J.N. Duncan
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Release Date
April 2011
Urban Fantasy

She's as tough as anything haunting Chicago's streets. But to deal with an inhuman power that won't stay buried, this FBI agent needs help that comes at an immortal price. . .

Jackie Rutledge has seen her share of supernatural killers. But her latest murder case is what recurring nightmares are made of. Brutally exsanguinated human victims, vanishing-into-the-ether evidence, and a city on the edge of panic mean that she and her psychic partner, Laurel, are going to need more than just backup . . .

So Jackie is fine with any help rugged P.I. Nick Anderson can give--even if that includes the impish ghost and sexy vampire who make up his team. But Nick is hiding secrets of his own. And Jackie's investigation has plunged them both into a vengeful game reaching back centuries--and up against a malevolent force hungry for more than just victory. . .

Book Review by Michelle R
Apr 06, 2011   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
154 people found the following review helpful
DEADWORLD heads straight to my "Favorite Urban Fantasy" shelf.

With shadows of Jim Butcher and James Patterson, J.N. Duncan's FBI agent Jackie Rutledge is one kick-ass heroine I'm going to be following for a while. If you like detective stories with a hint of supernatural, DEADWORLD is not one to be missed. If your adrenaline isn't pumping when you dive into Jackie's world, you've got to be dead.

Jackie Rutledge is one rough, self-destructive, determined FBI agent with a past I still haven't fully figured out. It would take a team of therapists to work through her "issues". Fortunately for us, she has focused all of her rage and self-loathing on the bad-guys of Chicago.

Jackie's psychic partner, Laurel, knows there's more out there than meets the eye. Together, the two are no strangers to supernatural crimes. But this latest mystery has both of them in over their heads.

P.I. Nick Anderson is more than he seems. He's a vampire with a ghost and female vamp as partners. Together, they are trying to track and kill the evil force that has haunted Nick all of his undead life. It looks like Drake is back, and once again he's got killing on his mind.

The question is if either the FBI or Nick's team will be able to stop him once and for all, or will history repeat itself…..again.

There are so many twists and turns in this book a pretzel maker might even get dizzy. The pacing was amazing, leaving me clutching my book, unwilling to tend to my poor starving and neglected children. With every page, a new facet of the case or the characters was revealed. I loved how the information on Nick and Jackie's pasts, Laurel's hidden secret, Shelby's role in Nick's life and the whole Drake drama leaked out slowly over time. All the little clues made the characters as much a mystery to solve as the mystery plot itself. I'm still in shock that the book was over 400 pages. It flew by only to tease me with a touch of the next book in the series. (Very cruel, Mr. Duncan. Very cruel.)

Even with a ghost popping in and out of scenes, vampires holding all the cards and psychic energy flowing like the mighty Mississippi, DEADWORLD didn't feel overly supernatural. When I step into Sookie's world, it seems almost like a different planet. Black Dagger Brotherhood, Night Huntress and Mercedes Thomson all have that overwhelming supernatural aura dominating the world building. DEADWORLD, on the other hand, seemed more like the world I've grown up in with a little "whoops, guess what?" thrown in on the side. At a time when I find myself choosing more and more contemporary fiction, this was a perfect balance of reality vs. fantasy.

Jim Butcher fans, Riley Jenson fans, Sookie Stackhouse fans, fans of the mystery or paranormal, you have to pick up DEADWORLD and see what I mean. Just make sure the kids are fed and the fridge is stocked. It's tough to stir and read at the same time. Trust me ladies and gents, this one is a keeper. Enjoy!
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