Author: S.W. Fairbrother Published: April 11, 2014 Pages: 326
Stars: 5 out of 5
Vivia Brisk knows about the dead. She should. She’s died enough times. Vivia is a hag – or death witch – one of the last of her race, and can die, visit the underworld and return at will. As a consultant with charity The Lipscombe Trust, she has a job she loves — helping London’s most vulnerable supernaturals, even if her colleague Malcolm drives her round the bend on a daily basis. Vivia thinks she’s got Malcolm’s measure – sexist, not too bright and generally a pain in the ass, but then Malcolm zombifies and, along with his fourteen year old son Ben, flees the police.
With a zombie on the loose, London goes into lock down and Vivia is roped in into find them. After all, Malcolm can only keep control so long without fresh flesh, and the risk of the zompocalypse increases the longer he’s on the lam. At first what happened seems simple, but then the police find decades-old corpses hidden near Malcolm’s house, and Vivia begins to realise Malcolm’s missing son is in a lot more danger than from just a single zombie on the loose…
This story is unique in the characters and the authors ability to describe sometimes the indescribable. Characters in this story range from zombies to shape shifting cats who take on the personality of the animals they shift into. But the most unique character is the main character- she is a hag, aka death witch. She isn’t pretty. In fact she resembles the dead in many characteristics. It isn’t often you encounter a main character as anything but beautiful, attractive, or at least easy on the eyes.
The main character consults with the necroambulism team where she often returns to the dead to help figure out if someone was killed recently, who they were, and help solve the crime. While she is in the underworld, the things she encounters are easily found in nightmares. The depth of the main character was surprising. To say she has had a rough life is an understatement. Even after everything she went threw, the ending of the book left me sad and contemplating how unfair things sometimes turn out. But I don’t want you to get to discouraged, the author leaves some hope for the main character in what will hopefully be a sequel.
The author does an excellence job describing the weird, scary if not disturbing, and ugly side of things. The story the author created is a dark mystery. Just when you think it couldn’t get more bazar, the author creates a scene that could have come out of the twilight zone or a Steven king book. This is a very well written book!