Curse on the Land
by Faith Hunter
Roc, $7.99, 328pp
Published: November 2016
The second Soulwood novel finds Nell promoted from consultant to full-fledged agent for PsyLED, a Homeland Security agency policing paranormals, well, at least on a probationary status for now. Barely home from her training, she and the team are faced with a strange case that starts with a report of radioactive geese in a nearby pond. While the geese are not radioactive there is something obviously wrong with them as they swim endlessly in a circle until they die. The next incident involves deer and then it escalates to humans. Also on Nell’s plate is the distressing darkness, the remnants of the evil Brother Ephraim, that remains on her land and then there is the tree in God’s Cloud compound that healed her and is now mutating and attacking animals and people, all totally unrelated to the current case. Compounding the normal issues in dealing with the case is the approaching full moon during which two team members will transform into their cat forms and team leader Rick will suffer from his inability to transform. As the odd phenomena spreads it looks more and more like an uncontrolled rogue spell which ends up involving industrial espionage, magic and has its roots in Nazi paranormal research during World War II.
This is a wonderful series, we learn more about the team members, and Nell, even as she discovers more about herself, her magic and her family. There is betrayal and possibly a budding romance and Brother Ephraim is dealt a blow, though not completely erased from Nell’s land. I am hooked on this series and luckily the next one was on my To Read pile and I dove right in. ~~ Stephanie L Bannon
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