Corpse Walker: The Night Parade by Ralynn Kimie Book Review


Rating: 3 out of 5.

Rating: 0 out of 5.

Content Warnings: War, Animal Abuse/Sacrifice, Violence


Corpse Walker is a historical fantasy book based on World War II. The story follows Hayden Daithi, a Marine who was killed in the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and his mysterious resurrection days after the attack.

With his peculiar abilities and the knowledge of an ancient Japanese demon threatening to wipe out humanity, Hayden and his team must prepare and fight back with the limited knowledge they have. Can they do it? 

I would recommend this book for readers who enjoy historical fiction and Japanese folklore/mythology, as it is the perfect blend of the two.

*Disclaimer: Now this isn’t normally a book I would choose myself, as I’m not really into history, but Ralynn Kimie reached out to me and asked me to review her book. This does not affect my review of the book, as I am dedicated to being honest in my reviews.


  • Interesting concept
  • The series has a lot of potential
  • The perfect blend of historical fiction and Japanese mythology


  • Need to know some Japanese folklore/mythology
  • Told not shown most of the information
  • Disjointed plot points



Disjointed Plot Points

While I enjoyed the overall story, there were a lot of disjointed plot points that really affected my rating of the book. 

To start off, Dr. Susanoo randomly being the God of Storms came out of nowhere. We got hints that he knew more than what he was leading on, but him suddenly revealing he’s a god and then disappearing for most of the book, felt jarring. 

The next jarring plot point was Agent Elaina Dacua being the spy. Again, there was no foreshadowing or lead-up to this. If anything, it seemed like Elaina would be a love interest for Hayden later on. So when she finally returns to Hawai’i and says the new doctor will “blow my cover,” it confused me.

The final plot point was a member of the Dullahan being Hayden’s dad and arriving at that conclusion from two words the spirit said, “my son.” Now, it is a stretch to assume a spirit from the Underworld is his dad from those words alone. “My son” can be used as a term of endearment, especially when meeting someone new. So, when this happened, I didn’t pay any mind to it until the book revealed the spirit was actually Hayden’s dad.

Missing Periods of Time

Added to the disjointed plot joints are the weird spans of time that just pass with nothing happening.

Once Hayden is arrested and until he is released (1 year), the events seem too scattered and nothing eventful happens. We only learn 2 things during this portion of the book:

  1. Susanoo’s journal is written in Old Japanese and it needs to be translated.
  2. Hayden can walk through walls and become invisible.

The rest of the information is useless, except for the small part when Agent Dacua takes Hayden’s mom home, as it plays a small part later. But even then, Hayden’s address could have been discovered by other means. 

We also don’t get a lead-up to Hayden appearing on Saipan to help fight. And suddenly he’s quick and good at fighting. We don’t see much of his training nor are we informed he will be there to fight against Nurarihyon. I just wish there was a tie between his last training session we saw and when he arrived in Saipan.

Plot Thoughts

  • What do they think Hayden can do to help the war? He hasn’t really shown any powers besides walking through walls and being brought back to life. What is their plan?
  • I’m not sure 100% how the Dullahan fit into this story besides Hayden being Irish. 


The characters felt a little half-baked. By this, I mean that Kimie knew her characters well, but it didn’t translate well into the reader learning about the character. Throughout the book, we basically see sneak peeks of each character’s personality, quirks, and mannerisms, but we don’t really get to connect with them. 

However, Hayden was starting to grow on me at the end and I felt like I was finally starting to gauge who he was. The same goes for Miss Sharp and Dr. Stolly. 

This bunch was an interesting group and I wanted to see more of them interacting– pushing each other, fighting, anything. We did get a little of that when Dr. Stolly was training Hayden, but that was kind of it. 

I hope in the next book we’ll see more interactions with the characters and we’ll be able to sit with them and connect with them better.


Told Not Shown

As a fiction writer myself, I understand how hard it is to show the reader important details or events without straight-up telling them; and I would say that is where another star is knocked off for this book.

There was a lot of information given to the reader, even when the story didn’t prompt it. Like Dr. Sauer’s fidgeting habit or Hayden’s fear of failure. There was so much telling of what was happening and not enough showing and walking the reader through the events and revelations character’s had. 

To nitpick a bit more under this section, we got a lot of military vehicle descriptions and names when they weren’t necessary. In particular, on page 270, the vehicle Miss Sharp drives takes up an entire paragraph before jumping to another scene. We didn’t need that more detail about the aircraft. For me, who is not familiar with military lingo and machinery, it felt overdone and left me skimming. 


The dialog in Corpse Walker was very well done. The conversations felt natural and flowed well between talking and describing the scene. 

With this being said, at times I did get confused about who was talking as all the characters sounded similar to each other. There wasn’t much distinction in dialect, which I would have expected from a Marine (cussing is big) and a native from Hawai’i as they speak differently than people in Pittsburg or Philly. 

I also want to praise the commitment to sticking with slang terms and insults used in the time period. That really added to the story and made the dialog seem more natural as well. 


Upon reading the back of the book, I didn’t expect it to lean heavily into Japanese mythology. I was thinking more alien instead of folklore. So, I had to do a lot of external research into what terms meant and the fight between Amaterasu and Sasanoo. 

Luckily, I enjoy learning about Japanese culture and folklore, but it did take me out of the story more times than I would have liked. I think if these key details were explained, then it would have added so much more depth to the story. 

I also wasn’t expecting Irish Philippine mythologies either. Makes me wonder if these mythologies are real, does that mean that every culture’s mythology is true? Like Norse, Mayan, etc.?

Point of View

The general omniscient POV was just too broad for the story. While it did capture everything going on, I couldn’t really connect with the characters or story like I wanted to. It all felt at arm’s length apart. 

My suggestion to correct many of these flaws is to have a limited omniscient point of view. This way the focus will be more on the important characters and storylines. 

Final Thoughts

I see what Corpse Walker was trying to do and Kimie was partially successful. However, I think instead of a book, this story would have really worked as a movie. But I know that wasn’t the goal. 

I love the idea and the overarching plot Kimie has introduced; and with some tweaks and a more narrow point of view, I believe the rest of the books in the series will nail the story she is trying to convey. 

Even though I had a lot of critiques about the book, I enjoyed reading it. There were many cool aspects and twists that I liked. I enjoyed the mythology intertwined throughout and how well the setting for the entire book was done. It really fit the time period and stuck to it. 

I’m also intrigued about the sequels since it seems like fae will be involved. And like I said, I love the premise of the story, so I will probably read the next book. 

What did you think of the book? Did you like it or could you have done without it? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Facebook Page  |  Goodreads TBR  |  Spicy Rating Scale  |  Ralynn Kimie’s Website

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