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Black Dog (Hellhound Chronicles, -1) by Caitlin Kittredge

Black Dog (Hellhound Chronicles, #1) by Caitlin Kittredge

Hellhound Chronicles series — by Caitlin Kittredge

NEW Series!

☆ NEXT Release: Grim Tidings — Aug 25, 2015

Genres and Sub-Genres[]

Urban Fantasy

Series Description or Overview[]

A soul catcher must stop demonic monsters from her past from infecting the world. ~ Goodreades

Lead's Species[]

Hellhound: Soul catcher

Primary Supe[]

Reapers / Demons

What Sets it Apart[]

  • Female Hellound as the lead character. 
  • A mythology that reinvents the traditional story of fallen angels, demons, Hell, and Tartarus.

Narrative Type and Narrators[]

First person narrative by Ava, a Hellhound hired by her reaper boss, Gary, to fetch souls.

Books in Series[]

Hellhound Chronicles series:

  1. Black Dog (2014)
  2. Grim Tidings (Aug 25, 2015)

Shorts, Novellas, Anthologies and Guides[]

  • The Resurrectionist (in Urban Enemies)

Other Series by Author onsite[]

World Building[]


Las Vegas


  • New Orleans
  • Hell
  • Wyoming — where Ava finds Clint holed up with bikers
  • Tartarus
  • Underworld
  • Kansas

Supernatural Elements[]

✥ Hellhounds, reapers, demons, shape-shifters, zombies, vampires, “zompires”, Fallen angels, angels,  necromancers, voodoo, hellspawn, Heaven and Hell, secret genetic lab in Hell, underworld, supernatural gangsters, , , ,


  • Hellhound: Shapeshifters who are indentured servants of a reaper, gathering the souls of wayward necromancers and of those who have "missed a payment," after selling their souls to a demon—they hunt errant souls and send them to Hell. Hounds are basically slaves who have little if any free will of their own.
  • The Kingdom: A Heaven-like place that is run by the Host;
  • The Host: "Nine generals who give the orders. There's nothing higher than them…" (Black Dog, p. 200)
  • Fallen Angel: Angels who were banished from the Kingdom. Originally, they were sent to Hell, but escaped to the mortal plane when the demons revolted against them. Most have maintained at least a few—but not all—of their particular angelic powers.
  • Demons (aka Hellspawn): Supernatural beings created by the Fallen as servants in Hell. They despise the Fallen and eventually rose against them. Lilith was the first demon to be created.
  • Hell: The original home of the Fallen.
  • Tartarus (aka the Pit): A prison in the deepest depths of Hell where the Fallen imprisoned the demons. After the demons rose up and took over Hell, they used the Pit to contain the damned souls collected by the reapers. As the series begins, the gates of Tartarus are tightly closed, permitting no exit.
  • Reapers: Servants of demons. They are tasked with collecting the souls of sinners. The reapers also supervise the hellhounds and the people who provide vampires with their blood supply.
  • Necromancers: Warlocks who can raise, animate, and control the dead. They use blood in their conjuring: "Willing human blood for healing and protection. Unwilling for black magic and cursing." (Black Dog, p. 166)
  • Deadheads (aka Zombies): Mindless creatures raised from the dead and controlled by warlocks.
  • Vampires: "Suckers aren't hard to pick out. They stink like old women's underwear, and unless they've got a good hemoglobin-rich supply, they start looking like beat-up luggage within a couple of weeks." (Black Dog, p. 28) Older vamps weigh very little because their internal organs dry out.
  • Shapeshifters: They can shift regardless of the moon phase, and they live in multi-species packs (e.g., coyotes, wolves, and mountain lions). ~ Fang-tastic Fiction
  • Scythe: a powerful blade that can draw out a soul and instantly kill any creature, human or supernatural.
  • Zompires: a breed of monsters as smart as vampires—but who behave like zombies

Groups & Organizations:[]


Hellhounds are in the service of a reaper, a nasty job with an even worse contract. Essentially they're the earthbound muscle for demons: reapers can’t spend much time on earth, so they need Hounds to do their dirty work and collect the souls of the damned. Collecting these souls is easiest in human form with the use of reaper-consecrated object called a Scythe (doesn’t have to be an actual scythe) that sucks the souls right outta those poor fools. Hounds are super strong and fast, but they’re not exactly known for being intelligent or independent. ~ GR reader review


The series heroine is Ava, a hellhound who works for a reaper named Gary. Gary, in turn, works for the demon Lilith. Ava is unique among hellhounds because she can remember when she was human, a fact that she keeps a secret from Gary. Ava lives a hopeless existence. If she fails on any soul-gathering assignment, Gary will kill her and send her to Hell. If she completes her assignments successfully, she will be assigned more—an endless stretch of violence, fear, and endless servitude. Ava knows that she "might not always like what I did, or that that matter what I was, but I was a hound. I was made to hunt. It was all I was meant to do…My part was to track [the necromancer] down and kill him. Always had been, always would be. I was a hound, That was all I was good for." (Black Dog, p. 24) Gary puts it in much cruder terms, continually reminding Ava that she is nothing but his loyal dog: "…Ava, you get to do what you do best…Fetch." (Black Dog, p. 15) ~ Fang-tastic Fiction: Caitlin Kittredge: HELLHOUND CHRONICLES


