Book Review: Crimson Wind by: Diana Pharaoh Francis


Pocket Books

Publish Date:
December 28, 2010


Mass Market Paperback

Order From: 
Amazon / Barnes & Noble


Max knows what trusting the wrong person can cost you. Her former friend Giselle, a powerful witch, enslaved Max years ago, turning her into a Shadowblade - a deadly warrior compelled to fight for Giselle. But there's more at stake now than Max's thirst for revenge. The Guardians, overseers of the magical world, have declared war on humanity and on any witches not standing with them. Max and Giselle have come to an uneasy truce in order to protect what's left of Horngate, the coven's home. Max would do anything for Horngate - even give herself over to a mysterious otherworldly creature in the nearby mountains in exchange for his help. But first, she intends to save the mortal family she left behind. And Alexander, the Shadowblade warrior who could be her closest ally or her deadliest enemy, is going with her.

On a road trip into the unknown, Max and Alexander face wild magic, desperate enemies, and battles that bruise both body and soul. But the greatest challenge will come from unexpected revelations that test everything Max believes about who she is - and where her loyalties lies...

Review: In Crimson Wind, we are brought into the story right where Bitter Night left off. Horngate was nearly destroyed and now the witches, Shadowblade, Sunspears, and other individuals must now work to repair the damage and rebuild their strength. Because the threat has come too close to home for Max, she wants to go get her human family and bring them back to Horngate so they will be safe. Aside from rescuing her family, Max has other issues to deal with, such as the promise her witch Giselle made to the entity known as ‘Scooter’ – Max herself! Alexander and Max head off to get Max’s family and run into all sorts of trouble along the way.

I didn’t think it was possible, but Crimson Wind is even better than Bitter Night!! Alexander steps up a lot more in this book and we get to see into his thoughts and feelings. I loved the new characters and I hope we get to learn more about them in the next book. I was definitely pleased about how well the second book meshed cleanly and clearly with the events of the first. There were surprises and twists – ones I could never have imagined – which just added to the depth of the plot. Ms. Francis shows her talent in the careful, complex, and detailed creation of the characters – she makes you feel as if you’d known them all your life. I’m wholly pleased with this series and I definitely recommend it to all who enjoy urban fantasy.

Horngate Witches series: Bitter Night (1), Crimson Wind (2), Shadow City (3)


  1. Great review! I also wanted to let you know that I gave you the One Lovely Blog Award!

  2. Pocket AFter Dark just had the first book up on their site as a free read (actually I think it's up for a couple more days) and I read it and loved it. I'm looking forward to the second one. I wish this series was getting more publicity. It's a great UF series.


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