Genre: urban fantasy
As an Agent of Death, Madeline Black is responsible for escorting the souls of the dearly departed to the afterlife. It's a 24/7 job with a lousy benefits package.
Maddy's position may come with magical powers and an impressive wingspan, but it doesn't pay the bills. And then there are her infuriating boss, tenant woes, and a cranky, popcorn-loving gargoyle to contend with.
Things start looking up, though, when tall, dark, and handsome Gabriel Angeloscuro agrees to rent the empty apartment in Maddy's building. It's probably just a coincidence that as soon as he moves in demons appear on the front lawn. But when an unholy monster is unleashed upon the streets of Chicago, Maddy discovers powers she never knew she possessed. Powers linked to a family legacy of tarnished halos.
Powers that place her directly between the light of Heaven and the fires of Hell...
I've seen reviews about this series steadily appear over the years (perhaps on your blog Blodeuedd?), and it made me add this series to my wishlist, and then my TBR. Finally, Christmas Day, I picked up the first book in the seies, and started reading it, and I was hooked from page one.
It features a nice not so very young female heroine, about 32, struggling to make a living while doing a job that doesn’t pay and prevents her from getting a real job with fixed hours. Her only companion is a gargoyle named Beezle. She is an agent of Death, gathering the souls of the newly departed, and guiding them to The Door. What happens then, she doesn’t know. And sometimes the souls are stubborn, and refuse to leave with her, and then they become ghosts. Each week she gets a list of names and places, and after wards she has to file reports to her jerk of an overseer.
Then suddenly her whole world is turned upside down with the arrival of Gabriel, her possible new tenant. He is gorgeous and he makes her heart beat faster, but something is off about him… and Beezle really dislikes him. And then her best friend (and only friend except for Beezle) is killed by a monster, and that same monster tells her he ate her mother! Rage and magic overpower her, and after hurting the monster, she passes out. The next morning she awakens in her own bed, with her hair neatly braided (something she never does!) and dressed in the only demure virginal nightgown she owns (the one she never wears). Who put her there? Why won't Beezle tell her?
Monsters keep appearing, people die and Maddy suddenly has new powers to defeat them with. Finally, reluctantly, Beezle and Gabriel tell her about her heritage and about what is happening. She is not so human as she thought she was … even though she is an Agent of Death. Her father is Azazel, one of the Fallen Angels, and when she finally meets him, her life isn't her own anymore. And Maddie is really unhappy about that! Having to follow rules she doesn't know about, rules she doesn't want to follow, and obeying a father she didn't know excisted until a few days ago? She will get out of this, somehow, and follow her heart ..
I really enjoyed this book, and I probably will read the rest of the series very soon as well. I loved Christina Henry's writing style, her sense of humor and the strength she gave Maddy to go on, and keep on fighting, without making her ruthless or arrogant. Her life is totally turned upside down, but she focuses on the important stuff, doesn't wallow in self pity, and stays "normal". And then I loved Beezle too as a side character, who is totally addicted to popcorn.
If you like Urban Fantasy, you really should give this series a try. Don't worry about the Angels - Fallen Angels - Lucifer angle, it is not about religion at all.
© 2015 Reviews by Aurian