Thursday, July 30, 2020

Spells for the Dead by Faith Hunter

Nell Ingram faces a dark craft known as death magic in the newest pulse-pounding paranormal procedural in the New York Times bestselling Soulwood series.

Nell Ingram is a rookie PsyLed agent, using the powers she can channel from deep within the earth to solve paranormal crimes. Together with her team, she's taken on the darkest magic and the direst foes. But she'll need to tap into every ounce of power she has for her newest case.

Nell is called to the Tennessee mansion of a country music star and finds a disturbing scene—dead bodies rapidly decaying before everyone's eyes. The witch on her team, T. Laine, knows this can only be one thing: death magic, a rare type of craft used to steal life forces. PsyLed needs to find this lethal killer fast. But when a paranormal-hating FBI agent tries to derail the investigation, they find themselves under attack from all sides.

Book 5
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Spells for the Dead is the fifth installment in the Soulwood series, and it absolutely cannot be read out of series order or as a standalone. Start with Blood of the Earth. But honestly, I'd suggest you start at Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock #1), because this is a sister-series to Jane Yellowrock. This would avoid any confusion, as well as organically explain the world-building in an easy to digest fashion as the reader learns along with the heroine.

Faith Hunter creates the most original heroines I've ever read, and Nell Ingram takes top honors. Nell's background, the 'cult' culture in which she was raised, her family, her widowed status, and even her home, I have never read anything so unique. Then add in the fact that her magic is quite literally communing with earth...

Nell is no longer a probie. She's a full-blown PsyLed agent. While everyone treats her with respect as a major part of their team, Nell still feels the insecurities of being the rookie. She's still finding her footing, after the conditioning of her past. Especially now that her boss's boss is looking over her shoulder.

More police procedural than the last installment, I won't go into detail over the crime PsyLed is investigating. I will admit, while I love a good who-done-it, this portion dragged the novel down. I appreciated the crime-solving, threading the pieces together, but it was slow as molasses and not holding my attention as the more personal issues did. I was more curious about Nell, more so than what PsyLed was up to.

The crime-solving is a major focus of the novel, with a minor focus on Nell's personal life. With her sisters moving into her home, the reader sees more of the impact their past has on the women. Nell is still navigating her budding relationship with Occam, which I enjoyed their interactions and the slower pace involved, befitting Nell's personality and background.

Nell is still developing her magic, learning what all she can do, flexing her abilities. I think this is the perfect vehicle to allow the reader to discover it with her, without being bombarded with too much information. Masterfully done, as the reader's curiosity spikes.

I highly recommend this novel to Urban Fantasy fans. Faith Hunter is always at the top of my recommendation list. Nell with her intriguing background and unique magic abilities, and Jane with her inner Beast, Native American ancestry, and vampire political connections. Two unique heroines, one highly recommended author.

Also Available in the Soulwood Series

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca

For reviews & more info, check out our Blood of the Earth post.

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca

For reviews & more info, check out our Curse on the Land post.

Book 3
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca

For reviews & more info, check out our Flame in the Dark post.

Book 4
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Circle of the Moon post.

New York Times Bestselling author Faith Hunter writes three series: the Jane Yellowrock series, dark urban fantasy novels featuring Jane, a Cherokee Skinwalker; the Rogue Mage novels, a dark, urban fantasy/post-apocalyptic series and role playing game featuring Thorn St. Croix; and the Soulwood Series featuring Nell Nicholson Ingram.

Connect with Faith

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Spells for the Dead (Soulwood #5) by Faith Hunter to read and review.

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