Geist by Phillipa Ballantine

18 March 2014

Geist (Book of the Order, #1)    
Geist by Phillipa Ballantine
Publisher: Ace
Publication date: September 29th, 2010

 Between the living and the dead is the Order of the Deacons, protectors of the Empire, guardians against possession, sentinels enlisted to ward off the malevolent haunting of the geists...

Among the most powerful of the Order is Sorcha, now thrust into partnership with the novice Deacon, Merrick Chambers. They have been dispatched to the isolated village of Ulrich to aide the Priory with a surge of violent geist activity. With them is Raed Rossin, Pretender to the throne that Sorcha is sworn to protect, and bearer of a terrible curse.

But what greets them in the strange settlement is something far more predatory and more horrifying than any mere haunting. And as she uncovers a tradition of twisted rituals passed down through the dark reaches of history, Sorcha will be forced to reconsider everything she thinks she knows.

And if she makes it out of Ulrich alive, what in Hell is she returning to?
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I was confused.

Right from the absolute start, we are thrust right into action. 
And there are Deacons,  Actives, Sensitives, Geists....

I actually had to go back several times thinking I miraculously missed all the explanation.
Yeah... no, the explanation came,  30 pages too late.

The main character is Sorcha Faris, an experienced Deacon with 20 years under her belt.
I REALLY liked parts of her character, she is portrayed as a cool beauty with brains and unbelievable power. 
She is also married to her long time partner Kolya. But after a freak accident, he is left to recover and she is paired with a promising newbie Merrick Chambers, a boy with a secretive past and a fear of Sorcha that makes him  determined to stand his ground. 
Together they made a surprisingly good team. And are able to form a strong Bond right from the beginning.

Surprisingly the thing that irritated me the most was 
Sorcha's inability to behave like a mature adult when speaking to the majority of the other characters.
She was behaving childishly immature on one side, then proud and full of herself on the other.  
And Merrick was the level headed one, calmly discussing and interacting with others. 
That kinda threw me off, who again is the older one?

In the first half of the book we meet Raed Rossin the Pretender to the Throne and his crewmen on his ship. 
 ( A pirate AND a prince)

I really liked him. Not only did he have a genuine voice he was thoroughly developed as a character.
Cursed he set to sea in hopes of avoiding the things that curse him. 
He is a tragically flawed character, thus irresistible in my mind, I really enjoyed being in his head.
The only time I liked Sorcha was when she was interacting with Rossin, she seemed fun and witty. 

I'm not sure how I feel about her infidelity, simply because I really love a slow building romance. And everything seemed rushed when it came to the two of them.

Let's Talk about the world
When reading fantasy the thing I most love is the world itself.
The history, the creatures, the weapon's, the mystery, the bad guys all his makes for a great fantasy setting
And that is the case in Geist.
The universe itself is an unbelievable oasis of future possibilities. 

Geist was a perfect overture to what is still to occur. The shape shifting creatures and the usage of weapons as mediums for magic, the touch of piracy, and the sprinkle of steam punk. All this made for an epic world setting.

I really hope the second part will loose the awkwardness Geist had, because it has so much potential for a truly unbelievable series.



  1. LOVE the gifs! Whoo, Pirates of the Carribean :) Makes me want to bust out the movies. Too bad about this one, I hate the feeling of not understanding something, especially in books. I have to say that cover is kinda cool. Definitely not what I would think depicts Urban Fantasy, though!

  2. Ugh, I think I'll skip this one.

  3. Mmm, I'm feeling there's too many issues for me to go for this book. I REALLY hate being confused. And I get confused pretty easily...which I feel bad about (because I don't rate books high if I'm confused) buuuut, it's difficult. I'm reading The Bone Season right now and I'm still in a "what the heck is happening?" phrase. I hope I figure it out soon. >.<

  4. Me too, I spent three days reading this book, it got exhausting trying to keep up with all the new revelations I could hardly wait for the end to come.
    But i did give it benefit of the doubt since it is the first book in the series. ( I only feel bad since everyone else loved it)
    I've seen The Bone Season floating around cant wait to hear your thoughts on it!

  5. hahahah,yeah its more of an Epic fantasy then Urban
    (but the cover is too pretty *sob*)

  6. ahahha, I recently saw a supernatural gif, and had an idea that I could watch the all 9 seasons of the show (I did -.-.)
    Right! The covers are all beautiful courtesy of Jason Chan, i only wish all Urban fantasy authors would consider digital art covers instead of real ones! So much more kick-ass.