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Dark Currents (Agent of Hel #1)

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  6,410 Ratings  ·  892 Reviews
Jacqueline Carey, New York Times bestselling author of the acclaimed Kushiel’s Legacy novels, presents an all-new world featuring a woman caught between the normal and paranormal worlds, while enforcing order in both. Introducing Daisy Johanssen, reluctant hell-spawn…

The Midwestern resort town of Pemkowet boasts a diverse population: eccentric locals, wealthy summer peopl
ebook, 368 pages
Published October 2nd 2012 by Penguin Group (USA)
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Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ Rabid Reads
2/17/17 - ON SALE for $2.99:

Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

I read Jacqueline Carey’s Phèdre Trilogy when I was in the midst of my “Give me High Fantasy, or give me DEATH” phase about ten years ago. It was strange and dark and sexy and disturbing. Only twice in my entire life has a book been so bleak for so long that I was compelled to skip ahead. One of those times was a Phèdre book. I only skimmed enough text to glean that, yes, the end of the pain and suffering was in sight, an
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
BR with my MacHalo Freaks starting February 15, 2016.

This review is dedicated to barnacles everywhere.

It worked! It worked! The preemptive, Super Powerful, Anti-Crap Spell my Awesome Anti-Crap Wizard cast on this book worked! Ladies and gentlemen, please meet Gustav, aka my savior.

Damn, I love this little guy! He waves his magic Anti-Crap Wand and boom! 4-star rating on the way!

Given my recent winning streak UF-wise ← this might be a slightly ironic statement, I fully expected this book to su
Nov 13, 2012 Sara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If Charlaine Harris and Kim Harrison had a baby and if that baby were slightly less concerned with who the main character was currently bedding and if the entire attitude of the baby was slightly less morose and dark and instead highly readable, entertaining, funny and yet steeped in really cool, old mythology, solid writing and a female lead who actually enjoys the power she has? The baby would look a lot like "Dark Currents" the first in what I hope will be a long series in the "Agent of Hel" ...more
OKAY so one of my FAVE authors delves into one of my FAVE genres! Result? Mmm, I liked it a lot, not a rave for me, but certainly enough that I really wanna know more and will be in for whatever she writes in this world!

I mean, not to say it's not well-executed, nicely written, good characters, but I feel like I've read SO MUCH in the genre, that I gotta be knocked out with something super different to really have it stand out. And I kinda expected the sexy-stuff factor to be higher, and this w
Dec 17, 2015 Choko rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*** 4 ***

A fun buddy read with my Ghoul loving friends at the MacHalos!

This was much more fun than I expected. Urban Fantasies tend to be very hit and miss, but this one was one of the good ones:)

A Demon Spawn, literally, half human on her mother's side, lives in a small town on Lake Michigan within a community which is uniquely positioned on top of a shallow border with the underworld, thus being able to support many paranormal creatures and menagerie of mythological persons and gods... This
1.5 I tried, I really really tried!

Gah, the characters were so damn annoying, they didn't know what the hell they wanted and why they were doing what they were doing!

I got to around 40% and I just couldn't take it anymore. Too bad, the idea could have been decent. And it's almost impossible to write a bad PNR... But ah well, I guess everything happens at least once in your life.

If you've read any other PNR, stay away from this one. Just no.
Erin ☕ *Proud Book Hoarder*
Buddy read with the Machalos

Okay. Some books just "get me", where I have instant fall-in-love right away chemistry. This was one of those books that charmed me first sight, no questions needed later. Clearly it's not that perfect for every one, but it was so up my alley it needs to rent a permanent parking space in there.

The book has cute humor, but to me this wasn't overbearing - I generally dislike books that lean too far in the cutesy direction to where they become fluffy stories and lack any
Jan 11, 2013 Brigid rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Brigid by: Kat Kennedy
Why did I try out Dark Currents, you ask? Because of a little comment dearest Kat made:


Thanks to Kat, I picked up this glory of urban fantasy novelization (It's a word. I'm sure of it).

