Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Dirty Streets of Heaven by Tad Williams
The Dirty Streets of Heaven
Review by Jacqui Slaney
I had promised myself that I would not buy any more books for a while until I caught up with at least some of the ones I had on my shelf. Then a certain blog writer let me know the ridiculously low price of a new James Herbert, so of course, I had to buy that, but it was on the Kindle and I reasoned that it did not count. Then I saw this book and having bought all of this authors work over the years, I knew that I had to buy it.
This is the description:
Sure, he takes the occasional trip to Heaven, but his job as an advocate - arguing the fate of the recently deceased - keeps him pretty busy on Earth, and he's more than happy to spend the rest of his time propping up the bar with his fellow immortals.
Until the day, a soul goes missing, presumed stolen by 'the other side'.
A new chapter in the war between heaven and hell is about to open. And Bobby is right in the middle of it, with only a desirable but deadly demon to aid him.
This is a book about Heaven and Hell. There are angels and demons, ghosts and you find out what happens when a person dies.
The main character is Bobby Dollar, or the Angel Doloriel as he is correctly known and he is one of Heavens many advocates for newly departed souls. Every time someone dies, there is a court case for that soul, an angel and demon fight for the soul to be sent either upstairs or downstairs depending how the presiding judge decides. Bobby is good at his job; he questions everything, which is not something an angel would normally do. He is known for being grumpy and sarcastic and is suspicious of his superiors. He also used to be member of the Harps who are the soldiers of heaven and often wonders about his past, altogether he is a great character, who you quickly start to like. Everything is quite normal until the day one soul vanishes before Heaven and Hell can decide where to send him, then one of Hells prosecutors is killed rather nastily and suddenly everybody is looking at Bobby as the cause of all these problems.
The pace of this book is fast, and you are hooked quite quickly, you want to know what happens next. As I said, Bobby Dollar is a great character, and he has soon become a favourite of mine. Other great characters are described along the way, with Bobby’s interactions with them, you find out some of their history, which does flesh them out and makes the whole story more interesting and the writing zip along. Fatback for example, and the Sollyhull sisters who are brilliant, you also have Sam his best friend and Monica his occasional love. Best of all you have the Countess of Cold Hands, who ends up meaning a lot more to our hero than he expected. There are great descriptions of Heaven and the higher angels but not too much that it allows the story to become bogged down
 As I said, I bought this book without hesitation as I have enjoyed all of Williams’s books, and I have seen other reviews from people who have done some same. They however seem to criticize the story for not being as good as some of his other work. This book is completely different from the others though and so I think it is a bit unfair to compare a story like this to say ‘Memory, Sorrow and Thorn’ or to ‘Shadow March’.
You should enjoy this book on its own merits, trust me, it’s an excellent read and whether you know Tad Williams writings or not, you will definitely enjoy it.

10 out of 10

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