“Ronald has done a terrific job with the Celtic mystical matter….[She] has tapped into the dark streak that runs as an undercurrent through much Irish folklore.” —Charles de Lint, Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction
With Soul Hunt, Margaret Ronald continues the edgy adventures of Red Sox fan and supernatural tracker Evie (“Hound”) Scelan as she negotiates her way through Boston’s deadly undercurrent. One of the most exciting new voices in urban fantasy follows her Spiral Hunt and Wild Hunt with another electrifying tale of paranormal activities, as Evie Scelan must make good on an otherworldly debt or suffer devastating consequences. Aficionados of Kim Harrison and Jim Butcher—and anyone who appreciates the brilliant contemporary spins on ancient mythology deftly executed by Neil Gaiman and Tim Powers—will certainly want to hunt down Margaret Ronald’s Soul Hunt.
Margaret Ronald learned to read on a blend of The Adventures of Tintin, Greek mythology, and Bloom County compilations. Her vocabulary never quite recovered. Her fiction has appeared in Realms of Fantasy, Strange Horizons, Baen's Universe, and Fantasy Magazine. Spiral Hunt is her first novel.
This was a wonderful conclusion to the Evie Scelan series. Huzzah, Ms. Ronald. I think there could be more, but if the series ends here I can accept. I am not happy about it, mind you, but things do end.
This book, and the other two in the series, were wonderful. The author did a fabulous job of putting together a great plot, creating interesting characters that all had true individuality, and putting them in a setting (Boston and surrounds) that had as much character as the people.
Evie is a hound. She tracks things down, and lives with the mystic underbelly of Boston. The vines that support the book are Celtic in origin and she artfully twines them into a story that fits and lives with its setting. I could smell the waterfront and see the paths in the Common, the banks of the Quabbin, the harbor islands and the twisty streets of Boston. These are places that I have been and that live in my heart as much as they do in Evie's.
Evie has a destiny and she finds it with the mythic Gabriel Hounds on Midwinter's Eve. How she gets to it is fascinating and wonderful. I truly wish there were more.
Soul Hunt was a great urban fantasy with a lot of attention to detail, and the characters were complex but in a good way. The only problem I had was not realizing it was the third in a series until I had started it. I didn't want to stop, but I know it would have been SO much better reading the books in order to understand what each of the characters had went through. The world was fascinating, and the action kept the reading a good pace, even with my coming in late.
Very good urban fantasy, I'm surprised that more of my friends haven't read this series. It uses some interesting mythological elements without trying to throw in the whole kitchen sink. The author continues to use the main element of Evie being the Hound, or having the talent of a magically enhanced sense of smell, in interesting ways in this book. In other books where a character has this ability it has sometimes been annoying, everyone seems to have certain scents that mean nothing to me and that don't add anything to the story. That isn't the case here, Evie uses her ability in ways that are useful and interesting to read about.
There is also a satisfying story arc in both Evie's personal life across the three books and in the situation in Boston. It isn't clear at the end of this book if there will be another book or not, but I would not be surprised (although I would be disappointed) if this was the last book in this series. The conclusion of this book was just terrific and the author may well want to leave well enough alone.
My only real complaint is with the marketing department at the publishing house and the very misleading cover on this book. The first two covers indicated solid urban fantasy. If I saw this one without knowing anything else, I would expect a very sexy story and that's the last thing you're going to get here. There is a romantic storyline, but it isn't a sexy one. On top of that, Evie is frequently described as not being pretty and in fact being horse-faced. Not that I expect them to put that on a cover, but that sexy make-up covered gal is just false marketing. The hounds and the gothic city scene are good, but that hovering face is really weird and inappropriate. If you're looking for romantic fantasy, this isn't your book. If you like urban fantasy, give this a try.
Soul Hunt by Margaret Ronald is the third book in an Urban Fantasy series about Genevieve "Evie" Scelan and her adventures and "misadventures" in and around Boston. This book is action packed right from the beginning. Evie and her friends tend to find themselves in hot water and hazardous situations throughout the story.
In a world where paranormal magic is still misunderstood, Evie is still trying to manage her own unique gifts. Known to the undercurrent or supernatural beings as "The Hound", Evie uses her rare talent to find people or items using only the sense of smell. After a incident gone wrong involving a Quarry Guardian Spirit and her boyfriend Nate, Evie is left magically impaired. Her talent is no longer dependable and she has reoccurring grey-outs that can't be explained.
Between, friends growing distant and unexplained mysteries, Evie tries to help a friend and ends up fighting for her life while trying to find a way to return the "Horn of the Wild Hunt" and the Gabriel Hounds that have joined her!
Join Evie in a life and death hunt, where even she is unsure whether or not she will survive the test laid before her! A truly wonderful read, Soul Hunt has a steady pace of action that keeps you going all the way through. With bits of romance in all the right places!
Admittedly, I accidentally came into this series midway through. Sometimes ebooks aren't so clear on when a book is a part of a series. This did put me at a bit of a disadvantage when it came to getting into the story, as it took a while for Roland to explain or even mention past occurrences. That said, once I got into it, I did discover it's not quite my cup of tea. The magical part of Boston (The Undercurrent) is far more complex than it needs to be, and, as a Bostonian, it doesn't make sense to me as something that would work under the surface of my city. Further, I just don't get what's so cool about Evie's paranormal power of being "The Hound." It's all kind of gross to me. Add onto it that I just find Evie to be rather dull, and I won't be going back to catch up with the series or read any further. I do see why it would appeal to bigger fans of urban fantasy, though, and I appreciate that the setting is a northern one instead of the more typical southern ones. For that reason, I do recommend it to fans of urban fantasy looking for something a bit different.
