The Dead of Winter
Cora Oglesby, Book #1
By Lee Collins
ISBN# 9780857662729
Author’s Website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Vicki

The Dead of Winter is a Supernatural Western. Some will have the same confused insta-reaction to this hybrid genre as they did when Joss Whedon announced production on Firefly, the Sci-Fi Western. ‘How will that work?’ they said. And unfortunately, they never really gave it a chance. Now is the chance to right those wrongs! Any past indiscretions, where you have overlooked awesome because it might have been a little bit too far outside of your comfort zone, can be forgotten about by reading Lee Collins’s debut novel: The Dead of Winter.

Cora Oglesby and her husband Ben are bounty hunters, but they don’t haul in felony dodgers and they don’t collect debts; their bounty is decidedly more fangy. They hunt vampires, hellhounds, werewolves, ghouls and a whole host of other things that go bump in the night; for the right price.

When the duo rides into Leadville, Colorado Cora and Ben are commissioned for a job that leads them down a path that will change their lives forever.

Cora is like Calamity Jane after too much whiskey, a couple more years around the block and less singing and dancing, more swearing and punching. Luckily, Calamity Jane is one of my all time favorite movies, which is why I instantly loved Cora and all her flaws. I think you really have to like Cora to enjoy this book, but she is definitely not for everybody. For me, Cora is the heart of the story, even if she seems a little harsh and distant at times, she ultimately roots the novel in reality.

Cora and Ben’s marriage is a catalyst to many truly surprising plot twists and while they appear to be polar opposites their relationship is comfortable, yet bittersweet. I really enjoyed the way in which Collins represented their relationship and the way in which this relationship developed throughout the novel.

The extremely English scholar and his eccentric wealthy employer were my other favorite characters. Although the dialogue was excellent for everyone; James and Cora’s exchanges and banter were particularly notable and entertaining.

Cora Ogelsby is a kick-ass heroine and really, we can’t have too many kick-ass heroines can we? Especially when they are nearing retirement and still wielding weapons and killing monsters like nobody’s business! This novel is not for the faint of heart, there are some particularly gruesome scenes but Cora’s interpretation of these scenes is almost comedic. She has no problem kicking a severed vampire head at a group of bystanders for her own amusement. See? Kick-ass!

I very much enjoyed my time with Cora and I am looking forward to seeing where Collins takes her next.