Review: Sweep of the Heart by Ilona Andrews

Posted January 25, 2023 by Jen in Rating B, Reviews, Sci-Fi or Fantasy Fiction, Urban Fantasy Tags: , , ,

Book cover of Sweep of the Heart by Ilona AndrewsSweep of the Heart
Ilona Andrews
Rating: B

What I’m Talking About:

Sweep of the Heart finds Innkeepers Dina and Sean once again in the middle of chaos and adventure. The book starts with a missing friend, and the only way to save Wilmos is to work with the arbitrators to host a large-scale, potentially dangerous event. Sound familiar? Even though Dina and Sean have been here before, it is a unique situation. 

Like the other books in this series, Sweep of the Heart is filled with humor, rich world building, and intricate details. The story is unique and the world is utterly fascinating. I loved learning more (so much more!) about Dina’s past, Caldania’s past, and how Inns work. I loved seeing Sean and Dina mesh and how they’ve grown as a couple. I enjoyed the humor and the little surprises and Easter Eggs. The way the authors tie in tidbits and pieces within the book and from previous books blows my mind.

With that said, I didn’t love the “story so far” clips at the beginning of each chapter, which actually made it feel like a serial story rather than a cohesive book. Additionally, there are a LOT of new characters, and I struggled to keep them all straight. After I finished reading the book, I discovered a list of characters, which would have been helpful while reading. Then I went to the front of the book, where there is a letter to the readers noting the character list, as well as an explanation of why they kept the “story so far” sections. I don’t fault the authors and thank them for these including the information, but when one gets a Kindle book, it opens to the first page of the actual story, so I never saw those things until too late.

The book is actually two separate plots: the search for Wilmos and the spouse selection ceremony. The connection between the two plots is tenuous. The 300+ individuals, fourteen species, politically charged event is interesting in that it provides a wealth of information about the known universe and Caldania. However, it goes on for too long and is overwhelming. The book finally returns to Wilmos, and this storyline is chocked full of critical information regarding the overall plot of Dina’s missing family, moving things forward by leaps and bounds. While I enjoyed both parts, I wish that the book had been more cohesive. 

At first Sweep of the Heart felt like a “final book” because the story contains so many characters from every previous book. I appreciate that we get some closure for these characters or we discover what has happened with them since last we met. But based on how the book ended, there is still much to share. New possibilities and promising storyline seeds are tossed into the story, so I hope it’s not the end. 

My Rating:  B

About the Book:

Life is busier than ever for Innkeeper, Dina DeMille and Sean Evans. But it’s about to get even more chaotic when Sean’s werewolf mentor is kidnapped. To find him, they must host an intergalactic spouse-search for one of the most powerful rulers in the Galaxy. Dina is never one to back down from a challenge. That is, if she can manage her temperamental Red Cleaver chef; the consequences of her favorite Galactic ex-tyrant’s dark history; the tangled politics of an interstellar nation, and oh, yes, keep the wedding candidates from a dozen alien species from killing each other. Not to mention the Costco lady.

They say love is a battlefield; but Dina and Sean are determined to limit the casualties!

Release Date: December 13, 2022
Innkeeper Chronicles #5
Science Fiction; Urban Fantasy, romantic elements, novella
paperback (454 pages), e-book, audiobook (coming)
Book Source: Purchased with my own funds

Purchase Info:
Amazon (affiliate link)

Reviews in the Series:
Clean Sweep by Ilona Andrews (Innkeeper Chronicles #1)
Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews (Innkeeper Chronicles #2)
One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews (Innkeeper Chronicles #3)
Sweep of the Blade by Ilona Andrews (Innkeeper Chronicles #4) – Audiobook Review
Sweep with Me by Ilona Andrews (Innkeeper Chronicles #4.5)