Author: Melissa F. Olson
Published: October 30, 2012
Read: February 2013
Paperback, 283 pages
From Goodreads: A woman with the ability to counteract magic is in a race against time–and the supernatural underworld–to catch a killer before another body drops.
Scarlett Bernard knows about personal space: step within ten feet of her, and any supernatural spells or demonic forces are instantly defused–vampires and werewolves become human again, and witches can’t get out so much as a “hocus pocus.” This special skill makes her a null and very valuable to Los Angeles’s three most powerful magical communities, who utilize her ability to scrub crime scenes clean of all traces of the paranormal to keep humanity, and the LAPD, in the dark.
But one night Scarlett’s late arrival to a grisly murder scene reveals her agenda and ends with LAPD’s Jesse Cruz tracking her down to strike a deal: he’ll keep quiet about the undead underworld if she helps solve the case. Their pact doesn’t sit well with Dash, the city’s chief bloodsucker, who fears his whole vampire empire is at stake. And when clues start to point to Scarlett, it’ll take more than her unique powers to catch the real killer and clear her name.
Dead Spots was featured as an Amazon Kindle Daily Deal at a perfect time for me. It was late November, 2012, and I had just finished Iced (Fever #6, Dani O’Malley #1) and was nursing my post-Feverworld depression. I hadn’t ever heard of Melissa F. Olson, or the Scarlett Bernard series, but I’m glad that I followed my gut instinct and bought Dead Spots! I read this before I started ‘Book Obsessed Shan in San Fran,’ but I will be reviewing Trail of the Dead (Scarlett Bernard #2) on here shortly, and I wanted to help spread the word about the Scarlett Bernard series.
What I liked:
- The beginning: WOW – what a gory, horrifying, chilling way to start this supernatural murder mystery. The picture that Olson painted was truly a gruesome crime scene. And then when the
hotcop ran into Scarlett and the werewolf appeared out of nowhere…. it was an awesome start to a good book.
- Scarlett Bernard: Total badass. I really like our heroine, Scarlett. We got a good taste of her damaged past, her special skills, her inner demons, and her fearless demeanor. Scarlett’s special “skill” as a null and her profession are interesting to me. She can put the Old World folks at ease by giving them peace or instill fear that they can be murdered like a any old human. Love how she does the ding-dong-ditch when she goes to Dashiell’s!
- (Old) World Building: Although I did get a tad confused sometimes, I like the Old World that Olson created in Los Angeles. Supposedly, LA is kind of a dead supernatural town, but there was no shortage of powerful vamps and witches.
- Hotties: Hot good cop vs. hot werewolf. How can a girl decide!? I could see Scarlett ending up with either…. Jesse is that sense of normalcy that Scarlett hasn’t had since her parents died and she found out that she was a null. But can he ever accept Scarlett for who she is? Eli understands Scarlett and the burdens of her job, and he desperately wants Scarlett to let him in. (Our werewolf reminds me of an adorable puppy dog that is shown to the right, hehe).
- Midwest/Cali Transplant!!!: My Chicago and California self were smiling whenever a reference to a Chicago sports team was thrown out, I grinned from ear to ear. Melissa – you are speaking to my heart on that 🙂
- The Cliff Hanger: I guess that might have been obvious to some people, but I did NOT see that coming! And Scarlett’s newfound skill, her brother, the other null, and the love triangle (duh)…. OMG, I can’t wait until book 2!
What I didn’t love
- Dead Spots read more like a supernatural murder mystery to me… which was cool with me, because I enjoy murder mysteries (supernatural or not). While the beginning of the story hooked me in, there wasn’t a lot of action… besides the beginning and then the END (the end was awesome, by the way). The story flowed very well, but I was hoping to see more of Scarlett in action with her job…. or the other supernatural cast of characters for that matter.
- I really liked the love triangle… but it’s time for some hook-ups! It’ll happen… I can be patient, right? 🙂
Anyway, if you like a supernatural story with a kickass heroine and a hot love triangle, I would recommend the Scarlett Bernard series!