You guys, Die and Stay Dead has garnered me my very first starred Publishers Weekly review ever! I’m reprinting it here in its entirety, even though technically I’m not supposed to, because oh my God, I am so thrilled!
In this smart and fast-paced follow-up to Dying Is My Business, unkillable gangster Trent and the rest of the Five-Pointed Stars race against time to stop a madman from destroying the world—but the true danger comes from a far closer source. Kaufmann wastes no time in taking Trent and his allies all across New York City, where they uncover hidden magic and danger everywhere. He crafts twin mysteries—figuring how to stop a villain from summoning a destructive demon and finding the truth of Trent’s past—that gradually intersect. The fighting and introspection are finely balanced in this well-developed magical world, which includes harsh costs and sacrifices that don’t always pay off. Each character has a strong voice, allowing for quick engagement even if the reader missed the first book. The strong writing and open ending will leave fans hungry for the next installment.
This breaks the streak of Publishers Weekly pretty much hating everything I write, for which I’m both grateful and overjoyed, but a muthaflippin’ starred review? I never would have imagined! I was nervous that readers wouldn’t like Die and Stay Dead as much as they seemed to like Dying Is My Business — it’s a sequel, after all, and for every The Empire Strikes Back there’s a hundred Ghostbusters 2 – but maybe it’ll be well received after all. Time will tell. I’ll try not to worry about it, said the man who practically invented worrying about things he can’t control anyway.