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Review – The Stubborn Dead July 10, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 3.5 stars, Urban Fantasy.
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Title: The Stubborn Dead

Series: Lost Souls

Author: Natasha Hoar

Publisher: Carina Press

Publication Date:  January 23, 2012

ASIN: B006BVTFT4

From Goodreads:

Available at: AmazonBarnes and Noble

From Goodreads: Rachel Miller thought her next job was a run-of-the-mill haunting. As a member of the Order of Rescue Mediums it’s her duty to release trapped spirits from the earthly realm. But when called to client Sylvia Elkeles’s house, she finds a wraith who doesn’t act like he should.

The Order considers the wraith an extreme threat and Rachel may be forced to use a barbaric ritual to free him—a ritual that comes with a heavy personal price. If she fails to humanely release the wraith, she’ll have her supernatural abilities bound.

When Janus Ostara—local supernatural mob boss—shows up demanding her attention, and Sylvia keeps secrets that may place Rachel in mortal danger, she doesn’t need her abilities to know something darkly sinister is at play.

Between uncovering Sylvia’s disturbing motives, and avoiding Janus, Rachel has enough on her hands without dealing with a wraith who may not realize he’s supposed to be dead…

Review:

This was a short story of only 20,000 words but it was complete and full in and of itself. You never got the sense that anything was abbreviated. There was a full cast of characters that were nicely developed. The plot was well paced and Rachel was nicely fleshed out.

Rachel is a hard nosed, motorcycle riding Rescue Medium. She’s conned into dispatching a wraith that is unusual in its behavior. She might have to go to extreme measures to dispatch it. You can see her wrestling with her conscience over what she needs to do and what she wants to do. The conflict provides nice tension in the story.

Sylvia was the perfect foil to Rachel. Selfish and spoiled, she was the contrast to the selfless Rescue Medium that Rachel was. Her character had room for some pity but pity is something I never felt for her.

There was a cloak and dagger bit that I didn’t care for but I can see where it was needed. The story stands up on its own without needing a sequel except for a few unanswered questions that I feel are minor. There are some spots that I felt were very cliched.  I was able to read on through them though as the plot was still very intriguing.

On the whole a good story, just with some minor flaws.

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