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review 2016-05-25 15:49
Flawed, but with good potential
Dead Spots - Melissa F. Olson

“Your perspective on life comes from the cage you were held captive in.” ― Shannon L. Alder

 

Scarlett Bernard is one pragmatic lady. Of course, she has to be considering her job is supernatural crime scene cleanup. As in, get in, clean up the mess, steal the body, and book the hell out of Dodge before the cops arrive. She is truly good at her job, and her boss, the cold and distant Dashiell, Master Vampire of the city, may be scary, but he pretty much allows her to do her job without interference. But then, the worst happens.

 

She gets caught. Caught by a newly minted detective, Jesse Cruz, just after she arrives at a scene more bloody and grotesque than any she has ever seen. What happens next is fast paced action with terrific world building and interesting characters. I first read the book back in 2012, and enjoyed it then. This time I listened to the Audible edition narrated by Amy McFadden (one of my favorite narrators) and, as sometimes happens, I liked it even more as I listened. Scarlett is a strong character with a well-developed, though brutal, background and is likeable. She isn’t perfect, but that is what makes her interesting. She has taken horrific hits in her life – but the one she walks into later on is absolutely devastating and Olson does a rather wonderful job of writing the horrors of betrayal. I would have liked her to be more mature in her interactions with others – her tendency to cope a nasty, self-serving attitude at times was a downer. I am hoping that the next books will show growth in her as a character (especially since I own them all). Her behavior isn’t as horrendous as other female characters in the genre, but I am hoping for more maturity in upcoming works.

There are some things that were irritating. The Dreaded Love Triangle. Irritating! Not only do love triangles make me retch, this one felt stilted and unnecessary, dragging down the storyline. Also, the POV switches between characters and from first to third person erratically and unnecessarily. Irritating, but not as irritating as the lurrve (titter titter, Groan) triangle. Olson’s take on werewolf psychology was more interesting than a lot of other books in the genre, and her friendship with the Alpha and Beta were more realistic than many others. The Alpha isn’t as ‘Alpha’ as in other books (thank the Goddess!) and the tortured Beta was very realistically portrayed in the vein of “I never wanted this in the first place.”

 

So, flawed, it isn’t perfect by any means, but I still enjoyed it as much as I remembered, and Amy’s narration was, as always, spot on.

Source: soireadthisbooktoday.com
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review 2016-01-19 00:00
Dead Spots (Scarlett Bernard #1)
Dead Spots (Scarlett Bernard #1) - Melissa F. Olson 3.5 Stars - A Little Difficult to Like, June 14, 2013



Dead Spots - Melissa F. Olson
This was a unique take on what is an over-whelmed genre. Although this book does deal with the typical monsters, i.e. vampires, werewolves and witches, the main emphasis on this story is the fact that our protagonist is a Null -someone who nullifies the magic in a specific radius around them.

Scarlet has been hired by the otherworldly community to be a cleanup person. She cleans up the messes that cannot be explained to the human community. She helps keep the `monsters' hidden.

It took me quite a while to warm up to the characters in this novel and even after finishing it I am still not so sure I actually `liked' everyone I should be liking. I have no problems with the secondary characters. The author has done a wonderful job in letting me `see' them emotionally as how the author expects. It's Scarlett, Jesse (a human cop) and Eli the werewolf who is to be Scarlett's helper until another Null can be found, that I am having problems with.
These three characters come off, in my opinion as ineffective, not quite inept but darn close to it.

There are several interesting twists to this story and to this series as a whole. There is as it looks like now, a love/like triangle happening, and something evil happening with a once beloved and trusted character that will set us up for the next book.

This was not a waste of time to read and I will be starting the next book in about 15 minutes so I can tell you I liked it enough to try the next one. However, I hope with the second book, I see some growth with the 3 main characters and that they become less passive.
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text 2015-07-12 12:00
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review 2015-07-03 00:00
Dead Spots
Dead Spots - Melissa F. Olson Book was interesting, and I like the worldbuilding, but the pacing/character development were a little rough. Also, while I appreciate that Scarlett is not an Action Girl, her lack of drive and ambition (which ends up making much more sense to the end of the book/the next book) was somewhat annoying. My fav was totally Jesse Cruz, and he's a GEM. He's just SO NICE.
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review 2015-05-17 18:02
Dead Spots by Rhiannon Frater
Dead Spots - Rhiannon Frater

Have you ever read a book where you were constantly hoping that the whole thing was a nightmare that didn’t really happen? That the main character would wake up, and things in her life were totally the opposite of what was happening? Dead Spots by Rhiannon Frater did just that for me. Her books have never disappointed me. She is such a skilled horror writer that everything that happens in the book, was freakishly scary, and that your heart can’t help but beat faster and harder when the big bad scarys showed up.

In Dead Spots by Rhiannon Frater, main character Mackenzie (aka Mac) goes through a horrible life changing ordeal. In the blink of an eye, Mac’s perfect life – complete with perfect husband and a child on the way – disappears. The baby that she and her husband had so eagerly waited for is stillborn, which tears her and husband apart. Throw in the mix a mother who messes with her mind every chance she gets (like say…saying it’s all Mac’s fault that she lost the baby), getting back on her feet is not an easy one.

To get away from the memories and her pain, Mac decides to move back to Texas with her mom and start over. Little did she know that a near miss driving accident involving a deer, will change everything. Like in horror movie style, our heroine decide to venture into an abandoned café/bistro in the woods (here we go…) and finds herself getting stuck in a Dead Spot.

A dead spot is basically a doorway to an inbetween world. Where things of nightmares are very real, and all seem to be thirsting for Mac and her life glow. But Mac is also lucky to have run into Grant, as soon as she steps into the dead spot. Mac does everything he can to keep Mac safe, including telling who is and is not safe to talk to.

But when things that Mac says are starting to contradict the things she’s experiencing, who can she turn to and trust so that she can figure out a way to get out? With killer clowns and crazy ass wraiths hot on her trail, Mac must decide who to trust and who to avoid…but learning who is trustworthy is a scary path…one that might keep Mac trapped in the dead spot forever.

Let me as you this…Have you read any of Rhiannon Frater’s books? She is seriously one talented chick, and her eye for horror and terror is definitely spot on. Dead Spots is another book that you should add to your must read lists. Although not as grotesque and as gory as her other works (i.e. her As The World Dies series – which was amazeballs), the visions that her words conjured up in my head freaked me out.

That frickin’ clown? OMG… And that’s the thing! The world in Dead Spots is one where anything from nightmares can appear out of nowhere in the blink of an eye! That’s what I loved about it. Everything was guessing what could possibly happen next, if the character that we just met is someone who can be trusted or wants Mac killed, if Mac is actually going to make it out of the dead spot world and back to reality, if she’s actually going through the scary crap or if she’s dreaming this all up while unconscious from a car accident.

The fear mixed with the sadness and pain of what Mac went through had my emotions going all over the place while reading this book. Fans of reads that will keep you up at night and afraid to close your eyes will really enjoy Dead Spots by Rhiannon Frater. I cannot WAIT to see what she has coming out next!

Source: www.chapter-by-chapter.com/blog-tour-dead-spots-by-rhiannon-frater-review-and-giveaway
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