First things first, I have to thank Kory for speaking to me on twitter about her books. I got them immediately. I also, with sheer luck, won an audiobook of Dying for a Living, in a contest on her blog. And, I was really ready to read it. So, I took in advice of someone and listened to this audiobook while I worked and did laundry and such. It saved my kindle some abuse. (laughs) Though they synced themselves so the page where I was in my audiobook my kindle went to it so I didn't miss a thing. Annnnnnnnnd, I frigging LOVED it. It is one of the most original story lines I have read to date. That alone gets it an extra star.. so it's a 6 star review!!
We meet Jessie, Death replacement Agent, all around bad-ass and sarcasm queen. Her best friend Alice (Ali), her handler, James Brinkley and her... lover, Lane at the beginning of this story. All seems normal, well as normal as it can be for Jessie Sullivan. She's not your average, ordinary girl. She is a death replacement agent. What is that you ask? Well... if you are about to die she can take your place because she has a special talent of not dying. for long. Seems that if you have enough money to get it, it's like the new fad. Cool though, right? Not everyone has that ability. Least not in this world. She's not a zombie, before you think that way. She is a necronite. She will correct you in your thinking if you think to call her a zombie aloud.
From midnight on the day you die Jessie and her bestie, Ali, who is her assistant will shadow you. The moment you start to fade into the light, she snatches you out and takes your place. Depending on how you die depends on how long it takes her body to heal itself so she can rise again. Sounds simple enough, eh? Not! It all starts to go wrong when she goes on an assignment to do a death replacement for a hooker. (laughs) That was an O.O moment for me. Poor Jessie had to sit through a day of.. that. One the last 'call' of the day the man started to choke the lady she was there to swap with. As a death replacement agent she is not allowed to intervene and change the events of the death. Jessie settles herself into the death, taking the ladies hand, and as the process of the ladies death, the strangulation kicks in JESSIE collapses to the floor, the lady on top of her with a big ass kitchen knife. See the thing is you can only kill a death agent one of two ways. behead them or smoosh their brains. Since they need them to stay alive.
Thankfully, the crazy hooker was stopped by Ali and Lane, who had snuck a mini camera into the room and had been watching. They managed to get Jessie out of there and to the hospital. It took Jessie a couple of days to wake and when she did things went from bad to worse to.... not sure what words says it best. Maybe, shit-tastic. Not only was she now having to heal from almost being beheaded.. she had to watch out for herself. People were after her; trying to kill her.
Jessie took it all in stride I think.. to an extent...
"Why does the church hate you?" someone asked. Off-topic, much?
I grinned. "I think they're jealous Jesus isn't the only one coming back from the dead these days."
This got some laughs. Too bad it didn't last.
Things moved quickly once Jessie started trying to get the thoughts in her head in order. The whole, who, what, when, where, and why running through her at all times. She's under suspicion from the cops, because they think she is hiding something, though they put her under 'protective' custody, she has started seeing an Angel that no one else can see, her baby brother calls to say their mother, who she hadn't seen in years, not since the night Jessie died the first time has died. She isn't to leave town but that doesn't stop her. Her friends help her 'escape' her police escort. Kiera, one of her friends, goes with her. I mean, really no one wants her going away alone. She gets in enough trouble in a group, alone she would be toast.
While on her way to the funeral she decides to go see her mentor Rachel. Rachel is in a mental hospital because like with so many Death Replacement Agents she went a bit loco. Or so they think. (my opinion is she's just a little off... laughs)While there visiting her men show up and Jessie has to run for her life. Why are they all after her? That is what she tries to figure out herself. Brinkley shows up and gets her and Kiera out of there and heading back to her moms. her little brother is waiting on her after all.
At her mothers funeral all of the memories that Jessie had lost come back to her. The night she first died. her memories of her childhood best friend Alice. Her stepfather abusing her. Her wanting to die. Needless-to-say it was an eye opener.
When she gets back into town, she has only been gone a day. But that doesn't stop the craptastic overload from slamming back into her full force. So many things happen and I won't ruin them for you. People aren't whom they seem. And, Jessie gets a few hard slaps that she may not recover from. What would you do if you were given the choice of choosing between who lives and dies? Crazy.
Yes I left out a lot, really I don't want to ruin the last part of the story. I promise it's worth the read. Just be ready to be surprised! Elated! And over the moon!!!
This story is easily one of my new favorites. Can you have more than one? Hell yes. It's a great read, great listen. The narrator, Holly Jackson, did a fantastic job. I can't thank Kory enough for introducing me to this series. I am anxious to dive into book 2!!