Spiral X

Spiral X

by J. Westendarp


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781456580292
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 02/05/2011
Pages: 270
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.61(d)

About the Author

J. J. Westendarp lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex with his wife, two kids, and two basset hounds. He is an unapologetic Dallas Cowboys fan, loves to game when he gets a chance, and has an unhealthy obsession with Star Wars.

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Spiral X 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
S_Watson More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed Spiral X quite a bit, which was surprising because I've read my fill of female vampire hunters over the past few years. It is obvious that there is more intended for the main character, Cheryl, so some things are left unexplained. The story itself is self-contained and resolves itself nicely, so the larger mysteries are the "hook" to get people to read more books. Even without that, however, I'd say that the world created is interesting enough that I would want to keep reading. In particular, the author's take on vampires is one I've never seen anywhere, and actually makes complete sense. If he came up with that all on his own, I have to say that I'm impressed. Vampires have been done to death recently, so anything both new and non-sparkly is a welcome surprise. The hunters and the larger "organization" that becomes involved was also handled quite nicely and believably. One thing that stood out to me is that, except for one or two moments, it made virtually no difference that the main character was female. I'm wondering then what prompted the author to decide she was going to be female. It isn't a bad thing that she is, but as I noted there are a plethora of female vampire hunters nowadays. It was certainly refreshing to read one that didn't include all sorts of kinky, erotic sex, that's for sure, but almost everything about her was asexual, so there must have been something behind his decision. Also, one of her overtly "feminine" traits (the "pouty face") seemed unnecessary. Believe me, I've seen such a face and fallen victim to it far too many times to count, so I understand what the intent behind it was, but it seemed sort of tacked on. I won't get into any specific plot details, but the writing was well done and conveyed the story in an easy to digest manner. There was just the right amount of exposition and figuring things out to balance out the action, which there was quite a bit of. The characters were instantly distinct and recognizable, which is often a pet peeve of mine. There is nothing I hate more than a book where I need to keep notes to tell characters apart. While I realize that people in real life often have names, looks, or traits very similar to each other, in a fictional novel there's no need for that and only serves to confuse the reader. That was simply not an issue here. Every character was introduced and became immediately recognizable, all without extensive exposition describing them. Same with the locations and settings. Just enough detail was given to let me imagine it in my head, and that's it. That's exactly how I want my books to read, and this book was perfect in that regard. As mentioned earlier, there are some mysteries that are left unsolved. Ignoring those, the main storyline was interesting enough to keep me reading, but not so complex that it somehow gets resolved before I'm even aware of it or without really knowing why, which happens more often than it should. Like a good detective story, the plot proceeded from one clue to another, and the surprises were believable and well-implemented. Besides the purposely unexplained elements, the ending was realistic and believable, with no deus ex machina swooping in to save the day. It could have been deeper and more involved, with lots of subplots and distractions, but it didn't need to be and didn't suffer due to their lack. And the first person perspective, which doesn't bother me at all, helps
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lex_Write More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book. It was action packed and I was totally blown away by how focused I became on the plot. I actually had to read it twice because the first time I read it, I practically devoured it while trying to figure out what happens next, and of course, I completely forgot to take notes so I could write a good review. I love Cheryl, she is such a great strong female character. She totally kicks butt. A lot of times in paranormal books, the female character keeps getting put into situations where she needs to be rescued by some hunky supernatural guy, and ends up playing the damsel in distress rather than the butt kicking vamp hunter that was promised. While I do love those books too, it is just nice to see a crazy cool female main character. I will say that she does end up needing to be rescued but throughout the ordeal she stays strong and holds her own. I liked all of the plot twists and the fact that it kept me on the edge of my seat the whole way through. J.J. Westendarp does a really good job on all of the characters, not just Cheryl, they all have great multi-faceted personalities and are totally believable. I especially love the villains and I don't want to spoil anything for future readers so I can't say why I love them so much but I will say that you think you know who the good and bad guys are but nothing in this story is exactly as it seems. I know I'm gushing, but I was really pleased by the quality of the writing as well as the story. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves strong female character, action and adventure, paranormal and cop stories. I give it a 5 out of a 5.
bookhimdanno More than 1 year ago
A vampire hunter with the Bruce Wayne lifestyle. This is an interesting idea for a book and especially throwing in the drug usage and abuse into the mix. The main character is a kick-butt take no prisoners kind of girl and she is in it to win it. The other characters add a bit of fun and fear as you go along. I put this book down a lot, I feel asleep a few times reading it and when I saw it was only 259 pages long I was shocked, it seemed much longer. The author added a few too many twists and turns into the characters life and even her 'uncle' was a bit more then the story needed. Near the end when he was mentioned again I really had to think about whom the heck they were talking about. I liked the idea and the story wasn't bad I just think some could have been cut and in other places the author could have expanded the ideas going on in those scenes. If you like vampires, hunters and a good mystery you will most likely enjoy this book. Check it out. I like the cover.
