Darkside: Waking the Dead, by S. K. S. Perry

A few weeks months ago, medic for Free (Legal) Books on the Internet Week, seek I reviewed Darkside by S. K. S. Perry. At the time, viagra here I didn’t even know if he was male or female (turns out he’s a guy), but I did know that I liked James Decker, the wise-cracking narrator, and his crazy world and friends. Mr. Perry sent me the sequel, which he might do for anyone who asks him nicely enough (also, there’s a donation button on the page), and I promised him I’d review it, too — eventuallly. At first, I’d gotten taken over by Wedding Brain; then I was holding off until I could find enough books for Self-Published Week. Finally, Mr. Perry, I’ve read it, and here’s your review.

The usual Sequel Rules apply: select [NO PLOT] from REVIEW when book number>2 . . . James Decker isn’t quite dead, in that way where he’s an Eternal. There are only eight of them, and whatever they are, they’re immortal. As a matter of fact, James gets killed two or three times in the process of this book, and it just doesn’t stick very well. In addition to that, he’s haunted by his dead father and grandfather, and his late girlfriend is possessing his current girlfriend. Sounds kinky, but apparently they share fairly well. Anyway, so Kingston starts to get overrun with zombies — both the vampire-made, yucky ones, and the more useful, resurrected kind from necromancers. Unfortunately, the zombies start attacking James and his friends and family. What do they want from him?

The enjoyment of this book is largely character-driven, for me. James is pretty awesome, as I mentioned before, as are all the characters we’ve known before (Sabrina, Josh, Leanne, Alex, Dad, and Grandpa); we also meet several great new people. My favorite is, of course, Sister Juliet; she’s a teacher at Alex’s school, and while she’s sort of the funny stereotype of nun (there’s a riotous scene wherein she orders two police officers to say Hail Marys), she’s also a lot more open-minded about the whole supernatural than most others. The other great character we see a lot of is Greg, James’s father’s old partner at the police force. He’s got a heck of a lot of strength of character, and a very dry sense of humor.

The plot of this book involves zombies, vampires, bikers, and strip clubs. No, seriously. It’s sort of like Bruce Campbell came up with it (in a good way!). There’s a lot of chopping-off-of-heads, fighting-off-of-vampire-biker-chicks-bent-on-seduction, and even a great car chase. Add to that an exploding car or two, a short diversion where James is taught how to fight with and without weapons, and the Angel of Death, and one’s got an action-packed plot pretty much guaranteed to appeal to nearly everyone. I think I liked the plot of volume 2 better than volume 1, frankly, although the original Darkside is still good.

I still don’t know why these didn’t catch the eye of a publisher, what with the urban fantasy boom. Perhaps it’s due to the male narrator, although Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files were even made into a short-lived TV series. Perhaps it’s due to a strong amount of humor, although Terry Pratchett sells awfully well. I hope my reviews have convinced at least some people to read the book, in its free, legal, self-published version. I’d recommend it for people who enjoy action, adventure, James Bond movies, zombie flicks, and laughing at all of the above, although things will undoubtedly make more sense if one reads the first volume first. 4.25/5 stars. (It’s my website. I can invent a quarter star if I want to.)

6 thoughts on “Darkside: Waking the Dead, by S. K. S. Perry”

  1. Thanks for the review. It’s not everyone (hardly anyone, actually) who will take the time to review self-published work. I greatly appreciate it.

    Steve (yep, a guy)

  2. Hi! Thanks for the comment. I meant to send you an email that your review was going up, but . . . well . . . I usually get to those later in the week. (Also, I’m leaving Friday for Antigua.)

    I really enjoyed reading it a lot, and I stand by everything I said in both reviews — why hasn’t this been published?!?

    So when’s the book set in B.C. coming around, huh? 😉

  3. I’m glad you liked it. The most often cited reason agents turned down Darkside was that they didn’t feel there was a market for humerous fantasy. Go figure.

    I’m currently working on an heroic fantasy that I hope to have better luck finding a publisher for, so the Darkside novels are sort of on the back burner for now. I had a lot of fun writing them, however, and there’s been a lot of positive response and requests for sequels, so who knows, that B.C. book may show up yet. 🙂

    Thanks again, and have fun in Antiqua!

  4. Ok, don’t mean to bug and i know this post is older than dirt but i was wondering where i can find Darkside: Waking the Dead. I read the first one and now i’m dying to know what happens next. Any info would be great. (this is assuming someone comes along and checks this out… with my crappy luck probably not.. lol) here’s holding out hope that someone hits me back. Thanks.

  5. I loved the first book and could not wait to get the sequel, I look every week to see if there are more, I hope you will write more, they are very entertaining and cannot believe you would have hard time finding publisher!!!!

  6. I too loved these books and am surpised that publishers do not realize that fantasy fanatics enjoy well done humour infused into their reading.

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