Posts Tagged ‘monsters/ghosts’

Reviewed by Elizabetta

HaintedTITLE: Hainted
AUTHOR: Jordan L. Hawk
LENGTH: 249 pages/94,378 words
BLURB: The Good Guy: Haint-working runs in Dan Miller’s blood. Not everyone can help the restless dead cross over, especially when the haunting threatens the Living. But the death of his parents six years ago forced Dan to give it up in exchange for raising his brother and sister, all the while struggling to keep their rural NC farm afloat.

So when the flamboyantly goth Leif Helsvin shows up on Dan’s doorstep looking for help with an evil necromancer named Runar, Dan’s first instinct is to turn him down. With two teenagers to look after, he’s already got all the trouble he can handle. Besides, the sexy Leif is too much of a temptation, and Dan is firmly in the closet.

The Bad Boy: Pierced, tattooed Leif never has sex with the same guy twice. It keeps things simple, especially since his oath to stop Runar has him constantly drifting from one town to the next.

But this time, it looks like Leif is going to need help, in the form of the very down-to-earth Dan. Since Nice Guys are off the menu, Leif just has to keep his hands to himself for as long as it will take to stop Runar’s latest scheme. But as Leif finds himself drawn deeper into Dan’s life, he quickly realizes he’s not just in danger of breaking the rules, but breaking his heart as well.


Haint: southern colloquialism for a ghost, apparition or lost soul; in folklore and popular culture, the spirit of a deceased person unable to move on to final peace, and capable of appearing in visible form or otherwise manifesting itself to the living.

Set in Appalachia country, the land of moonshine and hillbilly sensibility (ah, good memories of Lyn Gala’s “Mountain Prey”), this paranormal romance takes a more serious route and centers around haint, or ghost, hunting. Our two studly heroes are very good at what they do, called Walkers, they help the hainted to move on or destroy those spirits bent on causing harm. I’m imagining a kind of Dean and Sam of Supernatural TV and fanfic fame.

Leif, a hot, eyeliner-wearing, pierced and studded sword-wielding Nordic-looking new-guy-in-town partners with Dan, the quiet and broody country-boy farmer of the tanned and well-muscled variety for some intense ghost bashing.

What is especially great about this read are the action scenes— the hunting down of a very bad, evil, rat bastard of a necromancer and his hainted minions. Necro-guy has it in for Leif… well, he wants his lover back. But Leif says nuh-uh, homey don’t play that way anymore, and besides he has his eye on sweet Danny boy.

While Leif and Dan quietly try to figure each other out, there’s lots of sexual tension build up and even better, there is falling in like, then lust. And while there’s no insta-anything— refreshing— the denial of attraction is ever-present as both dudes think they’re not good enough for the other. But we know they’re special— the frequent threading of mythology throughout the story illustrates these present-day hunters’ own hero-making deeds.

There are great fight scenes with sword swash-buckling and wand-wielding, haint decapitations, limb whackings and lots of oozing black puddles of ghost ectoplasma-y goop. But don’t let that stop you, this is also an entertaining, well-written and nicely paced romance.

Elizabetta’s Rating:

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Elizabetta is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

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