The Pemkowet Visitors Bureau has always promoted paranormal tourism—even if it has downplayed the risks (hobgoblins are unpredictable). It helps that the town is presided over by Daisy Johanssen, who as Hel’s liaison is authorized by the Norse goddess of the dead to keep Pemkowet under control. Normally, that’s easier to do in the winter, when bracing temperatures keep folks indoors.
But a new predator is on the prowl, and this one thrives on nightmares. Daisy is on her trail and working intimately with her partner and sometime lover from the Pemkowet PD, sexy yet unavailable werewolf Cody Fairfax. But even as the creature is racking up innocent victims, a greater danger looms on Pewkowet’s horizon.
As a result of a recent ghost uprising, an unknown adversary—represented by a hell-spawn lawyer with fiery powers of persuasion—has instigated a lawsuit against the town. If Pemkowet loses, Hel’s sovereignty will be jeopardized, and the fate of the eldritch community will be at stake. The only one who can prevent it is Daisy—but she’s going to have to confront her own worst nightmare to do it.
“Jacqueline Carey proves her versatility with this compelling piece of urban fantasy.” —#1 New York Times Bestselling Author Charlaine Harris
“Fans have come to expect the amazing from [New York Times bestselling author Jacqueline Carey] and her new urban fantasy series won’t disappoint them.”—Library Journal (Starred Review)
“Insanely addictive.”—News and Sentinel (Parkersburg, WV)
“World building that recalls [George R. R.] Martin.”—SF Reviews
“Carey knows her fantasy and this latest trip into fantasy realism is a page-turner.” —San Francisco Book Review
“Delightfully distinctive.”—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
It seems a bit silly to talk about serious themes in a book that features frost giants driving dune buggies, foul-mouthed fairies and a beer-swilling bogle—and yet, there is one. One of the delights of paranormal fantasy is that it allows us to view the familiar through the lens of the fantastic. The town of Pemkowet, where the Agent of Hel series is set, is based on my hometown of Saugatuck. We really do have miles of Lake Michigan coast and acres of spectacular dunelands threatened by development, just like Hel’s demesne is threatened by… well, you’ll find out.
The idea that preserving the few wild places left in the world is essential to preserving the existence of magic is central to Poison Fruit; but it’s something I believe, too. There’s a sense of wondrous suspense in not knowing what lies around the next bend, whether it’s a shy dryad or a doe with her fawns.
Poison Fruit is also a book in which my hell-spawn heroine Daisy is forced to confront her worst fear. Granted, it’s more extreme than anything those of us without infernal parentage have to contend with, but I think a lot of people can relate to the idea of a fear so deep and dark, it’s scary to even voice it.
Of course, there are thrills and chills along the way, too. There’s a creepy predator on the loose, and Daisy’s love life is more complicated—and hotter—than ever.
This trilogy has been a tremendous amount of fun to write, and I hope everyone has enjoyed the ride. Just remember to keep your limbs inside the vehicle on the descent to Little Niflheim…