Conor Night, the world's only surviving necromancer, is used to having bad days. After all, he's spent the last few years as a minor pawn in the Game of Houses while keeping one foot planted firmly in the grave. But between the job offer he can't refuse from a wizard he doesn't trust and the appearance of a cult bent on sending him to the afterlife, his days are about to get a whole lot worse. He's used to the threat of death. Death making threats? That's new.
©2015 Michael Forbes (P)2015 Michael Forbes
"Action & harsh humor in a thrilling mix!"
Note: This is Book 2 in the series and can probably be read on it’s own as the story does remind readers of pertinent things that happened in Book 1 with enough detail to understand this book on its own.
This story happens perhaps 2 years after the events of Book 1, Dead of Night. Conor Night is still working as a Ghost doing the odd bit of thievery and the occasional mayhem and murder. He’s barely able to afford his illegal cancer meds. Technically, he’s dying. It isn’t pretty. But it does give him the abilities of a necromancer.
In Book 1, we learned a bit about the Game of Houses when Conor was hired by one to steal from another and ended up protecting a scion of one of these powerful Houses. Mostly, these Houses work in the background, their leaders being powerful magic users. The average public doesn’t know of their existence even though their lives are often shaped by the machinations of these powerful entities. Now, Conor is once again sucked back into this world that he tried so hard to walk away from. Conor is offered the job of stealing back the item that was stolen and restolen in Book 1, a large stone with magical properties. Taking on this job could mean pissing off not one, but two of the Houses.
On top of that, Conor is being hunted by a cult, the Necros. They are hell-bent on sending him to the afterlife and they say they were sent by Death itself. Conor doesn’t doubt this, not after the odd things he has seen and sensed with his magical dice and bone mask. Conor isn’t ready for the Other Side yet. Frankly, he is afraid of what awaits him there.
Once again, we have an excellent mix of action, mystery, reflection, and character development. Conor is joined by two friends he made in Book 1 – Amos and Prythi. There’s plenty of gun play, necromancer magic, and Prythi’s computer hacking skills. Amos is his usual charming self with colorful tales of his tom-cat ways and even more colorful language. He has his moments of solid friendship that make him lovable. My one quibble with this book is with Prythi; quite frankly, she sounds and acts too much like Dani from Book 1. Conor even makes note of that more than once. But even with that nod from the author via the main character, I would have preferred that either Dani was around or that Prythi had her own distinct characteristics.
Even with that one criticism, I still really enjoyed the hell out of this book. Conor has this past that he isn’t always proud of and he spends much of his remaining life trying to make up for it. It gets good and interesting when he has to make some tough, and sometimes questionable, calls to do so. He’s a fascinating character and the fact that he isn’t all superhero muscles and good looks just makes him that much more engaging.
Towards the end, there was this reveal that I was totally not expecting. In retrospect, it was completely obvious and I was pleased that the author kept me distracted with Necros, bone masks, and Amos’s tales of his ex-wife so that I didn’t see this big thing until it hit me between the eyes. And, yes, this big thing is pretty darn awesome. The ending definitely raises the stakes for Book 3, which I am eagerly awaiting.
I received a copy of this audiobook at no cost from the narrator in exchange for an honest review.
Narration: Jeff Hays set a new standard for awesome narration with Book 1 in this series and he does not disappoint with the narration of this book. His range for male and female characters is pretty incredible, having some of the most realistic female voices for a male narrator. Also, he goes the extra mile with making phone call conversations sound like half the conversation is taking place via phone and also the choir of voices that reside in the bone mask (rather spooky!). Add to that the voice of Death and the voice of Conor’s new employer for this escapade and we have an excellent vocal performance!
Fun series, doesn't struggle with sophomore slump - if you liked the first book this one will scratch the same itch.
I think Butcher's Dresden Files (gold standard for this genre) and Jacka's Alex Verus series are a touch more enjoyable, but Ghosts and Magic is ahead of the rest of the very large pack.
