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Staying Dead: A Retrievers Novel | [Laura Anne Gilman]

Staying Dead: A Retrievers Novel

As a Retriever, Wren Valere specializes in finding things gone missing - and then bringing them back, no questions asked. Normally her job is stimulating, challenging and only a little bit dangerous. But every once in a while....
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Publisher's Summary

It starts as a simple job - but simple jobs, when you're dealing with the magical world, often end up anything but.

As a Retriever, Wren Valere specializes in finding things gone missing - and then bringing them back, no questions asked. Normally her job is stimulating, challenging and only a little bit dangerous. But every once in a while....

Case in point: A cornerstone containing a spell is stolen and there's a magical complication. (Isn't there always?) Wren's unique abilities aren't enough to lay this particular case to rest, so she turns to some friends: a demon (minor), a mage who has lost his mind, and a few others, including Sergei, her business partner (and maybe a bit more?).

Sometimes what a woman has to do to get the job done is enough to give even Wren nightmares....

©2009 Laura Anne Gilman; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Suspenseful and entertaining, this is a worthy addition to the growing library of urban fantasy lit, and great way to kick off a potential blockbuster of a series." (Romantic Times)
"An entertaining, fast-paced thriller set in a world where cell phones and computers exist uneasily with magic, and a couple engaging and highly talented rogues solve crimes while trying not to commit too many of their own." (Locus)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (118 )
5 star
 (28)
4 star
 (37)
3 star
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2 star
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Overall
3.6 (37 )
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Story
3.6 (36 )
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3 star
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Anne Evans, GA, USA 03-11-09
    Anne Evans, GA, USA 03-11-09 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    179
    ratings
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    79
    24
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    FOLLOWING
    5
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    Overall
    "Great Urban Fantasy!"

    I am delighted to see the first book of the retriever series here at Audible! This is great urban fantasy with a well crafted other world co-existing with ours. The magic is called "current" because it's like electricity and is attracted to electricity. The Wren uses her talent for current as well as agility to retrieve lost items. This time, she's sent after a stolen cornerstone of a building. The owners want the cornerstone, along with the protective spell it contains, back.

    This is a multifaceted story full of interesting characters. There's a lot of humor too as the different worlds interact. I love PB and how ordinary people completely miss seeing a short, furry black & white demon in a trench coat!

    There are currently 5 retreiver novels. Hopefully Audible will get all 5!

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Boulder, CO, USA 05-10-09
    Amazon Customer Boulder, CO, USA 05-10-09 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    130
    7
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    0
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    Overall
    "Good book, bad reader"

    The tone of the reader's voice didn't fit the darkness of this story! This is a relatively dark urban fantasy, and the reader's voice always sounded either like she was laughing or like she was asking a question--it just didn't fit. I ended up buying the paperback just so that I could read the rest of the story (I got about an hour into the audio) without the irritation of the reader!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashanti Calumet Park, IL, United States 08-18-09
    Ashanti Calumet Park, IL, United States 08-18-09 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    93
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    51
    16
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    FOLLOWING
    6
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    Overall
    "I couldn't get past the reader's voice"

    There is obviously a market for this series of novels otherwise there wouldn't be a series of novels. For me, I just didn't see the appeal. I think most of the problem was the narrator. She sounds like a pre-teen girl. I have to wonder if someone in a position of power forced their daughter on the company that turned the novels into audio books. The book is intended for urban fantasy enthusiasts. The story is somewhat dark in tone. There are demons, wizards and all kinds of interesting things populating the story. I personally didn't care for the magic system created by the author. Still, I would have gotten over that and got into the story if not for the narrator. I actually might have been able to get past her childish voice if the tone and style of her narration fit the darkness of the story. Basically, everything was too perky, too bright. The narration simply was completely in the wrong tone for the story. This narrator should only be doing young children's books or Pee Wee's Playhouse. It's a shame, because maybe the novel was actually good, but I just couldn't get into it well enough to tell. Better to read this author's works and not listen to any audio of them. Save your credit.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Utah, USA 07-07-09
    Amazon Customer Utah, USA 07-07-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    47
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    484
    16
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    0
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    "Good first book."

    This was a good first book in a new (to me) paranormal series. I don't think the writing was amazing and it took me a minute to figure out what was going on sometimes. The concept was slightly refreshing. I still feel it was solid enough that I will probably pick up the next one to try.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sumati Jackson, MS, United States 06-01-09
    Sumati Jackson, MS, United States 06-01-09 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    20
    ratings
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    133
    5
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    1
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    Overall
    "bad narration"

    So I took a chance on this book. I can't even get past the first half. The narrator's voices sound too similar for each character, so I have no idea who is supposed to be talking half the time. I just cant get into the book b/c I cant figure out who's talking half the time and the story will jump around to the point of view of another character. There wont be a pause or anything to signify this complete change, so I just got confused. I may just buy the paperback and read it like Sarah suggests. I didnt have a problem with the narrator being more bubbly.. just had a problem with 2 of the main characters having almost identical voices.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer benson, AZ, United States 05-09-14
    Amazon Customer benson, AZ, United States 05-09-14 Member Since 2011

    Aging hippie

    HELPFUL VOTES
    20
    ratings
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    2
    15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Readable book, Wrong Narrator."

    I read this book in paperback maybe 3 years ago and liked it well enough to buy the rest of the series, so looked forward to hearing it in Audible.

    Mistake. The book narrated here seems like a different book then the one on paper. The narration makes that much difference.

    The reader sounds like she is 15 years old and reads the book as if it were a slightly amusing fairy tale - totally wrong for the book. In fact, the book is actually trivialized by the childish tone. It is hard to remember the characters are adults and the situations are dangerous. Murder, bullying, and racism sound more like high school hijinks when read by a child. Half way through the book it is mentioned that the story is set in New York. I was surprised because the tone of the reader had led me forget and assume it was Seattle. That is a sample of how much the book suffers from selecting a childish voice.

    (The narrator is actually good, for children's books.)

    The book was produced by Harlequin so apparently they think the teenage market would enjoy this voice. Adults will be looking for other entertainment. And the author will lose business.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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