Hunt the Moon (Cassie Palmer Series #5)

Hunt the Moon (Cassie Palmer Series #5)

by Karen Chance

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Overview

Cassandra Palmer recently defeated a god, which you'd think would buy a girl a little time off. But it doesn't work that way when your job description is Pythia-the world's chief clairvoyant. Cassie is busier than ever, trying to learn about her power, preparing for her upcoming coronation, and figuring out her relationship with the enigmatic sexy master vampire, Mircea.

But someone doesn't want Cassie to become Pythia, and is willing to go to any lengths to make sure the coronation ceremony never happens- including attacking her mother before Cassie is even born.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780451413079
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/07/2011
Series: Cassie Palmer Series , #5
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 169,478
Product dimensions: 4.19(w) x 6.75(h) x 1.13(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Karen Chance has lived in France, the United Kingdom and Hong Kong, but always comes back to America. She currently lives in Central Florida, the home of make-believe, which may explain a lot.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

I hit the ground running . . . or stumbling or falling—it was kind of hard to tell when it felt like the earth was crumbling under my feet.

And then I realized that was because the earth was crumbling under my feet.

“Craaaap!”

I plummeted straight over a cliff and into thin air, arms waving and feet still moving uselessly, screaming bloody murder. For a long moment, there was nothing but me and crystal blue sky and acre upon acre of sparkling, snow-covered land way the hell too far below. I knew I was supposed to be doing something, but the wind was roaring in my ears and my eyes were watering from the cold and the ground was rushing up to meet me at a pace that promised one very mushed clairvoyant in the very near future—

And then I was jerked back up, fast enough to cut off my breath, to leave me dizzy. Or maybe that was the feel of the hard arms around me or the harder body behind me. Or possibly the abject, stunning relief of Not dead, not dead yet

Because that never gets old.

My name is Cassie Palmer, and I’ve cheated death more times than anyone has a right to expect to. In the past two months, I’ve been shot, stabbed, beaten and blown up a few dozen times, and that doesn’t count all the magical ways I’ve almost been killed. I’d have been dead a long time ago if not for my friends, one of whom had just jumped off the cliff after me.

I’d have been a lot more appreciative if he hadn’t pushed me first.

My nose was running, I couldn’t see worth shit and my brain was still frozen in abject terror. So for a moment I just hung there, gulping ice-cold air and waiting for my heart to stop trying to slam through my chest. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see a small piece of what was holding us up, and it wasn’t reassuring.

It was almost transparent, except for a faint bluish tinge that was largely invisible against the brilliant sky. It had a dome-shaped top and a few filmy tentacles streaming downward to wrap around us, making it look vaguely like a jellyfish—if they were as big as a bus and had a habit of drifting around over the Colorado Rockies. What it was was almost as strange: an expression of one man’s magic, formed into a parachute that I didn’t trust at all.

On the other hand, I did trust the man. Although I really wished he’d caught me from the front instead of from behind. That way I could have kneed him in the nuts.

“You did that on purpose!” I gasped when I was able to breathe.

“Of course.”

Of course?” I looked up, but had to crane my head back, leaving the features above me wrong-side up. The clear green eyes were the same, and, unfortunately, so was the spiky blond hair.

It didn’t look any better from this angle, I decided.

“You have yet to learn to react reliably under pressure,” I was told. “Until you do, you are vulnerable.”

I tried swiveling my head around, because glaring at someone upside down doesn’t work. But all I saw was part of a muscular shoulder in an army green sweatshirt. My sometimes friend, sometimes enemy, all the time pain in the ass John Pritkin wasn’t wearing a coat.

Of course he wasn’t.

It had to be subzero out here, and if it hadn’t been for all the adrenaline pumping through my system, I’d have been freezing to death—but a coat wasn’t macho. And if I’d learned one thing about war mages, the closest thing the supernatural community had to a police force, it was that they were always macho. Even the women. It was kind of scary.

Sort of like dangling about a mile above a lot of very pointy mountains.

“Your abilities will do you little good if you cannot learn to function under stress,” he continued calmly, as we slowly drifted closer to the pointy bits.

“Stress?” I asked, my voice cracking slightly. “Pritkin, stress is a bad hair day. Stress is gaining five pounds right before swimsuit season. This is not stress!

“Call it what you will; the point is the same. Remember what we discussed.Assess—determine what is happening; address—decide which of your abilities can best deal with the problem at hand; and then act—quickly and decisively. You must learn to do this automatically, without freezing up, and regardless of the circumstances. Or you will suffer the consequences.”

“I’m trying!” I said resentfully. It was barely two months since I’d been pushed off another cliff, and the fact that it had been a metaphorical one hadn’t helped at all. I’d been declared—over my loud and sustained protests—Pythia, the chief seer of the supernatural world.

It was a job that some people were willing to kill for, as I’d discovered the hard way. For my part, I’d spent a good deal of those two months trying to give back the power that came with the office, only to find that the power didn’t want to leave. After a number of very hard lessons, I’d finally accepted that I was going to have to make the best of it.

As a result, I’d been working my metaphysical butt off trying to make up for the lifetime of training the other candidates had received. It would have helped if Rambo up there hadn’t also demanded that I learn self-defense, too. I agreed that I needed it, but one thing I didn’t know how to do at a time was enough.