I now bow to your great scepter-ness (according to my mind, this is also a word. I dare you to defy me) Kat. Your welcome.

*Kat and her sceptor-ness take no prisoners.*

She's really a nice person, ignore Katy Perry's bitch glare.


A half-demon.

A mermaid.

A goddess of the Nor
Mar 03, 2012 new_user rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy
I don't know why I liked this. LOL. A murder mystery, a supernatural-ridden city, and even a love triangle- Dark Currents resembles every urban fantasy we've read. Though Jacqueline Carey does differentiate hers in some ways: supes attract tourists, and protagonist Daisy confesses to her crush instead of waiting five books.

But hellspawn Daisy's also a goody two-shoes. If she gives into her baser urges -the "Seven Deadlies" provide her moral compass; talk about a bandaid- she'll trigger Armagedd
Khanh (the Grinch)
This got off to a slow start, but ended up being a lot better than I expected. The first 50 pages of the book were slooooooooooow. It took me around a month, reading a page at a time, because it got off to such a bad start, and the premise didn't seem as promising as the blurb read.

Daisy is the daughter of a minor demon and a human woman whom it sounded like he raped. She lives in the town of Pemkowet, which exists in a world that knows of the existence of supernatural creatures. It's not an alt

If you’re vacationing in Pemkowet, or anywhere on the planet with a functioning underworld, do not mess around with a Ouija board. The spirit you summon might just pay a visit. Mom learned that the hard way, and I’m living proof of it.
Daisy Johanssen, reluctant hell-spawn. That’s me

Le iba a poner 3,5 estrellas, pero considerando el buen rato que pasé leyendolo, lo dejo así.

Pemkowet es un pueblo pequeño a lo Bon Temps (versión TrueBlood), con una variada (enfasis en variada) comunidad paranormal
This was one of the best UF books I’ve read in a long time. It was engaging and original. For once it didn’t feel like I was reading about the same old regurgitated tropes. Best of all it didn’t have a special snowflake, and it easily could have gone in that direction since Daisy is half human and half demon.

The world was unique. Random places around the world have pockets of hell that overlap with Earth. Supernatural creatures gathered in those places because their magic didn’t last long outsid
Oct 02, 2012 Kimberly rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What happened to the eloquent style of Jacqueline Carey? Where is the intricate character development? Where is the world-building? The political intrigue? Where is the attention to detail?

Daisy the "heroine" is a flat, pathetic shadow of Anastasia Steele from the Shades of Grey trilogy (the only positive comment I can make about Shades of Grey is that the sentence structure was decent). The language is simplistic and repetitive. Daisy's dialog is particularly annoying, littered with clichés and
May 21, 2014 Alexa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Let me start by saying that this is NOTHING like Jacqueline Carey's other books. If you're reading this for the intrigue and the politics, you'll be sorely disappointed. This is light Urban Fantasy at its best.

Daisy, our MC, is the daughter of a human and a demon/incubus. As a result Daise has a tail (A TAIL!), a terrible temper, and has to carefully control herself to not fall for the seven deadly sins. I really really liked her; she's so... nice. So refreshing! She doesn't have all the answer
Jacqueline Carey doing urban fantasy. I'm intrigued. Wish it was out sooner ....

This series introduces a new open urban fantasy universe, where members of the eldritch community tend to cluster above cities and towns with functioning underworlds. Pemkowet is a Midwestern resort town that is ruled by Hel, the Norse goddess of the dead.

Daisy Johanssen, the lead female point of view character is Hel's enforcer. Her mother is fully human. Her father an incubus. As such, Daisy has a hell-spawn herit
In a nutshell: If you like urban fantasy and need a new, quick read, I'd grab this one from the library and wait to see if later volumes in the series improve. If you want something more substantial, re-read Emma Bull's War for the Oaks.

