While I didn’t officially sign up to review Alex De Campi‘s Heartbreak Incorporated, it was promoed on Sadie’s Spotlight. I liked the look of it, and since everyone who participated in the tour received a copy of the book, I gave it a read.
by Alex de Campi
Published: June 22, 2021 by Rebellion Publishing / Solaris
Genre: Supernatural Thriller
Evie Cross had big dreams of becoming an investigative journalist but at 25 and struggling to make it in New York City, she’s finally starting to admit that her dream is her side hustle and her day job is actually… her job. That is, until she signs on as a temp for a small consultancy whose principal, Misha Meserov, specializes in breaking up relationships. Misha is tall, infuriatingly handsome, and effortlessly charismatic—he can make almost anyone, man or woman, fall into bed with him. And he often does.
But the more Evie is exposed to Misha’s scandalous world, the more she becomes convinced that he’s hiding something… when a wealthy San Francisco tech CEO with a dissolving marriage starts delving into the occult and turns up dead, Evie has to decide between her journalistic desire for the truth and her growing desire for Misha.
I really enjoyed this. We have a smart heroine, who may be struggling to find success and her place in the world, but is self-reliant and witty. We have a non-binary, bi-sexual hero who is badass, but not an alpha-asshole. He shows a remarkable amount of vulnerability, and like Evie, I adored him for it. The villains are suitably evil, the writing sharp, and the plot moves along at a good clip. But mostly I just had fun with it all.
I did think there was a bit of sag in the middle, when some otherwise important characters seemed to just get dropped for a while. And I found the descriptions of Misha inconsistent. Sometimes he’s sleek and slender, but also sometimes (especially with hands) he’s notably big. Maybe it’s just supposed to be that he’s bigger than Evie. Regardless, it’s a tiny complaint. All in all, I’ll be looking for more in this series (if there are to be any) and of de Campi’s work.
Alex de Campi’s mostly-indie career stretches from her Eisner-nominated debut Smoke (Dark Horse) through recent Eisner nominees Bad Girls (Gallery 13) and Twisted Romance (Image). Plus company work: she’s killed off most of Riverdale, twice, in Archie vs Predator I & II. Her next projects are YA adventure The Backups (Imprint / MacMillan, 2020) and a thriller with director Duncan Jones. Catch her YA adventure Reversal on her Patreon, and action-thriller Bad Karma on Panel Syndicate. She also writes for TV and film (the Blade Runner anime & more). She is on social media as @alexdecampi. She lives in Manhattan.