BookAddictFL More than 1 year ago
Spiral X is reminiscent of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Cheryl Erikson, this story's vampire and demon hunter, takes on the shadowy underworld that most people never know exists. To add to Cheryl's problems, there is a new drug called Plast flooding her city and the vampires are in charge. For me, the similarities to Buffy were a little too close. Both are young, beautiful, tough women with boyfriend issues and only a few close friends they trust. The plot had no big surprises and at times things felt wrapped with too perfect a bow. While there isn't a lot new here, Westendarp kept the plot moving at a fast pace. The writing is crisp and kept me entertained. If you're a Buffy and/or modern vampire fan, this one's for you.
MRShemery More than 1 year ago
Like the majority of readers, I am drawn to vampire related stories. Most of the vampire stories I read have a human love interest for the main vampire. While a story about a dark and dangerous vampire becoming romantically involved with an unsure and hesitantly willing human is interesting, it can sometimes become a little boring. This story was not like that at all. First of all, the kickin'-butt takin'-names main character was a non-vampiric female. I enjoyed this fact. She had male sidekicks, assistants, etc. but she was definitely the one that was in charge of her domain. She could handle tough situations ... sometimes showing emotion, but not being too girly. I also enjoyed the fact that the vampires had another mission besides feeding on humans. There was actually a purpose for their presence in this story. Now, I can't tell you what their purpose is or I'd be spoiling the story for you ... just know that their presence is a nice change from the whole 'feeding on the human race' worn-out story line. While reading the story, I noticed one slight discrepancy: There was a club owner mixing a drink for Cheryl. He pulled out vodka and orange juice. It was then mentioned that the club owner made a drink called a Fuzzy Navel. Now, for anybody who has drank liquor concocted drinks in their lifetime, the mixture of vodka and orange juice is not known as a Fuzzy Navel, but a Screwdriver. A Fuzzy Navel is a combination of orange juice and peach schnapps. Vodka, orange juice and peach schnapps is called a Hairy Navel. I know, I know ... this isn't a major story element, but I feel that if you're going to put something based in real life in a story, it needs to be correctly depicted. Just my own OCD behavior speaking here ... Overall, I rather enjoyed reading Cheryl's adventures with vampires, police, FBI, priests, gang bangers, etc. It was a great mix of adventure and self-preservation. The story flowed extremely well and I did not want to stop reading it once I started it. I would recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys action-adventure with a vampiric twist.
D-M-R More than 1 year ago
Spiral X has a different take on vampire/human interactions between the Hunters, like Cheryl, and the vampires. The change of pace from your usual run of the mill vampire story made this book a fun read. This is Westendarp's first novel and I was pleasantly surprised at how good it was. I am eagerly awaiting the continuation of the story.
GraceKrispy More than 1 year ago
Cheryl is a Hunter. A Vampire Hunter. Not only that, but she's so good at what she does that the Underworld has a contract out on her. She has the best percentage of Vampire kills in any district and, if that weren't enough, she's about to become drawn into a big, secretive drug deal that has the ability to change the world as she knows it. Not only does Plast have a detrimental and violent effect on humans, it's central to a heinous plan to create a new breed of Vampire that won't succumb to the usual weaponry. In addition to her usual sidekicks Tank and Virgil, Cheryl meets a mysterious Hunter with an unusual past and some interesting connections, who joins them in the never-ending battle against the Underworld and the drug that's fueling their leader's plans. J. J. Westendarp has created in Cheryl a woman who can kick butt and take no prisoners, yet, even with that sense of duty, has a softer side for the human "victims" who have chosen to serve Vampires. Cheryl is very likable and sympathetic, even as she exudes power and control. She's reminiscent of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," with some "Blade" thrown in. I could easily see this story as a movie or a TV action series. Cheryl had all the elements you'd expect in an action hero: a tortured past that gave rise to her current profession, a few trusted associates, a true devotion to saving the world, and the ability to kick ass while still keeping a sense of humor. Overall, all of the characters fit nicely in the mold of typical action figures, and I really found myself rooting for Cheryl in the story. Although an enjoyable and fast-paced read, it was a too neatly tied up for my taste. The surprises are a little too predictable, and the connections between people and events a little too convenient and simplistic. Neat, but a little too neat. Much of the dialogue was trite, with explanations and events that seemed too perfectly organized. They fit the mold of an action story, but there wasn't anything extraordinary or special that got me excited. Instead of feeling like I was immersed in the action, I felt like I was watching a play onstage with everything perfectly scripted. The story is nicely written and the writing style was very readable and interesting, with no more than a handful of obvious typographical errors. A perfect read for those who love fast-paced action stories with a paranormal basis. 3.5 /5 stars @ MotherLode blog
kittycrochettwo More than 1 year ago
