MaryJanice Davidson begins her new Insighter series with Deja Who, an inventive urban fantasy with dangerous reincarnations, a no-nonsense heroine and Davidson’s much-loved brand of silly, off-the-wall humor.
Leah is an Insighter. She can see people’s past lives, and clients often come to her in order to exorcise troublesome past selves—murderers, thieves and other bad souls—who are wreaking havoc in their current life. Only when a soul learns his or her lesson, breaking the cycle of crime or other bad habits, will they be reborn “tabula rasa,” or with a clean slate.
While Leah helps clients struggling with pesky previous incarnations, she must be wary of her own past as well. In several of her past lives, she’s been killed, and she knows her killer is out to find her again. But this time, she wants to break the cycle.
P.I. Archer Drake has been tailing Leah for a while, hired by her toxic helicopter mom to keep an eye on her. The more he watches Leah, the more he realizes how isolated and lonely she seems—and the more he falls in love with her. When he finally approaches her, a friendship slowly blossoms into something more. Leah is attracted to Archer’s earnestness and his goofy sense of humor. There’s also the fact that he’s potentially tabula rasa, which proves intriguing.
Once Leah reveals to Archer that she’s destined to be killed, he joins her mission in outwitting her would-be killer. The biggest hurdle is that they do not know what form her killer will take. It could be a friend or a stranger—once, it was even her own mother.
The world of reincarnation Davidson has created is fascinating, and the romance between Leah and Archer is pleasant to read. She’s the stoic, firm voice of reason, while he’s the sensitive beta hero who finds himself falling for the heroine. Fans of Davidson’s soon-ending Undead series will be anxious to jump into Leah’s world.