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From Hell With Love by Simon R Green

From Hell With Love is the most recent book in Simon R Green’s “Secret Histories” series with the main character of Eddie Drood, aka Shaman Bond. It was also the second book I bought on my Kindle and I’ve been meaning to review this for a few days.

The long story made short, this book wasn’t as good as it could have been both for what felt like a rushed ending and poor editing / proofreading.

To start with, I don’t know if these problems are exclusive to the Kindle version I read but the book had editing issues. In several places there would be sentences that places there would be sentences that looked like they had been partially copied and repeated which confused the hell out of me while reading. In other places, on my Kindle version at least, there was be oddly pl aced spa ces that would break up words leaving me confused for a moment with what I was reading. And in at least one place they simply used the name of a character that didn’t exist in the book (when talking to William in the library, it suddenly has Walker taking a book out of Eddie’s hand instead of it being William doing that action).

As to the ending… Without spoiling the story this book introduced some great potential foes for Eddie and the Drood family and all to quickly came to a resolution of the threat they posed and moved on. Honestly, this book could and should have been two books. With the first of the two books ending at around Chapter 8 and the second book continuing onwards through the rest of the story-arc from there.

As it is, the story feels a little too rushed and when the conclusion comes as quickly as it does it seems almost too easy and feels a bit unsatisfying.

That said, I have oddly mixed feelings about the book. I still enjoyed it, faults and all, because I find the character of Eddie to be quite likable and the general idea behind the setting and stories remains fun. From Hell With Love also feels more like part of the series than the previous one, The Spy Who Haunted Me, did.

While I liked TSWHM is felt very out of place and much more stand-alone than the rest of the series has. Which wasn’t a bad thing, it was an interesting change in tone for the series but in the end almost feels like it was seperate from the other 3 that have come out so far.

I think some of this may be due to the fact that the series was originally concieved as a trilogy and instead now stands as being four books long with a fifth on the way. Still, if the series is going to be continued forward, that only makes it more disappointing that the villains in this book were dealt with in the manner that they were as they would have made for great recurring characters.

In the end, I don’t feel like I can recommend FHWL as easily as I did the first two in the series (The Man with the Golden Torc and Daemons Are Forever) but if you have been enjoying the series so far than you will want to read this one just so you can keep up with the direction the series is going in and so that you aren’t too surprised when For Heavens Eyes Only comes out.

I would also be interested in finding out from anyone who reads the print version if the editing errors in the Kindle version exist there as well. Curious if it was just bad proofreading or if the publisher simply made a very half-assed effort in getting the book to the Kindle format.

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