Saturday, October 27, 2007

Stephanie Plum meets Anita Blake?

Well, kind of. The humor isn't as over the top as Evanovich novels, and there isn't the dark sensuality of Hamilton, but Dead Witch Walking is a thoroughly enjoyable, funny, exciting read.

Rachel Morgan is a witch and a bounty hunter. The setting is a present-day-ish post-apocalyptic Cincinnati, and all across the country, a huge percentage of humans have been wiped out by a virus. The sudden lack of humans has made all the previously unnoticed supernatural residents of society very obvious, because they were immune to the virus and have all survived. Witches, werefolk, leprechauns, vampires, pixies and more all live (more or less) side by side with humans.

Although Rachel considers herself good at her job at the IS (Inderland Security), she's been plagued by bad luck lately, and her "runs" are becoming progressively more boring, even insulting. When she finally quits, her former partner Ivy, a living vampire (she has the virus because her mother was a vampire, but she won't be an undead vampire until she actually dies), decides to go with her. Their thoroughly despicable boss, Denon, could care less that Rachel wants to leave, but Ivy is one of the best, and her leaving is unforgivable.

Turns out that the nasty "accidents" that happen to IS employees who strike out on their own are not just rumors. Ivy can afford to buy out the contract on her life, but Denon holds Rachel responsible for Ivy's leaving and puts a contract out on her, instead. Rachel must find a way to earn enough money to buy out the contract on her life before Denon's assassins succeed in killing her. Rachel has a suspicion that a prominent citizen is involved in selling illegal drugs, and she hopes that nailing him will bring her enough money to buy off her contact. All she needs to do is sneak into his high-security estate and find some proof - and what could possibly go wrong with that?

There are many fun details and interesting elements that combined to make this book compelling - Jenks, the pixie who also leaves IS when Ivy and Rachel do, to go into private business with them, is fun comic relief to some darker moments in the novel. Ivy freaks Rachel out much of the time, even though for the most part she acts as a caring, supportive friend. But the fact that Ivy could lose self-control and rip her throat out is just a tad off-putting to Rachel. Although the writing was a little uneven in places, and at times I couldn't help but wonder why Rachel kept jumping into dangerous situations with very little planning or forethought, the story was so entertaining I didn't really mind. I am looking forward to reading the next in this series.

I'd like to thank Ladytink for recommending this series - be sure to check out her reviews of other Rachel Morgan novels.

The books in the Rachel Morgan (Hollows) series so far are:

9 comments:

  1. I'm waiting for my interest in paranormal novels to return and then I definitely plan to read this series. Thanks for the great review!

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  2. You are so welcome. My interest in different types of books tends to wax and wane as well, and I find that if I just wait it out, I know I will enjoy a book much more than I would otherwise. Sounds like you're the same way!

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  3. Yes, that's it exactly! I cycle through phases and so I know there will be a time when I'm ready to dive into a book like this again.

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  4. You're welcome! I'm so glad you're liking the series so far.

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  5. Literary Feline - It's fun to know I'm not alone in my book cycles!

    Ladytink - I am enjoying it, although I admit I peeked at your most recent review (A Few Demons More), and it sounds like it's going to be a tough one. :-( I like these characters already!

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  6. I just got this book before I went away. It will take a little while for me to get to it but it sounds like it is worth the wait.

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  7. But don't you love that feeling of having a bunch of books waiting for you that you think you'll really like?

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  8. Sounds interesting. Definitely adding to my TBR. I'm thoroughly enjoying the Anita Blake series so I'm sure I'll like this one. Haven't read any Kim Harrison yet. Worth a shot.

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    1. Sorry it took me forever to post your comment! I keep forgetting about moderation of older comments, but wow has it cut back on spam. Anyway, I will be very interested to hear what you think if you give this series a try. It definitely gets better and better as the series progresses, and the characters change and grow. I like that!

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