Orphan Kelpie lives in a neighborhood ruled by two mob
bosses, Gloriana Nelson and Mr. Davidson. She has barely
managed to survive them, let alone dealing with the ghosts
she sees. When Kelpie meets Dymphna Campbell standing over
new corpse, she finds an unexpected ally who also hears
ghosts. Together, the two must escape death, danger, and
shifting loyalties of the mobs if they want to live.
RAZORHURST by Justine Larbalestier takes readers down a
and dangerous story of mobs and those that desire power. I
absolutely love the premise of this book, and the author
does a great job of creating the tense world where an
alliance can break in the time it takes to shoot a gun or
pull out a razor. Kelpie and Dymphna feel realistic and
strong, though they hold possibly the most vulnerable
positions in the story.
As much as I love the premise, the plot feels a bit
uneventful. I felt like Kelpie and Dymphna kept journeying
towards one ending plot point rather than going through a
series of escalating events leading up to a big climax.
world building is excellent on the mob end, but there is a
surprising lack of action given the subject matter. The
ghost aspect of the story is unique and gives the book a
good twist, but it seemed to fall away from being an
important part of the story by the second half.
For readers who enjoy a slow pace focused on dynamic
characters, RAZORHURST would be an excellent fit. Though I
found the story a bit lacking in action, I still
liked getting to know Kelpie and Dymphna's dangerous
Justine Larbalestier has sharp writing skills, and I
definitely look forward to reading more of her books.
The notoriously bloody history of a mob-run Sydney,
Australia neighborhood is fertile ground for this historical
thriller with a paranormal twist: two girls' ability to see
the many ghosts haunting Razorhurst.
deadly Razorhurst neighborhood, 1932. Gloriana Nelson and
Mr. Davidson, two ruthless mob bosses, have reached a
fragile peace—one maintained by “razor men.” Kelpie,
orphaned and homeless, is blessed (and cursed) with the
ability to see Razorhurst’s many ghosts. They tell her
secrets the living can’t know about the cracks already
forming in the mobs’ truce.
Then Kelpie meets
Dymphna Campbell, a legendary beauty and prized moll of
Gloriana Nelson. She’s earned the nickname “Angel of Death”
because none of her beaus has ever survived knowing her.
Unbeknownst to Kelpie, Dymphna can see ghosts, too, and she
knows that Gloriana’s hold is crumbling one henchman at a
time. As loyalties shift and betrayal threatens the two
girls at every turn, Dymphna is determined not only to
survive, but to rise to the top with Kelpie at her side.