Review: Catch Lili Too by Sophie Whittemore

Do not put Gamin down as your vacation spot or you might just end up dead.

Cover Design: Natasha Snow

Lili is a Mesopotamian siren, and life as an immortal being is hard enough as it is. She’s asexual (which is incredibly difficult to reconcile if your entire point as a mythical being is to seduce people to death). She’s also struggling with depression from being alive for so long.

Lili is an absolutely shoddy improv-detective trying to track down a serial killer so ruthless that it makes even her murderous soul uneasy. However, there’s something larger at work than just one serial killer. A small town is hiding an even deadlier, global-scale secret. Forget Area 51 conspiracies. This one beats them all. With magic.

So, what better way to spice up her eternal life than being hired as a vigilante detective to stop a serial killer? Anything, literally anything. She’d trade her left lung to get out of this. Or, perhaps, somebody else’s.7

Excerpt

Chapter One

A Scandal in Gamin

The first killing had been easy. A little girl wandering the woods with a storybook under her arm. She hardly looked up; why would she? There were no tales of the killer in the wood.

Not unless you count fairy tales, that is. And who believes in those until it is too late?

She had books about fantastical heroes who go on quests to fight Evil that had a very purposeful capital E. She had colored in the pages of the black-and-white line drawings with pencils, with sweeping trains and glittering scales of armor. The pencils scattered on the ground, pages torn up and trampled underfoot. A halo around her perfect, little angelic head.

For that alone, the killer decided, she deserved to die. She was simply too good for this world. She would never have made it anyway. It was a mercy.

The second killing was more difficult. The killer, a little dirtier with a couple of claw marks on their face that would need to be fixed with a potion later, dragged their feet in the mud. The river was close; they could feel it. The sheer power emanating from it.

Their tongue darted out between their lips, tasting it. Death. Destruction.

Power. How long had it been since they’d felt it?

The killer scaled the little inn while everyone was sleeping. The owners had tried to modernize the inn to become an unremarkable hotel, the kind with a front desk and plastic keycards, and a swimming pool with far too much chlorine. Unremarkable except for one guest they had staying there. A guest who would check out and be replaced by someone far more powerful than he. Not that he knew it yet. Who would know if they were in the presence of a god, anyhow?

He wouldn’t, surely. He’d be dead before she arrived.

The killer knocked on the door of room 217. They hadn’t forgotten their manners in all their years of living. A curious figure came to the doorway, pressing their bespectacled face to it. They were a poet, fingers stained with ink and mind humming with words. Black hair swept through like a Romantic in the eye of the storm.

That’s the trouble with this town, the killer decided. Everyone believes in stories. That someone will try to save them.

“Are you all right?” the poet asked. “If you’re looking for the receptionist, everyone’s already gone home…”

The killer knocked the poet into the room and slammed the door shut behind them. A length of rope fell from their jacket.

“Come mierda, you’re crazy! What do you want with me? I don’t have any money. I’m a writer. I’m broke.”

The killer put their boot on the poet’s throat, uncoiling the length of rope. The poet choked and gargled and gasped in agony.

“I don’t want your money,” the killer cooed. “I want your room. At first, I thought I would just leave a note for the next guest. A little calling card to say I’m here. But I found something better than paper.” They leaned down and traced the poet’s jaw with a gloved finger. “Blood and flesh, for example.”

The poet died an unremarkable death for an unremarkable life. He’d most likely come back as a ghost, the killer decided. Violent deaths always got sentimental. But that would suit the killer just fine. He wouldn’t remember a thing, not in life or in death. The killer’s power made sure of that. Anonymity was annoying most of the time, but sometimes it was useful.

“A very powerful immortal will be the first to find you. You’re my welcome gift to her. No other will find you until then…” The killer pressed upon the body, sealing the contract in blood, flesh, and skin.

The killer yearned to look upon the immortal themselves, but that would ruin the ultimate plan. The immortal was so remarkable they might have been called a god if humans took kindly to that sort of thing. And nobody knew it yet, not even the immortal in question. That was why the killer did what they did. Killed anyone at all who might strike the immortal’s fancy. It was unusual, but that’s what the killer wanted.

The killer, strangely enough, wanted to get caught.

Just not yet.©

Warning: Graphic violence, the death of a secondary character

Wow. Just “Wow!” Head-trip.

First let me just give a shout-out to Natasha Snow for once again creating a beautiful cover. It was the cover that grabbed me. It catches the atmosphere of Gamin and sets the tone for the book or vice verse (laugh). 

Sophie Whittemore creates their own world in Minnesota and I do not want to live there. Just saying. Whittemore’s descriptions are creepy and otherworldly in Catch Lili Too. I want to echo Byron’s, then Lili’s, and freaking everyone else’s, “Why would you go there?!”

Whittemore compiles their own Scooby gang and what a cast of characters we have. Let’s run a quick rundown: Byron the gay poltergeist, Jason the trans necromancer with ADHD, Jo the Asian lesbian ghoul, Ikiaq the Indigenous Inuit shapeshifter, and rounding out the gang is the newly powere Patty the lesbian witch. Oh and let’s not forget the “how did I get myself into this?” leader Lili who is an asexual Siren. Talk about a diverse cast of characters. Do not worry, Whittemore adds more to this collective, but they also take some away. Be forewarned.

Catch Lili Too is told through Lili’s point-of-view and Whittemore breaks the fourth-wall by having Lili talk directly to us which is amusing. Plus Whittemore has some of the funniest chapter headings for this story and it matches Lili’s voice perfectly. 

The story seems simple enough as it is about a tired and depressed immortal who does not know whether she wants to live to see another day when they are all the same. Lili is just passing through Gamin when she runs across the first dead body…and then somehow ends up finding another and another until she is investigating the murders with a rag-tag and quickly growing team. It sounds so simple, but Whittemore makes it so delicious.

I was hooked. Gamin has vampires, witches, zombies, and more. This is not a place you want to be for Halloween. Whittemore needs to write more about our “Scooby Gang” as I cannot get enough. Action. Romance. Diversity. Blood. Lots of blood. Catch Lili Too is a book you want to seek your teeth into…or claws – either way works. Just read the first book in the “Gamin Immortals” series and meet the gang so you recognize them when they knock on your door.

I received an ARC of this book and I am writing a review without prejudice and voluntarily.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

 “As a Bookshop and Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.” at no additional cost to you.

Further Details:
© Catch Lili Too by Sophie Whittemore © 2020 All Rights Reserved
Publisher: NineStar Press, 978-1-64890-142-3, 16 November 2020
Series: Gamin Immortals, Book One; Settings: Gamin, Minnesota
Pages: 321; Sex: N/A

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