Early Review: Dragon Justice by Laura Anne Gilman

, by Kt Clapsadl

Dragon Justice by Laura Anne Gilman
Paranormal Scene Investigations #4


In my time with PUPI, formally known as Private, Unaffiliated Paranormal Investigations, I've seen a lot. Learned a lot. And not all of it's been good. But what we do-make people accountable for crimes committed with magic-is important work.

Still. Even I need to take a break every now and again. Or so I've just been told (ordered).
So hey, vacation. Maybe I'll finally figure out what's going on with the "special bond" between me and the boss man, Benjamin Venec. Venec seems to like that idea-he's invited me down to join him on a jaunt to Philly. But no sooner do I arrive in the City of Brotherly Love than we're called in to look at a dead body.

And that's when life gets really complicated....

It's been two years since Bonnie and the rest of the crew were hired to form the PUPI investigative team. There's been plenty of ups and downs, but the work is important. Never before has anyone had the capability to bring down those responsible for magical crimes, making them incredibly valuable. The team runs itself ragged trying to keep up with the caseload, but none more than Bonnie. She's been ordered to take a much needed vacation, and when Ben invites her down to Philly, she jumps at the chance. They've been dancing around each other and the magical bone that ties them since the very start and it's about time for them to get things settled. But nothing goes according to plan as shortly after her arrival, Bonnie and Ben get dragged into a murder case. And it's a bad one. Suddenly figuring out their relationship no longer seems like such a priority.

This book was a little too all over the place for my tastes, in both the perspectives and the lack of plot focus due to the many different things going on at once. Granted, it was all pretty much tied together by the end, but until that point I was left frustrated as I tried to keep everything straight in my mind. I think I would have enjoyed Dragon Justice if a little more information had been given earlier on, or even if a few of the many directions had been cut out. Less can definitely be more. My constant confusion was only compounded by the constant perspective changes. There was no warning nor indication of the change other than the switch from first person to third each time we left Bonnie's head. Granted, I did read an e-arc copy, so perhaps those perspective changes will be formatted a little better in the final print version. But even so, I can't really say that those rotations added enough to the story to compensate for the way I kept getting startled out of the book due to the abrupt changes back and forth.

After all the insane build up between Bonnie and Ben over the past few installments I was happy to see them finally start making roads to accept the bond between them. I understand that they are both incredibly stubborn people, but at some point even the most stubborn have to cave, especially when there is a magical bond involved. As much as I would have like to have seen them be head over heels for each other now that they have given in, I realize that wouldn't fit them at all. They seem to have found a balance between their work lives and personal ones, making the switch in personalities/status at the drop of a hat. It is that balance that gives me hope for them in the long run as anything less wouldn't have worked.

Despite the jumbled plot threads that threatened to overwhelm me, Dragon Justice was a pretty decent book. From what I understand, this was the last contracted book in the series. However, while it did not have a cliffhanger ending, it also didn't read like it was finishing the series, so I'm curious to see whether there will be more books in the future. I know I would like to see more of Bonnie and the rest of the PUPI team.

(Received a copy from the publisher via Netgalley)


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Previous Books:
  1. Hard Magic
  2. Pack of Lies
  3. Tricks of the Trade
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