While most people don't even realize vampires exist, twenty-two year old Cheryl Erikson hunts them. She is one of the best vampire hunters around. She has a psychic abilities when it comes to vampires she can feel their presence, and sometimes their intentions, which gives her an advantage. She also has her best friend Virgil, a techno whiz that lives with her, he does his best to help keep her safe. When the new drug Plast shows up in Dallas, Cheryl finds out that vampires are dealing it. While most drugs don't affect vampires Plast makes them almost indestructible, not to mention what it does to the humans who take it. When Cho, the man who trained her to be a vampire hunter winds up dead on her doorstep, and the person that killed him tries to kill her, she is warned that there is a contract on her head, and that the one person who can help her is a hunter called Reverend. Cheryl soon finds herself crossing lines she would never cross to get the answers she needs, but in the process she starts questioning whether she wants to continue hunting vampires. Can good prevail over evil, will Cheryl and her friends be able to stop the vampires before the vampires stop them? I am a huge fan of paranormal reads, and this book fit the bill and then some! Cheryl is a very strong character, a lady whom most people wouldn't mess with, but once we get her back story she also has a vulnerable side, having to deal with several losses in her life, Virgil is the constant in her life. He is like a mother hen trying to protect her.Tank a fellow Hunter, is also someone she counts on. There is also Father Harold, and the hunter called Rev. Each character plays a very important role in the story.I thought the Reverand's character was one of the most interesting of all, while a hunter, Cheryl doesn't completely trust him in the beginning,but soon realizes he might be one of her greatest allies. This book never has a down time, it is totally action packed from page one. The authors writing skills draw you into the world of the vampire hunter, painting such vivid descriptions that you feel like you are part of the story.Fans of paranormal fiction are going enjoy this book. I only hope that this is only the beginning for Cheryl and we see a new book from Mr. Westendarp soon.
Jaidis More than 1 year ago
I just finished reading Spiral X by J.J. Westendarp and am at a slight loss for words that can explain how much I enjoyed reading this book. From the moment I began reading it, I was instantly pulled in and held captive in the world that Mr. Westendarp has created. Spiral X has all of the qualities that make it a must read book. The main character, Cheryl, is everything I expect to find when reading about a woman vampire hunter. She is strong, confident, and can take care of herself in any situation while at the same time being vulnerable and fragile, if only to her own fears and doubts. But at the end of the day she always pulls through and proves that some things in life are worth fighting for no matter how much you have to give up in return. Throw in a best friend who knows Cheryl for who she really is, a mysterious vampire hunter named Rev, and loads of butt kicking action and you have all the ingredients to make an amazing story. Spiral X is a tragic yet beautiful story that you will enjoy reading over and over. I hope that Mr. Westendarp will continue with Cheryl's story and will most certainly be waiting in line to get a copy!
WyattMills More than 1 year ago
From the start I was sucked in, for one reason the main character is female. I wanna be like Cheryl when I grow up! Seriously! This is not your typical vampire, hunter book. With it's twists and turns and OMG no way's it keeps you on the edge of your seat reading as fast as you can to find out what happens next. Cheryl, Virgil, Tank, Father Harold and Rev are just a few of the characters you will encounter in this book. What I love about this book though is that each character that you encounter has their own part to play and J.J. has done a wonderful job integrating them into the story line so that you "know" them almost as well as the main characters, no matter how short lived their time in the book is. Cheryl has a lot to deal with in this book, from fighting evil, vampires to dealing with the losing people that mean a great deal in her life, each twist shapes her into the wonderful character she is. She makes it through thanks to her circle of support with her best friend Virgil, Tank who is another Hunter that backs her up when needed, Father Harold and even the head of shadow government agency. You think you have it all figured out as you read and then BAM, out of the blue a new twist or turn. I loved it! And I can't wait for more! I clicked the last page and almost screamed....what happened next??? I can't wait to see/read the next installment! J.J. Westendarp has found a life long fan right here.
1000-Plus-Books-to-Read More than 1 year ago
Cheryl Erikson is a Vampire Hunter and is taken on a wild ride when a vicious new drug called Plast hits the streets in her territory. This drug makes Vampires even harder to kill and makes the Humans taking the drug become deranged animals. Cheryl along with her team of friends including her mentor Cho, her pastor Father Herald, her Best Friend Virgil and her fellow hunter Tank take the Vampire world by storm as the drug Plast leads them into a Vampire owned night club called Spiral X. X marks the spot as Cheryl finds her self trying to escape death and take down a Vampire named Arthur. Can she pull through when everyone is counting on her to save the day? I really have a hard time with stories that are told first person and this book pulled it off very well. At first I wasn't connected with the Characters but the storyline really hooked me and before I knew it I was invested in each and every Character. When I had to put this book down I found myself thinking about each of them almost obsessively. I enjoyed this book. There was no romance, no over done sex scenes. This was a true book with plots, twists and turns that the reader doesn't expect. Mystery and danger. Right up my alley! This was a paranormal book right up there with the best of them but done differently. Cheryl, the main character, is fighting against Vampires who are still not known by most of the human population. She and a few of her friends are clued in to the secretive world and work together to keep the humans safe. If you like the Anita Blake series you'll want to pick this one up! This author is also donating 10% of the proceeds from the sales of this book to Child's Play Charity. Support this up and coming author so we can get more books! He's on my list of Authors to watch! ~ Melissa from 1000 + Books to Read