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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Review: Avenging Angels

I have reviewed Mary Stanton's second book in the series (read review here), so I am delighted to give you all a sneak peek into the new book due out in February.  Also don't miss the interview with Miss Stanton here.  She is a tallented author spinning an entire alternate reality and accompanying history as the series develops.  I think she is doing a great job creating entertaining paranormal mysteries.

Author: Mary Stanton

Copyright: Feb 2010 (Berkley); 304 pgs.
Series: #3 in Beaufort and Company mysteries
Sensuality: N/A

Mystery sub-genre: paranormal cozy
Main Character: Brianna Beaufort, lawyer for both regular court and Celestial Court
Setting: Savannah Georgia

Obtained book through: ARC

The book starts with Brianna at an Estate auction where the spirit of the Russell O’Rourke, who supposedly committed suicide after loosing a fortune, contacts her via a desk up for auction and asks for her help. The majority of the furniture up for auction is being deceptively bought back from the bank (due to a bankruptcy) by the widow of the “suicide” victim, Tully, who seems more interested in starting the Shakespeare Theater that her husband disapproved of than grieving. Before Brianna knows what happened, Mrs. Tully O’Rourke – who never believed it was suicide, has hired her to find out who killed her husband. A former New York police detective who staunchly believes that it was murder is also in town and doggedly investigating too.

There are several suspects for Brianna to investigate including the widow and none of them are obvious killers, but then it wouldn’t be any fun if they gave it up too easily. Soon a second murder takes place and it may have been the killer’s mistake and Brianna’s chance. Sideline plots include Brianna finding out the physical results of her celestial duties, some good and some not so good. Brianna also opens a secondary office to handle her living clients and her newly hired assistant, Mrs Emerald Billingsley, for that office promises to be a delightful addition to the series. The author is doling out details of a celestial world with its own history with tidbits dropped here and there that I gobble up and want more.

She took a breath. “Do you all…I mean…Do you actually need…” She stopped, momentarily flummoxed.

“You’re going to cut our paychecks?” Ron said.

“You’re going to stop payin’ rent? Lavinia said. "Oh my. And the social security doesn’t cover all it should.”

“My sister, Rose, depends upon my contribution to the household,” Petru said heavily….

…I didn’t mean I can’t pay you, I just wondered if you needed…” she trailed off.

“If we spent our off hours on some other plain of existence?” Ron said. “We don’t”

“We have lives of our own, you see,” Petru said.
Nice twist ending which I didn’t see coming, wrap up is good and a solid start of a romantic relationship for Brianna round out the story. I really like the character Striker who is an angelic warrior who makes appearances to protect Brianna (or keep Brianna’s temper from wreaking havoc). I would like to have seen more of him since he is a fascinating secondary character.

This tall, battle-ready member of the Company only showed up when something serious threatened – or when Bree herself was a serious threat to somebody. Bree smiled at him. “If something’s after me right now, they can have me. And I’m too tired to whale on anybody.”

“Maybe you should have had some of Lavinia’s tea.”

Bree raised her eyebrows. “Really? I didn’t think magic potions were part of our arsenal.”

He laughed, “No magic potions. Just a lot of caffeine.” He turned and swept the mist with his gaze, and then he looked under the car. Bree bent and looked under it too. He straightened up and slapped the car roof. "Everything looks okay, get in.”

“All this is waking me up at least.” Bree folded herself into the driver’s seat and looked up at him. “Anything I should know about?”

Guess not. But I am puzzled. Everything is quiet.”

“Too quiet?” Bree said cheekily.

“Yeah.” His coin-colored eyes looked steadily back at her. “Way too quiet.”
More is revealed about the supporting cast of angels at her celestial law firm as well as the rest of Brianna’s family as the series continues, which lends to the sense of actually getting to know them. Brianna’s Savannah is being carefully woven with each book and I look forward to being apart of the developing layered tableau with each novel.

For your convenience, you can preorder your copy here.
Until next Monday and our next author interview, I wish you many mysterious moments.
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Anonymous said...

I've never read a paranormal cozy. Thanks for the recommendation!

A.F. Heart said...


I enjoy paranormal mysteries. I did a few reviews for Halloween so you could check out the Oct 09 stuff too. Glad you are getting a few ideas of books to look into!

AF Heart

Lea said...

If I may get the chance, I may be able to read this book. Thanks for sharing the info.

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