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Dead Spots | [Melissa F. Olson]

Dead Spots

When LA’s vampires, witches, and werewolves make a mess, they call Scarlett Bernard to clean it up. Her ability as a null erases all magical traces from anything — or anyone — that comes within ten feet of her, and keeps humans in the dark about the city’s paranormal activity. One night when she’s called to a grisly crime scene, Scarlett is spied by the all-too-human LAPD cop Jesse Cruz, who strikes up a deal with her: he’ll keep quiet about the supernatural underworld if she helps him crack the case. She agrees, but the city’s chief vampire, Dash, starts to suspect Scarlett is behind the murders and will reveal all she knows of his shadowy empire. Now it’ll take more than Scarlett’s unique abilities to clear her name, keep the underworld underground, and track down the real killer.
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Publisher's Summary

When LA’s vampires, witches, and werewolves make a mess, they call Scarlett Bernard to clean it up. Her ability as a null erases all magical traces from anything — or anyone — that comes within ten feet of her, and keeps humans in the dark about the city’s paranormal activity. One night when she’s called to a grisly crime scene, Scarlett is spied by the all-too-human LAPD cop Jesse Cruz, who strikes up a deal with her: he’ll keep quiet about the supernatural underworld if she helps him crack the case. She agrees, but the city’s chief vampire, Dash, starts to suspect Scarlett is behind the murders and will reveal all she knows of his shadowy empire. Now it’ll take more than Scarlett’s unique abilities to clear her name, keep the underworld underground, and track down the real killer.

©2012 Melissa F. Olson (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (509 )
5 star
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4.0 (462 )
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Story
4.1 (461 )
5 star
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3 star
 (59)
2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Kelly Michigan 05-16-13
    Kelly Michigan 05-16-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    87
    ratings
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    599
    80
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    "Great Supernatural Mystery"

    I liked this book. It reminded me of the Gail Carriger Soulless books set in the present instead of the past. The idea of a null is very interesting. The storyline was well thought out and I enjoyed listening to the world unfold. I liked the characters and enjoyed the romantic triangle that is setting up. I hope that Melissa Olson turns this into a series. I thought Amy McFadden was a fantastic narrator. This is the first time I've listened to anything she narrated and I would definitely listen to her again.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dr.Lauber Texas 01-07-13
    Dr.Lauber Texas 01-07-13 Member Since 2004

    Hollow

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    3
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    Story
    "Good read with a few plot holes...."
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend this book but there are a few parts that will have you screaming at your audio device. It's a good first outing for the author. I would have given it a 3.5 if possible but it leaned more 3 than 4.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    The author gave allot more closure than most books but the so-call reveal that probably will be the device for the next book was predictable to me.


    Which character – as performed by Amy McFadden – was your favorite?

    My favorite characters were detective Cruz and Molly the roommate.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    I would go see it.


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Beth Mitchell 12-23-14 Member Since 2004
    ratings
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    167
    4
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    Story
    "I'm not into Vampire Books BUT...."
    Any additional comments?

    I'm not into Vampire books, but this was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed it, and will probably do more vampire books. These are a lot better than I thought. I guess that's the purpose of the daily deal and the specials- to get the reader to try something different. I am usually not disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracy DC 12-20-14
    Tracy DC 12-20-14 Member Since 2014

    Tracy

    ratings
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    7
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "a good magical adventure"
    What made the experience of listening to Dead Spots the most enjoyable?

    it gets better as it goes on


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    like the main character - she's flawed but not whimpy and not overly self assured


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LOYL-00 NY 11-27-14
    LOYL-00 NY 11-27-14 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    42
    ratings
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    54
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    2
    3
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    Story
    "Surprise in a good way--thumbs up"

    I could see this is a first book of a series--a few rough points but I must say I like the characters, the action and intrigue. Couldn't wait to read Book 2---I was very surprised at the book--REALLY WELL DONE. Again all of the above but those rough spots are now gone.

    I had to get Book 3---SO HAPPY I DID--great flow of story line and new action to spice up the story. Great imagination---time well spend and I really have enjoyed the reading/ listening.

    Now for your narrator--Amy McFadden--excellent choice--you are doing a great job!

    One problem--WE NEED BOOK 4!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cara Theriot 11-03-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    31
    4
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    Story
    "I am so glad that I gave this series a chance"
    Where does Dead Spots rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I would have to rank the Scarlet Bernard series somewhere in the upper middle among other books in the same genre. I really enjoyed this series. Melissa Olsen offers something new to the urban fantasy genre by introducing the null.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    It's difficult to say who my favorite character is because there are a lot of characters that are definitely likable but there are just as many that are lacking. If I had to choose then it would have to be Scarlett. She is The perfect urban fantasy heroine- strong, smart, and independent to a fault but tends to be a little naïve at times. I believe that her naïveté has more to do with her age then her IQ. I can tell that she will continue to grow and learn to accept help from those around her.


