*NOTE: I received an advance copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review.*
Carla Rehse’s new release, The Accidental Gatekeeper, is the first of a trilogy centered around Everly, a middle-aged woman who turned her drug-dealing husband into the Feds, and returned to her Central Texas hometown for safety…only to find she’s jumped from the proverbial frying pan into the fire.
Sitting next to Hell’s Gate, the town of Crossing Shadows, Texas, isn’t your ordinary Texas town. It may look like it, but it’s a chaotic mix of angels, demons, hellhounds, and a variety of other magical beings. Everly left years ago, denying her status as a “Marked” human, so she doesn’t get the warmest of welcomes upon her return.
Her main goal is to keep her grown daughter safe, a daughter who knows nothing of the family legacy. But before saving her daughter, she’s drawn into saving the town.
I liked Everly, in part because she’s not young. She has creaky knees and hot flashes, so she’s an unlikely heroine. I also loved the cheeky, snarky humor of the story. It kept me wanting to turn the page. The major characters were distinctive and fun, and the story moves less like a freight train and more like a supersonic jet…lots of action all the time.
This isn’t the type of book I normally read, so if you love what I’ve already written, you’ll enjoy this book. And I did, too, to a point. I would have liked to catch my breath here and there. The pace was a bit too breakneck for me. It also seemed like there were too many varieties of magical beings, which got a bit confusing.
Also, I am assuming (hoping) that since mine was a downloaded advance copy, the text formatting will get fixed in the final version. The formatting is inconsistent, making the book harder to read.
As a series, this book makes a good lead-in. It’s a complete story but leaves some unresolved threads as bread crumbs for the books to follow. I will probably want to know what happens next with Everly. (I have a pet peeve when a series book doesn’t have an actual ending, but this one does.) For an author writing a series, a reader wanting to continue is the ultimate goal.
The Factory Girl and the Fey comes out October 15! Coming soon: sample chapter and cover reveal. Stay tuned!