Audience: Young Adult, and Adult Geeks with a fondness for Buffy, Angel, and Supernatural
Here's an adage I NEVER adhere to--Don't judge a book by its cover. I frequently wander the book stores and look for books that stand out with clever titles or great art. But here's the catch: I never, I mean never, read the synopsis. If a family member has the unfortunate luck of being with me I have them read it and ask them if it sounds interesting. It's weird, I know, but too often in the past I've found out more than I wanted. I like to be surprised.
This is how I stumbled across Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride. I liked the cover,
but it was really the title that had me smiling and humming the Elton John tune, but with Necromancer instead of Tiny Dancer. I mean, how funny is that? Of course, in a weird twisted way it's funny. Oh, and the shiny circle (it's a literary award thing) on the front jacket implied that I wasn't the only one who found this book intriguing. So I promptly bought it, and I have to say I wasn't disappointed.
McBride has mastered the art of writing the burger-flipping, what-should-I-do-with-my-life-asking, college-age kid. Maybe I related too much to the main character, Samhain Corvus Lacroix (unfortunate name, right?). Out of place and going nowhere fast, Sam--wait, you didn't think he'd really go by Samhain--is working at a fast food restaurant, living in a dump, and has no real social life aside from his work friends, when a turn of events leads him to the revelation that he is a necromancer.
The book reads like a great episode of Supernatural. Yeah, I brought Dean Winchester into it. I don't know if you can understand that analogy if you aren't a fan of the show, but let me try to explain it. You know when you are laughing really hard, but scared at the same time? It's kinda like that--full of characters that make witty, but sometimes inappropriate, comments about their situations. It has everything I like in a book: action, wit, and horror. These things made this a compelling book; and the well developed characters, all of whom I will not be telling you about because of my spoiler OCD, were believable and will keep you entertained, and maybe even a little mortified. So, IF you don't trust me and need to know more continue to read, but IF you are like me and wish to remain spoiler free stop here!
In a nutshell, Sam goes to work completely average, well, below average in many regards, and after playing potato hockey in the parking lot with his coworkers, and generally doing everything he can to avoid working at the fast food dump, he meets an intriguing, but horrifying, stranger. This is when everything in Sam's world gets turned upside down, and he becomes an important power player in a supernatural world where the Necromancers are the most feared and respected. From Slacker Supreme to Nercomancer du Jour, Samhain is one on the most likable characters I've come across. His journey from fry cook to power player was horrifying and funny. Although there is another book in the series, I felt satisfied with the ending (unlike the cliff-hangers that leave me pulling out my hair), but I can't wait to see what happens next with Sam the Necromancer and his motley crew.
Summary from Goodreads
Sam leads a pretty normal life. He may not have the most exciting job in the world, but he’s doing all right—until a fast food prank brings him to the attention of Douglas, a creepy guy with an intense violent streak.
Turns out Douglas is a necromancer who raises the dead for cash and sees potential in Sam. Then Sam discovers he’s a necromancer too, but with strangely latent powers. And his worst nightmare wants to join forces . . . or else.
With only a week to figure things out, Sam needs all the help he can get. Luckily he lives in Seattle, which has nearly as many paranormal types as it does coffee places. But even with newfound friends, will Sam be able to save his skin?