Very natural narration by Jeff Hayes - a light touch with vocal layering adds life to the experience, especially with the supernatural characters.
Looking forward to the next installment.
"I loved it"
I received this book in exchange for a free review.
Once again another excellent effort by both the Narrator Jeff Hays and Author M.R. Forbes. I'm fast becoming a huge fan of both. Now I'm at a crossroads. I only have one more book left until there are no more.
On the subject of the story. I found it quite interesting. I enjoyed Prithi's character as well as Amos. I am a touch disappointed with the reveal at the end as it felt a little bit obvious, but on the other hand it was awesome so I was glad I was right.
I have to say, if you are at all a fan of Urban Fantasy, you owe it to yourself to read these.
"Conor's scrounging, but finds the truth."
Jeff is back to voice Conor and all characters. As always I settle in for a great, entertaining listen. Jeff has no troubles acting out Conor and others as they fight through this world. Coughing, and all sorts of small extras are a pleasure to have added to their various voices. The dark laughter of the mask catches my ears with the feel Jeff adds to it for us, it feels like the darkness that it possess.
We finally get to see Tarakona! Oh to see him! WOW! Cool. And what the orb really is... Oh my. I'm not telling you as you have to find out on your own. But he leaves Conor with a warning in the end. A warning that opens the world up to so much possibility.
*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.
Conor is still struggling for money and meds. He's got a score to settle as he wasn't paid from his last job, as promised. This leaves him scrounging but also gives a reason to take a job he normally wouldn't, for a bit of due revenge for stiffing him on payment.
Conor has a few things to fight through in this book, and they clash against each other at times. He has Death after him as Conor's been alive to long. Death is sending his Reapers after him, getting in the way as Conor tries to live on, earn money, and find his medicine. Death also gives Conor an ultimatum, to come with him or he'll take another in his place - a soul for a soul. Conor's one fear, to die, and he's running from it as best he can. Then Conor has to face the woman he has started to fall for and who stiffed him on payment, Jin. Conor is hired to steal the orb from her, again. Once he gets close, he learns more about Jin's reasons with how things ended on the last case, and where she stands now. He'll have many after him.
I like that we learn about necromancers a bit here. That they usually don't live more than a year or two, which makes Conor the longest living and practicing necromancer. Cool. This makes him valuable and wanted, by people to do jobs and death because he's escaped him for so long.
Oh Conor. His tools of his trade are dangerous. Especially the mask, it feels worse than the dice to me. When Conor uses the mask he makes a deal that is a bit hefty. Six souls. It wants six souls. Ouch. There is a protection yet a danger to the mask. I'm curious about it and wondering how it works.
I found I liked the world and story in this book better. I think I understand it better going into this book and got to see Conor running or fighting something at all times. There are a few turns with those after him that have different reactions that Conor, or I, expected.
"Death Takes a Holiday"
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBoom dot com.
Narrator first. Like the first book, he gives a fantastic performance. He has a talent of making you feel like you can see and hear everything the main character can. His performance for tarakona was every bit as powerful as tarakona. 5/5
Urban fantasy is my favourite genre. We'll start with the two characters we were most looking forward to. We finally meet tarakona in all his glory and he lives up to expectations. Death, on the other hand, was a little more disappointing. Like Black, he doesn't get much screen time and it's mostly a tease when they do. I was hoping the author would develop them some more instead of giving us the eric-cartman's-father treatment. We get to see some more of Baron's "pets" in action and there's a lot of action throughout. 4/5
"A good continuation to a great series"
This is book two in the series and there were quite a few references to book one and it builds up a lot of story for book three. You could listen to this as a stand-alone novel, but I think you would get much more out of it if you listen to book one first.
