Review: Wrong Side of Dead by Kelly Meding (Dreg City #4)
January 31 2012
Mass Market Paperback
Received from publisher
Kick Ass Chick – Evy Stone
From Goodreads –
Barely recovered from her extended torture at the hands of mad scientist Walter Thackery, Evy can use a break. What she gets instead is a war, as the battered Triads that keep Dreg City safe find themselves under attack by half-Blood vampires who have somehow retained their reason, making them twice as lethal. Worse, the Halfies are joined by a breed of were-creature long believed extinct—back and more dangerous than ever. Meanwhile, Evy’s attempts at reconciliation with the man she loves take a hit after Wyatt is viciously assaulted—an attack traced to Thackery, who has not given up his quest to exterminate all vampires . . . even if he has to destroy Dreg City to do it. With Wyatt’s time running out, another threat emerges from the shadows and a staggering betrayal shatters the fragile alliance between the Triads, vampires, and shapeshifters, turning Evy’s world upside down forever.
Kelly Meding is back with the fourth installment in her Dreg City series, Wrong Side of Dead. This is such a unique and interesting series. Very dark and very gritty, you can’t have a light stomach to read these books. But, as I’ve said in past reviews, you never feel like the gore is too much or that it’s just there to make you squirm – it really blends well with the story and somehow just fits. It helps remind us that this world that Kelly created is dark and it helps us truly see just how strong her characters are. For anyone to be able to survive what these people survive, you have to be resilient and ridiculously brave. These are people who have been through hell and back and who are still standing, still ready to fight and still ready to help each other out. And as much as the world impresses me in this series, the characters impress me more.
The series is told from Evy’s perspective. Her story is insane. Her story is also what makes this series so different. Ever since she was brought back from the dead (no, she’s not a zombie – she’s way cooler) in book one, Evy has struggled. She’s not sure who she is or what her purpose is. She’s dealing with feelings from ‘old’ Evy and ‘new’ Evy and isn’t sure how to mesh everything together. She’s always a strong, kick ass chick filled with heart and loyalty but her vulnerability and how she deals with what her new life throws at her is what makes her truly special. I have enjoyed her journey in these books, and I loved where her character went in Wrong Side of Dead. I feel like Evy finally has some closure and has a better understanding of who she is now. She has grown in leaps and bounds and is almost at peace with her new life. I was so happy for her because if someone deserves a happy moment or two, it’s Evy.
Speaking of happy moments or two, Wyatt really needs that. Especially after this installment. I never would have anticipated where his character has ended up. Evy is usually the one who carries the ‘vulnerability torch’ in their relationship and Wyatt is usually the stronger, more stable one, but this time around we really see deep into Wyatt and feel his fear and confusion over the journey he is about to undertake.
We even witnessed the more supporting characters change. Then again they did have to, either in this book or the last book, face some pretty important events that would force anyone to change. I mean…yeah. I even felt for the vampires!
Seriously, the character growth in this book was amazing.
Phin is another character I want to mention. In this book, he is totally bad-ass. Yet he still has that softer side – the side that makes you want to tell him anything because you know, without a doubt, that you can trust him with it. He is a little perturbed in this book and we really see how he is when someone messes with a loved one. Yes, we got a good idea in the second book, but for some reason, I feel we see it even better this time around. I love Phin’s character. I love how he is a main-ish character and is male yet is only friends with Evy – that there is no romantic anything there. I would not be disappointed at all if Phin suddenly decided to create a bit of a love triangle with Evy and Wyatt, but in the end Evy and Wyatt belong together so the love triangle would be moot. But really, I just want to see Phin kiss someone. I bet he’s a good kisser 😉
There is one more thing about this series, other than the characters and the world, that makes it unique: it’s the way it’s written. Each chapter is a different timeline. Book one counts down how much time Evy has left. In this book, you bounce from right after the events at the end of book three to present time (about a three month span). You see and sense tension between characters or events are being referred to that you are not completely sure of the details, then you are brought there and it all falls into place. It is really neat and brings a whole different dynamic to the stories.
It’s no secret that I am a huge fan of this series. It’s one of my absolute favorites. Everything about it, I like. Powerful characters mixed with interesting settings and a unique writing style. It’s Urban Fantasy the way it was meant to written. Wrong Side of Dead brings the series to places I wouldn’t have assumed it would go, but that work. It kept me guessing and I can’t wait to see what’s coming next.
Giggle worthy quotes
“’We’ll get as close as we can with surveillance equipment on land, but meanwhile I have some volunteers from the Pinnia Clan reconning by river.’
I glanced around the room, and sure enough most of the human faces wore the same question mark mine had to display. Baylor coughed softly.
Astrid puckered her lips, not thrilled with letting another bit of information slip out. ‘Their true forms are seals. They should be able to move undetected.’
“’Mr. Truman, may I draw some blood from your arm? I’d like to run a few tests.’
‘You smell strange,’ Wyatt said. ‘I don’t like it.’
On a list of absurd ways to answer a question about drawing blood, that definitely ranked at the top.”
Really great quote
“’Loving makes me stronger.’ I laughed, choked, and wiped my nose of my arm. ‘That sounds like a fucking greeting card, I know. But it gives me something more powerful to fight for than just honor and nameless, faceless innocents. There’s real poser in loving someone, and I know it now.’ I leaned down and pressed my forehead to his, aware of the heat of his skin, the machine that drew his breath, the monitor that ticked off the beats of his hears. ‘I just hope I didn’t learn it too late.’”