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Unquiet Dreams    by Mark del Franco order for
Unquiet Dreams
by Mark del Franco
Order:  USA  Can
Ace, 2008 (2008)
* *   Reviewed by Ricki Marking-Camuto

Unquiet Dreams, Mark del Franco's latest fantasy/mystery featuring druid Connor Grey, is a deep and sometimes dark tale about politics and the fey. As with his first novel, Unshapely Things, del Franco keeps an even mix of fantasy and mystery in Unquiet Dreams.

Connor Grey is called in by a friend, Boston Detective Murdock, to investigate the death of a normal teenage boy who seems to have been dropped from the sky into a puddle of mud. A few minutes later, police are called to the scene of the murder of a high-ranking fey politician who fought for unity among races. Grey believes the two murders are connected, but is relegated to investigate only the boy's death. As he and Murdock dig deeper, they discover that both cases involve trolls, gangs, and drug running. Also, the Guild is taking a strong interest in the politician's death, especially since it concerns the make-up of the Guild board. As much as the Guild wants to keep Grey out since he lost his powers, they are going to have to bet their lives on him if they want to survive this gang war.

In Unquiet Dreams, del Franco delves deeper into Connor Grey's history, making him an even more likeable protagonist. We get to learn more about the initiations of druids, Grey's family, and why his loss of powers was so devastating. We also get to see the start of a romantic relationship, which helps to make him seem more real. Of course del Franco brings back Grey's friends, especially Joe the flit, who provides a lot of comic relief. But he also introduces interesting new characters who help to round out the story and the fey world. Mark del Franco is a master at combining modern fantasy with crime detective mystery. Fans of either genre are sure to find a good read in Unquiet Dreams.

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