Reviews and updates from Amber Foxx, author of the Mae Martin Psychic Mystery Series
As a confirmed fan of this series, I found it fascinating to go back to freelance assassin Katla’s early career, and see her developing her homicidal enterprise. It’s oddly true to life somehow that she’s more nervous about her sales pitch for it than she is about actually doing the work. In this long short story or short novella—I’m not sure of the right name for fiction of this length—the plot is tight, facets of Katla’s complex character are revealed through it, and the tension and pace are perfect. As always, Halm has done his research. The accuracy of the events, from the subtle to the violent, is one of the strengths of his story, but it is the remarkable protagonist who carries it. Katla’s an assassin because of her skill. She takes satisfaction in her competence, not pleasure in killing, and acts without a trace of cruelty—and yet also without a trace of guilt. The result: a reader gets wrapped up her struggles and successes in an occupation with which it's hard to identify. If you’re new to the series, this short episode could be a way to try it out. If, like me, you’re already hooked, it can keep you from going into withdrawal while you wait for the next full length book.