I received this book for free from Bewitching Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Sentinels of New Orleans series by Suzanne Johnson
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Urban Fantasy

Are you a fan of mysteries? I am. And I especially like mine with a little bit of magic and romance sprinkled in. Which is why I was intrigued by Suzanne Johnson’s Sentinels of New Orleans series.


In Royal Street (Book 1), we’re introduced to Drusilla “DJ” Jaco, a deputy sentinel charged with protecting unsuspecting humans from the preternatural creatures who make their way to this world from the Beyond. These include vampires, werewolves, the historical undead (long-dead humans who continue to live on in our memory and therefore are able to sustain life in the Beyond), and so on. As a Green Congress wizard, her magics are less flashy than those of Red Congress wizards like her mentor and boss, Gerald St. Simon, but she gets the job done, and she’s got a healthy dose of ambition.

Then Hurricane Katrina hits, and it unbalances the energies keeping this world and the Beyond separate, resulting in multiple breaches. On top of that, Gerry goes missing and DJ’s magic and loyalties are put to the test. She’s also partnered up with sexy shifter and enforcer Alexander Warin, whose by-the-book, black-and-white approach to any problem clashes with DJ’s own roll-with-the-punches and shoot-from-the-hip attitude. Despite their frequent bickering and the awkwardness that stems from their attraction to one another, they manage to uncover a conspiracy, one DJ’s mentor turns out to be embroiled in.

And, as with all series, this is just the start. Johnson assembles a cast of characters around DJ, including several steaming-hot gentlemen. There’s Alex’s easygoing (and easy-on-the-eyes) cousin Jake, for example, who was discharged from the military and now owns a bar that features some of the best jazz in town. Plus, one of the historical undead DJ was sent to dispatch, the French pirate Jean Lafitte, has developed a tendre for her, and any attempt to deny his appeal would most likely set DJ’s panties on fire.

But studly goodness isn’t all you get from this series. The wizards DJ works for are just one species battling out for control, and while they’ve pretty much held the reins on matters on this side of the breach for quite some time now, conspiracies to change the world order are definitely in play. As a result, DJ will have to learn how to play in the big leagues, even if it means surviving the deaths of loved ones, never quite knowing who’s trying to use her and trying to protect her, and finding out just what she can do with the magic she was born with.

While I enjoyed the first and second book of this series, it was the third book that really had me itching to turn every page, and I cannot wait for Book 4 in the series, Pirate’s Alley, to come out on April 21, 2015! So if you haven’t caught up on this series before then, you might want to give it a read.




Books in This Series

1. Royal Street
Release Date: April 10, 2012
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Royal Street by Suzanne Johnson is the fun, fast-paced first book in the Sentinels of New Orleans, a series of urban fantasy novels filled with wizards, mermen, and pirates. These novels are perfect for readers of paranormal fiction and “fans of Charlaine Harris and Cat Adams” (Booklist) and RT Bookreviews agrees that “for readers missing Sookie Stackhouse, this series may be right up your alley.”

As the junior wizard sentinel for New Orleans, Drusilla Jaco’s job involves a lot more potion-mixing and pixie-retrieval than sniffing out supernatural bad guys like rogue vampires and lethal were-creatures. DJ’s boss and mentor, Gerald St. Simon, is the wizard tasked with protecting the city from anyone or anything that might slip over from the preternatural beyond.

Then Hurricane Katrina hammers New Orleans’ fragile levees, unleashing more than just dangerous flood waters.

While winds howled and Lake Pontchartrain surged, the borders between the modern city and the Otherworld crumbled. Now, the undead and the restless are roaming the Big Easy, and a serial killer with ties to voodoo is murdering the soldiers sent to help the city recover.

To make it worse, Gerry has gone missing, the wizards’ Elders have assigned a grenade-toting assassin as DJ’s new partner, and undead pirate Jean Lafitte wants to make her walk his plank. The search for Gerry and for the serial killer turns personal when DJ learns the hard way that loyalty requires sacrifice, allies come from the unlikeliest places, and duty mixed with love creates one bitter gumbo.


2. River Road
Release Date: November 13, 2012
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River Road by Suzanne Johnson is the fun, fast-paced second book in the Sentinels of New Orleans, a series of urban fantasy novels filled with wizards, mermen and pirates. These novels are perfect for readers of paranormal fiction and “fans of Charlaine Harris and Cat Adams” (Booklist) and RT Bookreviews agrees that “for readers missing Sookie Stackhouse, this series may be right up your alley.”