    What about Amy McFadden’s performance did you like?

    I have listened to other books narrated by Amy McFadden but Amy does an excellent job with the Scarlett Bernard series especially with Scarlett's voice and her comedic delivery was spot on.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peter United States 10-07-14
    Peter United States 10-07-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    7
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    "Not another teen vampire/wolf book at all. Yea!!!"

    In this book the main character is a strong woman and loyal to her friends and frenemies. With the market saturated with so many vampire/wolf books and stories this was a refreshing twist. Scarlett is a null which makes her cancel out any magic and it's effects on those in her immediate area (10 feet I think it is). This gets her into many situations that are wonderful for the story and very different from all the other stories out there. So refreshing and I absolutely loved this series and will continue to buy these books as they come out.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lulu 09-09-14
    Lulu 09-09-14

    I ignore genre labels. Some of my favorite books are outside my genre comfort zone. Listening to audiobooks is still reading. Not theater.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Unique Twist on an Overdone Genre"

    I am really tired of books where the entire plot is based upon the fact that the characters are vampires, werewolves and witches. If the book has an interesting premise, well developed characters, a plot that actually requires you to think or introduces you to new ideas and pulls you in emotionally either through humor, sympathy or in some other way AND some of the characters just happen to be vampires, werewolves or witches, then that is fine.

    I liked this book because while the plot focuses on the beings themselves, rather than on some larger worldly issue or event, the author introduces a new being that made this book different from the 900,000 other books covering the exact same plot. The main character is a Null, and when otherworldly characters are in her range, they loose all of their power and become human. I don't know if this plot device is enough to sustain multiple books, but it is enough to set at least this first book apart.

    One of the pluses of this new character is by her very nature, she is kind of a non-entity. Her importance isn't in what she does, it is in what she makes others "not" do. As a non-entity, then the author doesn't have to spend a lot of time developing Scarlett's character and personality. In fact most of this book seems to reenforce that she has very little character or personality beyond her ability to cancel others out just by her presence. She is certainly not emotionally connected to other characters.

    This was obviously an introduction to a series. When I read it, I realized that there were the beginnings of some interesting characters and some interesting story-lines waiting to be developed down the road. For the first book in a series, I think the author did a good job of piquing our interest to learn more. It remains to be seen if she can keep that interest as the series progresses.

    The narrator was OK. Occasionally slipping into the annoying category.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Delinda 08-22-14
    Delinda 08-22-14 Member Since 2006

    In my opinion, a good story evokes emotion. It'll make me laugh, angry, or cry. But it can't just be words on a page. It has to do something

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dead spots is a great ideal, I liked it"

    Didn't see that one coming, but its a super ideal. Story was full of action and adventure. Just the way I like 'em. Even a little underlying romance. But the concept was the best, because I just hadn't seen or heard of this being done before. Kudos! Looking forward to the next one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gypsyjolie Madison, WI, United States 07-16-14
    Gypsyjolie Madison, WI, United States 07-16-14 Member Since 2011

    audiobook addict

    HELPFUL VOTES
    62
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    5
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    "solid UF without romance emphasis"

    Solid Urban Fantasy - not too much romance and the heroine is relatable, fully-fledged, and mostly lacking in cliched UF/PNR attributes (insatiable sexual prowess, uncommonly good looks, superpowers that appear far beyond her known powers, crushing feelings of inadequacy, inability to make a decision, annoying sidekicks, or closets full of the perfect heeled black leather boots and endless catalogues of specialized weaponry, for example). Scarlett is smart but not too sassy, practical rather than superficial, and not whiney. She has a few too many trust issues but they are understandable considering what she's been through in the last few years. She has a habit of feeling that things are all her fault that may lead to a overblown guilt crisis at some point in the series. Her power (or anti-power, as she calls it) is unusual: she's a Null, and magical beings that come within her radius of power lose their magical abilities - vampires and werewolves become human, witches cannot use their magic. The author uses this ability to good effect in several scene.

    The magic system is well-explained and makes sense. The setting is current day Los Angeles, but realistically so and without a lot of Hollywood glitz or designer name-dropping. There is a romantic triangle, but this book is really not focused on the romance, so there are no eye-rolling romantic declarations, posturing over possession of the girl, or explicit sex scenes. The plot is solid, with enough clues and twists to keep you guessing. There are some fun references to literary history in the vampire background. The storyline wraps up at the end in a satisfying way, though a sequel is hinted at by a surprise plot point at the end. The characters are complex and feel "real" rather than just being archetypes (with the possible exception of Dashiell, the head vampire). I thought this was pretty impressive for a first novel.

    The audiobook narrator is Amy McFadden. She does a creditable job but it's not outstanding. Her pacing and delivery are spot on. Like the book itself, it is more than adequate but less than extraordinary.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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