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"Because I'm an inbetweener - and the only one anyone knows of at that - the dead turn to me when something is askew between them and the living. Usually, it's something mundane like a suicide gone wrong or someone revived that shouldn'ta been."
Carlos Delacruz is one of the New York Council of the Dead's most unusual agents - an inbetweener, partially resurrected from a death he barely recalls suffering, after a life that's missing from his memory. He thinks he is one of a kind - until he encounters other entities walking the fine line between life and death. One inbetweener is a sorcerer. He's summoned a horde of implike ngks capable of eliminating spirits, and they're spreading through the city like a plague. They've already taken out some of NYCOD's finest, leaving Carlos desperate to stop their master before he opens up the entrada to the Underworld - which would destroy the balance between the living and the dead. But in uncovering this man's identity, Carlos confronts the truth of his own life - and death...
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Alex on 10-18-15
Funny, Sharp Urban Fantasy
Half-Resurrection Blues is about a half-dead hitman working for entirely dead guys to keep the balance of life and death in check. I'm not usually all that into urban fantasy, but after reading Half-Resurrection Blues, I wonder if that's because I've rarely seen any author write about a city half so well as Older writes about Brooklyn. I learned (after reading it) that he'd been a community organizer, and those roots show. He knows people are and what they're up to and what they care about, and all those details make Brooklyn come to life on the page. It's fantastic.
It's also funny. Really, really funny. For example, early on, the narrator and protagonist, Carlos, meets another half-dead guy for the first time in his life, and it is not exactly the joy he would have expected:
/“Whaddup, douche bags and douche baguettes?” [Trevor] hollers at the crowd. I’m mortified and fascinated at the same time. A few passing revelers chuckle but most ignore him. A blond lady rolls her eyes as if she’s being hit on for like the four hundredth time tonight. “Why so serious?” Trevor yells into the sky. I found the one other being like me in the universe and he is a total jackass./
On that point, Older has the comic timing of his narrator down, and it's worth listening to the book for that alone. (I kept walking over to the next room to make my girlfriend listen to choice lines.) He's also just downright pleasant to listen to. My only complaint is the voice acting when one of the female characters is crying. High-pitched, fake-crying voice is a bit of a twitch for me. Thankfully, that's only a small part.
The other interesting thing about this book is how well Older writes male characters. Carlos and his buddies playing off of each other are great, and Older's awareness of how men interact with women (and why) was also fascinating (and appalling). Carlos does not make the best choices about how he conducts his relationships, which was actually cool to read, since the narrative does not support his choices (pointedly) but also does not demonize them.
Anyway, this is a great book. It's got a lot of depth while remaining a fun read. Highly recommend.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful
By Michael A. Bloomer on 06-24-15
Spoken Half Blues
What did you love best about Half-Resurrection Blues?
I have listened to many authors read their own work over the years and some can do it and some not so much. Apparently, Jose can. This work is a combination of prose, spoken word, and story. I say work instead of novel because in this case those three combine into a whole. I can hear references to Dashiell Hammett, Gabriel Márquez, and Langston Hughes, to name a few. The plot is basic detective genre made unique by cultural-Hispanic, entertaining-ghostly, and location-Brooklyn references. The reading was excellent if you like spoken word, you can hear the rythm and beat come across in the performance.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Andrew J Chamberlain on 03-05-16
A dark delight
Where does Half-Resurrection Blues rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
I really did enjoy this one, certainly ranks in my top 10, maybe top 5, a combination of engrossing storyline and rhythmic, masterful telling from the author
What did you like best about this story?
I think this story had a lot of the ingredients that I like, snappy tempo, noire setting, bit of a dark feel without being too relentless about it, and the narration is a treat, Daniel really knows how to bring his own story alive with a rhythm and intensity that suits the material
If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
Living half-life to the full