Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard [Review]

Something Strange and Deadly (Something Strange and Deadly, #1)4 out of 5 Robots!

Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard

Series: Something Strange and Deadly #1
Genre: YA Paranormal
Release: July 24, 2012
Hardcover: 388 Pages
Publisher: HarperTeen
My Copy: Purchased
Reviewer: Shannon
Buy the Book: Amazon

Book Summary:
The year is 1876, and there’s something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia…

Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about. Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she’s just read in the newspaper—

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor…from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she’ll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including their maddeningly stubborn yet handsome inventor, Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance.
(Courtesy of the Publisher)

Shannon's Thoughts:
Something Strange and Deadly is kind of a mix of steampunk and zombies.  Neither of which are genres I generally read, but I found myself enjoying this book quite a bit.  One thing I really liked was the Dead just were.  There wasn't a lot of explanation or discovery.  I liked this alternate history quite a lot.  Eleanor is a fun character as well.  She is strong and stubborn, but not irritatingly so.  She is willing to risk her life to help others, even at the expense of her reputation.  She bristles a bit against the expectations of women during the time period and I loved it when she went "to Hell with it" and started doing what needed to be done.  Simpering female, she is not.  Eleanor's relationship with the Spirit Hunters is also great.  Joseph, Daniel and Jie are all as different as can be, but are united with Eleanor against the dead and the Necromancer that controls them.  Eleanor and Daniel's relationship starts off rocky, but gradually grows into grudging mutual respect and then finally into something more.  Well their relationship wasn't the focal point of the story, it did add some interest tension between the two.

My one complaint is that I saw the ending a mile away.  I was a little surprised that Eleanor didn't catch on much earlier, but I did like how everything did come full circle.  I am very interested to see how the story progresses in the sequel, given the ending.  I was very sad for Eleanor that certain things were left the way they were.  But I also know she is growing more resolute and making her own decisions.  This should be fun to see.

Other books in this series in the order that they should be read:
1. Something Strange and Deadly
2. A Darkness Strange and Lovely

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