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Sara's Review: Nightwise by R.S. Belcher


PUBLISHER: Audible Studios

NARRATOR: Bronson Pinchot

RELEASED: August 18, 2015


LENGTH: 10 hours and 29 minutes








The acclaimed author of The Six-Gun Tarot and The Shotgun Arcana launches a gritty new urban fantasy series set in today’s seedy occult underworld In the more shadowy corners of the world, frequented by angels and demons and everything in-between, Laytham Ballard is a legend. It’s said he raised the dead at the age of ten, stole the Philosopher’s Stone in Vegas back in 1999, and survived the bloodsucking kiss of the Mosquito Queen. Wise in the hidden ways of the night, he’s also a cynical bastard who stopped thinking of himself as the good guy a long time ago. Now a promise to a dying friend has Ballard on the trail of an escaped Serbian war criminal with friends in both high and low places—and a sinister history of blood sacrifices. Ballard is hell-bent on making Dusan Slorzack pay for his numerous atrocities, but Slorzack seems to have literally dropped off the face of the Earth, beyond the reach of his enemies, the Illuminati, and maybe even the Devil himself. To find Slorzack, Ballard must follow a winding, treacherous path that stretches from Wall Street and Washington, D.C. to backwoods hollows and truckstops, while risking what’s left of his very soul . . . .


I kept thinking I was missing a few books when I started listening to this series. Laytham, is such a developed character with an intricate past, and the reader/listener is given little bits and pieces. I kept wanting more of those stories. I like to grow with the characters, I would have loved to been on all those journeys with Laytham and watched him turn from the young man to the incredibly jaded one. Getting it in flashbacks just didn’t feel complete. I really hope Belcher goes back and fills in the blanks.

Nightwise is an incredibly well developed and intricate Urban Fantasy steeped in today’s culture. Belcher turned modern and past events and made them his own, from the founding of our country all the way to 911. His story is brilliant in its intricacy.

Laytham is the epitome of the anti-hero. Every time in the story I think he is going to do something to redeem himself, he turns right around and proves to be a bastard. I wanted to like him but he made it hard, this line sums it up pretty well.

“…you are a villain with a heart dipped in the blackest of blood and yet you still cling to the notion that you are a hero.”

Laytham is a character that is going to stick with me for a while and so is this story. It is raw and gritty as hell. My only complaint is I want the backstory. I never start a series in the middle and this felt like it.

Pinchot did a superb job with the narration, I will be looking for more works by him. Anytime I find a great narrator I always look for more from them.

Overall I am giving Nightwise 4 Boundless Stars, I really enjoyed it.

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