Note: These have all be previously released in the Dreamspinner “Gothika” books – and are unchanged. However, it is really nice having them in one place if you are a big Eli fan and they are all good stories to re-read 🙂
After having re-read them in this go around, I found I loved “Among the Dead” the best followed by “Black Dog”.
I didn’t love Reparation or The Bird as much but they are interesting if nothing else 🙂
I loved the other covers a ton more… but … whatever 😉
Reparation by Eli Easton
On the harsh planet of Kalan, weakness is not tolerated. When young spore farmer Edward suffers an carriage accident that kills his mail-order bride and his factory manager, Edward has little chance of survival, until Knox—an enormous “reconstitute” labor slave—plucks him from disaster.
Recons are part machine, part human remains from executed Federation prisoners. But Knox is different from other recons. He can read and has flashes of brilliance. With no one else to rely on over the bleak winter, Edward forms an alliance with Knox, and against social taboos, they become friends. Edward struggles against his growing lust for the large humanoid, and while Knox thrives in his new life, memories of his past torment him.
A twist of fate brought Knox and Edward together, but there will be a price to pay in blood when they learn how deeply their lives truly intersect.
I am not a space fan, so this didn’t resonate with me. I found a lot of plot holes and I won’t spoil it here, but I had an issue with who made up the “reconstitute” … I also didn’t love the whole creepy cyborg/necromancy aspect so it was hard to feel this was a romance – more a creepy Halloween story with a slight romantic tinge.
3 of 5 stars
“The Bird” by Eli Easton
Colin Hastings is sent to Jamaica in 1870 to save his father’s sugar cane plantation. If he succeeds, he can marry his fiancée back in London and take his place in proper English society. But Colin finds more than he bargained for on the island. His curiosity about Obeah, the native folk magic, leads him to agree to a dangerous ritual where he is offered his heart’s most secret desire—one he’s kept deeply buried all his life. What happens when a proper English gentleman has his true sensual nature revealed and freed by the Obeah spirits?
Colin doesn’t know it, but he’s in love with his best friend. In 1870, you don’t admit that to just anyone, even yourself. It takes a voodoo ceremony for him to make this realization and then he has to convince his friend to take a risk, if that weren’t enough.
Following a close second as best of the bunch, this was another great short story that fulfilled its obligations in a few pages. Very well crafted. It’s historical and educational without being pedantic. The writing is very dark and evocative and quite unlike the previous books/stories I’ve read by Eli Easton.
She always produces an amazing story and this is no different.
(On re read I wasn’t as big a fan, but it is interesting)
The Black Dog by Eli Easton
Constable Hayden MacLairty is used to life being dull around the tiny hamlet of Laide on the north Scottish coast. They get occasional tourists, “monster hunters” interested in the local legend of the Black Dog, but Hayden thinks that’s only a myth. A rash of sheep killings, a murdered hiker, huge footprints, and sightings of the Black Dog force Hayden to rethink the matter. With the help of Simon Corto, a writer from New York doing research for a book about the Black Dog, Hayden tries to figure out why the enormous hound is reappearing. Hayden finds himself strongly attracted to another person for the first time in his life. But between the danger stalking the hills, Simon’s inevitable return to New York, and Hayden’s mother’s illness, true love may be more of a phantom than the Black Dog.
Black Dog was my favorite in this series. It was a fully fleshed out short story about a man who doesn’t know his own families secrets and when he finds out he has to make some tough decisions.
Eli is one of my all time favorite authors and this story is just as amazing as her longer stories.
(This was super cute and I loved the little twists this short story takes.)
4.5 of 5 stars
Among the Dead
Ever since his accident, Neil Gaven sees dead people. He’s isolated himself, unable to bear the constant barrage of sadness and grief. But a gentle ghost grabs his attention on the bus one day. He seems to understand, to have some secret to impart. Neil works to interpret the ghost’s clues. Then they lead him to Trist, a homeless young man who is also tormented by spirits. Are they two of a kind? Maybe together they can find a way to live among the dead.
This is a lovely and sweet story with a little twist. Eli Easton’s writing is smooth and flawless and her characters are rich and full. I loved the attention to details with the subtle blurring that at first causes confusion then clarity as the story draws to its finale. I suppose the story has a HEA – depending on your point of view. ☺ It’s excellent. 5 of 5 stars
(This was hands down my favorite and I liked it even more than the first time I read it!)
Overall 4 of 5 stars