I received this book for free from my own shelves in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Dirty Deeds by R.J. Blain, Faith Hunter, Diana Pharaoh Francis
Series: Ordinary Magic, Jane Yellowrock #13.1, Jane Yellowrock #13.2, Magical Romantic Comedies
Published by Pen & Page Publishing on January 12, 2021
Source: my own shelves
Buy on Amazon
Also in this series: Blood Trade, "Easy Pickings", True Dead
Also by this author: Blood Trade, Kicking It: These Boots are Made for Stalking, Blood in Her Veins, Mercy Blade, Shadow Rites, Bloodring, Seraphs, Dark Queen, Shattered Bonds, Black Arts, Broken Soul, Dark Heir, Cold Reign, Blood of the Earth, Curse on the Land, Flame in the Dark, "Water Witch", "Explosion On King's Street", Skinwalker, "Shiloh and the Brick", "Black Friday Shopping with Nell and Occam", Circle of the Moon, Blood Cross, Spells for the Dead, "Easy Pickings", True Dead
When the going gets tough, the tough get their hands dirty…because no job is too big or too small — if the price is right in these six brand-new short stories.
“Sealed with a Tryst”, Ordinary Magic #??a
“At Death’s Door”, Ordinary Magic #??b
“Bound into Darkness”, Jane Yellowrock, 13.1
“The Ties That Bind”, Jane Yellowrock, 13.2
(If you’re interested, there is a chronological listing of the Jane Yellowrock books on my website.)
“Doggone Mess”, Magical Romantic Comedies
Devon Monk’s “Sealed with a Tryst”
It’s an interesting concept of a human family chosen to protect the unknowing somewhat human town of Ordinary where the gods can come down to take a vacation. Sure they have to have their powers bound, and they have their own jobs to do when they come, which makes me curious to read more of this series.
In this case, “Sealed with a Tryst” finds the über controlling Police Chief Delaney Reed trying to find time to go out oDark Queen, Jane Yellowrockf town with her fiancé, Ryder Bailey. As you’ll see, there’s no end of problems in town, but nothing the rest of ’em couldn’t handle… Well, okay, that dragon pig may be more than anyone can handle, lol.
Devon Monk’s “At Death’s Door”
This is simply a continuation of “Sealed with a Tryst” in the town of Ordinary and keeps on with the fun. That title is a crack-up. And you’ll understand why I say this when you meet Than. I do have to appreciate his attitude about junky art, as opposed to cool junk art.
Faith Hunter’s “Bound into Darkness”
This is a must-read for Jane Yellowrock fans!! It’s a peek in at what Liz wants from a romance with Eli…oooh… I gotta say, that Eli is prepared for most everything. It’s still a competition as Liz tries to prove that she can take care of herself — in spite of her lung issues, and Eli freaks about not being able to protect her. Now…if only she could protect herself from her own temptations. Not to worry though, there is plenty of blame to throw around.
“That was the nature of all power, to always want more, no matter the cost.”
Hunter uses a third person dual protagonist point-of-view from Liz’s and Eli’s perspectives. It definitely give us insight into Liz’s thoughts about Eli. Meanwhile Eli’s thoughts take a bit of time for us to take in.
I am rather confused as to why a woman would use a urinal out in the woods. Why not just squat and go? I’m also disappointed at the poor proofreading job. Mmm, Hunter touches on the anger-guilt Liz (and her sisters) experience about what Jane did to Evangelina.
Yep, it’s the South: “Black man with guns. Be careful.”
…because I follow this series. The still-cursed Liz Everhart, a stone witch, is one of the seven, er, I mean, six Everhart sisters, four of whom are witches. The curse happened in Blood in Her Veins: “The Devil’s Left Boot”, 6.25. She and her twin, Cia (a moon witch with a flashier fashion sense), work at the family business: Seven Sassy Sisters’ Herb Shop and Café. Ray Conyers, a famous country singer, is Cia’s boyfriend. Molly, an older sister, is an earth witch who’s married to Big Ethan Trueblood, an in-the-closet air witch. They have three kids these days! Angie-baby is the oldest, then EJ, and now baby Cassy. Evangelina had been their oldest sister and the leader of their coven until Raven Cursed, 4.
Jane Yellowrock, a bounty hunter of vampires and a Cherokee skinwalker, is now the Dark Queen and owns a resort/vineyard. George “Bruiser” Dumas is her significant other. Eli “Hoss” and Alex “the Kid” Younger, brothers, are part of Jane’s family. Eli’s a former Ranger with lots of skills, Jane’s second-in-command…and afraid for Liz. Alex is a computer geek with a police record for hacking. Chewy is a former Ranger who had been on Eli’s team.
