Dead on the Delta (Annabelle Lee #1)

Dead on the Delta (Annabelle Lee, #1)

Once upon a time, fairies were the stuff of bedtime stories and sweet dreams. Then came the mutations, and the dreams became nightmares. Mosquito-size fairies now indulge their taste for human blood—and for most humans, a fairy bite means insanity or death. Luckily, Annabelle Lee isn’t most humans. The hard-drinking, smart-mouthed, bicycle-riding redhead is immune to fairy venom, and able to do the dirty work most humans can’t. Including helping law enforcement— and Cane Cooper, the bayou’s sexiest detective—collect evidence when a body is discovered outside the fairy-proof barricades of her Louisiana town.

But Annabelle isn’t equipped to deal with the murder of a sixyear- old girl or a former lover-turned-FBI snob taking an interest in the case. Suddenly her already bumpy relationship with Cane turns even rockier, and even the most trust-worthy friends become suspects. Annabelle’s life is imploding: between relationship drama, a heartbreaking murder investigation, Breeze-crazed drug runners, and a few too many rum and Cokes, Annabelle is a woman on the run—from her past, toward her future, and into the arms of a darkness waiting just for her. . . .

  Dead on the Delta by Stacey Jay
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dead on the Delta features a different take on fairies than the one most children grow up believing. In Annabelle Lee's world, fairies are mosquito-sized, murdering little monsters, out for the blood of any human they can sink their teeth into, and for most, their bite results in death. Annabelle is one of the Immunes, however, and her job is to help the higher-ups out by doing all the dangerous work that involves contact with fairies.

I had a number of issues with this book, mostly pertaining to Annabelle, but no matter how repulsive I found some actions of hers, Dead on the Delta is one of the most gripping stories I've read in ages. This is one book that doesn't waste any pages getting into the action or building up the suspense, but dives into the plot and mystery from the very first sentence.

Jay has outstanding talent in bringing her characters and their stories to life. I'm positive I wouldn't have liked this complicated book nearly as much if Jay hadn't written it so well, with the romance and humor placed exceptionally well amidst all the action and suspense.

Annabelle is selfish, snappy, weak, and plain mean at times. And she knows that. She knows exactly how she is (even though she's in pretty strong denial about her "habits") and I think that's why it's impossible to pity or even hate her. She is a fascinating and complex character who you can't help but wish with all your heart gets her happy ending, because no one deserves it more. Her character development, narration, witty comebacks, genuine concern over the fate of innocents, all hint at a strong woman with a heart of gold hidden beneath the drunkard she has become due to all the trauma and grief in her past and present, and I'm sure it'll come out gradually, as long as there's someone around who believes in her.

Now, who that "someone" might be, I have no idea. I love Tucker, mostly because he seems like the one love interest with the least baggage, but there's not enough about him in Dead on the Delta to say anything for sure. Between Cane and Hitch, Hitch clearly loves Annabelle more but I really don't want her to have to deal with his and Stephanie's kid, immature as that sounds but Cane could give her everything she wanted, if only she'd come to truly love him. Basically, I'm rooting for whichever man gives Annabelle the most happiness and the least pain, even though I'm not sure who that is just yet.

The ending left me utterly speechless, more than a little disgusted (not with Annabelle though), and completely in awe of Jay's amazing story-telling prowess. I can't believe I put off reading Dead on the Delta for so long, but I'm also immensely relieved that there's just one more week to go before Blood on the Bayou comes out. What started off as something I was very, very reluctant about reading quickly turned into an unputdownable, so-absorbing-you-read-it-in-one-sitting read, and I can't wait to find out what happens next in Annabelle's messed-up life.

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  1. I haven't actually heard of this book before now, but I like the idea of it. It sounds creepy and suspenseful. I'm not sold on the multiple love interests, but that's always kind of a pet peeve of mine. Still, I might have to give it a shot. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    1. You're welcome, and thanks for dropping by, Natalie! I really wasn't expecting to like this, but it ended up surprising me. And don't worry about the love triangle! It isn't obnoxious or irritating at all. On the contrary, it actually plays a role in the book. If you like dark UF novels, I'd definitely recommend reading this.

  2. WHY is your blog so cool? Seriously! You are a goddess. I had no idea you had a blog at all! I'll be stalking you now... 0:)

  3. GREAT review!!!
    I don't like books about Fairies much anyway ,,, but you really made me think twice after reading your review ,,, usually I skip any reviews about Fairies but this one was different and i loved it ,,, and thanks to you I'm actually going to read this book :)


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