Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Over Your Dead Body by Dan Wells

John Wayne Cleaver has it tough. He's still a teenager -- though officially adult as of this book -- and he's already lost his family, the love of his life, and the special Federal taskforce he was briefly part of. Oh, and he's a sociopath with well-founded fears of becoming a serial killer.

On the other hand, the demon-hunting gig has been going really well. So well that's he's running out of demons to kill, even with the aid of his childhood friend Brooke. Brooke was briefly possessed by one of those demons -- they all have somewhat different powers, but all are parasitic on human lives in one way or another -- and was left with the memories of that demon and all of the other girls that had been possessed over the years. Since "those years" add up to several thousand, that's a lot of voices in Brooke's head, which means John is now the sane and stable member of the group now.

That's where Over Your Dead Body starts -- some time after the fourth book, The Devil's Only Friend, with John and Brooke criss-crossing the country and using her second-hand memories to find and kill demons. But their money -- stolen from caches that the dead demons won't need any more -- is running low, and so is the list of potential targets. And there's another Federal team getting closer, possibly to capture John for the death of his previous team. And the one personality John never expected has resurfaced in Brooke: Marci, the girl he loved back before he knew the demons even existed.

I'm very fond of this contemporary fantasy/horror series, mostly because of John's voice. He's a great conflicted narrator, and Wells does a great job of showing him struggling with his urges and the horrible situations that Wells keeps thinking up for him. (This book has some more of them!)

The first book -- I Am Not a Serial Killer -- was turned into a movie starring Christopher Lloyd this year, so this would be a great time to jump into the series and catch up before all of your indy-movie-watching friends declare it their favorite thing ever. Here: go read my review of the first trilogy; maybe that will convince you.

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