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Littlest Death
A Labyrinth of Souls novel
by Eric Witchey
ShadowSpinners Press, $11.99
Published: September 2017

In a labyrinthine afterlife that has room for every conception of Death personified, the newest, youngest, littlest Death is still faceless and persona-less. Some of the established Deaths offer advice and share experiences, but being low entity on the Eternal Totem Pole is a lonely existence. It only gets worse when a botched soul collection leads to escalating errors. Littlest Death has to pay for the mistake, not with her life, which she doesn’t have, but with her immortality, by submitting to birth and life as a human. Her loneliness is alleviated by a Hellhound puppy, sired by Cerberus, that opts to accompany her on the perilous incarnation.  (The puppy is a scene-stealer. My favorite element of the story became the author’s series of nicknames for the furry, adorable hellspawn.)This is a good literary match for readers who have an interest in anthropology; it can also double as YA fiction by reason of the protagonist’s youth and the theme of coming to maturity. There is also a subversive quality to this novel that can be easy to overlook, startling to recognize. This one stays with you. – Chris Wozney

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