I kept on wanting to not be disappointed by this book, but it just got more and more mediocre as it went on. Now, since it's Jacqueline Carey, her mediocre still trumps a lot of what's out on the shelves, but it's absolutely the weakest book of hers I've read (I'
Oct 16, 2012 Jeffrey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pemkowet is the setting of Jaqueline Carey's very entertaining urban fantasy murder mystery. The setting and backdrop for the story is very strong. There is a thin line in Pemkowett between the Underworld and our world. A werewolf pack has a home in the forested area out outside the town. Fairy's are attracted to spells. Naiad's inhabit the rivers, a ghoul biker gang that feeds on human emotion is a major criminal element and there is even a vampire house where bespelled humans are the fodder fo ...more
Sadly disappointing. I wanted to like it so much better than I actually did, but such is life.

1. The plot is... sparse. There's not a whole lot too it.
2. That would be ok if the novel were more of a character study. I love those! But it wasn't. We get to know Daisy decently well, but she's sweet and boring, and we don't get too much in depth with the others.
3. It feels like Carey just decided "Hell with it, paranormal romance is raking it in, I need a paycheck" and chucked this out.
4. I hate to
Didn't work for me. Read like a YA Charley Davidson. Silly, punny, and the snark just wasn't sharp enough. Not horrible, I just can't spare a care for any of the characters.
All Things Urban Fantasy
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy See site review for similar titles

Full of unexpected twists, cliche-free characters, and a fantasy infused Midwestern town shaped by Norse mythology, DARK CURRENTS (Agent of Hel #1) is a fantastically fun paranormal crime thriller that brought to mind several of my favorite urban fantasy series including Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs and Rachel Morgan/The Hollows by Kim Harrison.

The story centers around Daisy Johanssen, half-breed demon who works a
Apr 30, 2013 Brittany rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I expected so much more from Jacqueline Carey. She's already proven that she can create compelling characters with her other series, which is why I'm baffled as to how she found it completely impossible here. Her main character, Daisy, is a 14 year old goth chick's Mary Sue wet dream--all she needs is violet eyes that change color and we're set. In an attempt to make the character 'modern', the page is peppered with really offputting turns-of-phrase; she constantly refers to the 'Seven Deadlies' ...more
Jul 24, 2012 Abby rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, fantasy
(NOTE: this review is from a pre-pub galley.)

Official Review Title: Fifty Shades of Gah!

Gah ... this book was, OMG .... gah ... GAH! Annoyed yet? Yeah, so I was while reading this otherwise awesome book. Carey has an EXTREME verbal tic here with the word "gah". It's uttered out loud or in the heroine head every other page. Gah! It really is that prevalent and that distracting. Which is a crying shame, because otherwise this is damn near perfect book.

In brief: Daisy Johansson, half-breed human/he
I have mixed feelings about this book. At the very least it held my attention and I pretty much read it in all of one sitting. On the other hand, I don't feel all that emotionally invested in the characters or what's going on in their world. There's a great deal of distance felt between myself and the characters, which is sad because I want to be invested in them. I want to love them and root for them. Instead, I just sort of like them.

One of the issues is that Daisy, the main character, needs
Carolyn F.
Oct 14, 2015 Carolyn F. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I tried to read this author's Kuschiel's series and it was just too much for me and I read erotica. So I thought I wasn't going to be fooled by this book's blurb and while I was reading it I kept expecting any minute some intense sex scene. Didn't happen. In fact although there was violence against a female in the book, none of the details were discussed. So now I'm thinking maybe it was a little too tame. (Just call me Goldilocks - I'm rarely satisfied.)

The story itself was good. I'm planning
Francesca the Fierce (Under the Covers Book Blog)
4.5 stars

This review was posted at Under the Covers

I have wanted to read a Jacqueline Carey book in what seems like forever. I've been attracted to and purchased quite a few of them, but never managed to set aside the time to read them. Then this book comes along with this beautiful and fun cover and I just caved and had to read it.

I think I'm in love. This book is not the dark and gritty urban fantasy I thought I would get by reading a Jacqueline Carey book and for me, in this story, it worked
I know, I know. I was supposed to keep reading Kate Daniels, and I assure you I would have if I HAD THE BOOKS WITH ME. But I don't, and fortunately my e-reader is full with lots and lots of awesome reads.

