All Things Urban Fantasy's Reviews > Seven Kinds of Hell

Seven Kinds of Hell by Dana Cameron
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Mar 11, 13

bookshelves: 2013-march-hotp, reviewed-by-abigail, earc
Read in March, 2013

Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

SEVEN KINDS OF HELL is the first full length novel in the Fangborn series, but it's not the first story set in this world. I've read and reviewed two short stories set in the Fangborn universe (there have been four--see the series tab below for links) and was thrilled to get to jump into a more expansive novel featuring an archaeologist no less (possibly my favorite literary profession), along with the Stueben siblings from the short stories. I'm sorry to say I was less thrilled by the somewhat staid story and rather bland characters.

I normally love when short stories lead to full novels. In this case, the Fangborn mythology is so cool that it really should have leant itself to a great book. The Fangborn, or Pandora's Orphans, are the hope that was left when the mythical box was opened and evil escaped into the world. Werewolves, vampires, and snake shifters are the superheroes of this world, able to detect and destroy evil. Vampires, for example, don't feed on human blood, they literally suck evil out of people. There are all kinds of new twists on these creatures that I found fascinating. I was even glad to see the characters from the short stories pop up to help in SEVEN KINDS OF HELL. The problem was with everything else.

SEVEN KINDS OF HELL is, at it's heart, an archaeological thriller. But it's less Indian Jones and more whatever the boring equivalent of that is. Zoe was pretty sleepy for me from the start, and as she traversed the globe to rescue her kidnapped friend, retrieve artifacts, and avoid Fangborn politics, she never became any more exciting for me. In fact none of the characters captured my attention--not even George and Claudia who I enjoyed in short form. The whole book was slow even during fang filled action scenes. It all just felt bland.

I'm really baffled by my reaction to SEVEN KINDS OF HELL. It had everything that would normally equal a great urban fantasy for me: Eye catching art from Chris McGrath, fascinating mythology that I was anxious to see expanded, and even an archaeologist protagonist! The writing itself is fine, but I really had to push through the last 2/3 of the book due to the meh story and dull characters. There are two more full length novels planned in the Fangborn series, but I think I'll be passing.

Sexual Content:
A Brief sex scene
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