Review copy provided by Tor. Additionally, Jaime is a personal friend, and we share an agent.
As I read A Barricade in Hell, I kept thinking, “Why can’t I have a TV series like this?” Jaime does the research into her visual cues meticulously, from the flowers to the furriers to the Chinatown streets. They’re touchstones, jumping-off points for the narrative, grounding the fantastical in the historical. And the two main characters fit together so well: Delia’s work with ghosts and poltergeists meshes so well with her husband Gabe’s police work, each complementing and balancing the other, that I keep thinking, “This is such a good place for a scene break in a book…and it would also be a good place for a scene break in a TV show…if I could have a TV show in which a married couple had work strengths that complimented each other like this!” But honestly, it’s not that common in the written side of things either.
And 1917 in the US is such a volatile setting, such a fascinating time, with “modern” technologies just introduced but not ubiquitous (cars, telephones–present but not to be relied upon), and also of course with the US poised on entry into the First World War. A Barricade in Hell uses that and all its attendant tensions without being directly about the politicians in Washington, and without forgetting that even a country that’s been isolationist can’t be isolated. I was so pleased with this, so very pleased. Highly recommended. It doesn’t come out for awhile, which makes now your perfect time to catch up on Delia’s Shadow if you haven’t already.