Tuesday, April 29, 2008

No Humans Involved by Kelley Armstrong

Readers around the world have fallen for Kelley Armstrong’s intoxicating, sensual and wicked tales of the paranormal, in which demons and witches, werewolves and vampires collide – often hilariously, sometimes violently – with everyday life. In Armstrong’s first six novels, Elena, Paige and Eve have had their way with us. Now get ready for Jaime Vegas, the luscious, lovelorn and haunted necromancer. . .

Jaime, who knows a thing or two about showbiz, is on a television shoot in Los Angeles when weird things start to happen. As a woman whose special talent is raising the dead, her threshold for weirdness is pretty high: she’s used to not only seeing dead people but hearing them speak to her in very emphatic terms. But for the first time in her life – as invisible hands brush her skin, unintelligible fragments of words are whispered into her ears, and beings move just at the corner of her eye–she knows what humans mean when they talk about being haunted.

She is determined to get to the bottom of these manifestations, but as she sets out to solve the mystery she has no idea how scary her investigation will get, or to what depths ordinary humans will sink in their attempts to gain supernatural powers. As she digs into the dark underside of Los Angeles, she’ll need as much Otherworld help as she can get in order to survive, calling on her personal angel, Eve, and Hope, the well-meaning chaos demon. Jeremy, the alpha werewolf, is also by her side offering protection. And, Jaime hopes, maybe a little more than that.

Over the last couple years, I have enjoyed several of the novels by Kelley Armstrong. Last year, I read the first three books in the series, but Dime Store Magic annoyed me, causing me to be hesitant to move on in the series. I decided the other day that I would just skip ahead to reawake my interest in the series, and then take it from there. I chose this book because I really liked Jeremy when he came up in Elena's story, so I was interested to see more from him. The books always focus on female characters, but what I did see of Jeremy was worth it. Skipping ahead to this book was also worth it, though, because I am back in love with the series and am looking forward to further exploring. I think I am over my annoyance with Paige, too, so that is a plus. As the series gets going, the books centre around one female character, but characters from previous books make appearances, as well.

I should point out that Jamie is not my sort of character at all. I am a jeans and a sweater type of person, and you would never catch me in a dress very often. I am sort of a take action sort of person and I have a really hard time asking people to help me. In many ways me and Jamie are polar opposites with her tight dresses and high-heeled shoes. This worried me a bit in the beginning, but Kelley Armstrong carries the character off well, so I did not mind. Jamie is a necromancer, a raiser of the dead. She is not even fully aware of her own powers, though, because in many ways what she is scares her. She develops a lot in the course of the novel as she comes to terms with her powers and what she is capable of doing. She is always finding herself needing other people's help, but this time she learns to take matters into her own hands.

One of the things about this book is that there was a bit more of a sexual feel to it than I remember from the other books. That does not mean they did not have any, though, it could just mean that I have forgotten them. They are not the sort of scenes that I remember for later. There was one scene in this book that I had to comment on to a friend because, well, it is not my sort of scene at all! Romance novels are just not my thing. I do not mind a bit of it here or there, but I generally find myself skimming. And, well, I have a habit of finding the scenes more humourous than anything else. So, there were a few of them in here. I am sure lots of other people enjoyed them, and they were well-written, but this book had more than I cared to enjoy.

There were a lot of interesting characters in this book. Jeremy develops a bit during this book. We learn a bit about his past and what he feels like being an alpha. Having skipped a few books, he might play central in others too, I will just have to wait and see. I am glad that he was around during this book. It was actually what drew me to this book in the first place. Elena and Clay make an appearance, along with the twins. There is one scene near the end that made me laugh and it involved them. Paige and Savannah appear a couple times, as well as Paige's boyfriend. Hope, a half-demon, helps Jamie in her investigation, and I see that the next book in the series is about Hope. She is an interesting character, so I will be interested to see what happens. Eve is another character that appears a lot during this book. She is the mother of Savannah, and really, much more interesting than Paige. She serves as Jamie's guide, so she was a really good addition to the novel.

All in all, I really liked this book. I am glad I jumped ahead, and I am already looking forward to the next book I decide to read from the series. The back of the book says that Kelley Armstrong is up there with people like Laurell K. Hamilton, but I personally think she is better than Hamilton. I hope she keeps up the great books!

This book counts as both a Once Upon a Time challenge book and a Themed Reading challenge book.

My thanks to Random House for sending me a copy!


  1. I prefer her to what I have read of Hamilton as well. I have this to read next month and am looking forward to it. I know what you mean about not being your type of woman, I am a baggy jeans and jumper person as well so I relate more to Elena than Jaimie. Sounds good which is very encouraging.

  2. Having just read Broken, this is next up for me in this series. I expect to read it in the next 6-8 weeks!


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