Title: River Road
Author: Suzanne Johnson
May Contain Spoilers
I enjoyed Royal Street, the first book in Suzanne Johnson’s Sententials of New Orleans, with a few reservations. I was disappointed with the lack of romance, and wondered why DJ constantly made such bad decisions. The lack of common sense drove me bonkers. I’m happy to report that River Road is a stronger book overall, and even when DJ made some not so wise choices, she really didn’t have any choice in the matter. Keeping two warring clans of merfolk from killing each other, and getting normal humans caught in the crossfire, kept her busy and kept her putting herself on the line. It’s hard to argue about doing the smart thing when the smart thing is going to cost people their lives.
DJ and Alex are both working as sententials now, and the story picks up three years after the events of Royal Street. DJ is more comfortable in her own skin, with her powers and her elvin wand. She complains about the same things we all do; being overworked, working for a bunch of guys who expect results no matter what, not getting that raise she thinks she deserves. Her relationship with Alex has settled down and they have decided that they make great friends. When the merpeople start feuding, Dj and Alex have to put an end to their territorial disputes, which are complicated by Jean Laffitte. He’s buddies with two of the mer, Rene and Robert, and he has a vested interest in seeing a treaty between the clans. Rene and Jean have many shady business dealings, the less DJ knows about, the happier she is.
I enjoyed all of the characters this time around. They all make DJ’s life a trial. The merpeople hate wizards because of how they were treated after a large group of paranormals attempted to set up shop in the mundane world years ago. They are suspicious of her motives and treat her like crap, to be frank. I really felt bad for DJ; she is trying so hard to come to a fair solution to their dispute, and they just keep on giving her grief! Even her own employers don’t give her any respect, and she is constantly at odds with the Elders because of her methods, which are basically act now and ask for permission later. They are putting a huge amount of pressure on her to get the situation fixed, and when wizards start turning up dead, they are even more unrelenting that she fix it. Fix it now! I felt that the only person to give her any credit was Jean. He turned out to be a fun, well-rounded character, and I enjoyed the courtship between them. I can’t see them setting up house together, but there’s a lot of fun chemistry between DJ and her immortal pirate.
River Road kept my interest from beginning to end. The mystery was compelling, and DJ’s methods were entertaining as she raced against the clock to put a stop to the war brewing between the merpeople. I am looking forward to DJ’s next adventure, Elysian Fields, in August.
Review copy provided by Bewitching Book Tours