“Try harder,” Mr. Complete Lack of Sympathy told me.

“Look,” I said, trying to reason with him despite extensive experience that this rarely worked. “This isn’t a great time. I have my inauguration—”

“Coronation.”

“—coming up, and I’m trying to raise my abilities from pathetic to just sad before then so I don’t totally embarrass myself in front of the people I’m supposed to be leading. And then there’re fittings for the dress they want me to wear, and about a ton of names to learn, and if I get a title wrong it could cause some kind of international incident—”

“I will make you a deal,” he said, cutting me off.

“What kind of deal?” I asked warily. Wheeling and dealing was a vampire trait, something the other man in my life was much more likely to try. War mages ordered, threatened and bitched, depending on the circumstance. They didn’t deal.

Except for today, apparently.

“We’re directly over an area used by the Corps as a training ground,” he told me, referring to the formal name of the war mages. “Stay ahead of me for fifteen minutes, using any abilities you like other than time shifting, and I won’t bother you again for a week.”

I didn’t say anything for a moment. Because there were several types of shifting that came standard with my office—through space and through time. They might look the same to Pritkin, except that I moved from place to place instead of from era to era. But they weren’t. His boss at the Corps, Jonas Marsden, was the one training me in my newly acquired abilities and he’d told me so himself.

So if Pritkin didn’t specifically forbid me from spatially shifting, I could easily stay ahead of him—and buy myself a free week in the process. After the way things had been going lately, a little time off would be heaven. But it would be a bad mistake to sound like it.

“We’ve been out here half the day already,” I complained. “I’m tired, I haven’t eaten since breakfast and I can’t feel my toes any—”

“I’ll throw in a picnic.”

My head came up. “What?”

“I hid a basket this morning. After the test, I’ll take you to it.”

“It’ll be cold by now.”

“I left it with a warmer,” he said drily. Because war mages ate their fried chicken frozen to the ground and they liked it.

God. Fried chicken, potato salad, baked beans, maybe some apple pie or cookies for dessert—yeah. I could so use a picnic right about now.

“All right,” I agreed, faster than I should have. But I really was hungry. “No time travel.”

“You’re sure? Because when I win—”

If you win.”

“—you’ll stay until you’ve run the entire course. And you won’t whine about it.”

“I don’t whine!”

“Then we have a deal?”

“I guess so,” I said, trying to sound reluctant.

“Good,” he told me pleasantly.

And then he let go.

A couple of hours later, I staggered into the Vegas hotel suite I currently called home and face-planted onto the sofa. There was already someone sitting there, but I didn’t care. I was too tired to even open my eyelids and find out who it was.

Until someone pried one open for me with a finger the size of a hot dog. “Rough day?”

I rotated my eyeball—and, goddamnit, even that hurt—to see the leader of my bodyguards peering at me.

“No. I like being dropped from airplane height without a parachute.”

Marco patted me on the ass, which I guess was fair, since I was draped over his lap. “You seem all right to me.”

Marco, I reflected sourly, was getting awfully blasé where my health was concerned. He’d started out assuming that I was as squishy as most humans, and practically had a heart attack every time I got a hangnail. But after seeing me survive a few dozen attacks, he’d started to relax. These days, if I didn’t come in with a gaping wound or spewing blood, I didn’t get much sympathy.

“Because I managed to shift to the ground before I splattered on it!” I told him testily.

“Then what’s the problem?”

I turned over so I could scowl at him. “The problem is that I just ran a marathon in freezing weather with a maniac chasing me.”

“Why didn’t you just”—he waved the ham-sized hand that went with his bear-sized body—“you know. Poof.”

“You mean shift?”

“Yeah. Why didn’t you shift?”

“I did! But Pritkin expected that, and he borrowed Jonas’s necklace.”

“What necklace?”

I sighed and sat up. “It’s some sort of charm that allows him to recall the Pythia in times of emergency. As soon as I try to shift, wherever I am, whenever I am, it pulls me back.” As Pritkin had known when he made that bet, damn him.

God, I wished I kneed him in the nuts.

Marco seemed to think that was funny, which didn’t improve my mood. I got up and limped into the next room, still freezing cold and starving to death. Because Pritkin’s idea of a picnic left a lot to be desired.

But my bathroom didn’t. I knew it was stupid, but my bathroom made me happy. Maybe it was the size—which was huge bordering on sinful—or the soothing white and blue color scheme, or the rain forest showerhead over the Godzilla-sized tub. Or maybe it was because it was the one place in the whole damn suite where I could actually be alone.

Marco wasn’t the problem. Over the last month, he’d gone from treating me like a burdensome pest to treating me like a slightly bratty younger sister, and most of the time, I found myself actually enjoying his company. But Marco was the tip of the iceberg where my bodyguards were concerned. And they’d only been growing in number since the date of the inauguration had been announced.

Everyone assumed there would be an attack. I even assumed it. The supernatural world was at war, and killing off the opposite side’s leadership was SOP. And whether I liked it or not, the Pythia was seen as one of our side’s more important assets. Which explained Pritkin’s stepped-up attempts to make me suck slightly less at self-defense, and the dozen or so golden-eyed master vamps constantly patrolling the suite.

