By: Brit Lunden
Publication Date: September 2019
Reviewed by: Holly Connors
Review Date: October 8, 2019
Author Brit Lunden has written a perfect mix of action, mystery, and a hearty dose of romance to top it off, in the latest offering in her "Bulwark Anthology Series," The Devil and Dayna Dalton.
We first met Dayna in Bulwark, the book that introduced readers to this popular anthology. Dayna was a reporter for the local paper with a minor role to play in that story. What we did learn about her from Bulwark was that she was driven, had a long-simmering crush on Clay Finnes, the sheriff of Bulwark, and that she could be a bit annoying. To be fair, there was more to Dayna's story that needed to be told, things that would explain her "issues" and what drove her to relentlessly pursue Clay as well as mess up her own life. Fortunately for readers, author Brit Lunden decided to explore Dayna's background in The Devil and Dayna Dalton.
The story opens with Dayna waking up at home after another night of drinking too much and bringing the wrong man home to help ease the pain of her life. Unfortunately for Dayna, bringing home yet another loser does nothing to help make life better. She quickly kicks Skip Benson, the latest dud date, out the door, gets some snide comments from her neighbor about her lifestyle choices, and then calls her mother. Again, probably not the best move as Dayna's mother is not the type of mother to bake cakes and spread the love. Rather, she's the type "...who couldn't even identify her daughter's father..." (pg. 10) and probably doesn't have any kind words in her vocabulary.
Dayna then heads to work and this is where the story gets going into overdrive. She decides to take the long way to work, along Old Jericho Road, a road that has a lot of history for readers, and characters, in the town of Bulwark. The story intersects with Bulwark at this point as Dayna meets up with Sherry Watson, a deputy who is investigating a local elderly man's death. As they talk, off in the distance, Officer Terrence Blake exits the old man's cabin. Sherry and Dayna walk toward the cabin but then suddenly Dayna is shoved to the ground by Sherry as a huge gray wolf comes bounding out of the woods. Sherry and Terrance run after the wolf as Dayna scrambles to keep up. After all, what a story! A wolf - particularly because no wolves live in the area.
It's at this point that things go really "weird" for Dayna as she soon gets lost, is almost attacked by the wolf, and is saved by a mysterious hunk of a man. More questions are asked, than answered, by Dayna about the man who saved her life, and the reader is brought along to try and figure out who he is, and what is going on. Curious characters abound, such as Mrs. Sweetpea, Dayna's one-time babysitter and now annoying neighbor. Like the others in this anthology, The Devil and Dayna Dalton is a quick read and one that kept me glued to the pages throughout. I've grown to love the fantastical world of Bulwark, GA, and can't wait to see where the author takes us next.
Quill says: The Devil and Dayna Dalton is another very satisfying read in the "Bulwark Anthology Series." If you've been reading these books, don't miss this one and if you haven't yet discovered this fun series, start reading now!