While I've read a book or two with fallen angels, have to say that Knight's Fall is the first where the ex-angel is a PI. In New Orleans, no less! WitWhile I've read a book or two with fallen angels, have to say that Knight's Fall is the first where the ex-angel is a PI. In New Orleans, no less! With just those two facts, you know it's going to be a good read!
Loved the main character, Xavier! Despite being a former angel, he wasn't all preachy or goody two shoes. In fact, he was more than a little annoyed that he'd been thrown out of Heaven and was now mortal. But a guy has to make a living, so he becomes a private eye.
After the initial set-up, Xavier takes on a case that isn't what it seems and that's where the fun really begins!
There's a secret government agency, an addictive otherworldly drug with devastating results, and hints of a conspiracy that point towards Xavier getting his wings clipped because he was framed. And did I mention the zombies? Not your typical movie zombies either, but a whole new breed. Yikes!
There's also a secondary story of Xavier trying to track down the woman he loved, who also caused his "fall from grace." Strange that she no longer seems to exist, but what an intriguing explanation presented!
Xavier was front and center as the main narrator, but the secondary characters were just as good! While his was the main voice, the transition between narrators was smooth and I was never confused or disoriented by the switch.
Minx, Xavier's savior and roommate who just happens to be a world-famous supermodel/cat shifter, was fascinating. Wanted to see more of her!
Also really liked Madame LuLu, a storefront psychic who's the real deal, Granger the apprentice mage, and Marius, now my favorite cherub. Loved how in Henry's universe, cherubs aren't cute, chubby little cupids but rather the short, stocky janitors of Heaven. Talk about a mind-blowing revalation!
Thought that this was a well written story with interesting characters, a decently-paced plot, and an original take on angels. Already looking forward to Xavier's next adventure!
**Review copy received from Pump Up Your Books**...more
The first story in a collection usually sets the tone for the entire anthology, so a little sad that I didn't care for The Price of Survival. It was aThe first story in a collection usually sets the tone for the entire anthology, so a little sad that I didn't care for The Price of Survival. It was a little too science fiction-y for my tastes. Thankfully, the rest of the collection was more to my liking!
The Final Report on the Lifeline Experiment was an interesting take on the when-does-life-begin question. And I really loved the ending, which I didn't see coming at all. Love when that happens!
One of my favorite stories was Clean Slate, about a wizard trying to earn his title without falling victim to the Wizard's Curse. What is the Wizard's Curse? The price that the wizard must pay for the privilege of using his power. Never heard of such a curse, but loved it!
Some of the other stories that stood out for me were Protocol, Old-Boy Network, Proof, Trollbridge, and Pawn's Gambit. All different types of stories, but all original and interesting. More than a few of them had a neat little twist at the end, which I really enjoyed. Seems most of my favorites had a twist of some kind, so guess I like twists!
Even the stories I didn't particularly care for were well-written, so the author is obviously talented. Short stories are tricky, as you have to pack a lot of punch into a small space. Zahn proves himself very good at this!
While I'm pretty sure that this was my first Zahn book, it definitely won't be my last! I'm more of a fantasy reader than science fiction fan, but it looks like I still have plenty of options....more
Ever wonder if there's really an afterlife? If our time here on earth is it, or do we go somewhere else after we die? Firstlife sort of answers thoseEver wonder if there's really an afterlife? If our time here on earth is it, or do we go somewhere else after we die? Firstlife sort of answers those questions, with an interesting premise that hooked me in the first chapter!
According to the story, there are two realms where your spirit can go after death. Troika is the land of light, while Myriad is the land of darkness. Troika is a little stricter than Myriad, but they both have pros and cons. They both also have agents who try to convince humans to sign on with their realm.
Actually, there are three options if you include those humans who don't sign with either realm. They wind up someplace called Many Ends, which sounds straight out of a nightmare!
Didn't care for the prologue, but loved the rest of the story!
Ten, the main character, has been sent to a horrible asylum to be tortured because she refuses to sign with one of the afterlife realms. The treatment dished out to the residents is beyond belief! What's worse is that they're all kids. What kind of parent sends their child to a place like that? Yikes!
Turns out that both Troika and Myriad really want Ten to sign with their realm, so they send agents into the asylum to help make up her mind. They really, really want Ten on their side, so guess that alls fair in love and war.
