Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Midnight Crossing by Charlaine Harris

Now that Harris has finished with the Sookie Stackhouse novels, she's moved on to a new venue in the stories of Midnight, Texas. The story begins when a twenty-something Internet psychic, Manfred, with a touch of the real "sight" moves to a backwater town and meets a very odd assortment of residents. His landlord, Bobo, is the owner of a pawnshop which may have been around since Texas' founding, and who we find out eventually was a minor character in Harris' earlier series about the town of Shakespeare. His grandfather was a white supremacist who amassed a legendary hoard of weapons. To this day, militias around the country believe that Bobo knows what happened to that stash.

The pawnshop is tended during the nighttime hours by a vampire named Lemuel, who has definitely been around for a long time, and some of his clientele are definitely on the eerie side. He has a "girlfriend" named Olivia, whom I assume is some sort of vampiric human servant, or Renfro, who is quite a handy person to have around in a pinch.

The girl next door is Fiji, who is a practicing witch. She teaches classes and sells herbal concoctions out of her home which doubles as a shop and classroom, but she actually does have some supernatural powers, and her cat, Mr. Snuggly, has a few tricks up his...paws...too. There's the gay couple, Chuy and Joe, who run a combination salon and antique gallery, and the couple who own the only diner in town, Home Cookin', Madonna and Teacher. We have a family that runs the gas station and mini mart, Shawn, Creek and Connor, and Rev, a very different sort of preacher running the wedding chapel and pet cemetery.

When the body of a missing woman turns up, and some of the militia members hunting for Bobo's granddaddy's arsenal get feisty, things start to heat up, with some really surprising twists in this new mystery by Harris.

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