The setting of Incarnate is a character unto itself. Range and the city of Heart are this mix between the present, a fantasy world full of mystical creatures like dragons and centaurs, and futuristic technology (i.e. laser guns.) And it completely worked. To me, there are some genres that are hard to write and get right, and fantasy is one of them. There is so much that could go wrong when crafting a complex universe like the one in Incarnate. I have to applaud the author for not only making it all work together, but for making it a world I want to live in.
And not only is the world building excellent, but so is the character development. I really liked Ana as the main character. She doesn't start out the strong heroine that everyone loves to read about. She had a sheltered and abusive upbringing that causes her to be cautious of everyone and everything, but she evolves throughout the novel. Even though I do enjoy main characters who know what they want and will do anything to get it, I thought Ana was realistic. Most people don't start out like that-- they have to work towards it. And of course, our love interest Sam is the one who gets her to the point of which she can fend for herself. There's kind of an insta-romance between them, but it didn't really bother me that much. It made sense to me later on in the novel, but spoilers! I won't tell you why. You can figure it out.
Overall, Incarnate has a slower pace to it, but I don't really think it took away from the story. I really enjoyed getting to all everyone and getting engrossed in the world of Range. The plot is shrouded in enough mystery that it kept my brain constantly involved in what was going on. And the music. There is so much music woven into the story and I absolutely loved it. So, in the end, once I was done kicking myself for not reading it sooner, I very much enjoyed this novel. Especially the ending. It ended with just enough of a cliff hanger to make me want more, but not too much to make my mind melt. Well done, Jodi Meadows. Well done.