Book Review: The Rain-Soaked Bride

The Rain-Soaked Bride by Guy Adams, The Clown Service #2

A number of influential South Korean nationals are committing suicide on UK soil. In all cases they seem to simply drop whatever they're doing and swiftly -- almost vacantly -- end their own lives. An electronics importer falls from the top floor of his high-rise office, the ambassador to the UK shoots his chauffeur and drives his own car off London Bridge, an actor sets fire to himself during a movie premiere...

August and Toby investigate and slowly uncover the ancient force of the Rain-Soaked Bride, a ghostly spirit of vengeance that drags her enemies to their deaths.

Once summoned the spirit cannot be dismissed until it takes the life it is charged with, it will be unstoppable in its pursuit of the mortal it has in its sights. Unfortunately, after getting too close to the source of the spirit, that mortal is now Toby Greene.

 About two years ago I was first introduced to Guy Adams' writing in the form of The Good, The Bad and The Infernal, and was immediately taken by his writing style. A year later came something quite different, the first book in the The Clown Service series, The Clown Service, up until that time the Detective genre books were pretty much focused on a completely fantasy setting or completely current setting. The Clown Service was for me a book that marked the change, really giving a cool blend of both, making it just possible that something could exist, or making you wish it did. 

The story of The Rain-Soaked Bride picks up a bit after the events of The Clown Service, a few months have passed in between both books. Toby Greene, the latest addition to the super secret organization known as Section 37, or perhaps better known as The Clown Service, is wrapping up some business in Russia. After this Guy Adams set the focus once again back in London, England. The base of operations of Section 37. Toby, however, doesn't get much time to relax and soon finds himself on another mission. Some very unexplainable murders have been happening to a specific group of people. With unexplainable I mean really unexplainable. The normal authorities are drawing blank in finding ways to figure out just how it all might have happened. When the only thing left behind is a wet spot... Now it is once again up to the new guy Toby Greene and his superior Augustus Shining to find out what is happening. Because the victims in this are special, they are from a South Korean delegation, and this could put a lot of thing at risk. As with many if not all of Guy Adams' books I always have to stop my self from telling too much and even more so when I talk about the The Clown service books as they are non-stop action packed and very funny and humorous books to start with. 

And once again with, The Rain-Soaked Bride, Guy Adams did a very cool job in constructing the story. As I already mentioned above, this is part urban fantasy and a whole lot more. Guy Adams has a lot of creativity which readily comes to show when he build his story and devises the plot line. On the first it all seems rather normal, as it should be, but when you continue in the story the weird things start to pop up, the supernatural influences. In some ways they remain obscure mentionings, which allow you to think about them for yourself, what they could possible mean. But in other Guy Adams explains them in detail with an accompanying theory. Both of these elements work mighty fine together creating one heck of a promising story that delivers. 

The characters that you meet along the story are both recurrent and new. Lets take Toby for starters.Looking back on the first book it readily comes to show that Guy Adams had in mind to establish Toby as the lead character. Toby was placed in The Clown Service and had to deal with it. So basically his development was getting acquainted with the weird things and Section 37 in general. From the start of the story it becomes clear that he has learned many lessons and now is the next fully operational field agent. Toby is confident in what he does and all his actions show this. Also people around have become to trust him and his judgement fully. This gives him a boost in self confidence which gives a tremendous boost to his character. Second up is Augustus Shining, I like his character a lot. He was a bit fatherly in the first book but now gives more space for Toby's development and letting him take the center stage when it comes to making decisions. Augustus in my opinion is the serious side to it all, he like to approach thing more calculated than Toby but also doesn't mind for a joke once in a while. Next to these two established characters there are also newer introductions. To begin with the sister of Augustus. April Shining who is called into action to act as a Korean translator. April doesn't look by far close to August in terms of personality, she moves like a tornado through the story producing some very funny scenes, you don't want to get in an argue with her! Though we already met April in the first book she now has a lot more coverage in The Rain-Soaked Bride, this is also an advantage of a second book, further building out the characters. There was also a brief exposure of a curse specialist Cassandra Grace, who with her brief but powerful page time added a lot of flavour to the story. 

The Clown Service was a terrific start to the series which yes sorry to say Guy Adams continues brilliantly in The Rain-Soaked Bride. Further developing the oftentimes weird and bit eccentric characters and of course showing more and more of his own creativity in setting up this one-of-a-kind urban fantasy slash supernatural espionage series. I haven't heard a lot of new from the blogosphere about The Clown Service books, but this is a underdog guys and girl, beware! I wish more people new about this awesome series. It is. Trust me.


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