friends is a fun read.  Charis says she wrote Owl in the spirit of adventure movies like Indiana Jones and The Mummy. I like the mix of urban fantasy characters, especially the Japanese characters used in this book. I like that the characters are rarely what they seem, either; it kept me guessing.  I had five different guesses for the plot before I was done with the book.

What I didn’t like:  Owl gets in trouble with her friends because she goes off and does stupid things that could likely get her and other people killed.  Even though her friends tell her not to–sometimes beg her not to–she just keeps doing stupid things.  Even I got tired of her doing stupid things.  I know that accepting the fact that she does stupid things is supposedly part of her friends’ acceptance of her, but I think she goes too far.  She’s reckless and constantly ignoring those people she calls friends in this book, and I don’t think I could have put up with her.

badge3v4Conclusion:  Worth checking out for sure. I can see this becoming a favorite series if the stories stay good, so I’m giving it a 3.5.  I’m looking forward to the next adventure, but I hope Owl starts listening to her friends, or they won’t be her friends for much longer.

Stand Out Award Badge2Other reviews…

If you like this book…

… try Getting Wilde by Jenn Stark, the Alex Verus series by Benedict Jacka, or the Raine Benares series by Lisa Shearin.

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About Invested Ivana

I read fiction for entertainment and to escape my own world; so, I don’t want to read about “real” things. I read non-fiction to learn and be inspired. For the last several years, I’ve read mostly Urban Fantasy and other things supernatural. I also enjoy Historical Fiction. I love books that go deep into characters and worlds. I really want to know the characters, to be able to invest emotionally in them and their challenges. I like learning about cultures, so understanding the world is important to me as well.

Posted on September 21, 2015, in 3-Okay, Female, Giveaway, Invested Ivana, Nervous Nellie, Review, Standout Award, Urban Fantasy and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Dragons, I always love dragons.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I had a lot of fun with the first book! Looking forward to dive into the second book soon!

    Liked by 1 person

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