Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Tor Books
Publication Date: 11/13/12
Source: Provided by author for review.
Hurricane Katrina is long gone, but the preternatural storm rages on in New Orleans. New species from the Beyond moved into Louisiana after the hurricane destroyed the borders between worlds, and it falls to wizard sentinel Drusilla Jaco and her partner, Alex Warin, to keep the preternaturals peaceful and the humans unaware. But a war is brewing between two clans of Cajun merpeople in Plaquemines Parish, and down in the swamp, DJ learns, there’s more stirring than angry mermen and the threat of a were-gator.
Wizards are dying, and something—or someone—from the Beyond is poisoning the waters of the mighty Mississippi, threatening the humans who live and work along the river. DJ and Alex must ﬁgure out what unearthly source is contaminating the water and who—or what—is killing the wizards. Is it a malcontented merman, the naughty nymph, or some other critter altogether? After all, DJ’s undead suitor, the pirate Jean Laﬁtte, knows his way around a body or two.
It’s anything but smooth sailing on the bayou as the Sentinels of New Orleans series continues.
Magic, Murder, and Mayhem
I think what makes River Road so special for me was that it was FUN. The world has been established, the characters are known, and life in post-Katrina New Orleans is interesting to say the least. I love Johnson's pretes; you have loup garou, shifters, nymphs, were gators, mer people, and my personal favorite, the historical undead. The historical undead aren't ghosts, but are real historical figures, kept "alive" through memory.
The most prevalent of the Historical Undead, in this series, is Jean Lafitte, a 18th century "privateer" (ie, pirate). And though Jean Lafitte is long-dead, he is one of the three men who drive our heroine Drusilla "DJ" Jaco up the wall. The other two men being Alex and Jake Warin. Alex is DJ's partner, which makes him off-limits, for now. Jake is Alex's sexy, sweet, and slightly dangerous cousin. The sexual chemistry that DJ has with each man, yes even the undead Jean, makes River Road so much fun.
But, these three men, and DJ's potential relationship with each, is not the focus of River Road. DJ takes her job seriously and though she sometimes stumbles, she is good at it. Her dedication is admirable. She has become more confident in her abilities and is no longer one to let her superiors walk all over her. DJ has turned into a full-blown, take control, urban fantasy heroine.
River Road kicked off to a fun start, quickly developed into supernatural mystery, and kept me hanging on the entire time. The story ended with a strong finish and the last line left me dying for book three. The Sentinels of New Orleans is a series that will surely be loved by all Urban Fantasy fans.
" 'Jean Lafitte can use a telephone now. God help us.' The man was learning his way around the modern world entirely too well. Driving, taking showers and now making phone calls. He'd probably even learned to turn on his lamp." (ARC, pg 131)
"His hand brushed my wet cheek. I'd planned to get in his head and somehow, instead, he'd gotten in mine. 'I'm sorry,' he said. 'You just don't seem to understand that this isn't a one-sided thing with us. I don't want to lose you either. Not because you've put yourself in danger protecting me or because of the shitty baggage you drag around from your screwed-up family.' He paused a heartbeat. 'And not because of Jake.' " (ARC, pg 233)
You can purchase River Road at:
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Sentinels of New Orleans Series
(click on cover to see my review)