Name: Leonid Karpov — What: necromancer — Sidekick-to: Ava— About: Ava’s friend — Book First Seen In: Black Dog #1 (2014) Hellhound Chronicles series

Characters Chart[]

Characters What About
Ava hellhound the indentured servant of a reaper who hunts errant souls and sends them to Hell; turns into a big black dog;
"Leo", Leonid Karpov necromancer, mob prince, Grim Reaper Ava’s sidekick; friend; wants Ava to steal Gary's scythe to kill Sergei;
Gary reaper, Ava’s boss; asshole who lives to see his Hounds suffer and amass as many souls as possible to pass on to the big kahuna
Clint Hicks unknown (revealed later) Ava’s ordered by Lilith to collect his soul; evaded capture longer than Ava’s been alive; doesn't have a soul: not human; holed up in Wyoming with biker shifters;
Sergei powerful necromancer head of a mob family; Leo is Sergei's illegitimate son: uses him as killer and a clean-up man but denies him any power Leo wants Ava to steal Gary's scythe to kill Sergei;
Lilith demon, Gary's boss; wants to unleash demon spawn on earth and create total chaos

To expand the table, in Edit–Visual mode, right-press on a Row of the table or Column (Control-press on a Mac)—choose add Row or Column.

Caitlin Kittredge red hair

Caitlin Kittredge – Author


Caitlin Kittredge

Bio: Caitlin Kittredge is the author of the Nocturne City and Black London series, as well as several short stories. She started writing novels at age 13, and after a few years writing screenplays, comic books and fan-fiction, she wrote Night Life, her debut novel. She is the proud owner of an English degree, two cats, a morbid imagination, a taste for black clothing, punk rock, and comic books. She’s lucky enough to write full time and watches far too many trashy horror movies. She lives in Olympia, Washington. ~ Caitlin Kittredge | Authors | Macmillan


Cover Artists[]

  • Artist: — Source:

Other Contributors:[]

  • Audio Book Narrator: — Source:
  • Editor: — Source:

Publishing Information[]

  • Publisher:
  • Author Page:
  1. Black Dog (2014): 
  2. Grim Tidings (2015)

Book Cover Blurbs[]

BOOK ONE—Black Dog (2014): The first installment in a fabulous dark urban fantasy series—think Kill Bill with demons and gangsters instead of martial arts—from the award-winning author of the Iron Codex trilogy and Vertigo comic Coffin Hill... Ava has spent the last hundred years as a hellhound, the indentured servant of a reaper who hunts errant souls and sends them to Hell. When a human necromancer convinces her to steal her reaper’s scythe, Ava incurs the wrath of the demon Lilith, her reaper’s boss. As punishment for her transgression, Lilith orders Ava to track down the last soul in her reaper’s ledger . . . or die trying. But after a hundred years of servitude, it’s time for payback. And Hell hath no fury like an avenging Ava... The first installment in a fabulous dark urban fantasy series from the award-winning author of the Iron Codex trilogy and Vertigo comic Coffin Hill. ~ Goodreads | Black Dog (Hellhound Chronicles, #1) by Caitlin Kittredge

BOOK TWO—Grim Tidings (ug 25t, 2015): In this thrilling sequel to Black Dog—award-winning Caitlin Kittredge’s dark urban fantasy series, Hellhound Chronicles—a soul catcher must stop demonic monsters from her past from infecting the world. After winning her freedom from a reaper and facing off against a fearsome demon boss, Ava is now a masterless hellhound. Her friend, Leo, has found a new life after death himself: He’s returned as the Grim Reaper—the first in centuries. As both try to adjust to their new circumstances, Ava’s dark past comes back to wreak havoc on her . . . and the entire world. A breed of monsters as smart as vampires—but who behave like zombies—have been sighted in Kansas. Ava can’t believe these “zompires” are back. She thought she’d kicked their asses for good when she first battled them in a Nazi death camp. Now, they’re spreading their infection across America’s heartland thanks to a nasty piece of business named Cain. Free at last after being locked up in Hell for millennia, Cain has some scores to settle. To stop him, Ava must form an unholy alliance with some old foes . . . a bargain that will lead her to uncover deeply buried truths about her past—and Leo’s future. ~ Goodreads | Grim Tidings (Hellhound Chronicles, #2)

First Sentences[]

  1. Black Dog (2014) — Knowing that a person is marked for death is a strange feeling, one that crawls inside you and puts down roots.
  2. Grim Tidings (2015) —




Read Alikes (suggestions)[]

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See Also[]


External References[]



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