They were there for my protection; I knew that. But it didn’t make them any less creepy. They watched me eat. They watched me drink. They watched me watch goddamned TV. They even watched me sleep. I’d woken up more than once to find one of them just standing in the doorway of my bedroom, staring at me, like it was a perfectly normal thing to do.

If it hadn’t been for my bathroom, I really might have lost it.

Too bad I couldn’t sleep in there.

Marco stuck his head in the door as I was running hot water into my lovely big tub. “You need anything? ’Cause I go off duty in a couple.”

“Food,” I said, shrugging out of my coat.

“What kind?”

“Anything. As long as it isn’t good for me.”

He nodded and ducked out when I started to pull off my T-shirt. It was far too flimsy for where I’d been, but the saying on the front fit my mood perfectly: “I keep hitting escape, but I’m still here.” I tossed it on a pile with the coat, my stiff-with-cold jeans and the expensive scrap of silk that had been wedged up my ass for the past half hour. Then I slowly climbed into the tub.

Oh, God.

Bliss.

It was actually a little too hot, but I figured the amount of ice clinging to me ought to even things out. I added a generous amount of bath salts, found my pillow under some towels and let my head sag back against the tub. After a few moments, my muscles began to unclench and my spine sagged in relief, and I seriously began to wonder if sleeping here was such a bad idea after all.

I think maybe I did drift off for a while. Because the next thing I knew, I was at the pink and pruney stage, the mirrors were all fogged up and the water was no longer hot. And a ghost was sitting by the tub, staring at me.

I’d have been more concerned, but this was a ghost I knew. I grabbed a towel and shot him a look; I don’t know why. Billy didn’t worry about his numerous vices. He’d cheated death like he’d cheated at cards in life, and he intended to keep it up. That made his morality a bit of a mixed bag, since he never intended to answer for any of it, anyway.

With an insubstantial finger, he pushed up the Stetson he’d been wearing for the past century and a half. “I’ve seen it before,” he told me with an exaggerated leer.

“Then why are you looking?”

“’Cause I’m dead, not senile?”

I threw the sponge at him, which did no good, because it passed right through and hit the wall. “I can’t feed you yet,” I said. “Not until I eat.”

Billy and I had a long-standing arrangement, dating from the time I’d picked up the necklace he haunted in a junk shop at the age of seventeen. I donated the living energy it took to keep him feeling frisky, and he did little errands for me in return. At least, he did if I complained enough.

He stretched denim-covered legs out in front of him, as if on an invisible sofa. “Can’t a guy drop by without you immediately assuming—” He caught my expression and gave it up. “Okay, I’ll wait.”

I was trying to decide between getting out and running some more hot water when there was a knock at the door. “You decent?”

I pulled the towel up a little higher. “Yes, if my wrinkled toes don’t offend.”

Marco’s swarthy head popped around the doorjamb. “Naw, they’re cute.”

I wiggled them at him since I could actually feel them now.

“Anyway, grub’s outside and I gotta go.” He grinned at me. “Big date tonight.”

“Date?” I blinked in surprise, because master vampires don’t date. Not unless forced, anyway.

“Witch,” he said succinctly.

“Isn’t that a little . . . unusual?”

“I’m like the master. I like to walk on the wild side.”

It took me a moment to realize what he meant. “I am not the wild side,” I told him flatly. “I’m about as far from the wild side as it’s possible to get.”

He raised a bushy black eyebrow. “If you say so.”

I opened my mouth, then decided I was too beat to argue. “Well, have fun.”

“Oh, I will.” He paused. “And just FYI, there’s a bunch of new guys on tonight. Well, not new new, but new to you.”

I didn’t know why he was bothering to tell me. The bodyguards were changed on a regular basis. Round-the-clock security meant that some of them got stuck on the day shift, which was hard on vampires. At least I assumed that was why, after a week or two, they started looking a little peaked.

I nodded, but Marco just stood there, as if he expected some kind of answer. “Okay.”

“It’s just . . .” he hesitated. “Try not to freak them out too much, all right?”

“I freak them out?”

“You know what I mean. It’s those things you do.”

“What things?”

His eyes darted around the bathroom. “Talking-to-invisible-people kind of things.”

“They’re ghosts, Marco.”

“Yeah, only most of the guys don’t believe in ghosts, and they’ve started to think you’re a bit . . . strange.”

“They’re vampires and they think I’m strange?”

“And no popping out of nowhere in front of a guy. That takes some getting used to. I don’t think Sanchez has recovered yet.”

“The only place I’m popping is to bed.”

“Good plan.” Marco looked satisfied. “See you on the flip side.”

I rolled my eyes at the slang, which as usual for the older vamps, was decades out of date, and let my head sag back against the tub. I really didn’t want to move now that I was warm and relaxed and actually starting to feel my extremities again. But the smells drifting in from the next room were making my stomach growl plaintively.

I couldn’t immediately identify the source, but it didn’t matter. If Marco had done the ordering, it had to be good. Unlike Pritkin, Marco didn’t worry about things like trans fats and cholesterol. When Marco ate, he ate big: pasta dripping in cream sauce, huge peppery steaks, mashed potatoes with gravy, and cannoli sweet enough to crack teeth. Often at the same meal.

