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Review: Tiger’s Voyage (Houck)

AUTHOR: Colleen Houck
SERIES: Tiger Saga, book 3
PUBLISHER: Splinter Publishing
ISBN: 9781402784057
PAGES: 560
SOURCE: my library
GENRE: fantasy, romance, mythology
GIVE IT TO: MS, HS boys and girls. This one has universal appeal.

SUMMARY: Kelsey, Ren, and Kishan set out aboard a luxury yacht to uncover the third artifact needed to break the curse that has plagued Ren and Kishan for 300 years.

MOVIE COMPARISONS: This series should BE a movie (movie rights were recently sold to Ineffable Pictures).


  • Overall: 3/5 stars
  • Creativity: 3/5 stars–reminiscent of The Twilight Saga; many similarities
  • Characters: 4/5 stars for Ren and Kishan; 2/5 for mixed bag of underdeveloped supporting characters
  • Engrossing: 4/5 stars; Houck is a pretty decent storyteller
  • Writing: 3/5; did some skimming with this one and am starting to lose my patience with the love triangle plotline
  • Appeal to teens: 5/5 stars; I have no doubt my students will love this book
  • Appropriate length to tell the story: 2/5 stars; took WAY too long for the adventure to begin. Too much vacillating between Ren and Kishan as love interests. I skimmed in a few places.


  • Language: none
  • Sexuality: mild; some kissing, mild flirting, and “appreciation” of Kelsey’s body
  • Violence: mild; dragons are more tricksters than violent; some shark and sea monster attacks
  • Drugs/Alcohol: none

STATUS IN MY LIBRARY: We have the entire series, multiple copies of all three so far released. POPULAR! We have 10 copies of Tiger’s Curse in our library. As of today, there are still 14 holds (down from over 30 a few weeks ago, when we only had 5 copies). If you are a MS librarian, this series is a MUST.

WARNING: The reviews on this site are intended for librarians who need thorough book reviews in order to make informed purchasing decisions. As such, anything below this warning may contain mild spoilers. I try not to give away too much, but I do review the entire book.

WHAT I LIKED: I truly love this series and know I will read the other two books quickly after their release dates, if not before if I can get my hands on them. I am sold on any story taking place in the ocean; add in some dragons and sea monsters and Indian Mythology, and I am engrossed. Toss in a heated little love triangle, and I am thoroughly hooked.

I love Ren and Kishan as characters and love interests for Kelsey; both are sexy leading males and have unique histories. Once the quest (finally) begins, the action is plentiful. Houck describes the sea creatures and dragons the trio encounters beautifully and thoroughly. Some may complain about the detail, but I like Houck’s descriptions of clothing and food and exotic places they visit. And the Indian mythology and stories are just so incredibly interesting; without the mythology, the Tiger Saga would be little more than a Twilight copycat.

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE: While I really, really love this series, part of me is starting to care that the story is full of holes. I am sad that I am only now really starting to understand Lokesh’s purpose in what he does. He reminds me of Stefano on Days of Our Lives: a flat character with uncertain, evil motives that exists only to make trouble for the protagonists. We are three books into this series, yet Lokesh still lacks depth and makes his appearance only at the beginning and end of each book. After nearly 1500 pages of story, Lokesh’s motives should be more than the ubiquitous increase in his own “power.” Houck has has ample time to better flesh out Lokesh’s character; I hope that Tiger’s Destiny gives Lokesh some more stage presence.

Lokesh aside, one of the things I really loved about the first two books is that I loved Kishan and Ren equally. Both are well-drawn as incredibly sexy, smart were-tiger princes who have 300 years of bad blood between them. But in this book, Ren is overly-protective and controlling, to the point that Kelsey can’t even choose to wear her hair shorter. Kishan becomes the clueless best boyfriend in this one and as such, comes off as lame and weak. He actually seems to have gotten stupid and inept in this book as he repeatedly fails to see the writing on the wall concerning Kelsey’s feelings for Ren. The poor guy cannot even manage to tuck in Kelsey correctly. Where is the smoldering, flirtatious, self-interested Kishan of the previous two books?

And Kelsey. Could this girl possibly get more irritating? I like that she is very courageous, determined, and smart. But seriously, is she really the siren she is made out to be? Tiger’s Quest features the ridiculous dating situation with Jason, Li, and Artie or Arnie or whatever. In Tiger’s Voyage, not only do Ren and Kishan battle for her constantly; now we have dragons who vying for her attentions, as well as three different men (who are old enough to be her grandfather) and a Texas cowboy (who could not POSSIBLY be more annoying). It seems Miss Kelsey never met a male creature she didn’t unwittingly entice with her long braids and hair ribbons.

I also groan at how Kelsey strings Ren and Kishan along. Back and forth she goes, constantly denying the one she really loves while dangling her feelings for him over his head nearly every time she sees him. I feel sorry for these guys and wonder why neither of them ever glances at poor Nilima, who seems to exist only to serve Kelsey’s grooming needs and talk about Kelsey’s love life.

And I kind of wanted to toss the book across the room after the Epilogue. Sheesh, really?

I know it does not sound like it from this review, but I do truly enjoy this series and anxiously anticipate the fourth installment, Tiger’s Destiny. The current July 2012 release date will give me time to recuperate from this one.

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