Unsympathetic Magic by Laura Resnick
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Struggling actress Esther Diamond is back as the calamities of her everyday life collide headlong with the rising of the dead. This book does an excellent job of introducing new threads and interweaving old ones, all with a riotous humor that had me laughing out loud - and I'm a tough sell for audible laughter. Esther's escapades pile atop each other and play out in a convincing and engaging fashion, and it all feels like the inevitable - if hilarious - result of what came before.
Only two things kept me from giving this book full stars. First, Resnick's research is showing: the story grinds to a halt to discuss the finer points of vodou (and similar spellings, etc), the associated religion, the spirits ... it's interesting information, but it stops the plot dead with its bulk. Second, three books in, the barriers between Esther and Lopez are beginning to feel well-worn, the same clichés I hate in romantic comedies. There's still much to enjoy in their relationship, but my patience with the contrivances is wearing thin.
Overall, though, this book comes highly recommended. It was quite simply a blast to read.
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