Christian McGrath’s portrayal of Charlie Madigan is gritty and strong complementing the writing of Kelly Gay. Gay’s writing continues to engage me as a reader. She maintains the balance between too much and too little keeping her novel tight and well-written.
The Darkest Edge of Dawn begins where The Better Part of Darkness left off. Atlanta became more in tune with the Charbydons living there. Charlie feels responsible for the “accidental darkening” and in a sense that is true. So, being the kind of person she is, Charlie sets a goal of saving Atlanta.
As we all know, the world is full of nutters. Being from Charbydon or Elysia makes no difference. Crazy people are found among all races. Sadly, some of the crazies go serial. In The Darkest Edge of Dawn Charlie and Hank investigate a warehouse where a dead body was found. Both find the place creepy and for good reason. In this lovely warehouse a pile of dead bodies and a pregnant hellhound is discovered. Something is off about the mound of bodies.
That was the second problem Charlie feels the need to save the world from. On a more personal level, the changes in her DNA are worrisome. What is she turning into and how is she supposed to control the powers she seems to have gained?
Trying to deceive your own daughter works like a charm unless she is psychic. And guess what, Emma is psychic. When Will died and his body was taken over by Rex, Charlie decided that they had to wait until Emma was ready before she could be told. Talk about messed up life. But Charlie also has the pleasure of having a hellhound living at her home, a hellhound that Emma has a mysterious link to.
That’s not all that is going on in Charlie’s life. Her sister Bryn was affected by the drug Ash while trying to help Charlie. Now she has to take regular doses of the drug in order to stay alive.
Charlie’s partner, Hank, still has his voice modifier fused to his neck – joy of joy – hindering his ability to be a proper Elysian.
One of the things Charlie has trouble with is accepting help from others. She is going to need help in The Darkest Edge of Dawn just as she did in The Better Part of Darkness. I get that. Asking for help is difficult even when it is obvious assistance is needed. Just because you are adult age, does not necessarily mean that you are able to act maturely. I guess that is part of the reason why I like Charlie so much. She is vulnerable and strong, prejudiced and willing to look beyond those prejudices.
I think Charlie Madigan could a be a good role model for young women out there.
Redeeming Stanley is a treat of a novel. It is lighthearted, raunchy and adventurous. Most of all Redeeming Stanley is well written and thought out.
Meet Weldon Frame, self-diagnosed shrewd businessman, babe magnet, and mail room clerk extraordinaire. Meet Annie, Weldon’s ex-girlfriend, mother of his unexpected child, and recently-identified gold-digging stone-cold bitch. Meet Stan and Babe, Prince of Demons and Whore of Babylon. Meet Angela, born-again Christian with a jones for Stan. Meet Grandma, a ghost who liked the family dog a little too well. Meet the Freak…well, maybe not. Meet the Coppess, a gum-snapping state trooper who has Weldon’s sterling piece of American automotive engineering towed, leaving him afoot and furious in the middle of the Southern California desert night.
Clearly, Payback is in order. The rest is inevitable.
You can tell Redeeming Stanley is meant to be humorous. But there is a serious side to it – kind of. There are plenty of guys out there like Weldon and plenty of gals like Annie. Sometimes accepting responsibility for our choices can be difficult. We can’t do anything about what has gone but our choices for the future can be different from the ones we have gotten into the habit of making. Redeeming Stanley illustrates how difficult that is, but it also shows us that it is doable.
I loved it. There were enough crazy moments in Redeeming Stanley to make me happy for having read it. I left it with a smile on my face.
First-place winner, Best of the Best E-books Award, 2009