Tuesday, December 20, 2016

A Tale Du Mort by Katrina Monroe

Mort Oleander wasn't always the assistant embalmer to the world's worst funeral director.  Once upon a thousand years ago, he was the G.O.D. (General Operations Director)  of the dead, kicked out of the job thanks to corporate-wide strikes led by his brother, Sy.

Faced with mountains of paperwork and a staff high on revolution, Sy decides he's acted rashly.  His afterlife was meant to be margaritas and getting caught in the rain, not Mort's.  Ignoring the inevitable consequences, Sy brings Under out of the dark to mingle with the living.

Assisted by a trio of seamstresses living semi-retired in Florida and his ex-girlfriend's daughter, Mort must stop Sy before the Veil dividing Under and Above is destroyed.

This is the second book I've read by Monroe, and I'm happy to announce that it was just as great as the first.  She's a unique writer and I can't wait to read more.  After this confirmation of her abilities, I'm creating a shelf in the library for her works.

What makes Katrina's work unique is difficult to explain, but I shall attempt it!

If you've ever watched The Brady Bunch, the most memorable character is Aunt Jan.  She's quirky and odd and you can't help but cock your head to the side in wonder at her.  It's that same look on your face the first time you saw a picture of Santa in a speedo, drinking a beer.  It's quirky and unusual and stretches the boundaries of the known, but not to uncomfortable degrees.  Not only that, it brings you a sense of joy and wonder.  Not Santa in a speedo, but that feeling.  Everything I've read by Katrina Monroe/Saete has given me that cocked-head sense of wonder.  She takes everything I know and have heard of and then stretches it into the unusual and quirky.  I admire her.  She has great creative talent and I'm sure her brain is like a merry-go-round where the animals are constantly playing musical chairs.  Chaotic and different, but at the same time, fun and unusual.

Katrina also adds this same whimsy to her characters, while giving them a darker side to balance them out.  Some are lovable, some are likable, some are despicable, but all of them are real and the kind of people you want to exist in the world.

If you're looking for something a little different, pick this up.  There's a wonderful suspense story filled with magic and wonder as well as unforgettable characters.

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