The fact that vampires didn’t technically need to eat didn’t appear to worry Marco. He’d told me that one of the best things about finally reaching master status had been the return of working taste buds. And he’d spent the time since making up for all those flavorless years.

I decided that maybe I was clean enough. “Turn around,” I told Billy. “I’m getting out.”

He made a pouty face but he didn’t argue. Maybe he was hungry, too. I wrapped the towel around myself and started to get out of the tub.

But instead my hands slid off the porcelain, my knees bent and I slipped back into the rapidly cooling water.

For a second, I just lay there, more confused than worried. Until I kept on sinking. Then I snapped out of it and began to struggle.

And found that it made absolutely no difference.

The best I could do was keep my face above the bubbles for a few seconds while I struggled to move, to cry out, to do something. But my body was as frozen as the shout trapped behind my teeth, which my lips stubbornly refused to let out. The most I managed was a muffled grunt as my head slowly went under.

Immediately, all sound vanished. The whoosh of the air-conditioning, the almost silent footsteps of the guards, the soft clink-clink of someone dropping ice cubes in a glass in the dining room, all faded into a watery roar. Silence constricted around me, a heavy, cold hand that robbed me of breath as effectively as the water over my face.

The bubbles had half dissolved by now, with pockets of suds floating here and there, like the sky on a cloudy day. In between I could see the ceiling of the bathroom, rippling with my barely discernible struggles. But they weren’t enough, weren’t nearly enough, and my lungs were already crying out for air.

After what felt like an hour but was probably no more than a few seconds, the scene above me was obscured by Billy’s indistinct shape. He was saying something, but I couldn’t hear, and then his face passed through the water and he gazed at me curiously. “Time to get out.”

No shit, I thought hysterically, trying to flail limbs that suddenly felt like they belonged to someone else. A frown appeared between Billy’s eyes. But it was the impatient Billy look, not the panicked Billy look. He still didn’t get it.

“Seriously, Cass. Your dinner’s gonna get cold.”

I just stared at him, my eyes burning from the soap, willing him to understand. Nothing happened, except that a chain of bubbles slipped out from between my lips, heading for the air a few inches away. It might as well have been a few thousand, for all the good it was doing me.

My toes were floating near the surface of the water, right beside the switch that controlled the drain. It was mounted just below the faucet, within easy reach—if I’d been able to move. As it was, I could only stare at it, stark terror creeping over my body, chilling my skin and threatening to paralyze whatever brain function I had left. I couldn’t move and Billy was useless and I couldn’t even take a deep breath to calm down because—

Because I was about to drown in the goddamn bathtub.

of my c8¢“What kind?”

“Anything. As long as it isn’t good for me.”

He nodded and ducked out when I started to pull off my T-shirt. It was far too flimsy for where I’d been, but the saying on the front fit my mood perfectly: “I keep hitting escape, but I’m still here.” I tossed it on a pile with the coat, my stiff-with-cold jeans and the expensive scrap of silk that had been wedged up my ass for the past half hour. Then I slowly climbed into the tub.

Oh, God.

Bliss.

It was actually a little too hot, but I figured the amount of ice clinging to me ought to even things out. I added a generous amount of bath salts, found my pillow under some towels and let my head sag back against the tub. After a few moments, my muscles began to unclench and my spine sagged in relief, and I seriously began to wonder if sleeping here was such a bad idea after all.

I think maybe I did drift off for a while. Because the next thing I knew, I was at the pink and pruney stage, the mirrors were all fogged up and the water was no longer hot. And a ghost was sitting by the tub, staring at me.

I’d have been more concerned, but this was a ghost I knew. I grabbed a towel and shot him a look; I don’t know why. Billy didn’t worry about his numerous vices. He’d cheated death like he’d cheated at cards in life, and he intended to keep it up. That made his morality a bit of a mixed bag, since he never intended to answer for any of it, anyway.

With an insubstantial finger, he pushed up the Stetson he’d been wearing for the past century and a half. “I’ve seen it before,” he told me with an exaggerated leer.

“Then why are you looking?”

“’Cause I’m dead, not senile?”

I threw the sponge at him, which did no good, because it passed right through and hit the wall. “I can’t feed you yet,” I said. “Not until I eat.”

Billy and I had a long-standing arrangement, dating from the time I’d picked up the necklace he haunted in a junk shop at the age of seventeen. I donated the living energy it took to keep him feeling frisky, and he did little errands for me in return. At least, he did if I complained enough.

He stretched denim-covered legs out in front of him, as if on an invisible sofa. “Can’t a guy drop by without you immediately assuming—” He caught my expression and gave it up. “Okay, I’ll wait.”

I was trying to decide between getting out and running some more hot water when there was a knock at the door. “You decent?”

I pulled the towel up a little higher. “Yes, if my wrinkled toes don’t offend.”

Marco’s swarthy head popped around the doorjamb. “Naw, they’re cute.”

I wiggled them at him since I could actually feel them now.

“Anyway, grub’s outside and I gotta go.” He grinned at me. “Big date tonight.”

“Date?” I blinked in surprise, because master vampires don’t date. Not unless forced, anyway.

