Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
LGBTQ+ Category: Lesbian
About The Book
Flynn Dalton doesn’t want to be a hero. But for Genesis, she’ll do whatever it takes.
After her first, deadly brush with the paranormal, Flynn just wants to get back to her life: construction work, semiprofessional bowling, and her fiancée, Genesis. Unfortunately, Flynn’s abilities have caught the attention of the National Psychic Registry, and they have their own agenda. Wherever Flynn goes, the registry follows, setting up tests of her abilities, hounding her to attend the conference in Atlantic City for evaluation and training.
Flynn can handle the registry’s heavy-handed tactics, threats, and guilt trips. She’s even convinced herself she can deal with her own growing—and increasingly dangerous—powers. But the offer to heal the wounds she sustained in Dead Woman’s Pond, wounds that are making it almost impossible to do the work she loves, is much more tempting.
And if the registry learns of Gen’s addiction to dark magic, agreeing to do whatever the registry wants might be the only bargaining chip Flynn has left.
Unfortunately, the registry’s plans for her are much deadlier than a simple series of tests…
After the deadly and supernatural events of Dead Woman’s Pond which saw Flynn Dalton become a local hero, all she wants to do is go back to her quiet life as a construction worker and move on with her fiancee, Genesis. But the pain and trauma have affected almost every element of their lives, and in addition to that, there’s also the Registry Board – the mysterious magical institute Genesis used to be part of, which is now relentlessly pursuing Flynn to join its ranks, and their tactics are anything but moral.
The second book in the Nearly Departed series by Elle E. Ire hits the mark for what I look for in a sequel – advancement of plot, expansion of the world and exploring elements that were only mentioned or hinted at in the first book, and most importantly, the fallout and consequences of everything that went down in Dead Woman’s Pond.
Genesis and Flynn love each other, but that love has taken a sharply toxic turn. Their insecurities and self-doubts threaten their lives together at almost every turn. They repeatedly cross each other’s boundaries and get drawn in to petty misunderstandings – all borne out of the fallout of PTSD, addiction, chronic pain, and fear from climax of the first book.
Flynn is dealing with chronic pain from her injuries and discomfort with the development of her untrained powers, and the danger that brings with it, because she’s much stronger than she or Genesis previously realised. Genesis, meanwhile, has touched the darkness to save the ones she loves, for the second time in her life, and that comes with overwhelming temptation to do it again.
This is a much darker read than the first book, and that one was already pretty dark! But I’m now truly invested in Flynn’s and Genesis’s story. They will do anything for each other, and even though Dead Woman’s Revenge sees them both in very difficult situations and making bad decisions, their love is as strong as ever. How far will they go to save each other? The answer is, pretty far – and I expect they’ll be pushed to their limits in the concluding book Dead Woman’s Secret, which I can’t wait to read.
H. L. is a Jewish Australian writer of LGBT+ fiction. She holds a Master of Arts in International Relations (2015) and a Bachelor of Media in Communications and Journalism (2012), both from the University of New South Wales.
She has been writing stories since she was old enough to hold a pen. She is the author of M/M fantasy romance novels Heart Of Dust and Soul Of Ash, Books 1 & 2 of the Death’s Embrace series.
She has had two speculative short stories published: “The Collector” in the 2014 Future Times Award Collection A Tick Tock Heart, and “Entente” in the 2020 Twisted Stories Award Collection Just Alice.