Dog Warrior
by Wen Spencer
Review by James Munizza

Wen Spencer's novel, Dog Warrior, is the latest book in the Ukiah Oregon series. While Ukiah appears in it, the main focus tends to be on a new set of characters that are destined to play a significant role in Ukiah's life.

The story begins just outside of Boston with the 2 of the new characters (Atticus Steele and Kikaru Takahashi) liberating a dead body, that strangely looks quite like Atticus, from the trunk of a car that happens to have mice in with the body. Mice that Atticus and Kikaru happen to recognize as blood mice. Taking the body and mice with them, they go to the place they are staying and begin to piece together the identity of the body while trying to arrange a drug buy of a new hot drug on the market called blissfire.

As Atticus, Kikaru, and their partner Kyle Johnson delve into the mystery of the "dead body" (Ukiah), they are slowly draw into Ukiah's world and problems. Atticus also starts to find out more about himself and is forced to deal with this new strange new reality.

Another character must also deal with their identity as Agent Zheng must decide how she feels about Ukiah offer of marriage and his force liaison with the cultist Ping.

The story moves along quickly and weaves the Ontongard and the Temple of New Reason fight into higher consequences as the fate of the world hangs in the balance, Ukiah, Atticus, and the Dog Warrior have to come to an uneasy alliance to deal with this threat.

This novel brings a satisfying conclusion to the original story arc of the deadly Ae and while I did miss the characters of Max (who mainly appears via phone calls from Ukiah) & Sam, I'm waiting to see if the author will continue with Ukiah's story or if she'll further explore Atticus' story.

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