“Witch,” he said succinctly.

“Isn’t that a little . . . unusual?”

“I’m like the master. I like to walk on the wild side.”

It took me a moment to realize what he meant. “I am not the wild side,” I told him flatly. “I’m about as far from the wild side as it’s possible to get.”

He raised a bushy black eyebrow. “If you say so.”

I opened my mouth, then decided I was too beat to argue. “Well, have fun.”

“Oh, I will.” He paused. “And just FYI, there’s a bunch of new guys on tonight. Well, not new new, but new to you.”

I didn’t know why he was bothering to tell me. The bodyguards were changed on a regular basis. Round-the-clock security meant that some of them got stuck on the day shift, which was hard on vampires. At least I assumed that was why, after a week or two, they started looking a little peaked.

I nodded, but Marco just stood there, as if he expected some kind of answer. “Okay.”

“It’s just . . .” he hesitated. “Try not to freak them out too much, all right?”

“I freak them out?”

“You know what I mean. It’s those things you do.”

“What things?”

His eyes darted around the bathroom. “Talking-to-invisible-people kind of things.”

“They’re ghosts, Marco.”

“Yeah, only most of the guys don’t believe in ghosts, and they’ve started to think you’re a bit . . . strange.”

“They’re vampires and they think I’m strange?”

“And no popping out of nowhere in front of a guy. That takes some getting used to. I don’t think Sanchez has recovered yet.”

“The only place I’m popping is to bed.”

“Good plan.” Marco looked satisfied. “See you on the flip side.”

I rolled my eyes at the slang, which as usual for the older vamps, was decades out of date, and let my head sag back against the tub. I really didn’t want to move now that I was warm and relaxed and actually starting to feel my extremities again. But the smells drifting in from the next room were making my stomach growl plaintively.

I couldn’t immediately identify the source, but it didn’t matter. If Marco had done the ordering, it had to be good. Unlike Pritkin, Marco didn’t worry about things like trans fats and cholesterol. When Marco ate, he ate big: pasta dripping in cream sauce, huge peppery steaks, mashed potatoes with gravy, and cannoli sweet enough to crack teeth. Often at the same meal.

The fact that vampires didn’t technically need to eat didn’t appear to worry Marco. He’d told me that one of the best things about finally reaching master status had been the return of working taste buds. And he’d spent the time since making up for all those flavorless years.

I decided that maybe I was clean enough. “Turn around,” I told Billy. “I’m getting out.”

He made a pouty face but he didn’t argue. Maybe he was hungry, too. I wrapped the towel around myself and started to get out of the tub.

But instead my hands slid off the porcelain, my knees bent and I slipped back into the rapidly cooling water.

For a second, I just lay there, more confused than worried. Until I kept on sinking. Then I snapped out of it and began to struggle.

And found that it made absolutely no difference.

The best I could do was keep my face above the bubbles for a few seconds while I struggled to move, to cry out, to do something. But my body was as frozen as the shout trapped behind my teeth, which my lips stubbornly refused to let out. The most I managed was a muffled grunt as my head slowly went under.

Immediately, all sound vanished. The whoosh of the air-conditioning, the almost silent footsteps of the guards, the soft clink-clink of someone dropping ice cubes in a glass in the dining room, all faded into a watery roar. Silence constricted around me, a heavy, cold hand that robbed me of breath as effectively as the water over my face.

The bubbles had half dissolved by now, with pockets of suds floating here and there, like the sky on a cloudy day. In between I could see the ceiling of the bathroom, rippling with my barely discernible struggles. But they weren’t enough, weren’t nearly enough, and my lungs were already crying out for air.

After what felt like an hour but was probably no more than a few seconds, the scene above me was obscured by Billy’s indistinct shape. He was saying something, but I couldn’t hear, and then his face passed through the water and he gazed at me curiously. “Time to get out.”

No shit, I thought hysterically, trying to flail limbs that suddenly felt like they belonged to someone else. A frown appeared between Billy’s eyes. But it was the impatient Billy look, not the panicked Billy look. He still didn’t get it.

“Seriously, Cass. Your dinner’s gonna get cold.”

I just stared at him, my eyes burning from the soap, willing him to understand. Nothing happened, except that a chain of bubbles slipped out from between my lips, heading for the air a few inches away. It might as well have been a few thousand, for all the good it was doing me.

My toes were floating near the surface of the water, right beside the switch that controlled the drain. It was mounted just below the faucet, within easy reach—if I’d been able to move. As it was, I could only stare at it, stark terror creeping over my body, chilling my skin and threatening to paralyze whatever brain function I had left. I couldn’t move and Billy was useless and I couldn’t even take a deep breath to calm down because—

Because I was about to drown in the goddamn bathtub.

