Sunday, February 5, 2012

February 5, 2012 -Book Review –Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey

Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey
Science Fiction/Fantasy


Product Description From Amazon.com:
“Lushly written with rich and vivid characters, SANTA OLIVIA is Jacqueline Carey's take on comic book superheroes and the classic werewolf myth.

Loup Garron was born and raised in Santa Olivia, an isolated, disenfranchised town next to a US military base inside a DMZ buffer zone between Texas and Mexico. A fugitive "Wolf-Man" who had a love affair with a local woman, Loup's father was one of a group of men genetically-manipulated and used by the US government as a weapon. The "Wolf-Men" were engineered to have superhuman strength, speed, sensory capability, stamina, and a total lack of fear, and Loup, named for and sharing her father's wolf-like qualities, is marked as an outsider.

After her mother dies, Loup goes to live among the misfit orphans at the parish church, where they seethe from the injustices visited upon the locals by the soldiers. Eventually, the orphans find an outlet for their frustrations: They form a vigilante group to support Loup Garron who, costumed as their patron saint, Santa Olivia, uses her special abilities to avenge the town.

Aware that she could lose her freedom, and possibly her life, Loup is determined to fight to redress the wrongs her community has suffered. And like the reincarnation of their patron saint, she will bring hope to all of Santa Olivia.”

Review:
4 out of 5 stars

Let me quickly state that this is not a typical “werewolf” story.  I certainly can’t claim to know the author’s intent for latching onto that claim other than to provide some context for Loup’s extraordinary abilities.  Having said that; the story is very well written and was a pleasure to read.   It starts a little slow introducing the reader to “Outpost 12”, which is a military zone that acts as a buffer between the United States and Mexico following the outbreak of an epidemic in Mexico.  The people of Outpost 12 are no longer considered US citizens and are completely isolated. 

As the reader I found myself cheering for Loup and the other orphans as they take what little action they can to provide justice for one of their own and unwittingly provide hope for the town in the vestige of ghostly miracles.  The Santitos (the orphans) are a wonderful cast of characters who all add value and insight into the main character and again I couldn’t help but like them all.

Prior to this story I had not read anything by Jacqueline Carey, but I was thrilled to find out that there is another book that continues Loup’s story.  I will definately be picking that one up





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1 comment:

  1. Blinks, you have not read anything by her before?

    Go check out my Goodreads reviews for her 6 book Kushiel set. You will find them interesting.

    Here is her fan page there.

    http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9237.Jacqueline_Carey

    Kushiel is a great series, but book three is dark, very dark. She does a good job with it but man you feel it.

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