Review: All Souls Near and Nigh (Soulbound #2) by Hailey Turner
Special Agent Patrick Collins has been reassigned by the Supernatural Operations Agency to New York City. Navigating his new relationship with Jonothon de Vere, the werewolf he’s now soulbound to, is nothing compared to dealing with territorial disputes between the vampires and werecreatures who call the five boroughs home. But the delicate treaties that have kept the preternatural world in check are fraying at the edges, and the fallout is spilling into the mundane world.
Manhattan’s club scene is overrun with the vampire drug known as shine and the subways have become a dumping ground for bodies. When the dead are revealed as missing werecreatures, Patrick and Jono find themselves entangled in pack politics twisted by vampire machinations.
Learning to trust each other comes with problems for both of them, and the gods with a stake in Patrick’s soul debt aren’t finished with him yet. Bound by promises they can’t break, Patrick and Jono must find a way to survive a threat that takes no prisoners and is stalking them relentlessly through the city streets.
Old and new betrayals are coming home to roost but the truth—buried in blood—is more poisonous than the lies being spun. Trying to outrun death is a nightmare—one Patrick may never wake up from.
“All Souls Near & Nigh” is a 104k word m/m urban fantasy with a gay romantic subplot and a HFN ending. It is a direct sequel to “A Ferry of Bones & Gold,” and reading the first book in the series would be helpful in enjoying this one. Please see the disclaimer at the beginning of the book for content some readers may find triggering.
A couple of months have passed since the events of the first book. Both Patrick and Jono are situated in New York and Patrick gets a new case which leads to some very disturbing revelations which are in the blurb so to me it does not count as a spoiler – some young weres who could not / would not join the packs for various reasons are missing and often enough ending up dead.
Despite the horrible killings and some other painful events taking place, the author somehow manages to make these books *so much fun* for me. I know part of is that most of the characters are very appealing, easy to root for and you just want them to get their happy ending.
I had to roll my eyes (in a good way) at Patrick for example about him agonizing about whether to take an eighteen year old kid (um… lets say being for the reasons of not spoiling anything ) with him when he went hunting the bad guy because Patrick needed the kid to show him Stuff (once again I am being vague for the reasons of not spoiling the story) and the kid may not have wanted to see the bad guy again, but it is not as if Patrick was leaving him unprotected. And still the man was thinking about not being a good enough person because of that.
Most of the mortal magical characters in these books seem to be like that so far. Patrick suffered through war, Jono went through some torture in the last book and I am sure we will see some more angsty back story for him, Marek has his own cross to bear but they all seem to stay more or less decent people so far.
But also there are immortals, lots of them and somebody mentioned that Gods from different pantheons may be appearing in each book. Greeks are barely there in this book, but we get to meet some entities from the Aztec pantheon and I know significantly less about them than about Greeks and it was still lots of fun to meet them.
I am very curious whether, at the end of the series, Patrick will be lucky enough to pay all the debts to immortals that he owes and that he only thinks he owes and that they would leave him and Jono to live their lives as they see fit. I am almost as curious about this as about the progress of Patrick and Jono’s romance.
What annoyed me? The event in the warning. Not that it happened, but how it happened and why the character was unprotected from this to happen.
Can’t wait for the next book in the series.
I often find trigger warnings to be spoilers. I’m glad they are there for readers who need them but at the same time I wish people would be more diligent about finding a way to share them without spoiling the books for readers who don’t want spoilers. For example authors could put a statement in the beginning of the book that says “Trigger and content warnings are listed in the back of the book for those who want them and don’t mind spoilers.” Or in the case of trigger warnings in reviews, I think it’s a good idea to write “Trigger warnings:” and then hide the actual warning under the cut. I can’t be the only one who thinks they can be spoilery.
And yes occasionally spoilers have made me feel like you felt in this case — dread something (or anticipate something) and keep wondering when it would happen instead of focusing on enjoying what I was reading just then.
@Janine: As you know I dont mind spoilers, but certainly I agree that to balance the possibility of spoilers for the readers who do mind them versus those readers who might need warnings, letting them know that trigger warnings are here, but at the end of the book maybe a good idea. Now when I think more about it, I actually would not mind a more detailed spoiler ( I am not saying that such warning need to be given ever – to whom the assault happens when why etc ), because then I know what to expect and still not to wonder when . But thats just me , I do try to think of many readers who try to avoid spoilers, yes.