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Unclean Spirits

Book One of the Black Sun's Daughter
Narrated by: Suzy Jackson
Series: Black Sun's Daughter, Book 1
Length: 9 hrs and 3 mins
4 out of 5 stars (321 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In a world where magic walks and demons ride, you can't always play by the rules. Jayné Heller thinks of herself as a realist, until she discovers reality isn't quite what she thought it was.

When her uncle Eric is murdered, Jayné travels to Denver to settle his estate, only to learn that it's all hers - and more vast than she ever imagined. And along with properties across the world and an inexhaustible fortune, Eric left her a legacy of a different kind: his unfinished business with a cabal of wizards known as the Invisible College.

Led by the ruthless Randolph Coin, the Invisible College harnesses demon spirits for their own ends of power and domination. Jayné finds it difficult to believe magic and demons can even exist, let alone be responsible for the death of her uncle. But Coin sees Eric's heir as a threat to be eliminated by any means - magical or mundane.

Aided in her mission by a group of unlikely companions - Aubrey, Eric's devastatingly attractive assistant; Ex, a former Jesuit with a lethal agenda; Midian, a two-hundred-year-old man who claims to be under a curse from Randolph Coin himself; and Chogyi Jake, a self-styled Buddhist with mystical abilities - Jayné finds that her new reality is not only unexpected, but often unexplainable. And if she hopes to survive, she'll have to learn the new rules fast - or break them completely.

©2008 M.L.N. Hanover (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

LOVE this new Series!

I really love this new series. I bought all four audio books at the same time and it was wonderful to just jump to the next as I finished each one. I usually try one out before I buy the rest but I'm glad I didn't this time.
The premise was new to me and very interesting to read. There was good depth to the story and I enjoyed and felt great empathy for the main characters. I just want there to be another......soon.
When I first started listening, I was slightly put off by the narrator's child like voice and I feared it would bother me, but I soon forgot all about it as I got lost in the story. She was good at differentiating the characters by their voice and I had no problem keeping them apart.
Excellent new series. Can't wait for more

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Tracey
  • Danville, AR, United States
  • 04-07-12

Finally available on Audible

Great intro book to the series. Looking forward to learning more about the secondary characters later in the series (X, Jake, etc) Jayn is a bit on the whiny side at the beginning, but I am sure this is all a part of her character development. Has a fair bit of action. I am not keen on the romantic bits (especially this particular pairing), but it is takes a backseat to the paranormal actions in the volume.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Couldn't Get Into It

I don't know if it was the breathless co-ed style narration, or the pedantic prose but I really had a hard time getting into this book. I wanted to enjoy it but there was just something that kept me from caring, either about the main character or the plot. There is no humor in this book, everything is treated with a level of earnestness that I found draining. And then the writer took several sentences to describe a jelly donut, not even a particularly unique jelly donut. I stopped listening not long after that.


13 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not as good as I thought

Good premise, fell apart in the telling. I would not buy this again. Sad sad sad

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Poorly Written and extremely unbelievable

What disappointed you about Unclean Spirits?

I love science fiction books. A good author is able to pull you and make you believe in the story and feel for the characters. The main character in this book is extremely unrealistic it seems that she just happens to be able to do all these amazing and impossible things with no training, no experience, it just feels like there is no reason that she shouldn't have gotten killed which is extremely more likely. Completely turned me off the whole series.

Has Unclean Spirits turned you off from other books in this genre?

Not turned off from other books in the genre but from this author in particular

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The narrator was fine seemed to capture the lack of character of the main character rather well.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Perhaps my neighbor has a rider.....

This is a very fun urban fantasy! I don’t know why it hasn’t been on my radar sooner. Jayné is an engaging character and I love how she (and us readers) are tossed into the middle of things when her uncle Eric passes away. She’s surprised to learn that she was his sole heir and that gives her a chance to restart her life. Yet there’s a glitch – Randolph Coin! Let the badass magic and hand-to-hand combat start!

