John's Reviews > Every Which Way But Dead

Every Which Way But Dead by Kim Harrison
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May 23, 08

bookshelves: horror, fantasy
Recommended for: Fans of supernatural adventure, anyone who likes the Rachel Morgan series.
Read in May, 2008

This, third, book of Kim Harrison's Rachel Morgan series has the weakest plot so far. On the other hand, the character driven scenes kept me reading, and when the plot finally got rolling in the last 30% of the book, I was frothing.

The book starts out with two problems presented to Rachel: A demon that she owes favors to has come to collect, and a new crime boss in town is making life difficult for everyone. After that, we get a lot of character development and the plot fades away, showing up now and again to remind the reader it exists. When it returns for good, it was intense, and I stayed up late into the night turning pages.

From about the 10% to the 70% mark the book is mostly character driven. As a guy, it edged on getting a bit too soap operaish and girlish. However, even the one scene that should of had me nodding off, a date scene with lots of clothes talk, was so well written I kept right on going. Without spoiling anything, I will say Rachel's love life gets a lot more complicated in this book.

I do like a strong plot, and I can a problem with this protagonist. She's throws herself into situations without a plan, and reacts. So unless the antagonist is in her face, scene after scene, she looses focus, and Harrison fills up the pages with side issues. I like a little of that, it makes it feel more real, but I'm hoping for stronger plots in the rest of the series.

One theme that this book addresses is "Who are the Monsters?" Trent, the very evil antagonist from the first book is back, but is he really on the side of darkness? And what about what Rachel and Ivy are doing for a living? Are they crossing over to the dark side? Many shades of grey in this book.

Anyway, a fun read, with a bit too much soap opera in the middle. I would not recommend this as a stand alone book, you'll want to start with Dead Which Walking.
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