Diabolical Sword: An Urban Fantasy Mystery

· The Charm Collector Book 1 · Ringtail Press
6 reviews

About this ebook

Enjoy the first book in this fun, mystery-focused urban fantasy series today

A sentient sword. An artifact collector. A whole world of trouble.

My name is Harlow Fletcher, and I’m a charm collector.

As the daughter of bounty hunters, I know more about the criminal underbelly than the average citizen of Luma, California. But when my dad’s work got him killed, and my mom skipped town, I swore off the profession for myself. Instead, I fell into the lucrative gig of freelance charm collecting. I have a knack for finding rare artifacts, namely illegal magic-laced weapons, and I use that skill to sneak into criminals’ homes after the police have carted them off for their latest infractions. Once I’ve helped myself to the contraband, I sell it to the highest bidder.

While looting my latest victim, a gorgeous sword catches my eye. I regret my decision to steal the sword within minutes: the weapon is alive. It’s lightning-quick, has an anger management problem, and refuses to leave me alone.

When the sword takes off one day, I think it’s finally out of my life for good—yet, in less than twenty-four hours, the police are at my door, accusing me of murder. While I’m in the middle of explaining that I didn’t commit the crime, the diabolical sword floats into my apartment, covered in blood.

Now we’re on the run, with bounty hunters and government-trained feline shifters hot on our trail. Proving my innocence is going to be a lot harder with the sentient murder weapon by my side—especially when I might be next on its hit list …


Content Warning: Adult language


KEYWORDS: urban fantasy, contemporary fantasy, elves, elf, vampires, vampire fiction, magic, paranormal mystery, hidden city, magical sword, sentient sword, fantasy mystery, amateur sleuth, female protagonist, woman of color, supernatural suspense, paranormal suspense, supernatural mystery, supernatural thriller, supernatural mystery, fantasy series, mystery series, urban fantasy series, first book, series starter, sorcerers, witches, goblins, urban fantasy series

6 reviews
Emilie V
November 18, 2021
Harlow makes a living collecting and selling charms, weapons, and other magical pieces. When that occupation leads to her nabbing a sentient dragon sword, she gets dragged into more danger and conspiracies than she signed up for! Overall, Diabolical Sword is an entertaining and exciting read. The plot kept me guessing and came together nicely at the end. There are some hints of potential romance, but nothing solid yet—which I appreciated! I love a good slow burn. The world is nicely built, and this first book does a great job of explaining the rules, lore, and magic without infodumping or getting overwhelming. Diabolical Sword has a fantastic cast of characters. Every voice felt unique, and you can tell everyone has a deeper story that we will probably get to explore later. Harlow is witty and sarcastic, making for fun banter between others in the cast like Caspian and Zander. I absolutely loved the sentient sword and how much personality it had, despite not being able to speak. The sword’s bond with Harlow was adorable and I can’t wait to see more! I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
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LJ Harris
November 11, 2021
The author spent time building this world for the reader. It took a bit of time to get there, I must say, but it helps considering all the magical creatures thrown in and the connectedness of them all in that world. Harlow Fletcher is our charm collector (thief of magical objects) in question and on a job one night she picks a sword - or the sword picks her - and her life goes sideways from there! I liked Harlow. Just a regular chick trying to keep it going in a world where she was all alone, except for her bestie, Kayda. Loved all the supporting characters, in particular Caspian and Welsh. A decent job was done with dialogue in general, but especially between Caspian, Welsh and Harlow. And that sword, it was every bit as strong a character as everyone else. It had a fiery personality that really came through. So did its affection for Harlow, and hers for it. I soooo enjoyed when it made its feelings known. Kayda found that out...haha! Again, there's a fair amount going on here, but care was taken to build the story, so it wasn't overwhelming. Overall, an entertaining read. Looking forward to the next phase in the story. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
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Lucrecia Tolbert
July 30, 2022
This book is so worth the read. I could not put this book down. The characters are absolutely wonderfully created along with a well crafted storyline. It is amazing all that a sword can create such havoc not only on the town, but also on an individual's life. Most importantly this book features a person of color as the main character. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
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About the author

Melissa lives in Northern California with her boyfriend and way too many pets. She divides her time between operating a dog walking business and writing. She (mostly) writes paranormal mysteries. Some of them are very cute and some of them are very creepy. You can find all of her books in ebook, paperback, and audio formats.

You can get in touch with her at the following sites:

Website/Mailing list: https://melissajacksonbooks.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WriterMsJackson

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/melissa-erin-jackson

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/inkscape

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