Someone or something dangerous and unimaginable is loose in the Southwest, something that's ripping young men apart with its claws and teeth and taking their blood. The first victim was Navajo Tribal Detective Lance Logan's cousin. In a ceremony seeking the approval of his Navajo ancestors, Lance has received their blessing to seek revenge against the monster that killed Jimmy D. and now a string of other young men. When his mystical Navajo intuition leads him to Lake Pleasant, AZ, and the latest killing – that of local high school football star Andy Simmons – he finds his Navajo beliefs and his by-the-book training suddenly at odds over the evidence he's presented...until he meets psychic and new age shop owner Carly Carleton.
Carly has her own problems dealing with her dream visions, which have been getting more frequent of late, not to mention more frightening. After she takes the information she's gleaned from her dreams to the local police chief and he labels her an eccentric flake, she only tells her employee and friend Jazz about her latest dream. Despite Jazz's promise not to tell anyone about Carly's dream, she accidentally lets it slip to her boyfriend Kyle Murphy – who just happens to be lead detective on Andy's case. When Kyle learns that Carly's dream exactly matches Andy's bloody mauling, he knows he must bring Lance and Carly together in an effort to get one step ahead of the killer before he – or it – can kill again.
The attraction between Lance and Carly is instant and combustive, almost as if they'd known each other before. With each of them hesitant to act so quickly on their feelings, their attraction smolders, proving to be more powerful than their determined wills can manage. What neither of them knows is that their meeting and the ultimate apprehension of a demented murderer who seeks the perfect blend of human and animal DNA to create a monstrous killer will change their lives forever.
Death Unseen by Tia Dani – the writing team of Kristia Eaton and Dani Petrone – is a suspenseful who-dun-it, with a gripping mix of mystery, romantic suspense, and both Native American and tarot-type mysticism. Lance and Carly are both strong individuals, with down-to-earth personalities and the kind of problems everyone can relate to, even if you aren't a clairvoyant and possess the ability to experience death in dreams. When Lance meets Carly, he isn't certain if she will turn out to be a help to him or a deterrent to his mission. He doesn't quite know how to take her or his attraction to her. I thought their initial sexual encounter was a bit rushed until Carly envisions them together in a previous lifetime. With their shared powers and once they deal with their individual issues that keep them apart, their relationship develops into something quite extraordinary. Unfortunately, their dialogue struck me as a bit stilted at few times, probably a result of the dual authorship and difference in writing styles.
The back story involving Jazz and Kyle makes for a nice addition to the plot. Besides, these two play vital parts in the story line, and their personalities – especially Jazz's – certainly add spice to the story, as did Kyle's Captain Oberville, but for a very different reason. I wanted to box the stubborn man's ears a couple times. And then there's SCIMAN/Creator and his nephew Jackie – chilling characters to say the least. I also enjoyed the elaborate setting descriptions, which reminded me why I love Arizona so much myself.
Death Unseen is a definite keeper, one of those books you just can't put down until you've finished it, but as good as this book is, the ending itself is the true chef-d'oeuvre of this book. I won't forget it for quite some time. I absolutely love it when there are a ton of questions and suggested outcomes presented at the end of a book, signaling a sequel, which I hope – in this case – will be available very, very soon.
Reviewer: Merrylee TwoLipsReviews.com