This book continues a great urban fantasy series. The main character is a Necromancer that just seems to keep finding himself in bad situations, and it seems that once he gets a handle on things, everything changes. There is a lot of depth in this book due to shifting alliances and treaties and that gives this an interesting dynamic that keeps you guessing on where it will go next. The narrator does an amazing job with this book. All of the voices he used were fantastic, especially the main character’s voice. He also did an amazing job with the sound effects, like imitating the distortion you might hear when talking to someone on a phone, and coughing or laughing when the characters did. In the end, this is a great novel and a great urban fantasy series and I can’t wait to listen to more.
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBoom dot com.
Now this is an example of an awesome story paired with the perfect narrator. This is book 2 in the series and it not only kept my interest from chapter one, it maintained the flow of book one with an amazing plot and characters that I absolutely love! There is necromancy, zombies, mythical creatures, other universes, virtual reality and so much more that I won't even attempt to mention it all. The characters are perfect, dialogue is witty, sarcastic and very relatable. I found my self laughing out loud many times! These characters are individuals that I would definitely want to hang out with. What an imagination! I'd love to play in this author's head for a day! The writing is so natural and flows so well that I had no problem becoming immersed in this story as my own reality. I wouldn't start with this one without reading book one first, not because you wouldn't enjoy it, but because you'll be missing a great book and history on the characters and story that is too good to pass up. I've purchased the kindle version of both books to go with the Audible books. I know I'll be listening and reading these books again and again.
The narrator is perfect! His voice choices for each character gives them such personality! He is able to switch from one to the other with ease and his timing and inflection are perfection. I know that in other books, I can see myself choosing books based solely on him being the narrator. This narrator really knows what he's doing!
This, like book one, is a 5 star read! Definitely worth the credit or the price. I'll be following both author and narrator, as well as this series. I CAN'T WAIT to see what comes next!
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.......however, I purchased book one Audible and Kindle versions, as well as the Kindle version to go with this one on my own. It's THAT good! Pick up this series. You will not be disappointed!!!! Urban fantasy at it's best!
"Wizards, and Cults and Death, Oh My!"
Forbes, Hays, Conor. or All Around Winners. Don't get me started or we'll be here all day.
The other titles in the series "Dead of Night " Book One in the Ghost and Magic series and "Dead Stare" Book Three by M.R. Forbes.
What Technicolor was to the Land of Oz in "The Wizard of Oz" and Pavarotti was to Opera, Jeff Hays is to audio book narration and this series especially. Jeff IS Conor Night.
What the Indiana Jones movies would have been if Indy were a necromancer.
I'm having a great time listening to the Conor Night series. And I appreciate the opportunity to listen, review and enjoy them. Where else can you find a Chapter Title titled after a Lenny Kravitz song?
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review. Thank you Jeff.
"Even better than book one!"
There was never a dull moment in this one. This whole series started out with a really interesting premise, and an interesting magical system (in that only the dying can be necromancers). The world that I really enjoyed in book one has developed really well now in book two and this volume was full of surprises. Frigging got me right in the feels there too, which I wasn't expecting from the creepy necromancer book. Conor is an easy character to really feel for, despite being a creepy necromancer who is years past his expiry date.
Narration was once again amazeballs. The production/narration during phone calls (and the freaking mask again) was awesome. Conor and Prithee's tones change from female to male as needed by various events, but their accents don't change. Their vocal ticks don't change. Little details like that make a huge and amazing difference. It gives this book something special.
And you know... the laughing is still sometimes awkward... but not always anymore. Chuckles are okay... so I guess it's growing on me. :)
I really hope that book three will be recorded as an audiobook sometime soon, because I'm just about at 'shut up and take my money' levels of in love with this series (though, really more like 'read this book to me and take my money' I guess.)
Definitely one of the more sinister series. The main character seems to care, but underneath it all is pretty selfish.
Maybe Sandman Slim series
If Forbes keeps this up it will be more of a comparison of books in the series
Masterful..... is the only way to describe Jeff Hays
Was not able to, but yes I did not want to stop listening.
This is a great 2nd book. I literally can't wait for the next!
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