Sunday, 16 November 2014

Chasing the Dead by Keta Diablo

About Keta Diablo:

Keta Diablo is a multi-published author of paranormal, historical and occasionally gay fiction (paranormal). In 2009, her erotic romance Decadent Deceptions was a finalist in the RWA Molly contest. In 2010, Keta's entry Phoenix Rising finaled in the Scarlet Boa contest and in 2011 Keta's acclaimed paranormal shifter, Where The Rain is Made, was nominated by Authors After Dark for a BOOKIE AWARD AND by Deep In The Heart of Romance for BEST ROMANCE OF THE YEAR. In 2014 Sky Tinted Water was nominated for a Rone Award.

Many of her books, including her gay fiction series CROSSROADS have won numerous awards: Top Reviewer's Pick, Recommended Read and Best Book of the Month.

About Chasing the Dead

Madrid Arrende is a young woman of Mexican descent who has inherited her mother’s abilities to communicate with the dead. She’s beautiful and feisty, set to inherit the large prosperous ranch which her father has built up from nothing. She is engaged to marry a weak and pasty town boy, but has known love and lust in the past, thanks to a rugged cowboy named Deacon Bannister. A woman with her fire and her future needs a Deacon Bannister by her side; we all know this. But how will they come together?

Chasing the Dead gave me everything I have come to expect from a good western romance: strong, likeable heroines, desert sunsets and palpable settings I could lose myself in, and Most Important Of All, that dreamy lustable male character. Deacon is everything a western hero should be: strong, manly, outdoorsy (he breaks horses), rugged, stubborn, insanely handsome, and ever so swoonfully dedicated to the one love of his life. (Of course, in real life, who could live with a man like this? BUT, that’s why we have book boyfriends. They stay in their books where they belong, forever hot, twenty-something, and forever the ardent lover.)

Now for the rest of the story. I was a little unsure of the ‘communicating with spirits’ bit, but this was very well done. The spirits were sit within the context of Native American beliefs. I am far from an expert in this culture, but knowing Ms Diablo, she will have done her background research and traditional customs will have been drawn on. The Spanish certainly was spot on, except for one instance where it stood out like a sore thumb - and then I realised that a gringo was speaking, and it made me laugh instead.

I loved that the main character came from a Mexican background. I liked reading about a heroine whose skin was not alabaster. She spoke a lot of Spanish and her home had a very strong Catholic influence. It was very substantial, and believable.

There were other likeable characters too. Deacon’s brother and the Apache girl who Madrid becomes friends with are both strong, three dimensional characters with their own back stories and their own motivations.

The story arc is nicely done, and I would expect nothing less from Ms Diablo. Her character introduction is splendid, and the story builds with the usual crests to the climax, and a well-earned happily ever after.

All in all, there is very little that is new here, which fans of this genre will be relieved to hear. Ms Diablo has kept the romance bones in the usual order- ankle connected to shin then knee etc etc - and fleshed them out with an Apache / Mexican / Cowboy overlay. Which I really like. The paranormal thread sews all three together very nicely, and not too weirdly, which I can’t handle (I’m not much into zombies and everyone turning into werewolves).  The finished story is the one we all demand - of love, lust, romance, strength and individuality - whilst also giving us a beautiful underlying story of ethnic co-existence and co-dependence.

And that’s the story I really appreciated here.
Read about Chasing the Dead on Goodreads here
Buy it for $3.51 here on Amazon
Read more about Keta and her books on her website
Connect with Keta via Twitter here

No comments:

Post a Comment