Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Bastard Reaction: Poison Sleep by T.A. Pratt

About five months ago I read the Blood Engines by T.A. Pratt, first in the Marla Mason series. Don't remember well the details, but overall I enjoyed the read even though the book didn't grab me as it could have.

I just finished Poison Sleep, the second in the Marla Mason series, and I was thoroughly entertained by it. Can't tell why Poison Sleep worked for me more than Blood Engines, but it did. Full disclosure, I've never been a big fan of 3rd person narrative and multiple POV when I read Urban Fantasy. It simply hasn't worked that well for me, and this series is written from that perspective. Regardless, Poison Sleep hit all the right spots I was looking for.

The book is filled with what I call "what the fuck" magic, as in anything goes and weird magic (and shit) abounds. It's fast moving with some amusing dialogue and quite humorous at times. The key to reading the series is just to sit back and enjoy the ride, and not take it too seriously. Really like Marla Mason as a character, she's quite badass and has her own set of morals and priorities; she's a law (or government as she mentions in Poison Sleep) unto herself. Another thing I liked is that you're constantly switching on who you're rooting for, majorly because of the different POV and there's a lot of gray area to work with. There's no shortage of fun characters either.

My main complaint is that I felt like there wasn't a good exposition of Marla's magic in this book, something that I thought worked very well in Blood Engines. She was more of a hack and slash chick this time around. Another is that due to the nature of multiple POV, some of the twists that occur throughout the novel were spoiled.

Other than that, Poison Sleep was a very enjoyable book for me, and will certainly keep reading the series. As for whom to recommend the book to, I think non Urban Fantasy readers might find the book more approachable than what is usually out there in the paranormal spectrum, and one series I think is comparable in the nature of magic and tone of the books is Simon R. Green's Nightside series, which I know many have been entertained with.

Oh, and the cover is quite nice and very fitting.

Where to buy:
Poison Sleep Mass Paperback on The Book Depository

You can get more info in the Tim Pratt's website and on a site dedicated to Marla Mason.


  1. I think I have the first two books, looks like I'll have to get the rest as well.


  2. Don't get ahead of yourself and read those two first, but I do think there's something for you here.

    I don't think you have read Simon R. Green's Nightside, but if you do and have enjoyed them, then this should pose no problem for you.

  3. I have read the first one and a MM short story about a rising god, I did enjoy it but then didn't follow up on the sequel. Hopefully should get to the second one which is in my my house somewhere.

    But looking from what you think, I think I might enjoy this series, so no harm in getting the latter two.

  4. I really enjoyed reading the Marla Mason books. I read all four of them. And with you mentioning this book I went back out looking to see if Pratt ever got the 5th book publishes as the fourth kind of leaves you with a cliffhanger ending. And I see he has. Some how another book that has slipped past me. But I know about it now and will have to see about getting it. Thank yoU!

  5. I got up to book 4 here, so by the end of the year I'll be done with them. I learned about the 5th book recently too, which looks like he had to self-publish and funded by fans. Got to see what happened with the publisher and him that he had to resort to this. A bit disappointing since I really liked the covers, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

    Also, recently saw that he has book 6 planned, so there's another one coming.


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