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on August 28, 2012
This is the 10th Cosa Nostradamus, and 4th P.U.P.I, novel. Several of the key ongoing plot threats are brought to a conclusion in this book, and some new potential plot threads are set up to replace them. In internal chronology, this is the first PUPI book to be set after the final Retrievers book, the first three took place between, or concurrent with the Retrievers books. We get to catch up with Wren Volare, and get an almost unavoidable face-off with Ben the security wizard trying to protect a target from Wren the legendary Rertriever (he ultimately fails, of course). The plot thread of Ian Strosser's sister, which has been a main underlying plot thread from the beginning, is (apparently) wrapped up, and Wren (of all people) becomes a mentor.

For those who have never read any of Gilman's previous Cosa books, the Cosa Nostradamus is their own name for the people (using the term loosely) who can use or are magic. The Cosa is divided into three main groupings, council (the human magic users who acknowledge and fall under the control structure of the various Councils who regulate magic users), lonejack (basically all the human magic users who aren't council), and the Cosa Cousins (all the more or less non-human people)

Two human magic users, Ian Strosser (council) and Ben Venec (lonejack), start an organization they name Private Unaffiliated Paranormal Investigations (PUPI). PUPI is not a police force, and has no affiliation with any governing or enforcement group (the the P_ and the U of the name). They hire several human magic users (referred to as Pups) in their early 20s, and train them to be a CSI for magic related crimes. They will do an investigation for anyone who asks (but they do expect payment), and present their results. Their purpose is not catch the perpetrators, or punish the guilty, just to0 determine the truth and give that to the person or persons that hired them. The viewpoint character is Bonita Torres (council) who is one of the Pups. She was introduced in the Retriever books as Wren's next door neighbor.

This being Luna (Harlequin), there is, of course, a romance plot, but Luna has always been lenient with its authors in not requiring them to make the required romance plot the main focus of the books.
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on March 27, 2015
Don't get me wrong, I have liked Gilman's other books, but quite frankly I felt cheated. The first two books in the series developed a lovely tension between Bonny and Ben, while they resisted their bond. As their link became stronger, and Bonny matured into being ready for a real relationship, I was literally thrilled when Ben invites her to explore their bond on their off time. YES! And then NOTHING HAPPENS. Ok, so they are sleeping in the same hotel room, but they might as well have been platonic roommates for all emotional payoff we get. Then, of course, there is this whole serial killer scenario going on, which felt vaguely contrived. And one of the most interesting dynamic characters is killed off in a completely uninteresting way. A totally disappointing ending all in all.
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VINE VOICEon July 24, 2012
This fourth adventure in the Paranormal Scenes Investigation series had all the thrills and adventure that is the series' trademark. It combines police investigation, though the PUPIs aren't members of any police force, and magic. PUPI is an organization of magic users who investigate magical crimes. The story begins with an investigation of the kidnapping of a little human girl. Two members of the Fae bring the case to them because they don't want to be blamed for breaking the Palisades Treaty. Working for a Lord and Lady of the Fae isn't easy but there are possible future benefits. So Ian Stosser, one of the bosses of PSI, takes the case and assigns Bonnie to try to find the girl - discretely.

Bonnie calls in favors from friends we have met in earlier books in this series and in the Retrievers series when she visits Wren, a famous retriever, and Danny who is half-faun, a private detective, and a former police officer. Bonnie's case seems to be intersecting with Danny's as he also has missing kids to find. Together they determine that someone is trying something magical the needs 7-year-old, 14-year-olds, and 21-year-olds. She finds her little girl with the help of a dryad and also finds a totally untrained talent. She knows this girl needs a mentor and decides to take her to Wren.

Ben Venec, meanwhile, is taking some time off from being the other boss at PSI and decides to take a side job of his own in Philadelphia. He and Bonnie have a sort of magical relationship called a Merge which both are denying because neither wants magic to decide their life for them. But when Bonnie gets a couple of days off, Ben invites her to join him in Philadelphia. They could work on their relationship. At least they could if they didn't stumble on a murder case. There is a serial killer targeting and killing Talents. Ben, Bonnie and the whole crew get sucked into the investigation.

I love Bonnie. She is smart, tough, caring and has a strong sense of justice. I also love the relationship between Ben and Bonnie and am glad that they have moved on from ignoring the Merge and are trying to figure out how to fit it into the life they want to lead. The magic system and the worldbuilding are strengths of this series. When I think about it, I think of little vignettes - Bonnie visiting the dragon in charge of New York; Bonnie bringing lasagna to Wren for a housewarming; Bonnie with the dryad of Central Park.

