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About A Longer Fall by Charlaine Harris

#1 New York Times bestselling author Charlaine Harris returns with the second of the Gunnie Rose series, in which Lizbeth is hired onto a new crew, transporting a crate into Dixie, the self-exiled southeast territory of the former United States. What the crate contains is something so powerful, that forces from across three territories want to possess it.

In this second thrilling installment of the Gunnie Rose series, Lizbeth Rose is hired onto a new crew for a seemingly easy protection job, transporting a crate into Dixie, just about the last part of the former United States of America she wants to visit. But what seemed like a straight-forward job turns into a massacre as the crate is stolen. Up against a wall in Dixie, where social norms have stepped back into the last century, Lizbeth has to go undercover with an old friend to retrieve the crate as what’s inside can spark a rebellion, if she can get it back in time.

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Review of A Longer Fall

In this alternative history, the United State has been divided up into several independent regions.  The atmosphere is similar the Old West, but magic is the heavy-handed influence that is both feared and appreciated.

Lizbeth Rose is a favorite character.  She is a Gunnie – a hired gun.  She shoots first and usually, does not even need to ask questions, so confident is she in her ability and her purpose.

The blond one pulled his shiny new gun, and I killed him.

Note, she doesn’t aim, doesn’t fire.  She just kills him.  This efficiency of words is characteristic of Lizbeth.  It is also refreshing and serves to move the plot along at quite a clip.

Lizbeth is an interesting woman.  In essence, to make a living, she often has to kill.  While she does not seem to regret the need, it does not harden her.  She is vulnerable, honest and determined to set things right.

Early in the story, the man who hired Lizbeth dies and the package is stolen.  Lizbeth needs the money so she is determined to find who the package was to have been delivered to.  Enter old friend Eli, grigori (wizard, magic-wielder, sorceror, etc.).  Eli also has a vested interest in the delivery of the package, so they team up.  I liked the pair working together in An Easy Death, so I was please to see Eli again.  He has a history, as does Lizbeth, so keeping them together means we get to learn more about them.  Off they go to the prudish little town of Sally, where grigori are feared, women who wear pants are frowned upon, and blacks are second-class citizens.  The town’s unwritten rules are enforced in not so subtle ways by the rich and powerful.

This is a story of bigotry, ideals, hope and change.  Who determines what is right?  How does change happen?  In fictiondom, change is a lot easier than in real life, so even though I was rooting for Lizbeth and Eli and the good people of Sally, I thought the ending was, hmm, silly.  Well, I liked what happened, but it was too easy.

5 stars for A Longer Fall.  I thing you would benefit from starting with An Easy Death, if you have not read it, but it is not necessary.  I am hooked on this series and will continue to follow it.

Through Netgalley, the publisher provided a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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