case of the sinful santaRating: 3.25 stars
Buy Links: 
 Amazon | All Romance
Length: Novel

Nick Klauson has always been the black sheep of the family. An elf with human blood, Nick will never take the place of his uncle, Santa. So he’s been relegated to make sure that when Santa makes his yearly journey no danger awaits him. That’s how Nick’s ended up scouting the paranormal girls’ school. The dark emotions emanating from the school are too much for Nick to ignore. If he can’t find the problem, the children won’t be visited for Christmas. But before he takes on that daunting task, Nick stops in to have a drink or two at the local bar in attempt to drown his sorrow. If only his elf nature would allow him to get drunk.

Tasked to find his cousin, Danjal, and inquire about the illegal use of brimstone, Zephariel, the Angel of Vengeance, finds himself off course and walking into a pub. For some reason, he was unable to pass the bar without going in. And when he catches sight of the beautiful man at the bar, he knows why. Fated mates aren’t the norm with angels, but Zeph isn’t going to turn around now. After receiving the kiss he’d been dreaming of, Zeph is unknowingly transported to a girls’ school by a familiar to help a group of amateur investigators get rid of a zombie problem. It’s not like he can say no since he owes the familiar a favor. He vows to hunt down Nick as soon as he’s finished.

Confused and a little put off by Zeph’s disappearance, but not surprised since clearly no one could ever really want a half-elf, Nick makes his way to the school to complete his job. When he arrives, Nick finds himself drawn into an investigation and mystery involving vampires, a not-so-human, angels, necromancers, and zombies. And in the middle of it all – Zeph. In the midst of an investigation, Nick has to come to terms with having a fated mate and overcome being substandard in his own eyes. But dangers await the fated pair in the most unexpected of places.

The Case of the Sinful Santa is the fourth book in the End Street Detective Agency series by Amber Kell and R.J. Scott. This series must be read in order for it to make any sense. Here’s the thing. I’m a big fan of both of these authors. Always light-hearted and always entertaining. And we all know that I love a good paranormal story. This story is good, only it has some issues that were never quiet worked out in the end.

It’s no surprise that I liked Nick and Zeph. These authors have a way with likable characters. And there are a lot of characters in this story. As for Nick and Zeph, I like the inventive characterizations. I mean come on, a half-elf related to Santa Klaus and the Angel of Vengeance. Seriously, if nothing else, those two subjects are cause for intrigue and conflict. Nick is conflicted within himself – family issues battling with self-deprecation. And Zeph has to worry about angel and heavenly things and how they’ll relate to his new mating. Still all of their issues work together.

My one problem with the characters in this story is there are so many that I don’t feel like Nick and Zeph get the attention they need. If you’ve read this series, you know that it all pretty much revolves around the not-so-human Sam Enderson and the paranormal cases he reluctantly takes. And honestly, I like the continuation of the story arc, but with so much of Sam and his mate and their never-ending, life-altering cases it doesn’t leave a lot of room for the new characters and their love story. So, whereas, I like Nick and Zeph, I wasn’t satisfied with the relationship building, which basically consisted of “You’re my mate,” a big freak out, and the acceptance.

The story is fun, and I’m pretty sure that’s exactly what it’s meant to be. There is a lot that happens in this book. It’s almost hard to keep up. There are several different plots here and they don’t all relate. There are new issues that come up that are sure to be part of other books in the series, there is the continuing story arc, and there is Nick and Zeph’s story. I’m not sure I would categorize it as confusing, exactly. It’s just very jumbled. There’s so much going on, it’s distracting.

In the end, I enjoyed this book for the creativity and entertainment, but I did have some issues with it. I obviously didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it either. So as for now, I’m going to recommend this one to those who are fans of Amber Kell’s books and R.J. Scott’s paranormal stories, to those who like new and fun stories, to those who like continuing story arcs, and to those who are looking for paranormal and angst-free tales.

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