I do not receive compensation for reviews. I should note for the sake of full disclosure that The Judas Line was published by Camel Press the same company that published Cocaine Zombies and that Mark Everett Stone did provide a blurb for Cocaine Zombies. I do strive to be accurate in my reviews.
The Judas Line is a fast moving adventure that hits the ground running and does not let up. Jude Oliver comes from a family of assassins that go back to the time of Christ. He has been trained in military combat techniques as well as the use of modern weapons and magic. The story starts after Jude has left the family and gone into hiding. He has taken with him some very powerful and evil magic. Jude took thirty pieces of silver first provided to Judas of biblical fame. The silver contains thirty magic words. The family wants to get the silver back.
To hide the silver, and avoid detection by his family Jude has to keep it in a bath of holy water. Jude befriends an ex-military priest named Mike who provides the holy water. He also becomes the friend who will stick with him through a hellish adventure. The task to destroy the silver starts out as damn near impossible. They must locate and use the Holy Grail. Then their problems increase as they must fight Jude’s family of assassins who have the backing of hell.
We learn throughout the book about Jude’s childhood. His family is rich and powerful and will stop at nothing to get what they want. Jude is particularly gifted. Jude has mastered botanical magic and knows more magic words than his other family members in training. In most families this would make him popular. In his family it makes him a target for assassination.
Along the way Jude and Mike find some unusual magical help from various sources. These include Cain (the son of Adam and Eve), figures in Norse mythology, and elementals. Although, this seems like an odd cast of creatures to put together for a single book it does work.
The writing flows well and makes for an easy read. The dialog is funny and irreverent. The characters are likable and easy to root for. I would recommend this book as a fun and exciting read.