Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Audio Book Review: Sunset Specters

Sunset Specters

By:  Gary Jonas

Publish Date:  August 22, 2016, Audiobook Release October 18, 2016

Format:  Audiobook - 4 hrs 48 mins
Narrated By:  Joe Hempel

Genre:  Urban Fantasy

Series:  5th Jonathan Shade novel: 1st Book ~ Modern Sorcery, 2nd Book ~ Acheron Highway, 3rd Book ~ Dragon Gate, 4th Book ~ Anubis Nights

Impression:  The West is where the ghosts are... Jonathan keeps trying to stop Henry Winslow.

The powerful wizard, Henry Winslow, arrives in 1877 and sets out for the Barbary Coast in San Francisco to steal a bit of life energy from his parents before he can head to the 1920s to complete his immortality ritual.

Douglas Freeman is a former slave with a growing collection of vengeful ghosts, and he's headed for the Barbary Coast to kill the last few men on his list.

Jonathan Shade and Kelly Chan reunite with Brand, the former Sekutar warrior, and Esther, the ghost who has an unbreakable bond with Shade. They set out for California to stop Winslow. But the Barbary Coast is a dangerous place where life is cheap. Their paths will cross with thieves, cutthroats, crimps, prostitutes, gangs, magic, and a supernatural threat. Time is running out on their mission, and one thing is certain--not everyone is going to get out alive.

First Sentence:
Wind howled through Skeleton Canyon like a mournful widow.

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My Thoughts and Summary:
*This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast dot com, at my request.

Jonathan and his friends still have the same problem; when done with each of the three years they need to visit, how will they return to their own time?

Jonathan and Kelly jump forward to the time Brand is in, only to find Brand needs their help. Once they are on their way to find Winslow, the group divides in their thinking on how to get to where they want to be. Jonathan and Kelly move forward to find Winslow's parents in California, and in turn find Winslow. But when in San Francisco they come across so many ghosts that just linger around. Esther can't even get them to talk, and she feels the pull of the area too. They deal with the ways of this era as they fight to find a way to stop Winslow.

Joe continues to be the voice of Jonathan and crew. I'm so glad he returns with each novel. He is the voice of Jonathan for me and he voices Jonathan's dry humor in a sense that I know and enjoy. Joe does do slight changes in his voice, tone, and personality for different characters. When he speaks as Kelly he has a slight accent and determination to his voice, which I would expect from Kelly with her strong personality. Even when other characters appear on the page, I get a feel for them differently in Joe's voice.

Jonathan and Kelly jump to Brand in the 1870's, with a tag-a-long guest they weren't expecting. The way of the west in this time frame is hard on Kelly. Kelly's a female and Chinese, both looked down upon. Will they fight Winslow and work to get home or fight to change the past? What Kelly witnesses in this era is hard for her to see and live with.

It's hard to come into an era where life is so different and not be touched by the way of living, even if it's bad. Our characters got caught in the Egyptian time and now they are distracted by the unfair living in the 1870's. They still work toward their final goal, but they also get involved in the life around their goal as well.

Then there are all those ghosts... What happened to have so many stuck here? Since Jonathan can see ghosts, maybe he can figure it out. (That's a story you'll have to read this book to get.)

Winslow is more powerful in this time. I was concerned with how Jonathan and Kelly would stop him now, and later. Yet there is something about Winslow that has me half believing him. Not wholly but a portion because of his actions.

I was happy to get into this book. Jonathan, Kelly, and Brand's humors are ones I smile at as I'm listening. I do enjoy their banter. But, we don't get to see Raina in the 1920's yet. We are focused here in the 1870's. But we'll get to Raina next, I'm sure.

I will say, I do look forward to the endings of Gary's books with Jonathan. Nothing is easy and I always wonder how it's going to come out right. In some strange way, Jonathan makes it work. I love these twists. Right now, things aren't looking so hot for Jonathan, and I really want to see what comes in the next book at the next time they cross paths with Henry Winslow.

***If you found my thoughts helpful please click Yes at Amazon and/or Audible. Thank you!


Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Oh I'm an ending girl and you had me at a good ending. I might have to check out this author just for that. :)

LilyElement said...

Glad you enjoyed! I get so confused with time travel novels for some reason *shakes head*

Blodeuedd said...

You are so awesome at audio

Unknown said...

I still don't listen to fiction aduios but I've been beck deep in podcasts. So I can appreciate a good narrator/voice actor especially when the chracter is sarcastic.

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Melissa (B&T),

The endings are always crafty! I really enjoy them. Gary makes things hard on his characters, but they always seem to work it out. Now, this book is part of a three book run in the series. This is the second, so the endings aren't 100% complete as there is more to come. So, you might think they are a tad cliffy as the story line's not done yet. But they are all out in print and worth it.

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

LilyElement, I'm thankful that the time travel novels I've read aren't confusing. I know the affects on time and all that makes my head spin. These aren't like that. The story is more about being in this moment. Now, we may see ripples of what's done here in the next book when they return to their time, but I don't know as everything was to change anyway. lol.

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Blodeuedd, at this time it's about the only way I'm getting through books. lol. Thank you!

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Talk Supe, Oh I love listening to podcast books. They are amazing! And the narrators make the stories worth it. :) Hope you are enjoying your podcasts!