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Hunt the Moon 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 255 reviews.
rubypearl More than 1 year ago
wow. damn, book five answered lots questions brilliantly, with usual humor, wit, action, in depth story line, and sex, finally ;).. of course author leaves book hanging for next in series, but you feel satisfied with ending, which was a great climax in itself and did not see coming, left smile on my face, in a way, without giving story away [it never really is a happy ever after ending, and little too much action detail as norm]. even so, cannot wait for the next one, um, please hurry!!
tami_ami More than 1 year ago
Took the story line to new heights!!!! Love the love triangle and all the back stories. MUST READ!
dalnewt More than 1 year ago
I had a hard time rating this book because of the way the story-line jumped around. The book revolves around Cassie, the time traveling Pythia, being attacked by mysterious others who are more than human but unidentified until the latter portion of the story. But, that frantic story-line was sometimes abandoned in favor of past historical events, romance and explanations concerning the various back-histories of Cassie, Mircea (Cassie's master vampire love interest) and Pritkin (the half-demon war mage and Cassie's' protector). Sometimes the transitions were too abrupt for me, but, as a whole, this book worked. It deepened the main characters, delivered excellent action scenes and resolved in a wrenching/action-packed climax with a clever twist. As always I enjoyed Cassie's spontaneity, snappy comebacks and humility. She grows up a bit in this book. Instead of whining and complaining, she seems to be sincerely dedicated to discovering and exercising her powers. Note, the chase/action scenes are excellent and seem a bit more cohesive than past action sequences in the earlier books. The love triangle is a little too cliché for me but at least the two male characters, (Mircea and Pritkin), are more filled out in this book. Part of the mystery surrounding Cassie's mother is predictable from the first historical scene featuring her. Furthermore, the full identity of Cassie's mother becomes apparent when the enemies' identities are revealed within the text. Nonetheless, it's a clever twist that unites the past and present and explains Cassie's' succession to Pythia.
NoraAdrienne More than 1 year ago
Hunt the Moon By Karen Chance Copyright June 2011 Publisher Signet Select Cassandra Palmer recently defeated a god, which you'd think would buy a girl a little time off. But it doesn't work that way when your job description is Pythia-the world's chief clairvoyant. Cassie is busier than ever, trying to learn about her power, preparing for her upcoming coronation, and figuring out her relationship with the enigmatic sexy master vampire, Mircea. But someone doesn't want Cassie to become Pythia, and is willing to go to any lengths to make sure the coronation ceremony never happens- including attacking her mother before Cassie is even born. Cassie just can't catch a break. No sooner has she killed, maimed, destroyed, or ticked off her last nemesis, she's back in the middle of more action and fighting for her life; all this while preparing for her Coronation. Of course Cassie is trying to take all of this in stride, even with no dress, and Mircea conveniently out of town. Cassie (powers aside) is every woman I've ever known. Just trying to get through life in one piece while doing her job, having a love life, and just trying to stay one step ahead of the bill collector. For Cassie it means being the Pythia, a job she has not received proper training it. Her kick ass, and take names style makes reading the series a fast paced, don't turn your head or you'll miss something kind of book. I have been a Cassie fan right from the beginning in "Curse the Dark". I hope this book has a long and healthy run. I think Ms. Chance's writing style and characters have a depth and life to them that parallel our own world and lives. FTC Full Disclosure: I borrowed this book from the Public Library fully intending to enjoy it and write a review and sharing it with the world.
Rita_Lot More than 1 year ago
The Cassandra Palmer series is a unique and I highly recommend it for Urban Paranormal Fans. This fast pace series is filled with a variety of interesting other worldly beings and is unique with Cassandra having the ability to travel through space and time to make sure that all is right and stays right with the world. Its action packed with a splash of romance and a steamy love triangle. I've read all of Karen Chances novels and even her shorts. Her writing style draws you in and keeps you hooked. My only suggestion is that you read the Palmer series first before you attack the Midnight Daughter series. Karen enjoys mixing these two worlds and characters since they all are occuring at the same time. The Palmer series introduces the main guns. Great summer and rainy day read!
sl75 More than 1 year ago
This book is by far my favorite in the series. Amazing when a book can be this fresh and exciting at installment #5! I love Cassie! I love Pritkin. I love this series. The ending was amazing...I just wish I didn't finish it so fast...because I cannot wait for the next book!
ElizabethT More than 1 year ago
I love Cassie, she's funny, clever, and courageous. This is my favorite book so far. because she is starting to get her feet as the Pythia. I can't wait until the next one comes out.
EclecticMusicLover 18 days ago
This book is excellent! I have read it many, many times. Highly recommend.
SeiyaStarlight 18 days ago
Watching Cassie and the rest of "the cast" grow is really interesting, it's even more noticeable if you reread the books thus far. Karen Chance doesn't disappoint, each book is better than the last and each book feeds into the next seamlessly. You could almost forget where one ends and the next begins... that is unless you're waiting for the next one to be released then all bets are off. I couldn't recommend this series enough, Karen chance continues to work her magic and it's leaving us readers dying for the next book.
Jen Kyle 18 days ago
Wow another fun whirlwind. So many different things happen in this book. The action is so much fun. Learn more about characters. Mercia is in this book more. But I'm sorry but Pritkin is still my favorite.
_A_ 22 days ago
