Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Book Review: "Three Days to Dead"

After the book from my last review turned out to be such a disappointment, I was really nervous about this next one. Not only is this a new author for me (and I have a track record of not doing well with branching out into new authors), but the subject matter had some similarities as far as the whole “revived from the dead” idea was concerned. In fact, I probably would have passed this book up were it not for the comment blurb on the cover from Patricia Briggs who is one of my all-time favorite authors.

The good news is that while the “semi-zombie” idea didn’t work for me before (just too gross and depressing), it definitely worked better here. I think the difference had to do with how the re-animation was handled. In “Working Stiff”, the main character really is dead and her body will immediately decay if she doesn’t get her daily shot of nanites. In “Three Days to Dead”, Evangeline Stone dies but her spirit is transferred to a different body which, yes, is also dead, but is completely healed through magic. There’s no ongoing decay process and no need for daily booster shots.

Of course, there is still a catch – the new body will go back to being 100% dead in three days. So Evangeline has only that long to figure out not only how she ended up dead in the first place, but also who called her back, what they want and why she ended up in the body of Chalice Frost, a recent suicide victim, instead of being called back into her own body.

There area a number of good things about this book. There's almost non-stop action from the first few pages on so I was immediately sucked in. In addition, while the typical cast of vampires, werewolves, and fae are there, they are all given new and unusual twists which helps keep this book from feeling too formulaic. Also enjoyable was the seemingly doomed romance.

Having said that…there are a few rookie mistakes in the novel: the name Chalice Frost is a prime example. I mean, Chalice Frost? Really? I much preferred the character’s original name of Evangeline Stone. Also, I didn’t buy that the new body would be much use in a fight – it was healthy, but didn’t have the training or muscle memory that the old one did. Not to mention that the character had to adjust to a whole new center of gravity, etc. But the biggest issue I had was that there were a couple of plot manipulations that were a little too heavy-handed and obvious.

Overall, however, it was an enjoyable read and I will definitely be checking out the next book in the series. One plus with this is that the subsequent books are already out so if you like this one, there’s no annoying wait time for the next.

That’s it for this week. Check out my next book review candidate over on the right side bar: “Phoenix Rising.” If you like Steampunk (it’s not just for jewelry!), then this one’s for you!

See you on the 17th for Bead Soup!


P.S. Just in case anyone was wondering...I look EXACTLY like that chick on the cover of the book. EXACTLY. Because fighting otherworldly bad guys SHOULD be done in a cropped tank and skin tight jeans. Makes TOTAL sense.


lunedreams said...

Sounds like you dislike the same kinds of things I do! Lazy plot manipulations (like, when the main character isn't THAT stupid, PLEASE; or something so unlikely as to be nearly impossible just happens to occur to drive the plot--television falls out of random window and hits bad guy in head), impossible circumstances (like when the author forgets where her characters are seated and one of them somehow manages to lean over and plant a kiss on someone sitting at the other end of a 20 foot banquet table), etc. Or someone supposedly going "cranberry picking" (I hope you have a snorkel dumbass). You never get that kind of info in a review! About the really irritating, sloppy stuff. Thanks!

SummersStudio said...

Despite some of the plot faults and character problems you mention, this book sounds quite interesting. Especially if it is fast paced. I like a mystery.

CraftyHope said...

Wow, this books really seems to pack in a lot. I'm not sure if I'd be overwhelmed or not by all that. However, your review of this one definitely has caught my attention.