Thursday, May 17, 2012

Review: Wrong Side of Dead

Reviewed by Jen
As much as I loved Another Kind of Dead, when I finished it, I asked myself how long Kelly Meding could sustain what felt like one long story which already spanned three books.  Each installment picked up right where the last one left off, gaining more and more momentum.  But here, Meding does something a little different, which had me on my toes from the first page.

A few weeks have passed since the events of the last book and there have been massive changes to Evy's world. She is working for a new organization.  An old friend has been infected by the vampire virus.  And perhaps most unsettling, she and Wyatt have broken up.  At first, I wondered Did I miss a book?  Then I got a little mad because I was out of the comfort zone I developed with the series.  But I really should have given Meding more credit, because the story paid off as I kept reading.

Thackery, our mad-scientist villain, is still on the loose.  Now he has kidnapped a handful of the Therians, including the Owlkin survivors that Evy vowed to protect earlier in the series.  Of course, that makes the rescue mission personal for her and Phin.  They work along with their new "Watchtower" brethren to get them back.

The Watchtower project is great because it's made up of members of the human, vampire, and Therian races.  We see how they are letting go of old stereotypes and are forging bonds among the species.  It means Evy's once narrow world is expanding yet again, and as it grows, so does she.

The problems between her and Wyatt are a little frustrating.  It's hard to reconcile their split with the deep connection we've seen between them in earlier books.  I understand the reason we're given, but it just didn't ring true for me.  That being said, the remaining feelings between them are unmistakable.  And when a crisis comes knocking for one of them, their struggles help give it a better emotional payoff.

There's a lot going on, with subplots surrounding the new-found existence of werewolves, the infection of the vampires, and the betrayal of the Fae --all in addition to the kidnapping arc I mentioned earlier.   It's fast moving and feels like the beginning of a new chapter for our characters.  (Evy doesn't even get tortured in this one!) That makes it all the more upsetting that Random House has opted not to continue publishing the series.

The ending is fantastic and satisfying.  But it's clear that Meding has more story left to tell.   I love where she ultimately went with Wyatt's story and I hope there be more books.  In the meantime, I urge new readers to start with book one in the series, Three Days to Dead.  This isn't a story that you want to pick up in the middle.

Rating: B

Click to purchase: Amazon
Wrong Side of Dead
by Kelly Meding
Release Date: January 31, 2012
Publisher: Bantam

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At Friday, April 26, 2013 at 2:00:00 PM CDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is she not going to publish subsequent books in this series?

At Friday, April 26, 2013 at 2:34:00 PM CDT , Blogger Jen at Red Hot Books said...

She has decided to go ahead and self publish more books in the series, though she had not announced that yet at the time I wrote this review.


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