The Devil’s Disease
Genre: urban fantasy
Date of Publication: March 31, 2016
Word Count: 93,338
Cover Artist: Amy Mateyka
In the city by the Bay, things are about to get bloody…
Psychic medium Lena Alan always sticks to what she knows, and what she knows are dead people. When her brother Cyrus agrees to look into a troubling incident for local vampire Seneca Lynch, Lena finds herself in unfamiliar territory.
One thing is clear: she needs a detective, and there’s only one she trusts.
Private investigator Jesper MacMillian is ready to get back to business. Between his duties as leader of the city’s Romani community and the stack of unfinished paperwork on his desk, he doesn’t have time to think about ghosts, witches, or Lena Alan. After nearly a month of no contact, he’s starting to think she’s forgotten about him…until she waltzes through his office door and hands him a new case.
Still reeling from his last encounter with the subversive world, MacMillian is tempted to turn it down. But this is Lena, and he can’t bring himself to tell her no. He soon finds himself drawn even deeper into the shadows, into a part of the demimonde where folklore is real and nightmares are born.
This time, there are more than just ghosts walking the streets of San Francisco.
There are monsters, too.
About the Author:
L.J.K Oliva is the devil-may-care alter-ego of noir romance novelist Laura Oliva. She likes her whiskey strong, her chocolate dark, and her steak bloody. L.J.K. likes monsters… and knows the darkest ones don’t live in closets.
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Urban fantasy is arguably one of the most popular genres out there. From its humble beginnings back when Laurel K. Hamilton reigned supreme, it has exploded until it has earned a section all its own in bookstores physical and digital. The upside of that explosion is that there is no dearth of material to read.
The downside of that explosion is that not all those books are worth reading. I lament that so often that I hesitate to buy UF novels unless there are raves among friends and other trusted opinions and reviewers. There’s nothing wrong with that, exactly, but I almost never read outside the box. I mentioned in my previous Bewitching Blog Tours Review, I count on doing reviews to keep my reading horizons broad and varied. Occasionally, it also brings fantastic examples of my own beloved PNR/UF.
THE DEVIL’S DISEASE was like finding treasure in the walls of your house when you’re doing renovations. I literally spent an ENTIRE, UNINTERRUPTED DAY reading it from cover to cover (ebook cover, that is). I haven’t been this pleased about a book since… wow, I don’t even know when, but I bet it was something by one of my mistresses: Anne Rice, Kim Harrison, or Diana Gabaldon.
And I definitely haven’t picked up what equates to a “random” urban fantasy and love love LOVED it in forever. I honestly did not want this book to end.
THE DEVIL’S DISEASE was a terrific specimen of “real” urban fantasy — light on romance (while still giving a dose of bittersweet and steamy feelings), heavy on plot, mythology, and action. There were vampires, of course. It’s rare that UF gets a high rating from me without them. It was creepy, scary, and a little bit gory. A lot of today’s UF barely taps the horror genre which should be a strong thread in its plots (imo). There was a solid problem (or two… or three) that had to be solved, and, well, I won’t tell you if one or all of them were solved. If any. This is the second of the book in the series, and there are bits and pieces throughout that are clearly lingering from that story (which I haven’t read… YET) but just the way they are written, it’s fairly easy to follow along and say, “Ah. I get it.” The end of the book sets up future events that I can’t wait for either.
I loved the characters — Lena, Jesper, and their supporting cast are all a joy to watch, with well-written, individual voices. My favorite thing about a good urban fantasy is a rich mythology, and this book has it in spades. I want my vampire with his werewolf girlfriend (or enemy), walking down the street, elves, ghosts, fae, angels, demons, witches, you name it all around them. This book wasn’t quite that crowded, but it was satisfying to see at least a few of my favorite species. Maybe best of all, I did NOT see the whodunnit coming in any way, shape, or form. That’s a good story.
I’m so happy I signed up for this tour. I give THE DEVIL’S DISEASE a rare and hearty:
FIVE BATTY MOONS!