Dying for a Living

spaceThis reader grabbed the box set of the first three books of "Dying for a Living" by Kory M. Shrum the other day, and has finished book one, is currently a third of the way through book two, and completely enthralled with the characters! Protagonist Jesse is a snarky piece of work and always brings to mind Rose McIver's portrayal of Liv Moore on "iZombie" (Ruggiero, Diane and Rob Thomas, Creators; Warner Brothers; 2015-2017, television series) even though Shrum's physical description of Jesse is nothing like the television character. It's simply something about the attitude, although Jesse at times can seem, well, dumb. Endearingly so. And wishy-washy. Annoyingly so. But, these zombies - necronite death regenerators - are a new spin to the typical zombie story, and as such, quite intriguing. As a side note and as a word lover, a necronite is actually a mineral that has a fetid odor when struck; however, the word is derived from the Greek word 'nekro' which means a dead body... Shrum may want to consider a minor spelling change from 'necronite' to nekronite', maybe?
spaceThe book itself is well edited, with hardly any spelling, grammar or punctuation errors. However, a few sentences did have a missing word here and there but usually not a 'big' enough word to jar a reader, rather something simple like "the" or "a" or something along that line. The plot is slightly underdeveloped as a mystery as there simply isn't enough information for a reader - well, me - to figure out exactly who the murderer is until almost the very end, and it still had more twists and red herrings tossed in. There is a small focus on a love triangle as well, between Jesse and secondary characters Ally - her best friend that she forgot at the start of the story, but no spoilers here, and Lane, the hunky, semi-possessive and jealous-of-Ally, owner of the building Jesse's office resides in. A fat pug named Winston tosses in some adorable snorts and begging for food, throughout the story, as well. The settings are described well enough to easily visualize and feel like you, as the reader, are a fly on the wall observing all that Jesse sees - and sometimes things she doesn't.
spaceThe "Church" is the overall antagonist and some reviewers have stated they disliked that; while this reader found it refreshing to lump ALL religions together under the heading of "Unified Church" instead of singling out Christians, or Muslims, or Hindus, or... you get the picture... it was a completely unique spin on the organization of religion as a whole and could present many possibilities for zealots, in-fighting (I mean, how do they all get along with so many different beliefs?) and more. Shrum's writing style may not be for everyone; she can be choppy at times - although this reader thinks it may be related to Jesse's snarky butt getting into her head as she writes, and there isn't that hint of 'warmth' a reader might expect from a romance writer, or even that intriguing analytical voice one might find in a crime or mystery writer. Rather, her voice is her own and this reader liked it. Yep, I recommend this book. ** Review originally posted to Amazon reviews on July 6, 2017 the Goodreads review link will be included at the end of the boxed set of three. **


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