Hurricane Katrina is long gone, but the preternatural storm rages on in New Orleans. New species from the Beyond moved into Louisiana after the hurricane destroyed the borders between worlds, and it falls to wizard sentinel Drusilla Jaco and her partner, Alex Warin, to keep the preternaturals peaceful and the humans unaware. But a war is brewing between two clans of Cajun merpeople in Plaquemines Parish, and down in the swamp, DJ learns, there’s more stirring than angry mermen and the threat of a were-gator.

Wizards are dying, and something–or someone–from the Beyond is poisoning the waters of the mighty Mississippi, threatening the humans who live and work along the river. DJ and Alex must figure out what unearthly source is contaminating the water and who–or what–is killing the wizards. Is it a malcontented merman, the naughty nymph, or some other critter altogether? After all, DJ’s undead suitor, the pirate Jean Lafitte, knows his way around a body or two.

It’s anything but smooth sailing on the bayou as the Sentinels of New Orleans series continues.


3. Elysian Fields
Release Date: August 13, 2013
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Elysian Fields by Suzanne Johnson is the fun, fast-paced third book in the Sentinels of New Orleans, a series of urban fantasy novels filled with wizards, mermen, and pirates. These novels are perfect for readers of paranormal fiction and “fans of Charlaine Harris and Cat Adams” (Booklist) and RT Bookreviews agrees that “for readers missing Sookie Stackhouse, this series may be right up your alley.”

The mer feud has been settled, but life in South Louisiana still has more twists and turns than the muddy Mississippi.

New Orleanians are under attack from a copycat killer mimicking the crimes of a 1918 serial murderer known as the Axeman of New Orleans. Thanks to a tip from the undead pirate Jean Lafitte, DJ Jaco knows the attacks aren’t random–an unknown necromancer has resurrected the original Axeman of New Orleans, and his ultimate target is a certain blonde wizard. Namely, DJ.

Combating an undead serial killer as troubles pile up around her isn’t easy. Jake Warin’s loup-garou nature is spiraling downward, enigmatic neighbor Quince Randolph is acting weirder than ever, the Elders are insisting on lessons in elven magic from the world’s most annoying wizard, and former partner Alex Warin just turned up on DJ’s to-do list. Not to mention big maneuvers are afoot in the halls of preternatural power.

Suddenly, moving to the Beyond as Jean Lafitte’s pirate wench could be DJ’s best option.


pirates-alley-cover4. Pirate’s Alley
Release Date: April 21, 2015
 (preorder) • Add to Goodreads

From award-winning author Suzanne Johnson comes the fourth book in the smart and sexy Sentinels of New Orleans series.

Wizard sentinel DJ Jaco thought she had gotten used to the chaos of her life in post-Katrina New Orleans, but a new threat is looming, one that will test every relationship she holds dear.

Caught in the middle of a rising struggle between the major powers in the supernatural world—the Wizards, Elves, Vampires and the Fae—DJ finds her loyalties torn and her mettle tested in matters both professional and personal. Her relationship with enforcer Alex Warin is shaky, her non-husband Quince Randolph is growing more powerful, and her best friend Eugenie has a bombshell that could blow everything to Elfheim and back.

And that’s before the French pirate Jean Lafitte, newly revived from his latest “death,” returns to New Orleans with vengeance on his mind. DJ’s assignment? Keep the sexy leader of the historical undead out of trouble. Good luck with that.

Duty clashes with love, loyalty with deception, and friendship with responsibility as DJ navigates passion and politics in the murky waters of a New Orleans caught in the grips of a brutal winter that might have nothing to do with Mother Nature.

War could be brewing, and DJ will be forced to take a stand. But choosing sides won’t be that easy.


About Suzanne Johnson

Suzanne Johnson writes urban fantasy and paranormal fiction from Auburn, Alabama, on top of a career in educational publishing that has thus far spanned five states and six universities—including both Alabama and Auburn, which makes her bilingual. She grew up in Winfield, Alabama, but was also a longtime resident of New Orleans, so she has a highly refined sense of the absurd and an ingrained love of SEC football, cheap Mardi Gras trinkets, and fried gator on a stick.

Writing as Susannah Sandlin, she also is the author of the best-selling Penton Legacy paranormal romance series and The Collectors romantic thriller series. Elysian Fields, book three in the Sentinels of New Orleans series, won the 2014 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence while her Sandlin-penned novel, Allegiance, is nominated for a 2015 Reviewer’s Choice Award from RT Book Reviews magazine.