Lincoln Shaddock is the vampire Master of the City of Asheville. Mayhew is one of his vampires. Romona Mayhew had been his wife and a problem in Blood in Her Veins: “The Devil’s Left Boot”.
Golda Ainsworth Holcomb is part of the Ainsworth witch clan who was recently in an accident. Rover is her missing German shepherd-chocolate Lab mix. Sylvia, a sheriff, had been Eli’s previous lover. Connie Carroll‘s teenage daughter died in high school.
Faith Hunter’s “The Ties That Bind”
Whoa, we get some insight into the ancient history of Bedelia and Shaddock using a third person dual protagonist point-of-view. It was rather confusing that Bedelia and Shaddock’s story comes after Eli and Liz’s, but the action happens before Eli and Liz. Weird. You may want to read this before “Bound into Darkness”, although, then again, maybe “The Ties That Bind” would give too much away if you read it first. I dunno…
This story is all about love and knowing when you’ve screwed. Knowing enough to realize ya gotta eat some crow. Bedelia has her own come-to-Jesus moment, even though it was rather confusing.
And there were plenty of regrets in this.
Bedelia “Bee” Everhart, a witch who can draw on all the elements, is the mother of the now-six sisters, and she’s moved in with her mother who describes herself as “older than dirt”. Okay, she’s only a hundred and two. Evangelina is Bee’s now-dead daughter who had tried to seduce Shaddock. Two of Bedelia’s fellow witches, friends, are the free-lovin’ Mable and Clara Anne.
Lincoln Shaddock is the vampire Master of the City of Asheville; he’s also the chef at his popular barbecue restaurant. Bee’s recipe, B’s-Mac, is still a bestseller. Some of his current vampires include Mary and Nubit. Romona Mayhew had been one of the long-chained Mithrans in Blood in Her Veins: “The Devil’s Left Boot”. Shania Mayhew was an unaligned witch talked into an alliance. Connie Carrol was a human with a grudge.
Alex Younger is one of the brothers partnered up with the Dark Queen, Jane Yellowrock. Brute is trapped in his white werewolf form and works for PsyLED. The Coraville coven used to meet in the 1870s.
Diana Pharaoh Francis’ “The Pixie Job”
This was cute and interestingly different as well as annoying. Mal is the primary character who’s having her own issues. She’s confident enough in her work skills, but doesn’t have much faith in her relationship skills. That’s the part that rather annoyed me, as Mal whined on and on about it. What I liked was that sense of being a part of a larger story with Francis naturally weaving in Mal‘s and Law‘s past and giving us a sense of their future while Mal is vacationing at Effrayant, a supernatural luxury hotel, and Law, her former and current boyfriend, is bound to protect the resort.
I do wish that Francis had made more use of that cute little Elliot, lol. Yeah, I know, Elliot did have good bits, but, but, he was so darn cute! As for So’la…hmmm, I do think I’d like to read more about Mal…
It was certainly a different sort of tale with Law and LeeAnne both bound to make the hotel work under their supernatural laws, keep all the guests safe, and ensure that the bride and/or groom aren’t killed. Yep. Not everyone on either side is too happy about a joining of pixie and giant. We get all this via Mal’s perspective in a third person protagonist point-of-view.
R.J. Blain’s “Doggone Mess”
This was too cute, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the story coming out in 2022 sometime. Yeah, I’m annoyed that this must be a teaser to get me all excited about reading more. It is rather annoying to learn that this short story will be part of an upcoming book. Just leave it as a short and continue with the concept in the full-length. Oy.
That whine over, it really is cute with this different take on lycanthropes with Blain using a first person protagonist point-of-view from Joyce‘s perspective, as she battles the landlord who wants her out. In many ways it was too easy to predict, but the journey was a lot of fun.
The Cover and Title
The cover has a female character in black leather pants and a low-cut black top, holding a bright crystal of some sort, and crouching on top of a skyscraper with the skyline behind her along with flashes of bright neon and a werewolf head forcing itself through a brick chimney on the right. The title is a gothic metallic gold a’slant at the top. Below the woman is the rest of the text in gold: an info blurb about this collection of stories along with the names of the authors.
The title is about all those Dirty Deeds perpetrated in these short stories.