It was great that this story didn’t follow the standard urban fantasy Book 1 formula. Jayné and crew plan, practice, and go forth to battle evil… and things go wrong. We still have half the book to go! What will happen next? I loved it – I couldn’t guess how things were going to fall out. The team is breaking up, no longer acting like a team, and totally disheartened by their failure. Jayné will either rise, bringing them together, or take her inheritance and restart her life in some other city.

The side characters are all very interesting too. There aren’t many female characters, so I would like to see a better balance. The immediate team that worked with Eric are all guys (Ex, Aubrey, Midian, Chogyi Jake). Later on, a wife/husband team joins the group since Jayné did them a solid favor early in the story. For me, Midian and Ex were the most interesting side characters because they obviously have pasts and are conflicted over them.

In this tale, our heroes combat Riders, which are malevolent spirits that hijack human bodies. They come in different flavors and a few are explained in this book. I expect more will be explained later in the series. I like that this sometimes makes their job harder as they will try to save the human by expelling the Rider. This isn’t always possible, which causes some moral indigestion for some of our heroes. I love these complications.

There’s a side romance that was just so-so for me. It added some drama to the story, but I don’t feel the plot needed more drama. After all, we were saving the world! That’s drama enough. All together, 4.5/5 stars.

The Narration: Suzy Jackson was perfect for this story. She nailed Jayné’s voice. Jackson had distinct voices for all the characters. There were a few times I felt her male character voices needed a little more masculinity, like for Chogyi Jake’s soft voice or for Aubrey in quieter moments. Most of the time, her male voices were just fine. There were no technical issues with the recording. 4.5/5 stars.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Meh

I expected more from Daniel Abraham, having a fortune made things too easy. Obviously female protagonist has plot protection.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Not what I expected

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. The author is a great story teller

What did you like best about this story?

I have read the whole series, and I love that it is so unpredictable. I never would have guessed that book 1 would lead where book 5 ended up. In a world of cookie cutter stories, this one is very original.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

As Ive said before, dont make a movie out of the book. Movie writers kill the story every time.

Any additional comments?

This series is NOT what it looks like. From the covers of the books, you might be expecting just another over sexed, low plot, series, but that is NOT what you get. The sex scenes are rare, and not graphic, and the story is very well written, and imaginative. I was very pleasantly surprised with this series. I hope the author writes more!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Aaron
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • 05-19-13

The Beginning of Something Interesting

Hanover's first installment of the Black Sun's Daughter creates an interesting and engaging introduction into this world. Hanover does a great job at taking a new angle on the creatures of mythology and giving the reader what the need to know without beating them over the head with it. It's not complicated... not yet anyway, and that allows him to focus his energy on the story and the characters. One of the things I really like about this series is that the core cast of characters remains mostly intact and the attention remains on them no matter how crazy the plot gets (crazy in a good way mostly).

If you are looking to start a new Urban Fantasy type series with elements of action and a hint of romance, this is a good place to look.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent and the later books are even better!

Any additional comments?

I came to Unclean Spirits from a recommendation on Goodreads, and the first thing I saw at Audible were a couple of very negative reviews. They criticised the performer, the plot, and the premise. I didn't believe it could be as bad as that, and I'm glad to say I was correct.

I purchased the second book before I finished the first one, because I found the characters engaging, the performance great, and the premise of the story very interesting - and I've done the same thing with the third book, which is entertaining me at the moment.

I do have to say that I found the second book, Darker Angels, to be much better than the first, but that's after rating Unclean Spirits 4 out of 5, which is high for me.

The third book in the series, Vicious Grace, is starting out very well and I look forward to each opportunity to continue listening.

The only negative thing I could say is that I dislike the artifice the author has used in several places, where the main character's voice is used to say effectively "If I knew then what I know now then.....". But that is a very minor quibble.

To counterbalance that I'd mention that the main character, Jenae Heller, is a fan of Pink Martini, and now their albums feature prominently in my playlists! Excellent!