For the two months that Cassandra Palmer has been Pythia someone has always been trying to kill her. The latest attempt on her life, also threatens that of her mother's when a group of time traveling mages known as the Guild track down the Pythian Heir to kill her. Cassie attempts to save her mother while maintaining the integrity of the timeline. In order to save her mother Cassie with uncover secrets that will aid her in understanding the Pythian power. Whenever there have been more than one Pythia in a story, there has been an exciting chase through time. This one did not disappoint.
J_Daj 25 days ago
WHOA! This book changes everything, in the best way Hunt the Moon is a HUGE turning in the Cassie Palmer series. There are earth shattering revelations in this book. Lots of character development and action. You're left feeling both gobsmacked and a little vindicated at the end. I cannot recommend this series enough!
Lavinient on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This fifth book in the Cassie Palmer series is probably my favorite. The series is very action packed, but it is the characters that keep me coming back. And this particular book has a lot of character development. Some past stories were given and we saw new emotions, especially from Mircea and Pritkin. This is great, though I have been very much Team Mircea throughout, and this book has me flirting with Team Pritkin. Pritkin has had to hide so much, and it was nice to see behind the stone wall he presents himself as.As much as I enjoyed it I couldn't give it a full 5 stars. Chance's action scenes are just too confusing. No matter how slowly I read them and re-read them, they absolutely make no sense to me. I can't fully picture what is actually happening. And I have seen other people's reviews with the same complaint, so I know it is not just me.
TheBooknerd on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Absolutely loved this! The series just gets better and better with each book. I love seeing Cassie coming into her own, pushing for her own interests. And Pritkin... sigh. Such an entertaining partnerhood.
DarkFaerieTales on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Review Courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales Quick & Dirty: A fast-paced story of a woman who has more than her fair share of bad luck. Opening Sentence: I hit the ground running ¿ or stumbling or falling; it was kind of hard to tell when it felt like the earth was crumbling under my feet. The Review: I so look forward to these books. Each one ends leaving you chomping at the bit to find out what happens next. I¿ve been patiently lying in wait, like a lion in the savannah, ready to pounce as soon as it hits the stores. Surely, this is the book that will satisfy my hunger to know what happens next for our favorite clairvoyant. Needless to say, Hunt the Moon, the fifth installment of the Cassie Palmer series, is just as frustrating as the rest of them. Why can¿t Cassie, the main character, just stay home and take a load off once and a while? Hunt the Moon keeps me on the edge of my seat with nonstop action and then BAM, cliff hanger. AGH!!!! How is anyone expected to wait another year for the next book? Deep breath¿ okay, I¿m better now. Cassie Palmer, now Pythia, is finally going to be recognized as the legitimate heir to the office of chief clairvoyant. The death threats from the Silver Circle are now a thing of the past, and the Vampire Alliance negotiations are going well so Cassie should have it easy right? Please, easy things do not happen to Cassie; chaos and mayhem happen around Cassie whether it¿s her fault or not. Now there¿s speculation on recent events being the signs of the coming of Ragnorok, the end of days. Jeez, will she ever catch a break? As keeper of the timeline, it is Cassie¿s duty to keep people from changing the past to alter the future. She¿s had lots of experience with this over the last few books by stopping her once chief rival, Mira, from altering events that lead to Cassie¿s untimely end. Now a new group is intent on killing her mother and ensuring that Cassie is never born. We get to learn more about Cassie¿s long dead parents and how they got together. The story of the former pythian heir, Cassie¿s mom, and a rouge dark mage, her dad, running away together after meeting just once no longer holds any water. Cassie has become borderline obsessed with trying to find out anything she can about them, being denied information all these years. In some ways, Cassie is still that lonely child looking for the love and approval from those around her. I believe that Cassie¿s search for the truth about her parents and their real relationship is her way of figuring out how to deal with her own relationship with the sexy Senate member, Mircea. Or should I say, her way of NOT dealing with Mircea and focusing on something, anything, else. Growing up in a vampire court has trained her to deal with vampires and their ways but not how to hold her own around them. Mircea¿s formal claim is as good as being married both in his mind and the vampire community¿s, but Cassie refuses to accept the permanency of the bond. She has an overdeveloped sense of denial that is hampering her emotional growth. I have yet to meet anyone that uses the ¿ignore it until it goes away¿ mentality actually working out for them in the long run, but I think that Cassie is still optimistic. There is also Pritkin to contend with. John Pritkin: demon hunter for the Silver Circle, half-incubus and long lost Merlin from legend, is by far the most annoying man in Cassie¿s life. Even the piles of vamp bodyguards Mircea surrounds Cassie with don¿t come close to pushing her buttons like Pritkin can. He pushes far outside her comfort zone, both in combat training and in friendship. He serves as her personal war mage protector but they also have a lot of unresolved sexual tension to deal with. She likes him, hates him, frustrated by his attitude, and yet can¿t stand the idea of him not being around. They have had ¿encounters¿ in past books and this one is no exception. Who knew that incubi could be so complicated? Cassie loves Mircea but cannot deny her attra