This was a very entertaining story. I recommend it for lovers of urban fantasy.
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on January 15, 2013
LOVE this series! Laura Ann Gilman is an amazing author and I know better but I made the mistake of starting it late at night and had to keep reading until I finished it.

Dragon Justice is the 4th in her Paranormal Scene Investigations series and like the others is set in the same world as her Retriever books. I love the way Gilman blends magic, mystery and forensic science into an intriguing story that pulls you in and won't let go. Bonita Torres has become a seasoned investigator and her personal life gets more interesting. All of the PUPI's are adjusting to the expansion of the investigative business and new staff. There is both conflict and cooperation between Talents, Nulls and Fatae. We get to see a little more of Wren Valere and PB and even a quick visit to Madame, the Great Worm of NY, as well as meeting Rorani, The Dryad of Central Park.

Multiple investigations strain the resources of the group as they juggle the cases of a missing 7 year old girl and a serial killer with an interesting MO. I won't spoil the story by revealing too many details, but there is both personal and professional growth for Bonnie and some twists I really wasn't expecting.

I can't wait to read the next book in this series but in the meantime I can reread these books often because my enjoyment of them is not dependent solely on the plot but, like the original Star Trek series, the interaction among the characters keeps pulling me back, like greeting old friends
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on November 30, 2015
I enjoyed 1-3 of this PSI series. Number 4 Dragon Justice I'm just....well...thinking wtf? I'm about 85% of the way through and a very pivotal character dies, needlessly and more importantly stupidly. To use an abused quote in so many Paranormal urban fantasy mystery books, "it doesn't make sense!?!" Then his co workers and friends go order pizza and argue about anchovies? Ok I want my money back sister, horrible almost ending to a pretty cool series.
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on April 18, 2016
Another great story in the PUPI series! I am always checking the author's page to find out when the next book will be released! I highly recommend this series! You won't regret it!
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on August 9, 2012
This is one of those cases where I there series has degenerated quickly from what had been a promising start. This book was a white-hot, convoluted mess of a story. I have a pet peeve about the growing trend for authors to do lots of perspective shifts rather than following the primary character, and this was really, really bad in that respect. They follow Bonnie for a while in 1st person, then bounce around between other random characters (at least 4 of them) for short periods of time in 3rd person, bounce back to Bonnie, then back out again. There were three or four plot-lines going on, any of which could have or SHOULD have had an entire book, and all of them were handled badly and none of them really reached a satisfactory completion. The author had major events happen that wound up being rushed through. She had events in this book dependent on events in her Retriever series so if you haven't read that, you're kind of up the creek. Characters show up and leave without any real explanation of why they were there. There were a couple of dragon-related scenes that were included that made absolutely no sense in the great scheme of things, even by the end. The one plot-line that the author did actually kind-of tie up was only achieved by a surge of magic-babble, where Gilman came up with a complex addition to the magic-system of her world that was rather arbitrary and seemed thrown in because she couldn't figure our a real way for the heroes to solve the case. And speaking of arbitrary, it would be remiss of me to fail to discuss the incredibly forced main romance for our heroine. Gilman painted the heroine as a bisexual, independent woman. As far as "bisexual" goes, I'm glad when an author actually takes a chance like that with a main character, except this author didn't actually take a chance. The character hasn't actually been involved with another woman except to make reference that she COULD in the future or HAD in the past. But in any of the PRESENT stories? Not a chance. Instead, Bonnie is pretty much forced into a relationship through magical means, indicating that even the author had no real reason why the two characters would wind up together. There is absolutely no chemistry between the two characters caught up in "the Merge," but we are forced to endure the relationship anyway. The secondary characters, who have up until now been an important part of the chemistry of the book, were inconsequential in this one. So instead of the intriguing who-done-it kind of story that Gilman started off with in this series, she wound up delivering a confused hodgepodge of stuff than happened with no real identity.

Normally it would be unlikely that I would continue to read a series after something I considered this messed up, but the first few books in the series (keep in mind that I haven't read her other series) indicated that Gilman can really write. This book just felt like it was rushed to the publisher without any real plan to it. She would actually need to spend an entire novel just explaining all the things she missed in this one.
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on February 2, 2013
If you enjoy Laura Anne Gilman's retriever series you owe it to yourself to look at the life of the PUPPIs. Although some things in this book were not pleasant and it took a turn that I would never have expected it was a great book. A wonderful progression of the story arch and I can't wait for the next one.
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on September 2, 2013
Great series. Fun to read. Great universe. Great character development. Well written. I like how all the characters are growing in their roles, and the vivid imagery of the story line are all fantastic.
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on September 5, 2012
Great finish for the series (make sure to read them in order!). This was my favourite PUPI book, it had a bit of everything. Love, drama, magic, and - yes - sadness.
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