Sunday 21 August 2011

Book Review- Dante's Journey by JC Marino

Title: Dante’s Journey
 Author: JC Marino
Series:  N/A
Published:  22 February 2010
Length:368 pages
Warnings: hell, violence
Source: Library
Summary :A flash of light and Detective Joe Dante steps through. No longer on the cobblestone streets of 1961 Boston, Joe finds himself in a horrifying new world-Hell itself.
Joe was in hot pursuit of his family’s killer, drug lord Filippo Argenti when both were killed, and he isn’t about to let a little thing like death slow him down.
So with a healthy dose of New England stubbornness and the help of a mysterious guide, Virgil DiMini, Joe must evade angry demons, and search ever lower through the rings of the original Dante’s Inferno in hopes of finding justice for his wife and children.
However Joe will soon discover that behind every sin lies a secret and each secret revealed could land Joe in an eternity of hot water...VERY hot.
Review: DI Joe Dante died and went to Hell. He meets Virgil, his guide, and descends through each of the nine circles in order to find the man who killed his family. There isn't that much more to it really.
The majority of it is a description of the circle itself, who is in it, Dante interacting with someone in that circle, then moving on, normally being pursued by some demon. The other part is flashbacks to Dante's life, his wife Bea, his brother Mickey,  his two daughters, Argenti the drug dealer, and other people involved in Joe's life that ended him up in Hell.
I really like the concept-another updated classic, this one being The Divine Comedy, by Dante(the one who lived a long time ago). I've not read the original, only heard of it, and I can't tell you how much of it is true to the original. Judging by the amount of detail in the descriptions, I'm guessing it's fairly accurate. I also like the fact that it is still A Virgil guiding A Dante(I know that much about the Divine Comedy at least).
At some points it gets a little confusing-another Virgil comes along, and tells Dante something rather interesting about Virgil number 1.
I liked Dante a bit. He wasn't the most interesting of characters, or the easiest to connect with. It was written entirely from his perspective which lets us kind of connect with him, but it also shows his personality as being fairly blunt, slightly emotional and quite straight to the point-suiting his character as a policeman but a little boring and not very engaging. The character development was very good, especially when if realised his sin that ended him in Hell, but also throughout he kept moving on.   
I also like the way the back story was only revealed little by little. It kept me interested, and always seemed to cut off just when you wanted to know more. I also like the way that lots of random little things throughout got neatly tied up at various parts during the book.
Overall:  Strength 3 to a book that is more than just a trip through hell.

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Thanks for taking time to read this!
Comments are much loved.
Nina xxx

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