Bounty hunters Rachel, Ivy and Jenks, the unlikely witch/vampire/pixy team, are back in this marvelous sequel to Dead Witch Walking. Now that Rachel no longer has a price on her head she has more mundane worries, like paying the rent.

When the human-run Federal Inderland Bureau needs help investi-gating a serial killer targeting witches, Rachel takes the commission. The trail leads back to her old nemesis Trent Kalamack. In the meantime Ivy is still making vampiric advances, Jenks is still a pest and boyfriend Nick is summoning demons. A witch's work is never done.

This unusually strong urban fantasy benefits from intricately detailed world-building and intriguing characters. Moments of wry humor lighten a chill-ing, tightly plotted mystery as Rachel draws closer to uncovering a brutal killer and in the process uncovers secrets in her past.

Superficially Rachel is a type found in many contemporary mysteries: a sexy, smart-mouthed heroine with an endear-ing tendency to shoot herself in the foot. With restrained character-driven scenes offset by moments of pulse-pounding action, Harrison moves Rachel far beyond the stereotype and has readers seriously pulling for her by the end and left wanting more. (Feb., 464 pp., $6.99)
Reviewed by: 
Jen Talley Exum