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Elysian Fields (Sentinels of New Orleans) by Suzanne Johnson
Cover Artist: Cliff Nielsen
Review by Gayle Surrette
Tor Books Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780765333193
Date: 13 August 2013 List Price $25.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK

Links: Author's Website / Show Official Info /

DJ is the sentinel for the greater New Orleans region, and she's supposed to deal with the supernatural or magical problems in the area for the Congress of Wizard Elders. Since Katrina, the barriers are down between New Orleans and the shadow version of the the city--the Beyond, where the historical undead and other supernatural people and things exist.

Also by Suzanne Johnson:
Sentinels of New Orleans:
* Royal Street
* River Road
* Elysian Fields
* Pirate's Alley

Now her job is to check and see if what looks like the start of a serial killer copying the style of New Orleans' Axeman Killer is just that, a copycat, or the real Axeman coming across from Beyond. She's hoping it's just a normal human criminal, but Jake Warin, loup-garou, assigned to visit the site of the latest crime with her says he can smell a whiff of the supernatural at the scene.

As if that wasn't bad enough, Jake's not dealing well with his loup-garou nature and has a very short temper lately. It's bad enough that he's been trying to avoid being around people and spending more and more time in the Beyond. But he can't avoid emotional situations completely and that adds to the tension. DJ wasn't even supposed to be at the bloody scene with Jake. It was Alex Waren, Jake's cousin and supervisor, who was supposed to be there to observe.

Then there's DJ's best friend's boyfriend, Quince Randolph, a grade-A creepy stalker. He was always showing up around DJ and it was getting on her nerves because she didn't want to hurt Eugenie, but there was something off about Quince.

So, to sum up: things are heating up between Alex and DJ; she's got to find out who is controlling the Axeman and bring him back to New Orleans ... and since clues at the scene indicate DJ might soon be a victim this is a top priority; find a way to help Jake with his control issues; somehow find time to take elven magic lessons from one of the most obnoxious wizards she's ever met, Adrian Hoffman; and stop Quince Randolph from hurting Eugenie. Quite a to-do list. And readers of the series know that somehow Jean Lafitte is going to play a role in all of this mayhem and it's anyone guess just how he gets involved or on what or who's side.

Johnson again delivers a urban fantasy that's a page turner that moves from crisis to crisis with nary a break. The characters keep building on the experiences and events of the previous books but new readers can just jump in with this book as there is enough backstory to bring you up to speed and not enough to slow down readers of the series.

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