Author: Jacqueline Carey
Title: Dark Currents
Series: Agent of Hel
Pairing: M/F, F/F
Rating: Three Petals
On the Author's Website:http://www.jacquelinecarey.com/books.htm
The Midwestern resort town of Pemkowet boasts a diverse population: eccentric locals, wealthy summer people, and tourists by the busload—not to mention fairies, sprites, vampires, naiads, ogres, and a whole host of eldritch folk, presided over by Hel, a reclusive Norse goddess.
To Daisy Johanssen, fathered by an incubus and raised by a single mother, it’s home. And as Hel’s enforcer and the designated liaison to the Pemkowet Police Department, it’s up to her to ensure relations between the mundane and eldritch communities run smoothly.
But when a young man from a nearby college drowns—and signs point to eldritch involvement—the town’s booming paranormal tourism trade is at stake. Teamed up with her childhood crush, Officer Cody Fairfax, a sexy werewolf on the down-low, Daisy must solve the crime—and keep a tight rein on the darker side of her nature. For if she’s ever tempted to invoke her demonic birthright, it could accidentally unleash nothing less than Armageddon.
I have read and enjoyed many of Jacqueline Carey's novels throughout the years and I expected great things from her newest series, Agents of Hel. She is known for her carefully crafted prose, her deep and twisting plots, and her intense scenes of love and devotion. Dark Currents has none of that. The goal of this review, therefore, is to take the book as it is rather than what I had hoped it could be.
The most interesting aspect to Dark Currents is the very different magical community Carey has embraced. Norse mythology is not a pantheon I have seen used often--if at all--in modern fantasy and paranormal literature, but Carey introduces these very different Gods and Goddesses with ease. The Norse pantheon has also been seamlessly intertwined with Christian concepts of Hell, the Irish/Celtic Fae, and more, all set within the modern world. Carey makes all the very different belief systems and cultures woven together in the book feel normal.
What the book lacks is any real depth of plot. It feels very linear. Everything that occurs in the story is expected, well foreshadowed, and therefore unsurprising. Even when I remove my original disappointment in the lack of expected plot depth from how I read this book, it still feels flat.
That said, it was enjoyable to read. The characters are interesting and the plot is fun, albeit uninspiring. I particularly liked how the main character's bisexuality was never made to be an issue. She likes men and women equally and neither she nor those around her see any issue with that.
Maggie's Final Recommendation:
While this book did lack the prose and depth of plot I've come to expect from Carey's books, I still found this to be an enjoyable read. I do recommend it and I will be reading the sequel.
Maggie reviews paranormal and fantasy novels and novellas. She also interviews authors and hosts giveaways.