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4.6 out of 5 stars29
4.6 out of 5 stars
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 14 March 2011
Having read Sandman Slim I have to admit to being slightly disappointed in this second novel in the series. I thoroughly enjoyed the first book because it broke through the logjam of what have become standard urban fantasy novels. This author set out to give the reader a character whose voice is humorous but also irreverent, impertinent, dark and tough, but I do feel sorry for anyone who did not read that first book because in this one Richard Kadrey shows no mercy in trying to bring a new reader up to speed about most of what happened there. All of the incidents are remarked upon and figure prominently in the action of this book, but new readers are left with their legs churning as they try to catch up on what has happened in the past. It isn't necessary for an author to take a huge amount of time to bring current and returning readers up to date with their storyline and that would have been a welcomed addition here.

James Stark is the son of an angel and a human woman. His childhood was definitely not of the Ozzie and Harriet type and the scars of his feelings concerning his parentage play a key role in the character's development. Kadrey uses this book to explore that topic and the situations with Mason, Kasabian, Lucifer, Kinski, Candy, Vidocq, Allegra, and others from the Sub Rosa. He also introduces a new character, Brigitte Bardo (probably not her real name) who is a Czech gypsy porn star whose real purpose in life is to kill zombies. Stark begins to find zombies all over the place so he and Brigitte start killing them.

The wicked, black humor is still very much in evidence in this second book and there are some major advances made in the character of James Stark. I enjoyed most of the book except I kept waiting to see what the actual plot was going to be. When it finally came I didn't find it nearly as interesting as I had hoped. Definitely still worth reading for fans of gritty noir urban fantasy so it will not be a waste of your time. I just hope you've read the first novel before you crack this one open.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 8 March 2013
Sandman Slims back, the man who escaped from Hell, speaks hellion hell's natural language, prefers cigarettes from hell, lives with a head (no body) above a video rental shop, and hunts monsters for money as something has to pay the bills.

Stark is a darkly humorous violent hero who you will love a root for. Ubber violent, darkly funny, fast paced and masterfully written. It's a brilliant read.

Starks discovered he is half angel, that means his dad was an angel his mother human, which makes him an abomination by angel's standards (with one actively trying to kill him). To make matter's worse Lucifer is on earth to supervise his movie biography and drafts Stark as his bodyguard, and someone's trying to kill him. Which puts a target squarely on Stark's head. And to top it all off someone's trying to trigger a zombie apocalypse. With the help of is friends, plus a porn star zombie hunter and Lucifer giving him sage council Stark has to stay alive and save the day whilst seeking his next Cigarette from Hell.

Again this book is riveting. The action is fast, violent, and thoroughly enjoyable. Dark humour, fast pace, and loads of twists and turns to the plot as well. This book is actually better than the first one, though I do recommend you read book one first.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 11 September 2012
An excellent follow-up to the first installment of Sandman Slim.

This time Lucifer is in LA and Sandman Slim is roped in to provide some protection. However, there are some other guests in town. Zombies are on the prowl.

Sandman Slim has some additional help in the form of a Czech gypsy porn star, Brigitte Bardo.
With the Zombies suddenly popping up, it comes about that somebody is behind this and Sandman Slim is on the case.

There is a new revelation with Sandman Slim expecially when he comes unstuck with a Zombie. We see a new side to him. Of course, there is still the Vigil and Aelita's on the move.

If you enjoyed the first book then I think you will have a lot of fun with this. Mason hasn't gone away just yet and it is only a matter of time before there is a stand off.
An excellent read.
Hat's off to Mr. Kadrey.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 June 2013
I'm surprised how much I'm enjoying this series. It's witty, self aware, and secondary characters have no problem pointing out the fallibility and sometimes stupidity of the main character. I'm growing fond of the characters. There's enough moral ambiguity for me to chew on. The one liners are great, and every so often there is a page of theological v pop culture debate that is worth reading twice and leaves me with a smile on my face.

The plot holds together well, the LA atmosphere hangs like smog, the motivations are viable, the writing is immaculate, and I can't find a single thing to criticise. I need to pace my approach to the next vol, or I will consume them too quickly, stop appreciating them fully, and run out too soon. Like a good box of chocolates, these need savouring, one at a time, slowly.
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on 5 March 2013
The first book in the series - Sandman Slim - introduced us to the supernatural side of LA with a bang. This second book in the series is a bridge where some back story and details are filled in, hopefully in anticipation of an all-action third installment. Real heroes can't just kick-ass but at some point have to have some angst to overcome, and here it is.

However, the author has cleverly woven said angst into the story so it doesn't actually get in the way of the book's pacing. The book also takes the opportunity to settle some of the side characters into their expected roles, and give them a bit of background.

The zombie story-line serves its purpose and is enjoyable in its own right, but its still part of the vehicle for developing the series. I enjoy a good zombie book but this could have substituted any number of supernatural beasts for the zombies without it losing the plot.

That could be a negative but it really isn't. The book flows well, the characters grow, new elements are introduced, and the overall package is a good read that will have you looking forward to the next one.
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on 17 February 2013
I read other reviews and was intrigued by the mix of dark fantasy and old fashioned crime thriller. It is Mickey Spillane meets the devil. I've now read all three books and am currently reading the fourth most current one. I couldn't resist. They are fast paced, engaging, funny, self effacing. If you enjoy the dialogue in Black Adder and the humour of Supernatural, you'll like this. Couple that with a character straight out of Micky Spillane and Raymond Chandler and you're getting the picture.

Richard has an equally interesting perception of heaven and hell and the characters therein. No-one is perfect and no-one entirely evil. Sandman Slim is no "angel" - literally - well not quite - but he is engaging and hope he goes from strength to strength or depending on the ending of the fourth book in the series, ends up where he wants to be. That's yet to be decided as I'm only half way through.

I hope you give the books a chance. I did and am glad I bothered. They certainly make my journey to work more enjoyable.
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on 20 July 2013
I just love the characters in this series. The anti hero elements are all over. Stark reminds me of a Nicolas Cage type in Ghost Rider, or Han Solo of the underworld...the reluctant but unyielding hero. This series can run and run...Lucifer, Kasabian, Brigitte, Candy...and the elusive Mason....bring 'em back...again and sgain...kill 'em and bring 'em back again. Now if you'll excuse me I have another one to begin...just can't stop!
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on 8 March 2013
Second book in the Sandman slim series and another great read. Not quite at the level of the Dresden series but right below the top drawer. The author has put together an interesting world mixing supernatural beings from different stories over the ages into the modern world. The lead character is well drawn, cynical and hard bitten. The pain in his life shaping the person he has become.
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on 26 August 2013
It's definitely growing in me, this series.
The cast of characters is getting interesting and the violence quite cool. Stark is becoming better drawn and the central story arc is coming together - anyone familiar with the Vertigo DC comic line will see echoes of the Sandman and Lucifer series in here, but with enough wrinkles to keep me reading.
Roll on book 3.
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on 24 October 2013
The first good was good, predictable in some sections, unexpectedly fun in others. This book became everything that the first book lacked. A better story, greater character development, more scope. A fully enjoyable read. Hopefully the third book will be as good.
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