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Under Wraps (The Underworld Detection Agency…
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Under Wraps (The Underworld Detection Agency Chronicles) (edition 2011)

by Hannah Jayne

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1381586,938 (3.21)5
Member:TheBooknerd
Title:Under Wraps (The Underworld Detection Agency Chronicles)
Authors:Hannah Jayne
Info:Kensington (2011), Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library, Read in 2013 (inactive), StrangeBedfellows (inactive), eBooks
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Under Wraps by Hannah Jayne

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Sophie works for the UDA – the Underworld Detective Agency. The regulatory body that keeps an eye on San Francisco’s supernaturals, making sure they keep their heads down, making sure they follow the rules and making sure they submit the correct forms in triplicate.

But people have been dying in the city, brutally murdered, in ways that seem supernatural. The police – with detective Hayes as investigating officer – want some expert help on the supernatural denizens of the city. Sophie, as an (almost) human member of the UDA seems the ideal choice

Also, it doesn’t hurt that she finds Hayes rather… compelling

I always try to start a review with some positives, so let’s start there…

..

.

This concludes the positives.

No, seriously, I have not one good thing to say about this book. Ok, let me dredge something up – it has POTENTIAL.

The potential lies in the world. The idea of an underworld full of every creature of legend coming to Earth and having to fill in forms in triplicate for the UDA is an appealing one. There’s a huge number of creatures mentioned and they have hints of greater characters – like the fairies and pixies with their very bad tempers, for example, and the feud between the trolls and the dwarfs. There’s a lot of potential for growth and depth there to create a really fascinating and likely funny world.

It wasn’t realised here. For the most part all of the creatures were names, descriptions. They could have been wereavocados for all the difference it made. Now, fitting in depth for all of them so early in the series is hard and maybe impossible, so I don’t hold it against the book – yet. So the world gets a grudging tick.

There. A positive! Now to the negative

Which has to start with Sophie, the protagonist. Oh dear gods, this woman is quite literally the worst protagonist I have ever had the displeasure to read.

Firstly, this woman needs to give Anne Summers a call, invest in half of their catalogue and take care of business – because her overriding, unworkable obsession with good looking men is bordering on needing an intervention or treatment. The number of pages she spends drooling over her boss or Hayes are completely staggering. If you remove her endless desire to hump their legs from the book you’d be left with a pamphlet. It doesn’t matter what she’s doing, murdered bodies around, important work, saving lives – it doesn’t matter, her hawtness obsession never pauses. I actually have a note in the book saying “please gods stop” before the end of chapter 1. That is how quickly my patience ran out.

The whole reason she volunteers herself to help Hayes is because he’s hot. That’s how she inserts herself into a murder case. At one point she holds her breath when hunting for clues that Hayes is single and he gives her a concerned look because she has been rendered breathless by his hawtness for so long.

Secondly, this woman is pathetically weak. She works every day in the UDA, surrounded by every kind of creature imaginable yet get her in a club on an undercover mission and she has a minor panic attack because of all the monsters around her and has to be saved by Hayes. She not only loses her lunch at crime scenes, but she can’t even think about the victims without getting nauseous – or even leaving the room. When she’s irritated or angry or arguing she starts to become “hysterical” and needs to take deep breaths to keep close to rational. She whines, she cries, she mopes, she fails to achieve anything and has to be protected and sheltered.

Thirdly, she’s incompetent. Utterly incompetent. She’s supposed to help Hayes by being the supernatural expert but never once is her expertise used. Her room mate is more helpful than she is – and that only because Sophie is utterly incapable of keeping her mouth shut about the case. She will pass on important information to anyone and everyone she meets. Sophie fails to make a connection between the victims which she really should have and doesn’t even check the victims’ identities. When under threat Hayes tries to teach her to use a gun and she shoots the floor. Or the ceiling (even going to the range makes her gulp in fear – and she screams because the gun ejects a casing). At the end of a long lesson she can, just barely, occasionally hit the white paper the target is on. When menaced, she throws the gun at her attacker. She demands a full explanation of a supernatural occurrence in earshot – in the very presence – of someone who is not aware of the supernatural – and is SHOCKED, SHOCKED I SAY, that the police cover it up and hide the supernatural nature. She works for the UDA. Her JOB is to hide the supernatural from the real world – but no, she cannot understand this!

Read More ( )
1 vote FangsfortheFantasy | Dec 12, 2013 |
The cover is misleading. The heroine is not a kick ass heroine reminiscent of Merit, she doesn't go around wearing leather and kicking ass with a sword. The book was OK, but not was I expecting based on the cover. ( )
  LaCello | Sep 21, 2013 |
a fun supernatural mystery. like the cozy food mysteries, only with vampires and werewolves. ( )
  librarydanielle | Apr 1, 2013 |
Sophie Lawson is a human immune to magic working as an Administrative Assistant for the Underworld Detection Agency. Her boss is a werewolf, her best friend/roommate is a vampire, she has a troll stalker and her grandmother was a seer. She has yet to come into any real powers, but since she is immune to magic (meaning she can see denizens of the Underworld and magic & charmed objects have no effect on her) she helps keep the avalanche of Underworld paperwork under control and the UDA running smoothly.

