Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Dead On The Delta by Stacy Jay - review

Dead On The Delta
Stacey Jay
Urban Fantasy/2011

***** (5 out of 6)

cover - The cover is kept me coming back to the book at the bookstore, even though I was putting off reading about fairies (I've been reluctant to read about fairies after reading the Merry Gentry books, the only one keeping me reading about the fae has been McLeod's Spellcrackers.com series...)  but back to the cover - this cover is seriously a good cover.  The whole ambience, the colors, the bright hair, the whole desolate yet lush look of the whole thing.  FINALLY, after a year of waffling back and forth I bought the book.

It took me way too long to decide to buy and then to read this novel.  Dead On The Delta sounded good - sometimes, and sometimes I found my self thinking...come on....last time I read a book that many people raved about, I couldn't get into it.  Another time I bought a book because a lot of people were giving it great reviews and I couldn't finish it because there were so many inconsistancies - and I can usually ignore stuff like that.  Anyway, I finally just sat down and read it, and it ended up to be one of those books that you hate getting interrupted with.  Really.  I spent hours just reading it as opposed to reading, putting down, watching t.v., reading, getting distracted, reading again....you get the point.  This was a page turner.

There were a few things that got me thinking enough already - with the emo urban fantasy heroine.  It's just that they all have issues, deep angsty issues...but then that's part of what makes them who they are, brings them to whatever spot they're in, etc.  In the case of the main character - Annabelle - 'here' is living in a bayou, close to the swamp, not advancing much in her job because she'd rather drink than think.  I get the whole reason for using thing, but how about a person who just uses because they WANT to use?  Whatever - not my story.

Anyway, I did enjoy the story.  I liked the dialogue, I liked tone of the novel, the narration, the setting ...ugh - I felt like I was sweating and batting mosquitos away...  Annabelle lives in a swampy area that has been quarantined, or rather fenced in with iron fencing because these fairies happen to be real.  And they are also deadly.  They attack like mosquitos - or worse than mosquitos, because they attack until you're dead.  Oh - and their shit get used as a potent drug - acting a lot like crack does on crack addicts.  The way Ms Jay describes some of the fairy poop users is pretty much like the crack addicts and tweakers you see in any urban setting.

So Annabelle is trying to just stay on her little course - not advancing, not doing much of anything except getting her own drug (sanctioned by the government) and drinking when she can.  She's immune to fairy bites, and so has a rather high paying job collecting samples.  She also has a very handsome cop boyfriend.  Things are going along just fine when she ends up involved in a murder investigation, and stumbles upon a drug (fairy poop! really!) production house, and finds out things aren't just going on like she thinks. or though.  Nope - there's something fishy going one (besides the whole fairy poop drug making thing).  Now there's a body, she's being watched by a some governmental heavies, one of which happens to be an ex-boyfriend (of course!), her steady supply of state sanctioned drugs has dried up because she has been using them too fast, and her boyfriend is not happy with her.  AND some crazy weird cat shows up, growling at her while staying around her.

mini-rant follows**There was a lot going on in this book - most of it pretty interesting, some of it eye-rolling for me (as far as the formulaic things that show up like the ex-boyfriend having to watch/work over her; the angsty/emo past that causes her to use/drink/suffer/stay away from deep relationships; the antisocial behavior {I'm a little antisocial, so that's a little easier to handle --wink}; and the smart assed attitude - but then, if a character didn't have a smartassed attitude, I probably wouldn't stay interested in her)  Like I mentioned before - I realize certain genres have their commonalities - but I do want to see a half-evil person who doesn't suddenly go good.  An addict who isn't cured in the first novel of a series (that's why I love Chess Putnam so much - girl is an addict like - a REAL addict).  Or an addict/drinker who just uses because they like to, not because they had a traumatic past.  Or how about a fighter who just fights to fight monsters? not because they had a loved one annihilated in the past.  Either way, this is just to explain why I can really enjoy a novel and still have eyerolls while enjoying.  Not to take away from Stacey Jay's talent, because the woman wrote an excellent novel - I just wish the publishers wouldn't push for the sex in the first novel, the triangle of relationships where the woman has to choose (hell, take both - just do it and mean it, not angst about it, then go on a binge, falling in 'love' with 18 other guys coughtlkhcough).  So - mini rant aside...**

ahem...There was a lot going on in this book, and I thoroughly enjoyed the first person narrative, the plotting, the twists and all the details that came together to form a story on the bayou full of little deadly fairies that produced POOP that can be used as a drug!  I mean...wow.  what a concept! right?

Good story, good writing, good dialogue, and good twists and great motorcycle.  I'm planning on getting the sequel - because I think there's going to be some very interesting times ahead for little miz Annabelle.  I'm going to on the look out for Blood On The Bayou, which came out in March of 2012.  I just haven't seen it or been able to buy it quite yet.  Soon, very soon.  click on cover for excerpt.

I didn't realize til I looked up Stacey Jay's website, but she also writes Young Adult novels - specifically novels like Undead Much? and You Are So Undead To Me among others.  Quite a few - go visit her site, if you haven't already and check out the books available, if I were a teen, I think I'd really be interested in her novels - zombies, boyfriend trouble, etc - what more could a teen reader want?

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