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I’m “Dying by the Hour” to review @KoryShrum’s latest! [urban #fantasy]

I totally have been waiting for this ever since I finished the first book back in early spring. I told y’all to run and don’t walk and grab a copy. Since then the author has written a couple of short stories, and finally we have book two! I have not read Blind yet. 100% of all royalties for Blind will be donated to The Dreaming Zebra Foundation, a (501)(c)(3) charity providing support so that children and young adults are given an equal opportunity to explore and develop their creativity in the arts. Everything this author has wrought is woven in gold!

If you are reading this Tuesday the 2nd, make sure you go party at her release day party on Facebook!



I’m “Dying by the Hour” to review @KoryShrum’s latest! [urban #fantasy]Dying by the Hour
Series: Jesse Sullivan #2
by Kory M. Shrum
Pages: 297
on September 2, 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Source & Buy Links: Author
Amazon • • Goodreads •

After 83 deaths, Jesse Sullivan knows how to die. As a Necronite, she is one of the population’s rare 2% who can serve as a death replacement agent, dying so others don’t have to. But using her NRD to save lives is why she’s being hunted. 

For Ally Gallagher, death is permanent. If she fails to protect Jesse again, there will be no third attempt. After a quiet year the signs of serious danger have returned. People connected to Jesse are disappearing. Her home is vandalized and threatening messages are turning up in the safest of places. 

Then Jesse is taken and Ally has only hours to get her back. But no salvation comes without its price.

I received this book from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.


Dieing-for-a-Living-300Where to start without spoilers? Oh I know, the cover! Made me wet myself, I was so excited! What I love most about well designed covers, especially in a series, is the attention to detail and representation of the story itself. The first cover for Dying for a Living is close to monochrome and has Jessie headed out of the tunnel. Pretty easy to figure that one out. She is a gal who dies for others.  But if you look at the second one, shes coming out of a tunnel .. fire and ice… it has a more urgent feel to it, and this book is just that. It has more color, more development and more answers for all of us who are already invested in the story.

As I mentioned in my review for Dying for a Livingurban fantasy takes a couple of good things to work with the market flushed with good urban fantasies with a strong female character. It still needs to be enticing even with the same old paranormal creatures and plot devices. This story has all of it, plus Jesse is a NRD, or she happens to suffer from Necronitic Regenerative Disorder. In other words a completely new …creature? No not creature, just someone who has a slight genetic kink. But at least she makes the most of what she has, she dies for you for a living, yes she is death replacement agent… a zombie. But don’t let them hear you say that, it is just not politically correct.

Dying by the Hour leaves off about a year after the first one. Jesse has 83 deaths in her pocket and has yet to lose her mind, well at least she is not telling folks just how possibly crazy she is becoming. She has managed to keep Gabriel at bay, right? Wait, what am I talking about.. dang it guys… go buy the book. I do want to note for folks who do not like head swapping, the chapters go back and forth between different points of view. I am not sure it was as successful as the first one.

Saying that, character development is crucial and Ms. Shrum manages to not only have Jesse constantly developing but Ally, Nikki, Lane…. her asshat father. Everyone becomes even more distinctive. With Jesse, as the story builds up we see how far she has grown and also how far she has fallen back into her dark hole. Another reason I love this series, she may be a badass but she also is real. She is human but because of her NRD she also is “other” because of it.

Otherness is a difficult thing to portray and still keep the characters more real than not. I still get her, just like with book one. I still wanted to choke her decisions and behaviors, but she is growing up. Sure she has a boyfriend, but she had to answer an ultimatum because of it. This forced Ally, her dearest and oldest friend, to make a choice which ends up possibly changing the path of everyone in this tale. I was shocked at how I responded to many of the original characters, I ended up really disliking Lane instead of just a little bit. Nikki I fell in love with more and Ally I just wanted to tuck her into bed and tell her it would be OK. Jesse? Well she needs to be shook hard me things and perhaps a few smacks upside the head but in the end she is still on her path.

You will become invested in Jesse. She is believable, relatable and she becomes more and more real. Jesse is just as snarky as she was in the first book but she has a harder edge. I wanted to shake her several times within the story and the desperate feeling which is evoked while reading about the religious bigotry and hatred made me cringe. Not to mention major daddy issues. Of course if I had an asshat Daddy like Jesse, I would have major issues too!

Perhaps this is the perfect place to end here… Evocation of emotions all over the place and back. I worried over Ally, hoped Gabriel would smack Jesse harder into sense and wanted Lane to grow a pair and go away. Kory made me feel and be again anticipating the next book. Well??? How far are we from getting it Kory? Oh dang.. I know release day and all!

Check out my interview with Kory and my review of Dying for a Living


About Kory M. Shrum

Kory M. Shrum lives in Michigan with her partner and a ferocious guard pug. She has dabbled in everything from fortune telling to martial arts and when not reading or writing, she can be found teaching, traveling, and wearing a gi.  Her poetry has appeared in North American Review, Bateau and elsewhere. Her urban fantasy novels Dying for a Living, and its sequel, Dying by the Hour, as well as her short story Blind are available now.

You can also check Kory out on Google+.


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Breakdown on my Rating
5 Stars
Character Development
4.5 Stars
4.5 Stars
World Building
4.5 Stars
Overall: 4.5 Stars


  1. Thanks for the review. I love Jesse and the story line is a nice change of pace from all the urban fantasy out there 🙂

  2. I would like to be saved from defenestration… just so I can say I was saved from defenestration.

  3. She would save me from multiple gun shot wounds and perhaps fire while I rescued my dog from captivity.

  4. Probably road rage!!

  5. a bad one

  6. that sound like such a cool book! I’m adding it to my list of books to read.I know I’m to late for the contest but glad to learn about this book.


  1. #FirstFriday Mental Health Day plus #WinterisComing to Alaska - […] I’m “Dying by the Hour” to review @KoryShrum’s latest! [urban#fantasy] […]

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