It wasn't my first book from Jacqueline Carey. I tried to read Kushiel's whatever a long long time ago and dropped it quite early. Dark Currents I didn't drop. And I actually quite enjoyed it.

First . The girl's name is Daisy .


How cool is that ? Okay, maybe not everybody is gonna agree with me,
Throw your idea of the normal supernatural regulars out with this book. There are more varieties and they are unique; Werewolves, Brownies, Vampires, Ghouls, Mermaids and more. The head Ghoul, is sexy with a beating heart and blood in his veins. Hel is a Norse goddess who rules supreme over the edritch (supernatural others) that live there.
Daisy is a half demon and agent of Hel. She was raised by her mother, and taught to be 'good.' She has to avoid temptation, called the seven deadlies. If n
Mar 10, 2013 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who have seen Thor
While this does make use of some of the same tropes and motifs found in too much Urban Fantasy today, it is a cut above. If you are thinking it will be like Carey's Kushiel books, think again. There is a hint at a romantic many sided figure, but just a hint, the main focus is a mystery. So while the heroine, Daisy, feels lust, she doesn't act on it.

So Daisy is a special girl because she is the offspring of a human mother and demon father. I have to say that as much I as enjoy Armstrong's Women o
Paper Droids
Oct 12, 2012 Paper Droids rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Say what you will about Jacqueline Carey, but I will argue in her favour as a literary heavy-hitter until the cows come home and, if I’m feeling argumentative, I might argue with some cows, too. Yes, her Kushiel’s Legacy series is pretty sexy. And sure, the premise of her Phedre trilogy (the adventures of a courtesan-spy who is cursed to find sexual pleasure in pain) reaches Ed Wood levels of cheesiness. But Carey is such a master at what she does that she elevates what ought to be a guilty, smu ...more
Jan 19, 2013 Laura rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was so excited for this book. Jacqueline Carey writing an urban fantasy involving Norse mythology, how could that not be amazing? Well, it's really not. If Robin McKinley were to write a reboot of the Anita Blake books, this is what you would get. A female cop who specializes in the fantastic elements (because of her demon ancestry), solving a murder mystery, even with the setup of a love triangle with a were and a ghoul (which are just a variation on the standard urban vampire). Again, why do ...more
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
Sexiest villain? 1 1 Mar 10, 2017 02:39AM  
Darkest moment ? 1 1 Mar 10, 2017 02:39AM  
favourite love scene 1 2 Mar 10, 2017 02:39AM  
Casual Readers: {NO SPOILERS} Agent of Hel Series 9 10 Feb 22, 2015 01:41AM  
Who's Your Author?: January 2015 BOM (alternate): Dark Currents 25 33 Jan 28, 2015 09:05PM  
Vaginal Fantasy B...: Official Discussion Thread for Dark Currents *SPOILERS* 110 492 Nov 04, 2013 02:44AM  
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Jacqueline Carey (born 1964 in Highland Park, Illinois) is an author and novelist, primarily of fantasy fiction.

She attended Lake Forest College, receiving B.A.'s in psychology and English literature. During college, she spent 6 months working in a bookstore as part of a wo
More about Jacqueline Carey...

Other Books in the Series

Agent of Hel (3 books)
  • Autumn Bones (Agent of Hel, #2)
  • Poison Fruit (Agent of Hel, #3)

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“There's some sort of Soothsayers' Code that prevents soothsayers from soothsaying on a day-to-day basis, when it might, you know, avert this kind of ordinary, everyday tragedy. Something about the laws of causality being broken and the order of creation overturned, resulting in a world run amok, river running backwards, the run rising in the west, cats and dogs getting married...

I don't know; don't ask me.

I don't pretend to understand (...) But I guess it didn't rise to the standard required to break the Soothsayers' Code since no sooth was said.”
“By the way, if you're ever conversing with an actual vampire, do not refer to the House of Shadows as Twilight Manor. There's a reason vampires aren't known for their senses of humour.

If you accidentally do so, I'd say run, but it's probably already too late.”
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