Review of Dylan Hart: Not All There, The Box Set by RM Gilmore

Blurb:

OCTOBER BOX SET EXCLUSIVE – Just in time for Halloween

For a limited time, snag the first three novels in the Dylan Hart series plus a bonus short story! *BEST DEAL!*

Featuring:

THE SCENE

*Irreverent, twenty-something journalist, Dylan Hart, is not your average heroine. With a big butt and an even bigger mouth, she has her work cut out for her when she decides to cash-in on the blood-drained bodies of seven prostitutes scattered throughout southern California.

With her best friend in tow, and two contrasting boy-babes at her heels, the crew is pulled into an all too real sanguinarian lifestyle and dragged them through a bloody good mystery. Horrible pun intended.

ENDLESS NIGHT

*The graciously irreverent heroine, Dylan Hart is at it again. With a couple of headless corpses under her belt, Dylan’s crunchy exterior has reached maximum density. In The Big Easy, surrounded by ‘vampire’ elite, Dylan finds herself entangled in the underground world of blood and magic at the Endless Night Masque de Sang.

When a chance encounter brings a fascinating woman into her world, Dylan is forced to sift through fact and fiction to uncover a much more frightening villain. Voodoo. Who do?

SACRIFICE *Amazon Occult bestseller!*

*Dylan Hart has found herself in quite the conundrum. Locked in her apartment with an unknown voodoo beastie hot on her tail, she’s ass deep in death and it’s knocking down her door. Literally.

With no other choice but to return to New Orleans and the source of her torment, Dylan is faced with an opponent she may not outlive. Survival becomes key and anything else, like sanity, can only be a hope. Before the day is done, death will take over and nothing will ever be the same again.

NOT-SO LOVE STORY (Box set exclusive short story)

*Dylan Hart isn’t good with her feelings. Detective Michael Petersen is no exception to the rule. Take peek behind the scenes with Dylan’s telling of a not-so love story. A tale of love that proves happy endings are for amateurs.

Review:

Wow! Where do I begin. First off, I will tell you that this is not for all audiences. If you have a problem with foul language or violence I wouldn’t suggest venturing into this one. There is also some minor sexual content as well. Now that the disclaimer is out of the way, let me get down to the meat of this one.

This is a box set that includes the first three Dylan Hart novels and a short story that gives insight on the past of Dylan and Mike. Given the brilliant execution of the stories, the wonderful style and the perfection of the characters, I have to give this set a perfect 10 out of 10.

The first book, The Scene, starts with bizarre murders taking place in California; bodies are showing up naked and drained of blood. Most of the victims are hookers and transients so they don’t mean much in the grand scheme of things but Dylan Hart is hoping that a little investigation will help her come up with the material to write a book and alleviate her financial woes. Of course when bodies are drained of blood, who better to question than those that live the sanguinarian lifestyle.

This book was very different from any other vampire murder mystery I’ve ever read. Instead of either exposing or accepting the existence of the undead, the characters strive to find the individuals guilty of the crime, never once believing that vampires exist. Dylan and her friends bumble around the scene, trying to figure out what would drive someone to not only drink blood, but kill for it. I truly liked the premise of the story and I loved the way that the author kept me guessing. As a paranormal enthusiast, I was ready to accept that the killer was truly a vampire but the author had me on the edge of my seat waiting to see what truths Dylan was going to uncover.

I also want to note that I enjoyed the asides where they discussed how Dylan could work certain elements into her book. The scholar in me enjoyed the cleaver commentary on the conventions of mystery novels. Other elements that spoke to my inner nerd were the interaction and dynamic between the characters– There is her model perfect best friend who has her unwavering loyalty.and the underwear model who she is inexplicably drawn to despite the fact they both embody all the accepted societal standards of beauty that make her feel inadequate. Then there is the overbearing ex-boyfriend who struggles with his need to protect her while giving her enough space so that she knows he still loves her. These relationships exhibit the strength and depth of Dylan’s character and establish the potential for the series.

In Endless Night, Dylan is back and this time she is rubbing elbows with the elite members of the vampire community in New Orleans. After what happened in California when she was investigating the bizarre murders, Dylan has decided that instead of true crime, she’d much rather publish a work of fiction based on ‘lifestyle vampires.’ In order to get as much authentic information as possible, she accepts an invitation to travel to a summit in The Big Easy with her best friend, Tatum, Tatum’s beau and Primus of Southern California, Malcolm and Malcolm’s flunky Cyrus. Of course, New Orleans is the hub of everything supernatural and Dylan’s life only gets more complicated as she takes in all the bizarre the city has to offer.

I have to say, this book is amazing. I absolutely love Dylan. She is foul-mouthed and often reckless but she is also tenacious and strong despite her perceived imperfections. In this installment, we get to learn more about her background and it gives more depth to an already wonderful character. Dylan is real and gritty and I honestly cannot get enough. I am intrigued by the way Gilmore portrays a world that is so fantastical but also realistic at the same time. It creates a dynamic that is so unlike what you see in most paranormal books. Dylan doesn’t swoon around the bloodsuckers like her blond bombshell of a friend. No, like any good skeptic, Dylan is always looking for the smoke and mirrors instead of just accepting that the impossible may be anything but. This one left me wondering how her latest adventure would impact her outlook on the occult and had me dying to find out what kind of trouble she’d get into next.

The last book in the collection, Sacrifice, picked up where book two left off. This installment was much more intense and even more compelling than the others. Dylan has been through a lot since she first decided to investigate the novelty of the sanguinarian lifestyle. Now she has to face that fact that the occult is more than a load of crap and there are people out there that wield untold power and they want her to pay. Traipsing back and forth across the country, Dylan has one thing on her mind- stay alive. Follow Dylan as she tumbles down the rabbit hole and into a world that exists adjacent to our own but is full of things that go bump in the night.

I cannot get over the amount of power this series has. It is intriguing and completely addictive. The first book had me hooked but by the end of the third, I am past the point of no return. I will gladly follow this roller-coaster to the very end. There is no mush-gushy that you find in so many other books of this nature; it is raw and holds absolutely nothing back. Dylan is a character that you want on your side when the shit hits the fan simply because she refuses to give up. Her need to survive drives her through an action packed adventure where she is ass deep in a terrifying supernatural world. This is a no-holds-barred type of book that will drive you to continue reading through to the end and it will leave you begging for more.

The last story in the collection is an exclusive short that focuses on the failed relationship between Dylan and Mike. You get to find out how the pair got together and you get to see the ugly end to their relationship. Getting the scoop on all that transpired between the two makes you appreciate the relationship they had in the novels.

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