dearheart on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Book five in the series, and like the others, takes place in just a few days time. As a matter of fact only two months have passed since the series began.In the last book traitors for both the Silver Circle and the Vampire Council had been uncovered and eliminated, Apollo had been killed and an alliance was being formed between the various vampire senates and the Silver Circle. Cassie¿s coronation in front of all is less than two weeks away. She¿s begun training with Marsden and her biggest worry should be the dress for the coronation Augustine is creating but won¿t let her see. Ah, but if that were true the book would be rather boring.What we have is an exciting story with greatly-detailed action scenes, allowing the author¿s wild imagination and humor to come to life. This is peppered with revelations on Pritkin¿s past, why Mircea is so protective, and most surprisingly that Cassie¿s parents aren¿t quite the people she¿d been led to believe.Artemis¿ spell keeps the gods from the Earthly plane, but not their demigod descendants and the five sons of Ares are a tad upset over the killing of Apollo. They¿ve got another good reason for wanting Cassie and her mother dead, and unless Cassie can help save her mother, she won¿t be born. There¿s also an entity that possesses Cassie in an attempt to kill her and not all of the wards and vampire guards are enough to keep her safe. And while doing all of that Cassie must assert herself and her position over the vampires and the Circle, or forever be nothing more than their puppet.I was grabbed immediately from the first page as the book begins in the middle of an action scene and it just doesn¿t let you go. But more importantly for me is that as we learn more about the characters and their backgrounds the various relationships feel more real and understandable. So why not 5 stars? On the whole I thought is was an excellent book, but I sometimes get lost in the long detailed action scenes as I try to visualize what¿s happening. My imagination can¿t always keep up with author¿s. And with so much action, the reader can be left feeling either exhilarated or somewhat drained.
thewalkinggirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I remember giving up on the first book in this series the first time I tried to read it because it was too dark and hopeless for me and I thought Cassie was kind of... not whiny, exactly, but close.I'm not sure if I've changed or if the writing has changed, but I flew through this one like it was really funny candy. Even things that normally bug me in UF--love triangles, uber-powerful everything, a cliffhanger ending *sob*--work for me in this case. It could be the awesome supporting cast, the humor or that Cassie's a lot more compassionate and able to cope with cultural differences than many of her UF peers, but my reaction to this series now is: more please!
jmaloney17 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The latest installment in the Cassie Palmer series. This episode delves a little deeper into Mircea and Pritkin. I quite liked it and now I cannot wait until the next one. If you are a fan, you will not be disappointed.
coz_6 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A rollicking yarn featuring clairvoyant Cassie Palmer, vamps, mages, gods and everything in between. Staring to find the chases overly long but other than that, really enjoying this series. Need to read in order.
Candacemom2two on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Spoiler free for the entire series:I LOVE this series! It's full of every sort of supernatural creature imagined and Cassie is an amazing character! They're told in first person so it's important to connect with the character and Cassie is one character I completely feel the connection with. She's bold, she's snarky, she's brave, and she's completely kick ass! She'll stand up for what she believes in, and protect anyone she cares about even when putting herself in peril. And although she's all of those things she's not a perfect person. Sometimes she makes rash decisions, sometimes she's too dang indecisive in what she wants, she doesn't control her powers very well and sometimes she says things she shouldn't say. But those are the things that make her HER. And I love her!These books are PACKED with action. It's just one thing after another. And this is book 5 but only 2 months have passed in all the books. So that shows you how jam packed full of action they are.And talk about sexual tension! They are full of that! We have characters we love, and at moments we hate those same characters and then two seconds later we're in total lust for them. They send us all over the place, but it's all a good thing! Sexy vamps, crazy mages, dragons, gods, demi- gods... yeah, these books really do have everything. I'll admit that the first book didn't sell me on this series. But book two did! And I cruised through the rest only to have a never ending wait for this one. But it was worth the wait! I loved it!The following has spoilers for previous books:This one was longer then the rest I believe, but it was as full, if not MORE full of action. We saw most all of our favorite characters and we got almost equal amounts of Mircea as Pritkin. So whether you are team Mircea, or team Pritkin you should be happy in how much time they have on the page. I actually love both of them but Pritkin is just different. I love him for that. And so I'm completely team Pritkin. A lot happened in this book. Cassie grew, Cassie had revelations, more people came after her... yeah, you know how it goes. This book really had everything I would want. And my only thing I think I would say is maybe it had too much action? I felt like things were constantly crazy and a bit more conversation with people may have been nice. But it wasn't really a big thing and I don't think I would say it officially is a negative.This book although not huge compared to an actual huge book took me a long time to read. Surprisingly long since it's not *really* that big. And I've come to the conclusion that it was because of the action. I found myself reading more slowly so I could keep everything straight. Sometimes I had to reread parts. The action was so crazy that it was easy to get lost. I laughed a lot in this book! I'm sure I did in the previous books as well, but Cassie's thoughts are just too funny! But the other characters say some crazy things, and crazy things happen, and some things are just so absurd that it's hilarious. So yes, I definitely got my laughs in in this one. And that's one thing I really love about this series. It's perfectly balanced with action and humor. Now, the biggest downside? We have to wait!!!! This book ends with a cliffhanger. The things are resolved from this particular issue dealt with through this book. But right when it ends something major happens and Cassie is off to fix it. So now we're waiting to find out how she manages that. It's a cliffhanger that has me anxious for the next one, but it's not AS bad as it could be. The plus side is that I think the next book is going to be even better. At least if it goes in the direction I'm thinking (hoping?). So fingers crossed!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Non- stop action and drama. A few unexpected surprises along the way. I was surprised in the end by everyone's actions as well as the outcome. Couldn't put it down.
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