Wednesday, May 14, 2014

BOOK REVIEW - URBAN SHAMAN by C.E. MURPHY - WALKER PAPERS # 1 - HARLEQUIN - URBAN FANTASY

By: C.E. Murphy
Published by: Harlequin
Released: Available Now
Details: Paperback from library, 344 Pages

RATING: 4.25 SHAMAN STARS!

Blurb: Goodreads

Joanne Walker has three days to learn to use her shamanic powers and save the world from the unleashed Wild Hunt.No worries. No pressure. Never mind the lack of sleep, the perplexing new talent for healing herself from fatal wounds, or the cryptic, talking coyote who appears in her dreams.And if all that's not bad enough, in the three years Joanne's been a cop, she's never seen a dead body; but she's just come across her second in three days.It's been a bitch of a week.And it isn't over yet.

BOOK REVIEW by Michelle:

I saw this one at the library, and the cover kind of snookered me in. I do like an urban fantasy read.

This one delivered.

Urban Shaman is funny, witty, it has a shaman with attitude, a cranky Captain of the police department, it has a spirit coyote, a seventy three year old cabbie, a cross dressing detective, the list goes on.

I think fans of Mercy Thompson and Charley Davidson would enjoy this read.

Murphy starts off real strong with Joanne Walker aka Joanne Walkingstick, aka, Joanie, aka Jo and the list goes on.

Joanne is a fun and witty character who wants to help those in danger and she won't let her job stand in her way... if she still has it. She is coming back from extended leave from her job as a mechanic with the police department following the death of her mother, who she wasn’t close with, but she did the right thing. She is on a flight back from Dublin.  She can see from the plane a woman in need of rescuing.

Great eyesight I know!

Let the shenanigans begin.

Enter, cabbie Gary. I really love Gary. He is a sidekick character who I think is having the time of his life in his twilight years, upon meeting Joanne. He just keeps on tagging along for the ride.

“Lady, you’re the most interesting thing that’s happened to me since Annie died. You think I’m gonna miss out on all of this?”


He chuckled, like a nice big V-8 engine purring, I bet his Annie had been a V-4, higher pitch to complement his deeper sound.

Joanne and Gary connect from the start and have a loyal friendship.


“Spirit journey,” Gary guessed. I nodded. “Thought you Injun types knew all about that.” He grinned as I rolled my eyes. “Got a drum?”

“Nope. I thought you could use one of my stainless steel pots.”

Gary blinked at me. I laughed out loud, and his blinking faded into mild chagrin. “Makin’ fun of an old man,” he grumbled, but his gray eyes held a spark of humor.

“I don’t see any old men here.”I said as I went back through the living room into my bedroom. I heard his snort of pleasure and the creak of the floorboard as he followed me out of the kitchen. I came out with a drum and handed it to him, trying not to look proud. It must not have worked, because he took it with a great deal of grace and care.

“Where’d you get this, Injun?”



We get introduced to Coyote who appears in a dreamwalking state or plane?


Coyote snapped his teeth together and wagged his tail, eyeing my hand hopefully. “I didn’t think you’d come back so soon. What happened?”

I sat down cross-legged and scruffled his ears again. “Is it undignified to scratch a spirit guide’s ears?”



We find out Joanne is half Native American and half black Irish. She has some Injun in her.

Enter the rather cranky Captain Michael Morrison who is in his late thirty’s.

He was in his late thirties and looked just like a police captain ought to: a big guy, a little fleshy, with cool investigating eyes and strong hands that had blunt, well shaped fingernails. He was good-looking in a superhero-going-to-seed kind of way, which is probably one of those things you’re not supposed to notice about your boss.

Now we can tell all through this book that Jo and Morrison have a thing for each other. We just have to wait for that to play out in further installments.

