Carrie’s story is unique, she can not only read your mind she can see and read your soul. She had been damned by the actions of others thousands of years ago and the only reason Carrie wasn’t burning in Hell was that her ka, or life force, was unable to separate from her body. Her soul had been sold to Lucifer, and he is quite proud of his prize. After a several millennia Carrie finally finds a soul pure enough to fight for. Sebastian is not seeking redemption; he sold his soul for the greater good and is willing to pay the price. Carrie takes it upon herself to find a way to renegotiate his contract with the demon Keziel. To do this she must travel into the depths of hell and parley with the demons that control its pathways. As the cost of her journey rises, Carrie must determine how much she is willing to sacrifice to save one good soul.
“Elizabeth Corrigan has degrees in English and psychology and has spent several years working as a data analyst in various branches of the healthcare industry. She lives in Maryland with two cats and a purple Smart Car.”
Elizabeth Corrigan did an excellent job developing her characters and she has taken minor liberties with some myths to make a more entertaining story, however she has tried to keep historical accuracy. I believe she succeeded. Carrie’s story is unique and I could appreciate how she lived her life. She has two longtime friends who check in with her, the first of these is the demon Bedlam. He truly is chaos in the most fun way and he is not a bad guy. Here is the way she describes their first meeting:
I detected neither the sanctimoniousness of the angels nor the malicious cruelty of the demons. Instead, I felt a spiral of rotating emotions that left me dizzy enough that I had to put my hand against a stone pillar for a moment to steady myself… The man’s current emotional state similarly seemed to lack any center, though it cycled around guilt, confusion, anger, and a firm desire to be distracted from those three emotions…
“Okay, so here’s my problem. You know how sometimes you start doing something, and it seems like a good idea at the time, but then suddenly there are dead bodies everywhere, and you’re not quite sure how that happened?” …
I would love to be able to share the story here, but Bedlam rambles, then continues with:
“Now, let me say right here that it was all supposed to be a joke. I really didn’t expect them to take it quite so literally. These were people who held on to their religion through generations of persecution and slavery. And a gold cow? Their religious texts say that God made them in His own image, so I thought they’d be pretty quick to dismiss that one.” “Not so much?” I asked. He shook his head.
Through all the years Bedlam has been a true friend to Carrie and has done everything in his power to protect her. Her other true friend is the earth-bound angel Gabriel who has stolen her heart, but he seems to love her no more than the rest of mankind. The story is fast moving and highly entertaining with a lot of thought provoking material. It was a fun roller coaster ride while it lasted. It would be very interesting to see how this journey affects the rest of Carrie’s existence.
Added for Reprise Review: Oracle of Philadelphia by Elizabeth Corrigan was a nominee in the Fantasy category for B&P 2014 Readers' Choice Awards. Original review ran April 10, 2013.
My review is based on an advance reader copy of this book, so I’m unable to judge this area.
Rating: ***** Five Stars
Reviewed by: ?wazithinkin
Approximate word count: 65-70,000 words