Nancy's Reviews > Dead Harvest

Dead Harvest by Chris F. Holm
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bookshelves: sf-fantasy, angry-robot, library-books, shelf-inflicted
Recommended to Nancy by: Jeffrey Keeten

Posted at Shelf Inflicted

5 stars for the cover and the publisher name!

I’ve been wanting to read an Angry Robot book and my friends’ enthusiastic reviews led me to grab this one from the library.

I just wish I could muster as much enthusiasm for the rest of the book.

I like noir and hard-boiled mysteries, but urban fantasy has been hit or miss for me lately and I’m not sure how I feel about combining the two.

Still, this was a fun, gripping and intense story for 2/3 of the book, at least.

Sam Thornton was once human. Now he is a demon without a body to call his own and has to find living or dead “meat suits” to inhabit in order to perform his job as collector of souls. His latest job is to collect the soul of a young girl who slaughtered her family. Only when Sam finds her, he learns her soul is pure and instead of taking it, he makes it his mission to protect her.

Now that Sam has incurred the wrath of his boss, Lilith, and the angels and demons are about to start a war, he and Kate are on the run.

This book was heavy on the action and dialogue, which made it fun and fast-paced and gave it a very cinematic feel. It was humorous and there were interesting flashbacks about Sam’s past and how he came to be a collector. I could have done without the helicopter hijack and the subway tunnel chases which for some odd reason slowed the pace of the book for me and I ended up setting it aside a couple of days.

While Sam was an interesting character with a distinct personality, I found Kate and the secondary characters rather thin. By the last third, I got tired of the chase scenes and found the plot twists underwhelming.

For a book about a flawed man who is trying to do the right thing, yet is doomed to be a servant of Hell for the rest of his eternal life, I would have liked some thoughtful exploration of Sam’s spiritual conflicts and his feelings about his gradual loss of humanity, particularly in comparison with the other demons.

Not sure I’ll be continuing with the rest of the series.
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Reading Progress

January 30, 2013 – Shelved
January 30, 2013 – Shelved as: sf-fantasy
January 30, 2013 – Shelved as: angry-robot
September 21, 2013 – Started Reading
September 21, 2013 – Shelved as: library-books
September 24, 2013 – Finished Reading
January 3, 2014 – Shelved as: shelf-inflicted

Comments Showing 1-16 of 16 (16 new)

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message 1: by Jason (new) - added it

Jason I have to get this book. I can't seem to get enough of Hell! What does that say about me...hahaha

message 2: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Nancy, if you want to read another Angry Robot selection, try Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig. I read it last year, loved it, and just finished the second of the series, Mockingbird. Again, fantastic!

Nancy Jason, it says you must be a HELLion!

Thanks, Stephanie. I'll definitely check that one out. Have you read Clean Burn?

carol. Ditto, Nancy. Nice review.

Brandon I think it's worth sticking with for sure. That third book is a real barn burner.

Great review!

Nancy Thanks!

A real barn burner, huh? I think I'll wait a little while. Rarely do I read sequels back to back.

carol. Really, Brandon? Because book one felt like he was just begging for it to be made into a script. It wasn't very sophisticated in characterization. Does the writing improve? Or character development, or is it just trying to top itself in action?

message 8: by Julio (new) - added it

Julio Genao nice review, nancy. i've been eyeing this for a while.

Nancy Thanks, Julio. It was fun, despite my criticisms and I still may read the next one at some point. I'm in a deep funk from the books I've been reading lately and I need something light and fun.

message 10: by Julio (new) - added it

Julio Genao i need to write one.

for me, the holidays are like a lead blanket over everything; the only words that come out are subtle variations on the same emo crap i'm actively trying to avoid.

broken writer is broken

Nancy I'm not too big on holidays either; hubby is, so I try my best to make them enjoyable for him. Of course, two of the major holidays come at the height of my winter depression. Maybe you need a trip to a warm, sunny place for some inspiration?

message 12: by Julio (new) - added it

Julio Genao i'd settle for a warm, sunny boy in my bed.

Nancy Maybe you'll get one for Christmas.

message 14: by Julio (new) - added it

Julio Genao the stocking isn't big enough; luckily, i have a snuggie...

Robert Excellent! Looking forward to this one.

Nancy Hope you enjoy it!

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