Really enjoyed this one, as I've never read anything like it! Great characters, an interesting plot, and a well-placed storyline made for a great read! Definitely a great start to an interesting new series, and I can hardly wait to see what happens next!...more
The newest book in The Elemental Assassin series starts off with a unique twist, with Gin digging up a grave on a dark & snowy night. And not justThe newest book in The Elemental Assassin series starts off with a unique twist, with Gin digging up a grave on a dark & snowy night. And not just any grave, but the grave of her mentor's ex-wife! From the very first sentence, you know that Bitter Bite won't disappoint!
You've really got to feel for Gin. She's had a hard life and suffered more than most would be able to bear, but still managed to rebuild and surround herself with people who love and care for her.
One of her staunchest supporters has always been Finn, the foster brother who always has her back. Now it's Gin's turn to have his back, no matter how badly he treats her or how much she wants to punch him for acting like a gullible idiot. Brothers! Sheesh!
While I can understand why Finn might react the way he did, I had a hard time believing that a successful con man would be so trusting. Especially considering the way he was raised and the life he's led! If people that I loved and trusted had doubts, I'd at least hear them out. Poor, delusional Finn!
Have to admit that this is one of my favorite series, and I love how Gin has evolved over the years! Sure, she's a tough-as-nails assassin who's the reluctant leader of the underworld, but she's also a wounded soul who's doing the best she can with the cards she's been dealt.
This is another great installment with an interesting plot, fast-paced action, and an ending that will knock your socks off!
This is #14 in the series and while I think you could read it as a stand alone, I'd recommend reading the series in order so you can see how the characters have changed over the years. Already looking forward to the next book, as the series is just that good! ...more
What if you found out that the whole Santa Claus myth was a lie? A deception? What if he wasn't the jolly old elf spreading Christmas cheer throughoutWhat if you found out that the whole Santa Claus myth was a lie? A deception? What if he wasn't the jolly old elf spreading Christmas cheer throughout the world that everyone knows and loves?
What would you do if you found out he was actually a lying, cheating, thief who stole the holiday from Krampus, the true Lord of the Yule?
That's the dilemma facing Jesse, a down on his luck musician who finds himself smack dab in the middle of an actual war against Christmas!
Ready to end it all one depressing Christmas Eve, Jesse witnesses the strangest sight: a man in a red suit running for his life. Is that Santa Claus? Being chased by demons? Trying to escape in his sleigh, being pulled by actual, flying reindeer? Maybe that bottle Jesse was drowning his sorrows in was more potent than he thought?
And so begins Jesse's strange adventure. Unlucky enough to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, he finds himself caught up in the epic battle between Krampus and his mortal enemy, Santa Claus.
Wanting to reclaim Yuletide and bring back the old traditions, Krampus is determined to remove Santa once and for all! But is Santa really the evil usurper that Krampus claims?
Joining Krampus and his servants in their quest, Jesse is worried about his estranged wife and daughter. Some bad people have a score to settle with him and may take it out on his family. Krampus promises to help, but will it be in time?
While I've never heard of Krampus, I have vague recollections of stories about children leaving their shoes outside during Christmas to receive treats and bad little children being beaten for misbehaving. Never knew that those were old Yule tales, but now I want to learn more!
Really enjoyed this story, as it was an interesting take on the old Christmas legends! There are even references to the ancient Norse gods! Full of fascinating characters, with excellent writing and a fast paced plot, this is an awesome read for the holidays!...more
Kelley Armstrong is one of my favorite writers, so I'm happy that she has a new collection of short stories available! Anthologies are another favoritKelley Armstrong is one of my favorite writers, so I'm happy that she has a new collection of short stories available! Anthologies are another favorite of mine, so favorite author + favorite genre = a happy reader!
Pleased to discover that I've only read one of these stories previously and the rest were new to me. Some set in the same world as her Otherworld, Cainsville, or Darkness Rising Universes, but several stand all on their own. All in all, a nice mix!
One of the standout stories was Last Stand, which surprised me by turning left when I expected it to turn right. Love it when a story surprises me!
I also enjoyed how two of the stories, Gabriel's Gargoyles and Devil May Care, were connected. Both set in the Cainsville Universe, they fill in some of the gaps for those reading the series but can also stand alone. Nicely done!
The Door was another favorite, where a young girl is raised by loving parents but warned never to open the front door. While her parents never said anything, she was positive that something terrible lay on the other side. Then one day, after her parents are both gone, she must make the decision whether or not to finally open the door to see what's actually on the other side.
Unlike most collections which have a few duds, I can honestly say that every story in this collection is a winner! If you've never read Kelley before, this would be a great introduction! And if you're already a fan, this makes a nice addition to your collection. In other words, you need this book!...more