Detective Parker Hayes ventures into UDA after some mysterious murders topside have the police stumped. Chief Oliver went to college with werewolf Peter Sampson, Head Honcho in charge of the UDA, and he sends Parker down to see if they can help. Sampson decides Sophie is perfect for the job since she can see through glamour. So Sophie metaphorically puts on a CSI hat and jumps in. She soon finds out though that watching CSI on tv is very different from actually doing it.

Not a bad start to a series. The writing style takes a little getting used to, but it progresses at a good clip. The plot is twisty and the characters are interesting. Sophie is a bit too airheaded for me, but she’s not completely unlikeable. She reminds me a bit of Phoebe from Friends. Parker is an ass. I don’t like him at all. I sure hope he’s not going to be the love interest. All-in-all though I enjoyed dipping my toes into this new series and look forward to seeing where it goes.

*Many thanks to Kensington for providing me with a review copy. Please see disclaimer page on my blog. ( )
  AVoraciousReader | Mar 16, 2013 |
Pretty humorous if a teensy bit silly. I particularly enjoyed the dialogue. However, I couldn't connect with Sophie and didn't care for Parker/Alex one bit. Not even a little. But I did like Vlad. Overall, I couldn't stay interested. ( )
  TheBooknerd | Jan 25, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
Don't let the cover fool you. This book was awesome. I loved the characters and the world building. Really like the twists and turns that this book took. I really didn't expect a lot of the turns that this book took.

What I liked about this book was that this book had a mystery in it. I'm a sucker for a good mystery. The mystery starts off like any other mystery would. Detective Parker Hayes comes to the UDA which is short for the Underworld Detective Agency, where our heroine Sophie Lawson works. Her boss is a werewolf, and her roommate is a vampire, so this is a world where there are a lot of supernatural beings exist which i find kind of cool and that the UDA is a lot like a police force.

Detective Parker Hayes comes to them because he wants to solve the crimes and Sophie offers to help. So begins their steamy chemistry. Sophie is instantly attracted to him, so she knows it's not magic affecting her. Sophie knows this because Magic doesn't affect her. The term for Sophie is magically immune to beings that would use all sorts of magic on her. I like how the author slowly builds their relationship.

Then there was the fact that we had a troll, yes there is a troll in the book named Steve. Then we had Nina's vampire Nephew, Louis who is now calling himself Vlad. Yes Vlad. I found Vlad and Steve to be extremely funny and full of surprises. Steve is trying to protect Sophie and I kind of at times found him to be a little stalkerish, but Steve says he is trying to protect her.

This book rocked in a lot of ways. There are more and more murders and then disappearances happening. People around Sophie and Nina begin to disappear like Sophie's boss, Sampson, (who happens to be a werewolf), The Manager of Dirt, the club that Nina goes to is found murdered.

What shocked me...***Spoiler Alert*** was the killer turned out to be the Police Cheif. I found that a surprising shock. The other thing that surprised me was that Parker Hayes, wasn't really Parker Hayes, but an Angel who was named Alex Grace. Angels, we have Angels, well a fallen one anyway.

I love how Steve at the very end, does kind of come to the rescue. I just enjoyed this book. The fight scenes were awesome. Love the mystery plot and how all the sub-plot's of the book come together.

Plus Louis aka Vlad, have some awesome one-liners in this book.

There was nothing wrong with this book. If in fact anything, this book made me want to read the rest of the series right now. Too bad, I have to wait till November to read the next one, Under Ground.

added by livredeamour | editLivre De Amour-Books of Love Blog, Grace Fonseca (Apr 11, 2011)
 
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Book description
Sick of wrongful-death lawsuits every time a full moon comes around? Call the Underworld Detection Agency. As a human immune to magic, Sophie Lawson can help everyone from banshee to zombie transition into normal, everyday San Francisco life. With a handsome werewolf as her UDA boss and a fashionista vampire for a roommate, Sophie knows everything there is to know about the undead, the unseen, and the uncanny. That is, until a rash of gruesome murders has demons and mortals running for cover, and Sophie finds herself playing sidekick to detective Parker Hayes. Dodging raging bloodsuckers, bad-tempered fairies, and love-struck trolls is one thing. But when Sophie discovers Parker isn't what he seems, she has only one chance to figure out whom to trust. Because an evil hiding in plain sight is closing in - and is about to make one wisecracking human its means to ultimate power.
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"As a human immune to magic, Sophie Lawson can help everyone from banshee to zombie transition into normal, everyday San Francisco life. With a handsome werewolf as her UDA boss and a fashionista vampire for a roommate, Sophie knows everything there is to know about the undead, the unseen, and the uncanny... Until a rash of gruesome murders has demons and mortals running for cover, and Sophie finds herself playing sidekick to detective Parker Hayes. Dodging raging bloodsuckers, bad-tempered fairies, and love-struck trolls is one thing. But when Sophie discovers Parker isn't what he seems, she's got only one chance to figure out whom to trust. Because an evil hiding in plain sight is closing in...and about to make one wisecracking human its means to ultimate power..."--P. [4] of cover.… (more)

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