Seven Kinds of Hell by Dana Cameron

Just finished reading Seven Kinds of Hell a story about a shapeshifter called Zoe. Zoe’s daytime profession is archeologist and at the start of the story she steals an artefact that leads to a lot more trouble than she ever suspected.

Zoe and her mother have spent the majority of their time moving from place to place in an attempt to keep out of the reaches of Zoe’s relatives.  Her father’s family appear to be something sinister and to be avoided at all costs.  Slowly we discover a little of Zoe and the life she has led to this point.  Zoe has a secret, one that she hasn’t shared with any one else, not that she has a lot of friends to cosy up to anyway.  She turns into a werewolf.  She doesn’t know why or how this happens and she seems to have little control over the change.  It scares her, she thinks she’s going crazy and so doesn’t tell anybody.  But, after her mother finally passes away it seems that Zoe’s relatives are finally going to catch up to her and it also seems that they share the same secret.

Basically, the story brings to us a fairly unique set of characters.  The Fangborn.  Oracles, werewolves and vampires.  Except contrary to popular belief they fight evil and help to protect humankind.  It seems that the Government and a number of criminal elements have an interest in discovering certain artefacts relating to Pandora’s box which is believed to carry extraordinary power and to be the true origin of the Fangborn.  Of course, the artefact that Zoe stole is a decoration from the box and is being sought by a number of parties.  In the race for power Zoe’s cousin is taken by a Russian gangster as an incentive for her to collect the other artefacts and hand them over in exchange.  And, so the race is on and Zoe is finally going to need to trust others of her kind who may be able to help her rescue her cousin.

I must admit that I’ve struggled reviewing this book for reasons that I’m not quite sure.  It’s not a badly written book and it has a fairly original concept but I didn’t like it as much as I thought.  There’s no lack of action not to mention multiple destinations that take Zoe around the world.  But somehow I didn’t really connect with any of the characters or really buy into the whole plot.  I think possibly this is because there’s too much going on, too many characters who don’t always seem plausible and just the constant jet setting around the globe which seems a bit gimmicky.  Plus, given that Zoe isn’t in control of her beast nature and knows nothing about the Fangborn I struggled with the idea that she suddenly seemed to be so centric in this major hunt for ancient relics and power, not to mention that they all seemed to be doing quite well in finding these before Zoe unwittingly took one and came to their attention.

Now, I didn’t dislike this book and I don’t doubt that other readers, who like a fast moving story with lots of action, not to mention a little romance, will probably really enjoy this.  It could also be just suffering a little bit from first book syndrome where the set up detracts a little from the story but I’m not sure at this point however whether I will continue with the series.  That being said I certainly wouldn’t dissuade others from giving this a try.

Given the links to Greek mythology I’m entering this book as one of my Once Upon a Time reads.

I received this copy from Net Galley in return for a fair and honest review.

2 Responses to “Seven Kinds of Hell by Dana Cameron”

  1. cherylmahoney

    Sounds like a good premise with cool ideas that didn’t quite mesh…those are always frustrating!

    • lynnsbooks

      I wouldn’t say that I hated it, it was definitely okay, but I don’t think I liked it enough to check out No.2. I imagine some people will probably enjoy it more than me – there was certainly no lack of action or interesting settings but I thought it was too busy.
      Lynn 😀

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