Daniel Faust, mage and con man, finished off his first trilogy of novels by disposing of a particularly nasty villain who either didn’t know or didn’t care that her plans would destroy all of creation.
So, what’s a guy living out of Vegas with his succubus girlfriend to do for an encore? Review and mild SPOILERS after the cut.
This week on the podcast, the guys and Jenny did battle over various things, but I don’t want to cover that.
No, I want to cover their reaction to Armada, a book Jenny didn’t finish and Watson hated. Now, I reviewed the book myself, and while I didn’t hate it, I likewise didn’t really enjoy it either. It was perfectly meh, neither here nor there. I’ve read bad books. Armada was not a bad book.
But I probably took a little heat for not enjoying Ernie Cline’s first novel, Ready Player One, as much as the others did, in part due to my nostalgia distaste. Now, I want to expand on some points that Watson made in the podcast and a minor one I made on my review after the cut.
Gabbing Geek snared a great interview with author Mike Carey for his novel The Girl With All The Gifts a while back. If you haven’t read it, you probably should. Carey’s a great writer in the world of horror and dark fantasy, and if you haven’t read Girl or his great Vertigo series Lucifer, then you’re probably missing out on something.
He also has this dark, fun urban fantasy/horror series about a London-based exorcist named Felix “Fix” Castor. Review with possible SPOILERS for the fourth book in said series, Thicker Than Water, after the cut.
My very first Gabbing Geek article was all about urban fantasy, that subgenre where protagonists are often supernatural individuals, or people with knowledge of supernatural individuals, living in the modern world.
One of the authors and book series I recommended there was Craig Schaefer’s Daniel Faust series. Faust is a magician living in Las Vegas, a former flunky to a half-demon mobster that does odd jobs. The third novel in the series, The Living End, wraps up an opening trilogy of novels where Daniel matches wits with the treacherous Lauren Carmichael. Review with some potential spoilers after the cut.
The sidekick. That often annoying individual that follows the hero around, sometimes useful, sometimes not. The character is a staple of genre fiction. But sometimes the sidekick is more interesting than the hero.
After the cut are a few such sidekicks that outrank their bosses in terms of personality. Who will make the cut?
Picturing a fantasy setting might give a person of supposedly sound mind an image which revolves around something that came from the mind, pen, or fever dream of J.R.R. Tolkien, even if the person in question thinks that name belongs to a particularly odd Muppet. Or perhaps the idea is more of some sort of Game involving Thrones. Maybe King Arthur came off his flour bag to do his thing with Merlin or Galahad or people with names way cooler than anyone else you may know, provided you don’t know any chimps of the Link family (though, to be fair, he is a rather secretive chimp).
But fantasy usually just boils down to magic and the supernatural, and if The Ring taught us anything, and it didn’t, it is that magic and the supernatural can exist anywhere, which is where the Urban Fantasy subgenre comes in.