Review: Spirit Guide Series by E.J. Stevens

Spirit Guide Series:
    She Smells the Dead
    Spirit Storm
    Legend of Witchtrot Road
E.J. Stevens

Blurb from Goodreads:

She Smells the Dead
It's the beginning of senior year and Yuki's psychic awareness of ghostly spirits is threatening to ruin her life. Her ability to sense spirits of the dead isn't glamorous like on TV. SHE SMELLS THE DEAD. Yuki is being visited in her dreams and suspects that her friend Calvin is involved in something strange. Will Yuki be able to save the spirits and herself?

Spirit Storm
"Let the spirits guide you, but never let them take you."

Spirits of the Dead are coming...

Yuki is about to face an army of lost souls on Samhain, the night of Halloween, when the spirits of the dead roam free. Yuki will need all the help she can get from her friends, but will Calvin be there for her when she needs him the most?

Legend of Witchtrot Road
Surviving agitated ghosts, irritated witches, angry werewolves, and the horrors of high school has never been so hard.

The night of Samhain may be behind them, but Yuki and her friends have only begun to face the challenges of their paranormal gifts. Tensions are rising--in the pack, at school, and within their tightly knit group of friends. 

The tragic death of Wakefield High student Dylan Jacobs has emotions boiling over. The J-Team, Yuki's arch nemesis, have turned the entire football team against her. They claim that Yuki is a witch and blame her for the death of their fellow teammate. Will Yuki be able to solve the mystery of Dylan's death, and the legend of Witchtrot Road, before tempers flare and things turn violent?

Emma is the friend that Yuki turns to when things get tough, but she's been behaving strangely. Emma has been acting distant and seems to be coming down with a mysterious illness. What will Yuki and her friends do if their healer is truly sick?

Calvin has become Alpha and wants the best for his pack. He is a dedicated and compassionate leader willing to do anything for the good of his people, but will Cal be able to hold the pack together when a fiery, young werewolf comes seeking revenge?

Simon may still be a roguish playboy, but he is taking his role as Calvin's second in command deadly serious. Will Simon be able to focus on his pack duties when he is forced to face his dark, emotional past?

I've never heard of a psychic who has SMELLING THE DEAD as an active ability be it fiction or reality. I thought it was only SEE and HEAR the dead. Oh, there are stories that have people smelling something that isn't supposed to be there or smelling things that remind them of their dead loved ones. But here in the Spirit Guide series, smelling the dead is an ACTIVE ability.

I never expected that much when I read the first book. Actually, I got to read it as part of the TBR Intervention Challenge. The first few pages were ho-hum, typical of the YA genre but a few chapters in, it got better and straight-forward, no-nonsense heroine actually gave me the boost to read the rest of the book and continue on to read Spirit Storm. It actually got better in Spirit Storm with the background firmly established but the continued development of the characters and the plot made it interesting to read. However, both the first two books get only three out of five apples. 

In Legend of Witchtrot Road, the series finally earned four out of five apples from me. I liked it very much not only because Yuki's powers finally expanded but because the storytelling has kept its pace of quietly surprising the reader. Just as soon as I guessed that maybe the reason for everything was supernatural, the author revealed that it was actually a group of questionable backgrounds. 

What I actually like about the series is that it has a steady, fast pace - straight to the point, no dallying with some major cry-fest drama involving teenage hormones. The fact that every book is under a hundred pages earns the series major brownie points. What's more is that despite Yuki being a goth... well, she dresses like a goth... she does not act like one. But, I couldn't get over the fact that her spirit guide is a dung beetle. Sacred scarab my foot. I'll always think of a bug that burrows itself into some shit.

Anyway, I'll continue reading the series and I can't wait to read Brush with Death.


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