The Order considers the wraith an extreme threat and Rachel may be forced to use a barbaric ritual to free hima ritual that comes with a heavy personal price. If she fails to humanely release the wraith, she'll have her supernatural abilities bound.
When Janus Ostaralocal supernatural mob bossshows up demanding her attention, and Sylvia keeps secrets that may place Rachel in mortal danger, she doesn't need her abilities to know something darkly sinister is at play.
Between uncovering Sylvia's disturbing motives, and avoiding Janus, Rachel has enough on her hands without dealing with a wraith who may not realize he's supposed to be dead...
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
Rachel Miller scowled at the restless spirit. The old cow had done everything short of throwing her out the upstairs window. Now, adding insult to injury, she'd increased the static charge in the room, causing Rachel's hair to turn into a halo of chocolate-colored cotton candy. Awkwardly sweeping her hair into a poofy ponytail, she felt her patience finally give. "Mrs. Famularo, I've asked you six times to leave willingly."
Rachel slid the sleeves of her denim jacket back, revealing the blue, tattooed sigil of the Order of Rescue Mediums on her right wrist. She raised her right palm toward the suddenly wide-eyed spirit.
"I'm done asking."
The old woman wasn't giving up, though. She knew what that sigil meantevery spirit didyet she hiked her skirts, bared her teeth and came rushing at Rachel with the intent to put her through a wall.
Rachel felt the rush of power build in her, course through the first of the sigil's five segments and pour on toward the second. It happened in milliseconds, but it was still too slow. Mrs. Famularo slammed into her like a freight train, her fully manifested arms and torso propelling them out the door, across the corridor and into the wall. Winded from impact, Rachel still found the strength to brace her arms against the old woman's shoulders, just barely keeping her gnashing, foaming mouth at bay. The spirit began to grind her needle-sharp fingernails into Rachel's collarbone in an attempt to break her concentration. Instead, though, Rachel swallowed her screams, channeled her pain and anger inward and pushed her abilities even harder.
Like a cool rush of water across her flesh, she felt the power pour simultaneously into the third and fourth sigil segments. Suddenly the entire hallway was filled with the purest white light imaginable. Before either woman could respond, there was an audible snap.
The strength ebbed out of Mrs. Famularo's hands. The old woman's face took on a perplexed, then terrified expression. Rachel didn't stop, urging the power into the final portion of the sigil. The light became even brighter, causing Mrs. Famularo to shield her eyes and cry out. Rachel, her eyes barely narrowed to the light, sensed the four invisible presences surrounding them before Mrs. Famularo did.
Take it easy with her, okay? She doesn't mean to be like this.
She never knew if all the presences inside the light heard her mental words, but it didn't stop her from talking to them. She felt one of the presencesthe one she associated with the fifth segment on the sigilclose in and wrap itself around Mrs. Famularo. Mrs. Famularo babbled, frail arms beseeching, reaching for where the walls of her house should have been. The presence curled around her arms, tucked them close to her body and then
They were gone.
Rachel swayed a moment as the pale blue wallpapered corridor came back into view. She put a hand out and touched the indentation her shoulders had left in the wall. She could still sense one of the presences around her. This one in particularthe presence linked to the second segment of the sigilalways lingered.
"I'm okay. You can go now."
Still, it persisted. Some nights, when the extractions were rough, Rachel swore this presence had an almost maternal feel to it. Which was ridiculous, especially since she'd been taught that the presences were not partial to any one rescue medium. "I said I'm fine." She waved the presence away. "Go take care of Mrs. Famularo. She needs you more than I do."
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The book drops us right into the middle of the story. The action picks up from the start, and the book turned out to be a lot more fun than I thought it would be. Rachel is an intriguing protagonist. She has a great sense of humor, and she’s pretty awesome at what she does. The entire worldbuilding of this book was great, including the Order of Rescue Mediums, and the lore behind that. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
The Stubborn Dead is a quick read -- almost too quick. There is a *lot* more to Hoar's fictional world than she can fit into only 160-odd pages. Still, I really like Rachel, and Jonas has potential to be either a love interest or a threat. And the Order of Rescue Mediums is unique in urban fantasy. I look forward to reading more. :)
The Stubborn Dead drops us right into the action as protagonist Rachel Miller attempts to release a spirit from the Earth realm. The entity appears to be a woman and she violently resists Rachel's plea for her to crossover. Rachel draws upon symbols on her arms calling forth spirits that help her trap the entity. Despite its violence, she asks the spirits to be gentle. Rachel is thrust against a wall, as the spirits wrap themselves around the female entity. One of them lingers back and Rachel yells, I'm OK, she needs you more then I do." "GO". This novella while only twenty thousand words grabbed me from page one and never let go. This looks to be a great introduction to a fantastic urban fantasy series. Rachel is a member of the Order of Rescue Mediums and must live by their rules or have her supernatural abilities bound. When Rachel arrives at the home of her new client, Sylvia Elkeles’s, she finds a wrath. Once she has engaged it, she realizes something is terribly wrong. Now she has forty-eight hours to mercifully release the wrath or deal with the consequences. I really like Rachel; she is a strong protagonist who takes her job seriously. She is a supernatural hunter who calls on powers of the order to cross spirits over. She uses enchanted weapons and incantations. As if that’s not enough of a tough job, she has to deal with a client who is keeping a secret and a mob boss who wants her on his team. Hoar does just enough world-building to tantalize us and set us up for book two. The Stubborn Dead is the first book in the Lost Souls series and I can’t wait to see what Hoar has in store. This has the potential to be a new favorite urban fantasy series for me. I highly recommend this read to fans of urban fantasy, ghosts, detectives and the supernatural. Fans of the TV series Supernatural, pay particular attention to the dedication. I want to thank netGalley and Carina Press for providing me with this ARC in exchange for my unbiased review.