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The Dirty Streets of Heaven(Bobby Dollar, #1)
Bobby Dollar is an angel — a real one. He knows a lot about sin, and not just in his professional capacity as an advocate for souls caught between Heaven and Hell. Bobby’s wrestling with a few deadly sins of his own — pride, anger, even lust.
But his problems aren’t all his fault. Bobby can’t entirely trust his heavenly superiors, and he’s not too sure about any of his fellow earthbound angels either, especially the new kid that Heaven has dropped into their midst, a trainee angel who asks too many questions. And he sure as hell doesn’t trust the achingly gorgeous Countess of Cold Hands, a mysterious she-demon who seems to be the only one willing to tell him the truth.
When the souls of the recently departed start disappearing, catching both Heaven and Hell by surprise, things get bad very quickly for Bobby D. End-of-the-world bad. Beast of Revelations bad. Caught between the angry forces of Hell, the dangerous strategies of his own side, and a monstrous undead avenger that wants to rip his head off and suck out his soul, Bobby’s going to need all the friends he can get — in Heaven, on Earth, or anywhere else he can find them.
You’ve never met an angel like Bobby Dollar. And you’ve never read anything like The Dirty Streets of Heaven.
Brace yourself — the afterlife is weirder than you ever believed.
Tad Williams has been a constant fixture in the fantasy & science fiction genre for the past 25 years. His MEMORY, SORROW AND THORN series is often hailed as one of the finest post-Tolkien epics, and he has established a reputation for writing intelligent door-stopping, novels such as the OTHERLAND books (four volumes) or the SHADOWMARCH series (again, four volumes).
His new novel, THE DIRTY STREETS OF HEAVEN, however, is something of a departure for him, maybe even a career changer. It is the first of three (for now at least) planned volumes in this series called the BOOBY DOLLAR BOOKS, but each volume is self-contained and can be read independently from the others.
Doloriel is a rather ordinary low-level angel working under his earthly alias Bobby Dollar. He is an angelic advocate; on behalf of the recently deceased he argues for their immortal souls to be accepted into heaven rather than going to hell or even purgatory. He meets his fellow angelic advocates regularly in his favourite angel bar, but he is largely minding his own business and doing his job (which is a lot less glamorous than it sounds like), when suddenly immortal souls start disappearing and neither heaven nor hell seem to now why or how. Bobby Dollar´s life is suddenly at stake even though he does not really know why. However, he is quite sure that his heavenly superiors are not telling him everything and that if he wants to save his own immortal soul, he just has to find out what is happening by himself.
DIRTY STREETS starts out as a classic noir detective novel with overtones of Raymond Chandler rather than echoes of Tolkienian epic fantasy. Bobby Dollar is an engaging POV character whose distinctive, witty narrative voice drives the story forward at breakneck pace. He is playing against a colourful ensemble cast of angels, demons and other otherworldly beings. And while the books offers plenty of action and excitement, it is not all empty calories; there is some serious meat on the bones of this novel. A great, fun read that leaves this reader wanting more as soon as possible!