Several occurrences of "should of" and "would of" were a minor complaint, but did kind of kick me out of the story a little bit. The only real complaiSeveral occurrences of "should of" and "would of" were a minor complaint, but did kind of kick me out of the story a little bit. The only real complaint I have is that the pace is quite slow. While all the animal care was interesting and eventually fed into the plot, that 'eventually' is important. I had figured out who the killer was (although not why) about halfway through the book, which was the point where the main character finally let herself start to think that just maybe the accidental death at the zoo had been a murder instead of an accident. The red herrings were good, and did deflect my thinking for a while as to why the murder was committed.
I liked the characters and the setting enough that I will read the next book to see how it is. ...more
I first heard of Eric Czuleger on the Pseudopod horror short story podcast. His story "Immortal LA" was written specifically for that podcast, and wasI first heard of Eric Czuleger on the Pseudopod horror short story podcast. His story "Immortal LA" was written specifically for that podcast, and was released around July 5 of 2013. I so enjoyed the story that I purchased the book containing the story.
Then I promptly forgot about it for months. I'd see it on my Kindle and wonder what it was and why I had it. Finally, given its relatively short length, I decided to 'get it out of the way' quickly.
When I read it, I remembered the story on the podcast, and how much I enjoyed it. In this book, that story is called "The Vampire Andy." The stories are all gritty and raw and not at all "pretty." The vampires aren't sexy and smooth. The angels aren't perfect beings of light. The werewolves (if that is indeed what those were) aren't trying to seduce sex out of pretty people. Satan is actually a pretty polite guy.
These are not light fare. These are serious stories soaked in blood, sweat, and tears. They are the stories of deeply troubled and flawed (and, at times, brave) men and women. And each of the stories is good in its own right.
The only things that detracted from my enjoyment were the frequent grammar errors, homophone confusion, and punctuation misuse that peppered not only the stories, but the interludes between wherein the millennia-long history of Los Angeles is given. Some of it I can write off to formatting errors in the creation of the Kindle version of the book. Others could easily be fixed by professional editing. Some of them were negligible; some caused me to have to reread the same sentence several times to understand what was probably meant.
The interludes weren't as interesting to me as the stories, themselves. They could have been, but they felt hurried. Tacked on. You could enjoy the book without reading them at all -- just read the stories themselves, and you don't have to know all the background if you don't want to.
That I'm giving the book four stars in spite of the detractions should tell you how much I enjoyed the stories. I think Mr. Czuleger definitely has talent, and I'll be looking for his name in the future....more