Thursday, October 13, 2011

Blog Tour: The Keeper of the Dead by Alexandrea Weis

From Amazon:
The NOLA Series,part of the Trestle Press Cliffhanger Digital Story Series:
As Director of Cemeteries for the Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans, Angele Soule is jokingly known around town as The Keeper of the Dead. But Angele’s quiet job is turned upside down when a coworker’s body parts begin appearing in front of the tomb of the famous Voodoo Queen, Marie Laveau. During the investigation Angele meets Lou Glapion, a NOPD Homicide Detective, who is convinced the woman’s murder is the work of a deranged individual and not related to the notorious voodoo practitioner.

But Angele is not entirely convinced and begins to probe into the dark art of voodoo. But when someone threatens Angele by ransacking her home, she turns to the handsome detective for help. Falling for Angele, and desperate to protect her, Lou Glapion insists she move in with him until the murder is solved. However, when another woman from her office is found dead, Angele feels she may become the killer’s next victim. But all is not as it would seem, until one night when Angele discovers the truth behind the murders. Suddenly trapped in the sinister world of voodoo, Angele finds her fate resting in the hands of the dead Marie Laveau.

For Angele Soule, being The Keeper of the Dead is about to take on a whole new meaning.

About the author (from her webpage):

Alexandrea Weis began writing at the age of eight. In college she studied nursing and went on to teach at a local university. After several years in the medical field, she decided to pick up the pen again and began her first novel To My Senses. Since that time she has writen several novels and sold two screenplays (White River and Blood Will Tell). Blood Will Tell is currently in pre-production with Buyer Group International. Her work has been critically acclaimed and is continually growing in popularity.
Alexandrea Weis is also a permitted wildlife rehabber and works rescuing orphaned and injured animals. She recently has been working to aid oil soaked birds in the Gulf disaster .

My review:
With a healthy dose of New Orleans mystique, this novella is a perfect read for Halloween. It is a fast-paced paranormal thriller that will keep you turning the digital pages.
Angele is in charge of all the cemeteries in New Orleans, a strange profession and one which earns her the nickname of “keeper of the dead”. But there is more to the mild-mannered Angele. Slowly we begin to see that all is not as it should be in her corner of the world.

The narrative pacing is well handled, with the needed tension and release of scenes that make for easy, fluid reading. The whole story is pretty compact, giving the reader a sense of community that is very fitting for the plot. The atmosphere of the French Quarter permeates all aspects of it, so any New Orleans fan will enjoy reading about our favorite spots, like the Café du Monde and Bourbon street. Angele is an interesting enough character, although she does come off a bit on the distracted side as people around her start missing work and she can’t put two and two together. The male lead, Lou, comes off a bit better, with certain forceful aspects that might irritate the reader at first, but which later make a lot more sense.

The only real issue I had with the story is the epilogue. It’s a necessary part of this particular story, but it was a bit sloppy. Two quick to tie off all ends, as if the author were rushing to finish.

All in all, a fun, spooky story to read in October.

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