Book Review Paranormal Style: Walker Papers #7 – Spirit Dances

Spirit Dances (Walker Papers, #6)Spirit Dances by C.E. Murphy

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

OMFG. Seriously. I wouldn’t have classified the Walker Papers series in my top paranormal romance picks before #6 here. I mean, I’d read them all, but hadn’t paid much attention to when #6 was being released (like I do w/ my Kate Daniels & Mercedes Thompson books). In fact, I believe this actually came out in April. That’s right – five whole months before I even noticed.

BUT BUT BUT – I read it in one sitting, have subsequently read it again, and have read the last half of the last chapter 1 million times (approximately). LOVE LOVE LOVE.

ANYWAYS – On to the review:

The Story
Joanne Walker reluctantly entered the world of the supernatural in Book 1 (Urban Shaman) when she was skewered by Cernunnos and given the choice to live as a shaman or die. Much like the choice between cake or death, it seemed an easy one at the time. However, once reality set in, she spent a lot of time sulking and/or screwing up royally. (One of the reasons I was not obsessed with the first five books – it took her that long to get a grip, grow up, and take responsibility for her powers.)

She is a detective with the Seattle PD, and one half of SPD’s only paranormal detective team. Her partner, Billy Holliday (his parents maybe didn’t think that one through), sees dead people (or, more accurately, murdered people). Her best friend, Gary Muldoon, is a 74-year-old cab driver who ran off to San Diego for the duration of this book (my only real complaint – I love Gary), and the other major players are Billy’s wife Melinda (a bruja!), Joanne’s friend/spirit guide Coyote (Cyrano), and her boss, Morrison.

This book takes place around St. Patrick’s Day, or, more specifically just before the spring equinox and during the full moon. Someone in Seattle is kidnapping the homeless and murdered (supernaturally, of course) the lead dancer in a Native American dance troupe. Joanne must work with Billy, Mel, and Morrison to find the supernatural killer before more people die.

BUT – I can’t tell you the best part of the story (I hate spoilers), and it likely wouldn’t BE the best part if you hadn’t read the previous five books. There is romantic build up that happened for five previous books! And FINALLY. Something came of it. BUT, that something happened in the last half of the last chapter. And then? Nothing! DAMN YOU CE MURPHY! (PS – Book #7 comes out in March 2012.)

The Score
Romance/Sexytimes: A+ – Okay – so it was slow in coming (hee), and there wasn’t a lot there, but OMFG (again), YAY!

Writing: B+ – I enjoy the writing. It’s definitely on the level of my other favorite paranormal series(es?), and I am finally liking Joanne a lot more, too.

Paranormality: A- – First off, I love books set in places I can visit. Secondly, I like the gradual exposure to the Seattle paranormal world. Nothing seems forced or completely off the wall. It’s all very believable; especially with some of the mysteries that remain – like what’s the deal really with Mel’s power & Gary’s ability to drive with the Force?

Book Score: A – Solid A for reals… much love for this book. Perhaps I will read it again tonight. And every day until #7 comes out in March. I wish I was the kind of person who got advanced reading copies. I need to know someone.

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