Nov 12, 2010

Posted by in Reviews | 9 Comments

Review: Dead, Undead, or Somewhere in Between by JA Saare (Rhiannon’s Law #1)

Urban Fantasy
February 7 2010
413 pages
Eternal Press

Kick Ass Chick – Rhiannon Murphy

From Goodreads
“One bad corpse can ruin your whole day.
No one knows better than Rhiannon Murphy that one bad corpse can ruin your whole day.
She left behind the flash and sass of Miami for the no-nonsense groove of New York City, eager for a clean slate and a fresh start. A bartender by trade, a loud mouth by choice, and a necromancer by chance; she managed to keep her nifty talent hidden from those around her—until now.

The deliciously good-looking vampire, Disco, knows her secret. When he strolls into her bar to solicit help investigating the mysterious disappearances of his kind from the city, Rhiannon discovers he’s not the kind of person that appreciates the significance of the word no.

But in a world where vampires peddle their blood as the latest and greatest drug of choice, it’s only a matter of time before the next big thing hits the market. Someone or something is killing vampires to steal their hearts, and unlike Rhiannon, this isn’t their first stroll around the undead block.”

This is another example of blogland peer pressure.  I saw “Dead, Undead, and Somewhere in Between” by JA Saare floating around the blogs when it first released and was intrigued.  But I didn’t pick it up because I could only get it here as an eBook and I didn’t have my Reader yet.  Now, it’s making the rounds again (mostly thanks to Jess), and I have my Kobo now…so I got it.  I loved every minute of this book…until I got to the very end.  Okay, I shall tell you why.

I am really enjoying Urban Fantasy (UF) books this year.  The heroines are amazing.  They are complex characters with real flaws but that won’t lie down and play dead when life throws them a blow.  The worlds are extraordinary and imaginative.  The whole experience is fantastic…except for one thing.  UF doesn’t guarantee a HEA.  That’s a Happy Ever After.  In Romance, it’s a given.  You may not be floating in a bubble when you are finished reading an installment of a continuing series, but there will be love and there will be a guy and a girl stating their undying love for one another and they will be riding off into the sunset damn it!  But, in UF, there is no such rule.  You can have a guy and a girl, but the guy might end up with amnesia and ride off on the horse without the girl.  Or the girl might end up in a time traveling tunnel with the guy screaming her name begging her to struggle harder to get out of there…and then we read The. End. And WTF?!  CLIFFHANGER!  *insert every colorful curse word you know here* Damn you Urban Fantasy books for making our hearts beat faster than normal and making us perspire disgusting amounts sweat.

So, as you can tell, I have issues with unresolved plots.  But the fact that someone can write something that affects me so is a sign of a good author.  I really did like this book.  I thought the story was wonderful.  The characters were fantastic (I’ll touch on them in a sec).  I was reading and reading and reading and then the end hit.  I didn’t scream.  It wasn’t that bad of an ending.  But I did quietly say “son of a b*itch” and then *mumble grumbled* a little.  Was the ending worth reading the book though?  ABSOLUTELY.

I have a new contender for my Favorite Character list.  Rhiannon.  She is extraordinary.  She says what’s on her mind and doesn’t give a rats behind about it.  Rhiannon is a necromancer.  Someone who can see spirits (yes, as in ‘I see dead people’).  She doesn’t really know much about her ability, just that it exists.  She is asked (told) by Disco, a vampire, to help them try to figure out why vampires have been disappearing lately.  Most necromancers can’t see the twice dead, but Disco thinks Rhiannon can.

Ah…Disco.  The more you see him in the book, the more you want to see of him.  He is responsible for his own ‘house’ and therefore is very dominant and strong.  Yet he is not overly in your face alpha.  I really liked that about him.  It’s not a usual trait we see in a central male character in UF books.  And I can see why people swoon when they say the name Disco.  I am swooning right now.  Watch me go… *swoon*

I really enjoyed JA Saare’s style.  Her story telling is wonderful.  It flows well and captures you from the very first line.  She gets bonus points for not killing off Disco as she originally intended too.  (Can you believe that she really wanted to do that?  Like, OMG!)

“Dead, Undead, or Something in Between” is a great UF story.  Interesting concept, great heroine and compelling supporting characters that really bring it all together.  And even though this story didn’t end up with the characters rolling around in a field of wild daisies (like I would have preferred), I have to look on the bright side.  Slight cliff-hanger = book two is on its way!

4.5 stars

Giggle worthy quotes

“’Oh, man.’  Images of wanna-be vampires came to mind and an electric tremor shot down my vertebrae.  I didn’t want to be involved with a crowd like that.  I gave Goose my most pitiful look.  ‘Do we have to?’
He laughed.  The unexpected sound reverberating inside his apartment.  ‘Why can’t you be like this more often?  It’s refreshing and rather adorable.’
‘Fuck that shit.’”
“I gave my sweetest smile.  The one that says ‘aw shucks’ on the outside and a big huge ‘fuck you’ on the inside.”

Books in the Rhiannon’s Law series –
Dead, Undead, or Somewhere in Between
The Renfield Syndrome (2011)

  1. I’ve been seeing JA’s book all over the blogs and with great reviews as well. Also I noted that it is much longer than a usual ebook at 413 pages.

    Great review!

  2. Great review! I also loved this book very much and enjoyed the characters. Disco…I just can’t get enough of him. Can’t wait for book 2!

  3. Katie – GR says the eBook only has 217 pages, but that’s not what eReader said. It’s a full length novel. Oh, and it’s good. 🙂

    Bells – I LOVE the photos of ‘your’ Disco on your blog. I think they are Perfect! That’s how I was imagining him while I read this. 🙂

  4. I LOVED this book and can’t wait for The Renfield Syndrome. I must admit the ending made me very anxious and a little nervous about what happens next 🙂

  5. Julie, I’m so glad that you enjoyed Rhiannon as much as I did!!! loves.
    And I’m glad that you pointed out that Disco (one of Jason’s “favorite” names) was non-alpha. I didn’t realize that really until you said it. But I think that’s why he had such an impact on me. *swoon*

    Great review! Happy to have another person poking Mrs. Saare for TRS 😛

  6. Ashley – I hope nothing too grim happens in the next book… *bites nails*

    Spinecracker – I’m glad you were the one to finally push me over the edge to read this book. 🙂

  7. Damn, everyone likes her books…totally need this one now

  8. This sounds great – thanks for sharing your review

  9. blodeuedd – It’s a good Urban Fantasy book.

    shelleyrae – Worth a read. Plus, you meet Disco. He’s Yum!


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