Flora Reviews… Tall, Dark & Deadly (Agents of the Bureau #1) by Kharma Kelley
Read: 29th May – 1st June 2018
Publication date: 30th September 2016.
My Goodreads Rating: 5 Stars
So what’s this book about?
Tall, Dark and Deadly is the first novel (approx 214 pages) in Ms Kelley’s new urban fantasy/paranormal romance series, Agents of the Bureau.
Tall, Dark & Deadly is set in modern day New Orleans, USA. The story has many well known supernatural species in it. Such as shapeshifters and various fae. As well as vampires, we’re also introduced to half-vampires called Dhampirs. Dhampirs are regarded as abominations by most supernatural species. They’re not treated very nicely, many being executed by the Bureau before they “go rogue”.
I focus my reviews on how the story was told rather than the plot itself. I’m looking at the author’s writing style, how they paced their plots and how well they constructed their characters and setting. Therefore, my reviews don’t contain spoilers or reveal plot twists.
Here’s what the official blurb has to say about the story.
Chloe Hunter can’t seem to stay out of trouble. Incarcerated by The Bureau after running amok for a century with a gang of vampires, grifting and terrorizing humanity, she’s ready to make up for her dark and naughty past. Luckily, when The Bureau would rather see her at the end of a wooden stake, in comes her new straight-laced boss, Ethan Raines who’s got other plans. An enigmatic vampire who finds her hybrid blood and sexy street prowess too irresistible to pass up, Ethan requests The Bureau to release her into his custody. Her debt to society is to punish other supernaturals who break the law and cut them down.
When Chloe’s old gang involves her in a plot to unlock a mysterious box of woe, she’s forced to make some hard choices that threaten to betray the trust of the man who’s given her a second chance at life and love.
I was given a digital version of this book for free from the publisher after making a request via NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This has not influenced my review in any way. I’m sharing my candid opinion about this story.
So, what did I like about it?
I requested Tall, Dark and Deadly through NetGalley for a number of reasons. The front cover caught my eye – I mean, half dressed gorgeous specimen of maleness you’ve got to agree, yum. The story description piqued my interest – bad girl turned good with potential of plenty of grey areas to play in and an odd couple romance, yes please. Plus, of course, I love finding new-to-me authors.
Kharma Kelley’s writing style is breezy with a good dose of sarcasm. I enjoyed the inclusion of pop culture quotes and shows making this a very easy book to read.
I love stories that highlight the fact that we all have choices. That the choices we make not only affect us but those around us too. Sometimes, the hardest thing is to take personal responsibility for those choices we make.
Tall, Dark & Deadly is the first book in a new series. Therefore, I understand that it’s a fine balance between imparting information and pace of plot. Ms Kelley has built a complex paranormal world filled with vampires, shapeshifters, goblins, demons and various species of Fae. Many will be very familiar to existing fans of paranormal romance and urban fantasy genres. However, she’s created an interesting history spanning millennia. A system of governance for the supernatural world. This includes The Bureau who oversee the laws that every supernatural species has to adhere to. Therefore, I’m intrigued to see where she’ll take us next. Looking forward to learning more about this world and how it works in subsequent books.
I really enjoyed lots of elements within Tall, Dark & Deadly.
The relationship development, the adventure, the twists and surprises turned this story from a good book to a really good one. Not to mention the passionate, erotic sex. Oh my! How can so few pages make me go from titillated to excited and adrenaline pumped to blubbering like a baby?! There’s a nice little epilogue to finish this story off too which I enjoyed. Plus the blurb about book 2 “Nocturnally Yours” which is coming out later this year. These characters have found a place in my heart so I will be looking out for it with hawk-like attention.
So, ummm, was there anything I disliked about it?
Now, I’ve got to be honest. Yes I gave this book a 5 star (I loved it) rating. However, to begin with I didn’t like our heroine, Chloë Hunter. She was too gung-ho, seeming to lack the level of intelligence that I look for in a female lead and had to be rescued on numerous occasions from situations that were of a direct consequence of her thoughtless actions! (*tut* I hate that!).
However, I’m glad that I persevered. As the story continued, Ms Kelley gave us insights into Chloë’s history. The life she’d lead, the choices she’d had to make which forged her into the adult she became. Ms Kelley also used Chloë’s new second-chance as an analyst with the Bureau as a way to develop her character and grow. I found myself seeing her with new eyes as I continued to read doing a complete 180°. Chloë earned my respect and won my heart.
So, basically what I’m saying is…
After a shaky start, I ended up really loving this action-packed, emotional, passionate, and sometimes dark, paranormal romance novel.
There are scenes of explicit sexual content and graphic violence in this book. Therefore, I’d only recommend it to adults who aren’t offended by scenes of this sort.
I’d recommend Tall, Dark & Deadly to adults who like hunky heroes with a dark edge. Readers who enjoy seeing the female lead character really grow and come into their own. Especially those who love relationship and romance tales that have some gritty story-lines and oodles of passion.
So, has my review of TALL, DARK AND DEADLEY (AGENTS OF THE BUREAU #1) encouraged you to find out more? Click on any of the links below to check out the book yourself. Keep reading to find out more about the author.
About The Author
A Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy author, Kharma Kelley has always been enamored with all things that go “bump in the night“. She truly believes that finding humanity and beauty in some of the most seemingly unconventional places is part of the romantic psyche to her. Her work has been featured on Cosmopolitan.com and has won several peer awards with her action-packed, steamy prose. A big fan of the Big Easy, Kharma tends to weave her proud Cajun heritage and values into her books. She enjoys
reading other urban fantasy and romance novels and playing Minecraft in her spare time.
She frequents Wattpad (which she refers to as a story “incubator”) often and beta tests her new story ideas there as well as provide guidance and critiques to aspiring authors. She’s a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) advocate and blogger in both the tech and literary industry. She is featured in Austin Woman Magazine for her thought leadership regarding building inclusive environments in the workplace.
Her works are often compared to Laurell K. Hamilton, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Gena Showalter, Kresley Cole and the late great author L.A. Banks.
She lives in Round Rock, Texas with her husband.
Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts about Tall, Dark & Deadly. Kharma has become one of my favourite authors, see who my other favourites are HERE.