Imps just wanna have fun.
All Samantha Martin wants to do is drink beer by the pool, play mischievous pranks on the humans, and get her hot neighbor in the sack—oh, and avoid the angels who won’t hesitate to execute her on sight.
But when her naughty hellhound lands her in trouble and she’s blackmailed into catching a killer, Sam finds herself in the crosshairs of the very beings that want her dead. Run to Hel and give up all the earthly pleasures she’s learned to love? Stay and face a certain death? Or use her impish wiles and hope to survive?
WARNING: This completed series has laugh-out loud antics, an OCD werewolf, and a sexy angel. Get ready to binge read!
“Do I look like I’m compelled to do anything? Do I seriously look like anyone could compel me to even bring them a coaster?”
She looked me over again. “You look like you’re compelled to cause trouble, but I doubt that’s the boss’ directive.”
This was a very fun book to read. It is refreshing to have a main character who isn’t in it because it is “the right thing to do”. She gets bullied and lied to in order to get in the position she is in in this book. While not a unique take in urban fantasy, this is definitely something we don’t see often in the genre. More stories like this are sorely needed. I laughed a lot, despite reading this several times before this.
Sam is an amazing lead character. She is selfish, she is annoying, she is aggravating, she is impossible. Yet she knows it, this is what she aims to be. Dunbar makes this character actually fun, for once. Half of urban fantasy seems to be this way, but without actively trying to be that, they think they’re being virtuous. It is boring and annoying. Sam knows she isn’t virtuous, and she doesn’t want to be, either! I love Sam’s take on everything in this book. She is always being contrary to the norm, but she has her reasons and they aren’t exactly the worst reasons, they make sense. She is a demon, not a reskinned human. Praise everything!
Writing-wise, the first half of the book and the second half feel very different. Before Gregory shows up in the second half, the book feels a bit out of sorts. Mostly, it is Sam wanting Wyatt but scaring him off, and Sam being a little mischievous imp. Once Gregory comes along, the book settles into what it is. The second half is a lot better than the first.
The romance between Sam and Wyatt is…thin, at best. I see no reason in this book at all why Wyatt should be so enamoured with Sam, except that they haven’t had sex yet and he really wants to. He constantly says that she makes life more interesting to live, but I just don’t see it with him. I just want them to fuck and get it over with, he is nothing more than a pet to Sam and it is pretty painfully obvious in this book. Gregory, on the other hand, you can feel them being drawn to each other almost from the word “go”.
The plot is pretty interesting for urban fantasy, as well. Sam isn’t trying to save anything (Gregory and Candy kind of are, but Sam isn’t). She is just trying to fulfil her weregild. Plus, she wants to be able to Own the Angel. It is pure selfishness combined with a sense of obligation. While Sam runs around looking for this Angel, it doesn’t really feel like a detective/PI/whathaveyou novel. Sam doesn’t care about any of that, she just tries to make herself a big target. The people around her are driving that show.
The worldbuilding is interesting, too. Dunbar introduces a few creatures, mostly Demons and Angels this book, and gives them enough backstory and buildup you don’t feel they’re paper thin and basically angel/demon-coated Humans. She brings up a few other things, like fae, but they aren’t really explored much in this book. She tries to explain the powers they have, but this isn’t that kind of story where everything is known. It is a much more loose sort of explaining. Not everything has to be known – mostly because Sam doesn’t care, partly because Dunbar doesn’t want to turn it into that sort of story.
All in all, I’m really glad I’m rereading this because I’m having a bunch of fun. Sam is such a fun character to follow because she isn’t what you expect. She is there for chaos and fun. I’m there for chaos and fun.