Friday, December 3, 2010

Don't Kill the Messenger

Don't Kill The Messenger  Eileen Rendahl
  • Paperback: 336 pages

  • Publisher: Berkley Trade; Original edition (March 2, 2010)

  • Dark Faerie Tales UF reading Challenge #3 

  • Melina Markowitz is not your ordinary girl. She's hospital clerical clerk by night, and a delivery girl for the paranormal by day. She is an Arcane( Cane) in a Mundane ( Dane) world due to a life altering accident as a toddler. Or as she puts it....
     " Three-year-old me decides to take a quick dip in the cool, refreshing pool with out telling my  mama and I end up with a crappy job toting and carrying for werewolves, vampires, skinwalkers ,and the occasional chupacabra."
     It's tough to be the middle girl when you don't feel you belong in either world, but someone has to do it. Plus she has her OTHER side job of teaching martial arts in the local dojo. It is her true home and happiness.
     The downside of working the paranormal delivery circuit is there is no room for error or you could literally become someones lunch or plaything. So when men in ninja attire fall out of a tree, give Melina a bloody lip, and steal her envelope in mid delivery she knows she needs to recover it fast.
    Now Messenger turned P.I, Melina follows the ninja trail to a Taoist temple, where they not only plant beautiful zen gardens but ravenous talisman controlled Chinese vampires known as kiang shi.The kiang shi are tearing gang members limb to limb, intent on collapsing all gang and turf infrastructure for their own evil agendas.
     As it normally goes in nosy girl protagonist stories Melina is caught in many wrong places, at many wrong times. Her snooping catches the eye and possibly heart of Officer Ted Goodnight. She quickly tries to push him away to protect her own heart and his life.
     As more innocent victims fill the ER during Melina's shifts ,and her fellow Canes remain stubbornly neutral, she strikes out on her own to get answers . She is blindsided by heartbreaking circumstances, and learns the lonesome middle is longer a place to hide. It is time to trust people and take a stance for her city.
     Some of the one liners in this book had me laughing out loud, and then in the same hand the depth of Melina's feelings of isolation really struck a cord with me. Rendahl's wide arc of human emotion made this story not as super predictable as most. That was a nice factor, even when Melina was being a brat. :)

    3.5 out of 5 wooden stakes

    Wednesday, December 1, 2010

    Dark Oracle

    Dark Oracle - Mass Market Paperback (May 25, 2010) by Alayna Williams
    Dark Faerie Tales UF Reading Challenge Book #2

    I try to never start a book with preconceived notions, but when I picked up Dark Oracle ,as my next in line for DFT UF reading challenge , I have to admit I was NOT feeling much enthusiasm for the book. Why, you ask?? The thing is I couldn't even tell you why! In fact Dr. Tara Sheridan,the protagonist, and I have a lot in common. We both attended college to become FBI profilers, and we both enjoy observing and reading people. We were also both raised around Tarot cards. Where I did not continue the the family trait of Tarot divination, Tara did and used in her former profession until she was brutally attacked by a serial killer she was hunting.
     The opening chapter introduces you to Dr. Sheridan, now a recluse after her savage ordeal. She is skittish and even seems to shy away from readers. By Chapter 3 you start to see glimmers of how complex,independent, and highly intelligent this book and it's characters are...and that's when I realized preconceived be damned.
     Tara is asked to leave her safe haven by an ancient secret society, the Delphi's Daughters, and use her natural talents to locate a missing scientist, Lowell Magnusson.  She grudgingly accepts knowing it is the right thing to do despite her bitter, mistrustful past dealings with the Delphi's Daughters. Soon she realizes the situation is bigger then just one missing scientist. Magnusson has discovered a scientific breakthrough that governments would kill to acquire. Side by side with skeptic Agent Harry Li, it is a race to unlock the mysteries of science, life, and personal healing, all while protecting Magnusson's daughter, Cassie.
     The more Tara uses her cards for guidance , the more she realizes how much danger they are all in. With enemies attacking from every angle and Tara's traumatic past intertwined with it all, she only hopes she doesn't fail Cassie.
      Williams, aka UF author Laura Bickle, reads like  Criminal Minds meets Richard Condon meets Medium. It definitely did not read like a typical UF, and sometimes it did get bogged down in the extreme divination interpretation details, but surprisingly I liked it.
     I also enjoyed the fact that I didn't have to shoot Stephen Hawking a tweet to understand the mind blowing scientific end of it. I am sure he appreciates that fact also.
     I am very curious to read the next installment to see how the characters will develop.

    3.5 out of 5 wooden stakes v~v