Reaper
by Roxy Harte, paranormal (2009)
Liquid Silver Books, $4.50, ISBN 978-1-59578-587-9


Cynethryth ae Llyn Fawr - thank god for the cut and paste function on my PC - is a Reaper. A very long time ago, about 3000 years ago to be specific, she bartered her soul to save her village from the Death Plague, so she now wanders the world as Kendrah, emo lady who attends to the final moments of the false and fallen. In this story, she is busted during the act of helping a pedophile priest cross over and finds herself crossing paths with Detective Jonathon Taylor. Jonathan becomes suspicious when Kendrah is linked to three recent crime scenes, but you how cops can be in such stories. They can never resist an immortal emo lady.

I personally have doubts about Kendrah living this long and doing her thing while remaining ignorant of the rules of the world she is playing in. How on earth was she able to do her job in the past again if she is so easily detected by some cops in this story? I also don't really understand at the end of the day why exactly we need someone to escort souls of lowlives to the other side. Are we afraid that these souls will run away or something?

Reaper, therefore, has a bit of a disconnect for me where the premise and the actual portrayal of Kendrah is concerned. I find myself too distracted by the disconnect to fully appreciate the story. For example, I find Kendrah's behavior in this story more appropriate for someone who has recently become a Reaper, as opposed to someone who has been one for about 3,000 years. I'd think she would have become emotionless and disconnected from her human emotions instead of wailing and agonizing over every minute emotion and angst that crosses her path.

I don't have any problems with the rest of the story, but the problems I do have with this one are enough to pull me out of the story. Perhaps if the author has shortened Kendrah's career duration to, say, a century, then I probably would have appreciated this story better. Kendrah being a Law & Order: Special Victims Unit fan is a nice touch though - any woman who appreciates the finer qualities of Christopher Meloni has pretty good taste in men.

Rating: 65


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