Bledsoe’s fourth epic fantasy noir featuring “sword jockey” Eddie LaCrosse (after 2011’s Dark Jenny) is action-packed and witty, if slightly distant from the PI side of its family tree. LaCrosse’s investigative skills are called upon this time in the service of his landlady, Angelina, a tavern owner. She wants him to track down her onetime lover, Edward Tew, a pirate; she’s been waiting 20 years for him to make good on his promise of coming back to her. LaCrosse quickly learns that Tew’s ship, the Bloody Angel, was reported to have sunk after its crew captured a legendary cache of treasure, and that only one crew member—not Tew—survived. There’s more swordplay and action than actual detection, and the supernatural elements are downplayed, but the lead’s sardonic narrative voice will amply entertain readers who like their urban fantasies on the lighter side. Agent: Marlene Stringer, the Stringer Literary Agency. (July)
Try suggesting this to fans of Jim Butcher's Dresden Files.” Booklist, Starred Review on Dark Jenny
“Bledsoe skillfully combines humor, action, deduction, and emotion to make the material fresh and engaging for fans of both fantasy and noir.” Publishers Weekly, Starred Review, on Dark Jenny
“This well-crafted novel should appeal to fans of Glen Cook's Garret P.I. novels.” Library Journal on Dark Jenny
“Gives every evidence that Bledsoe's combination of sword and sorcery with hard-boiled detection will have a long and successful run.” Publishers Weekly, Starred Review, on Burn Me Deadly
“An entertaining, well-crafted melding of fantasy and hard-boiled detective fiction.” Kirkus Reviews on Burn Me Deadly
Another independently intelligible outing for freelance sword jockey Eddie LaCrosse, from the author of, most recently, the splendid The Hum and the Shiver (2011). Imagine a Philip Marlowe-style gumshoe in a familiar-sounding and well-constructed medieval fantasy world, where your clients could be gangsters or pirates threatened by dragons, sea monsters or magic. Eddie's latest client is Angelina Dirnay, tavern owner--and his landlady, so he feels in no position to refuse her. Twenty years ago, so Angelina relates, she was a barmaid in a harbor town and fell in love with a handsome young sailor whose career choice was piracy. On his first voyage, so rumor has it, he captured a vast treasure but then was wrecked, and no trace of either Black Edward Tew or the treasure was ever found. Angelina, tearfully waiting all these years, now asks Eddie to discover the pirate's fate. This coldest of cold cases seems hopeless, and Angelina's clearly not telling all she knows--least of all that she and Edward had a son, as Eddie will soon learn. The one solid clue is that there was a survivor from the wreck, who's now a feared pirate in his own right. The investigation proceeds in fits and starts, and the plot doesn't really add up. Still, Bledsoe brings his own brand of tough charm to the proceedings, assisted by a stalwart supporting cast, vivid scenery and rugged bursts of action. Series fans certainly won't be disappointed.