Book Review: Deadroads by: Robin Riopelle

Rating: 5/5

Publisher: Night Shade Books

Publication Date: April 15, 2014

Origins:  From Publisher for Review

Book Links:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Synopsis: Lutie always wanted a pet ghost—but the devil’s in the details.

The Sarrazins have always stood apart from the rest of their Bayou-born neighbors. Almost as far as they prefer to stand from each other. Blessed—or cursed—with the uncanny ability to see beyond the spectral plane, Aurie has raised his children, Sol, Baz, and Lutie, in the tradition of the traiteur, finding wayward spirits and using his special gift to release them along Deadroads into the afterworld. The family, however, fractured by their clashing egos, drifted apart, scattered high and low across the continent.

But tragedy serves to bring them together. When Aurie, while investigating a series of ghastly (and ghostly) murders, is himself killed by a devil, Sol, EMT by day and traiteur by night, Baz, a traveling musician with a truly spiritual voice, and Lutie, combating her eerie visions with antipsychotics, are thrown headlong into a world of gory sprites, brilliant angels, and nefarious demons—small potatoes compared to reconciling their familial differences.

From the Louisiana swamps to the snowfields of the north and everywhere in between, Deadroads summons you onto a mysterious trail of paranormal proportions.

Review: The Sarrazin family has a gift – or curse. They are connected to the dead…Aurie is a traiteur and sends spirits stuck on Earth to their rest along the Deadroads and Mireille is a psychic with a pet ghost. Their children are all gifted as well in different ways. Sol is being trained in the ways of the traiteur by Aurie, Baz is a musician with a voice which can tempt the living and the dead, and Lutie is the most like her mother. When Lutie was young, she wanted a pet ghost like her Maman, but her methods caused her mother to leave and take Lutie away with her. Now grown, Sol sees his father’s spirit which triggers a hunt for the devil who did him in. The three siblings are brought back together, but their pasts may keep them from defeating those who stalk them. DEADROADS is a tight paranormal thriller with outstanding characters and a chilling premise. I can see why DEADROADS has been described as dark fantasy, but to me it also dipped into the fringes of horror. I’m glad I remembered a lot of my high school/college French since there are pieces of dialogue in Louisiana French/Cajun. The conflicted relationships between the siblings along with their relationship to the spirit world made for an intriguing tale. Ms. Riopelle’s ability to weave each character’s story into the central plot and not slow down the story is admirable. DEADROADS is a intense and satisfying novel and I hope we see more of the Sarrazin family in the future.

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