Dead Souls: A Novel - by J. Lincoln Fenn

My Rating - 4 Stars

I am not sure what I was expecting when I saw the blurb for this book but it intrigued me enough to want to read it. All I can say is wow, what a roller coaster ride. This book did not disappoint and exceeded my expectations. I finished the book in one day, it was that good. The premise is simple enough, girl in bar meets guy and has a few drinks. Next thing you know he says he is the devil and will grant her a wish in exchange for her soul and a future favor. Without thinking she blurts out a wish thinking this is some crazy pick-up line. Fiona soon realizes she really did sell her soul to the devil and she isn't the only one. Fiona is a likable character despite her career driven, millennial personality. I was on pins and needles trying to figure out how Fiona was going to be able to turn the tables on the Devil and save her soul.  There were a lot of twists and turns and the ending was not what I expected. 

From the books blurb:

When Fiona Dunn is approached in a bar by a man who claims he’s the devil, she figures it’s just some kind of postmodern-slash-ironic pickup line. But a few drinks in, he offers her a wish in exchange for her immortal soul, and in addition, Fiona must perform a special favor for him whenever the time comes. Fiona finds the entire matter so absurd that she agrees. Bad idea. Not only does Fiona soon discover that she really was talking to the devil incarnate, but she’s now been initiated into a bizarre support group of similar “dead souls”—those who have done the same thing as Fiona on a whim, and who must spend their waking hours in absolute terror of that favor eventually being called in...and what exactly is required from each of them in order to give the devil his due.

About the author:

Her debut novel, POE, won the 2013 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award for Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror and went on to become an Amazon bestseller. DEAD SOULS will be published in September 2016 by Gallery Books. The author grew up in New England and graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of New Hampshire. Currently she lives in Seattle with her family.

I received a copy in exchange for an honest review


A Time of Torment - by John Connolly

My Rating: 3 stars

This is my first book by John Connolly and also my first Charlie Parker novel. A Time of Torment is book 14 in the Charlie Parker series. Usually I do not read a lot of detective stories but the supernatural element sounded like an interesting departure from the norm. As far as detective novels go A Time of Torment has the usual elements. There is a crime or mystery to be solved, a detective (and sidekicks) that no one seems to like, a side crime, and a lot of descriptions. Did I mention a lot of descriptions? For me, it is the overly descriptive story that makes my eyes glaze over and for that reason this book is only a three star book for me. Other than that, it is has an interesting plot and the supernatural nature of the story is an added bonus. Also, I enjoyed the sidekicks, Angel and Louis. I would have liked to see more of them in the story. The book takes place in Maine

and West Virginia and Connolly does a good job with the feel 
of the locations. I was surprised to find out he is from Dublin, Ireland. For readers that enjoy horror and detective stories then I recommend giving the Charlie Parker books a try. 

From the books blurb:

Dangerous and driven private investigator Charlie Parker returns in the latest gripping thriller of internationally bestselling author John Connolly’s series, in which ungodly 

fears haunt a strange and isolated community.

Jerome Burnel was once a hero. He intervened to prevent multiple killings, and in doing so destroyed himself. His life was torn apart. He was imprisoned, brutalized.

But in his final days, with the hunters circling, he tells his story to private detective Charlie Parker. He speaks of the girl who was marked for death, but was saved; of the ones who tormented him, and an entity that hides in a ruined stockade.

Parker is not like other men. He died, and was reborn. He is ready to wage war.

Now he will descend upon a strange, isolated community called the Cut, and face down a force of men who rule by terror, intimidation, and murder.

All in the name of the being they serve. All in the name of the 

Dead King.

About the author:

John Connolly was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1968 and have, at various points in his life, worked as a journalist, a barman, a local government official, a waiter and a "gofer" at Harrods department store in London. I studied English in Trinity College, Dublin and journalism at Dublin City University, subsequently spending five years working as a freelance journalist for The Irish Times newspaper, to which I continue to contribute, although not as often as I would like. I still try to interview a few authors every year, mainly writers whose work I like, although I've occasionally interviewed people for the paper simply because I thought they might be quirky or interesting. All of those interviews have been posted to my website, http://www.johnconnollybooks.

He is based in Dublin but divides his time between his native city and the United States, where each of his novels has been set.