I can’t imagine anything better than curling up in a comfortable chair with a cat and a cup of coffee to finish a good book after cleaning the house all morning. Ok, I can think of a few things better, but they involve really really good books, lots of cuddly kittens and amazingly good coffee. My point is, well-earned lazy afternoons like today remind me of why I love to read. I enjoy cleaning the house because it looks and feels better when everything has been dusted and put in its proper place. I love reading because it allows me to ignore all the spots I didn’t dust and the dishes I forgot to wash. Reading engages my mind in a way getting a mirror spotlessly clean never can.

Urban Shaman

Urban Shaman was recommended to me by a good friend, one whose taste in books (and basically everything else, as she is tremendously talented in everything she does) I have always respected. She said Urban Shaman was one of the best books she had read recently, although it was a quick read. As I had just received my replacement library card, I immediately put in a request for the book. And finished it in less time than it took for the book to be sent from a library in the next town over. I read the first 100 pages yesterday morning during breakfast; the next 150 last night before bed, and the last little bit this morning waiting for the laundry to dry.

My absolute favorite thing about this book was the wealth of ancient mythology the author drew from. Joanne Walker (the main character and a cop/mechanic) is of Celtic and Cherokee descent, so the book was centered around those two main beliefs. There was also a great deal of magical theories about shamans and a brief trip to the city of Babylon. Along with the magical stuff which I loved, the characters were also incredibly funny. My favorite was Joanne’s new sidekick/best friend is a 70-something cab driver with a wicked sense of humor. The book follows Joanne over a few chaotic days as she tries to stop a crazed Celtic demi-god from murdering people all over Seattle and trapping The Hunt (a group of hunters who collect the souls of the dead) in our world.

While the premise of the book is a bit weird, I greatly enjoyed the fast-paced action and speed at which the book moved. I do wish some aspects of the book had been given more time (Joanne’s past is hinted at constantly but never explained), but I guess that’s what the rest of the series is for! Urban Shaman was a great little read, perfect for down time between chores and over coffee in the morning when you don’t want to think.