Evie Scelan, aka Hound, has the ability to find things by their magical scent, for reasons that are detailed in book 1 & 2 and that relate to Irish mythology. She makes her living in gritty Boston with this ability and a bike messenger job. In this third novel of the series, Evie's in hot water again as events in the previous book seem to have left her magically disabled and in a very fatigued state. Bad timing, since she's being threatened on various magical fronts. The book is action packed and hits the ground running, Evie and her fellow characters are pretty vividly drawn, the book has an enjoyable sense of place, and the plot moves along nicely. It gets a little amorphous in spots, I started to get a little confused following the various hazardous magical events and plot twists, but I'd certainly recommend the series to urban fantasy fans who enjoy the "tough female lead" type of novel. There's a romantic element too, though it's a fantasy straight up. I read this courtesy of a galley from the publisher via Netgalley.
Evie Scelan still has a penchant for trouble following her and making hasty decisions. But really who hasn't?
I think this might be the final book of Evie Scelan and I am kind of sad to see it go. I really enjoyed the celtic mythology that Ronald had used in this book and her own world building. Also, I adored the greek mythology in this bad boy and I always enjoy the magic has consequences themes.
One thing that I really enjoyed about this is that some twists in this story weren't as easy to foresee as they were in the first book. Makes Evie seems smarter as to the happenings of the undercurrents which I really liked. Ronald did a wonderful job of tying up storylines from book two and still show the repercussions of Evie's decision from Book one.
But whatever Ronald comes up with next I am sure to read it.
This is the third novel in the Evie Scelan series. I liked it better than the second one, Wild Hunt. The story picks up shortly after the events of the previous book, with Evie severely weakened from a bad bargain with a spirit, as well as with a rather alarming deadline hanging over her. Unfortunately, this leaves her prey to those who wish to use her to reinstate a terrible power in Boston Harbor. As in the previous books, I really enjoyed the way Ronald uses the history and folklore of Boston. The way she writes about Boston, it really feels like the city I live in, not some slick, prettied-up, or glamorized version. I especially liked the exploration of Boston's harbor and the Quabbin reservoir, as it both tied into an important part of the previous book and pushed forward into new territory. Also, the last third of the book is just so damn wonderfully exciting.
Soul Hunt is a great conclusion to the Evie Scelan trilogy (at least, I think it is a trilogy, it reads like one but I could also see it becoming a longer series). While quite a lot of the story has to do with the Wild Hunt (unsurprisingly, given the title), much of the main conflict of the story is between Evie and one of her best friends. That is one of the elements that sold me on this book. Of course, Also, the conclusion is satisfying and clever without feeling contrived.
This third book in the series has Evie settling into a life that she thinks she can live, and then realizing that if she doesn't change things, she won't get to live it long. I had a horrible feeling it might be the urban fantasy version of 6 Months To Live, but it managed to veer away from that.
There is a plot involving The Wild Hunt, and what she owes them, and people resisting her, but I thought the metaplot, about what it is to be family, and what it is to make promises, was more interesting.
I thought it was a pretty solid continuation of the series, overall.
Read if: you've read the previous books, you enjoy urban fantasy.
Skip if: you are looking for an entry point to this series.
Genevieve "Evie" Scelan knows that she’s in deep trouble – she’s given back the horn of the Wild Hunt and now has to pay the price for using it previously. Unfortunately, she’s not been feeling herself, even to the point of losing her Hound abilities. Time is now running out for her survival and she has to find the answers before it’s too late…
Evie’s an alluring heroine with a nose for trouble (literally!). She is learning the consequences of her actions and they’re not always pretty. I think this is a great series and Evie is a wonderful character. All of the characters are well fleshed out, while the story is enchanting and fast paced.
This third book was the hardest to read for me. It's more than a bit confusing and the characters never seem to be able to finish a coherent sentence unless it consists of less than three words. The story never gives an understandable explanation for anything thats going on, especially with the watch that Sarah heads, which was already confusing in the second book but is now beyond comprehension. But really it's the fact that no one can seem to finish a sentence without being cut off or interrupted that truly annoyed me. So the only reason I'm giving this book 3 stars is because the first two books were worth reading and maybe the fourth one will be too.
Ms. Ronald was a childhood friend, and I like her books for the same reason we bonded back in the day - her intelligence and quirky creativity. This series is a little dark for my taste, which puts them at about 3.5 stars for me personally. I probably won't reread, but I'll continue to pick up and enjoy each new entry.
Full disclosure: I'm acquainted with the author. However, I really enjoy all three of the Evie Scelan books, and I hope that Ronald writes more of them. The character has grown in interesting and sometimes surprising ways, and I enjoy the Boston-within-Boston that Ronald has created.
There was a lot happening in this book and the ending was definitely one you could sort of see coming IF you knew anything about the Hunt. But you have to know all the history of the Wild Hunt. Overall I really enjoyed the book and the series to date. I wonder what's in store next?