I generally went to some lengths to avoid admitting to myself that I’d behaved like a complete, unmitigated jerk. It was like a horrible, embarrassing reversion to elementary school, where you indicate you think a boy is cute by throwing rocks at him. Once I’d lobbed the first rock, so to speak, I didn’t know how to stop, and the relationship hadn’t exactly improved with time. As far as I could tell, neither Morrison nor I had much of a life at all outside of the station, so we ran into each other often enough to develop a long-term, standing animosity.


I do like Morrison.

I’d been asleep less than three minutes. Just enough time to make the worst possible impression. I hoped I hadn’t drooled on myself.

“Get,” Morrison growled, “the hell. Out. Of my. Chair.”

I beamed. “Bruce was very specific,” I said in my best innocent voice. “Morrison wants your ass in his chair the minute you get off the plane.”

Morrison took a threatening step toward me. I cackled and waved a hand, climbing to my feet. “I’m getting. Don’t get your panties in a bunch.”



The sub character cops at the station all LOVE Joanie, she works on their cars, they are quite humorous throughout the story with how they stick up for her.


The floor was pretty comfortable, all things considered. Maybe if I stayed there, Morrison would just have me thrown in a nice quiet cell where I could sleep for two or three days. Except there were no quiet cells at the station, and I knew it. I groaned, pushed myself to my hands and knees, then sat back on my heels.

“Don’t do it, Joanie!” someone bellowed, loud enough to be heard through the window. “The job ain’t worth it!”

It took several seconds for my position, relative to Morrison’s, to sink in. Then I turned a dull crimson, too tired to even get up a really brilliant shade of red. Morrison glared over his shoulder and stomped around the desk to take his seat, all without ceasing to scowl at me.




“Jesus,” Morrison said in mystified horror, “don’t tell me you’re crying.”

“It’s my contacts,” I snarled.

“Thank God. You never struck me as the weepy sort.” Morrison was quiet a moment. I didn’t have the energy to look up at him. “It seems like half the department’s been by to make googly eyes on your behalf.”

I snorted into my palms, undignified laughter. “Googly eyes?”

“Googly eyes,” Morrison said firmly. “For some reason they like you.”



I love Billy the cross dressing Detective, he can wear heels like us gals, but he knows his job and he believes in the supernatural, which comes in handy for Joanne.

A couple great twists are thrown in to turn the story on its head, this I really liked.

My only complaint about this first installment is , by the end of the book I was a little muddled by all the different plane walking and some of the God mythology. I was trying hard to keep up, but I felt a bit overloaded, so I just shut my eyes and went with it all while my brain was hearing a bit of elevator music.

For the most part of this read, I was caught up on all the supernatural planes etc and I mostly understood the God mythology.

Cernunno’s is a great character. I am still unsure totally, if I was to be honest, about some things with him, but further installments may clear some of those shenanigans up.

It may be me.

I never studied any Greek or God mythology, so when I read different author’s takes on all this mythology stuff, sometimes I can get a bit bamboozled by it all.

I was entertained, I had a great time reading Urban Shaman and I am looking forward to reading # 2, Thunderbird Falls and catching up with this motley crew of characters.


“Now, what’s the plan?”

“The plan? I’m supposed to have a plan?” The cord contracted again, a physical pull, and I stumbled. Gary put a hand out to steady me. “The plan is to rescue the princess, slay the dragon, kick some booty and be home in time for dinner.”




Michelle

6 comments:

  1. This is new to me and sounds interesting, thanks for the introduction, Matey!

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    1. I think you will like it, Matey! Give it a whirl.

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  2. I read this one a while ago, in French I think even, but I don't think I liked it as much as you did and I stopped after this one. But I'm glad you liked it a little more.

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    1. Melliane, it seems with this series that readers either get it or they are not so sure. I totally got it, I just got a bit lost with some of the mythology and different plane stuff. I thought it had a very strong start to the book :D

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  3. This sounds like an excellent series, Michelle! I'll have to see if I can find it in my library. :) Thanks for sharing a fabulous review!

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    1. Thanks Brandee. I have Thunderbird Falls from the library, so I am going in again shortly :D

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