I had no expectations going into this book. At first I thought the reader sounded a little young for the main character but then realized that she needed the vocal range for all the other characters. This is a very dark, very gritty urban fantasy series. The basic set up is that in 1997 all the dead's spirits rose and started killing people...lots of people...almost all the people. The few practitioners of magic in the world eventually managed to prove themselves as true witches and banished the ghosts to the City of Ghosts under ground and a whole new post-apocalyptic world began. The main character, Cesaria Putnam is a Church Witch who debunks false hauntings. She's also a functioning drug addict. She's a powerful witch but ultimately as a drug addict hiding her addiction she's vulnerable to anyone who decides to blackmail her. The story is basically a mystery in an unexpected world with some wonderfully colorful and sometimes very cruel characters. I found the world building to be fantastic and the depiction of the life of a functioning drug addict was pretty harsh and exceedingly accurate. I personally fell in love with these characters (a stand out is Terrible, the local drug dealer's enforcer who is a whole lot more than he seems at first) and quite specifically the whole Downside patois and vibe. I have to say the reader for this audio book absolutely knocked it out of the park. I honestly don't know if I would have found the books (I have actually listened to all that are available now...BRILLIANT) as affecting if I hadn't been listening to Bahni Turpin's interpretation of the various characters. Really stellar work.
I am a huge fan of this series and of the reader Bahni Turpin. The books require someone who is able to move back and forth between many different types of language and dialect and keep the flow and rhythm of the dialogue smooth. Ms Turpin does this with ease. The books are dark and tough and they move fast. Characters are flawed and yet still extremely sympathetic in my opinion. I'm looking forward to more Downside books from Ms. Kane read by Ms. Turpin.
I enjoyed this book just fine. It did feel a bit like a "bridge" book if you will. It's main purpose is to get you to the next book without a huge amount of plot development on it's own. Still pretty entertaining. My only real complaint had nothing to do with the book itself but with Audible's damaged file that even after multiple calls to customer service did not get fixed or replaced. Very unacceptable specially since another customer stated that she did get her damaged file replaced with a working one. Audible needs to deal with this immediately.
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