Tag Archives: Urban Fantasy

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs : Review

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Mercedes “Mercy” Thompson is a talented Volkswagen mechanic living in the Tri-Cities area of Washington. She also happens to be a walker, a magical being with the power to shift into a coyote at will. Mercy’s next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she’s fixing a bus for a vampire. This is the world of Mercy Thompson, one that looks a lot like ours but is populated by those things that go bump in the night. And Mercy’s connection to those things is about to get her into some serious hot water…

I remember picking this book up for the first time at the used book store near my house back when I was in the middle of an urban fantasy kick — as I am right now, mainly because it was just sitting near the Dresden Files book shelf. It then proceeded to sit on my book shelf at home for two long years before I finally remembered I had it and decided to give it a try. I have been kicking myself since that day for waiting so long to read this book, Patricia Briggs has turned into one of my favorite urban fantasy authors, second only to Jim Butcher and his Dresden Files.

In a genre full of wizards, werewolves and vampires it’s always nice to see a main character who stands out from the pack, and Mercedes Thompson does just that. Mercy isn’t just the best Volkswagen mechanic in the entire state of Washington, she’s also a Native American being known as a walker — a shape shifter with the ability to turn into a coyote at will. When her werewolf neighbor Adam is attacked and his daughter Jesse is abducted it is up to Mercy to everything at her disposal to help Adam save his daughter before it is too late.

There are just so many things that I love about this book that I have trouble even talking about it sometimes without spewing my fanboy all over people. For a protagonist Mercy is pretty bad-ass, in a world of werewolves, vampires, powerful Fae creatures and a government determined to control them all you wouldn’t think one little coyote would be able to hold her ground, but she does. It’s also always fun to read some urban fantasy where all the preternatural elements aren’t hidden from the world, but out there for everyone to see, it adds a really interesting element to the story.

With the Mercy Thompson books Patricia Briggs has managed to take all of my favorite tropes from the genre and twist them into something completely her own. A feat that is not easy to do considering just how many books that are out there nowadays, it gets more impressive the more I think about it.

I can’t count the number of times I have read and reread Moon Called, it is from one of those series that I always seem to be in the middle of a reread of. I would definetly give this book 6 out of 5 stars and would suggest anyone looking for some great urban fantasy with a kick-ass heroine pick up this book.

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Libriomancer (Magic Ex Libris #1) by Jim C. Hines : Review

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Isaac Vainio is a Libriomancer, a member of the secret organization founded five centuries ago by Johannes Gutenberg. Libriomancers are gifted with the ability to magically reach into books and draw forth objects. When Isaac is attacked by vampires that leaked from the pages of books into our world, he barely manages to escape. To his horror he discovers that vampires have been attacking other magic-users as well, and Gutenberg has been kidnapped.

Libriomancer by Jim C. Hines was a really fun book to read, it is another book series that I wish I had discovered much sooner than I did. As I mentioned in my last review is really easy to find urban fantasy to read these days as it seems to be everywhere I look, it’s difficult to find good urban fantasy. So when I find books like Libriomancer I tend to read through them ridiculously fast. This book was so good I ended up reading the entire series in under a week and am already desperately waiting for the next book to release. It probably has the greatest magic system I have ever read about in any book, I can’t say how much I wish Libriomancy really existed in our world.

Founded by Johannes Gutenber over 500 years ago the Libriomancers are a secretive group of men and women with a very unique gift — they are able to reach into almost any book that exists and pull out an item from within to use. Need to sneak through a building undetected? Why not just pull an invisibility cloak from Harry Potter, or a shrink ray from pretty much any sci-fi book in existence. Isaac Vainio is one of these Libriomancer, but unlike the rest of his brothers and sisters in magic, Isaac has been stuck with a desk job in the middle of nowhere Michigan, about as far away from the rest of the world and Libriomancer politics as it is possible to get. However, when a group of Sanguinarius Meyerii — sparkling vampires who have been accidentally released between the pages of a book attack him in an attempt to learn Libriomancer secrets Isaac soon finds himself on the run. It will take his magical fire spider Smudge, a beautiful Dryad and his vast collection of science fiction noels to help Isaac find out just what the hell is going on, and keep himself alive long enough to do something about it.

I really can’t say enough how much I loved the magic system contained within this book, it is just awesome. There is just something about reading a book and have it mention another book or series I enjoy reading. This not only happens all the time in Libriomancer, but when it does it is usually when someone is reaching into the book references and pulling an item out of it to use. These references aren’t just used as gimmicks either, some of the items pulled from the books act as maor plot points for the story. Just trying to catch all the different books referenced and trying to figure out what item the Libriomancer is going to pull from the books is really fun. It makes the book and series really rereadable — at least to me it does.

I think anyone who enjoys reading urban fantasy will really enjoy the Magic Ex Libris series as a whole, I think about every book I’ve ever loved is mentioned in some way in the series. Just writing this review makes me realize I have to start rereading it again, which is not a good thing when I have to be up for work in less than 5 hours.


Skinwalker by Faith Hunter : Review

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Jane Yellowrock is the last of her kind-a skinwalker of Cherokee descent who can turn into any creature she desires and hunts vampires for a living. But now she’s been hired by Katherine Fontaneau, one of the oldest vampires in New Orleans and the madam of Katie’s Ladies, to hunt a powerful rogue vampire who’s killing other vamps…

Urban fantasy has quickly become my favorite sub genre of fantasy these days, the only bad thing about it is there is so much available now that at times it is difficult to sift through all the bland or mediocre stories to get to the really good stuff. Sometimes I will try and read two or three books a week only to toss them aside after just a few chapters for one reason or another. However with Skinwalker by Faith Hunter I was hooked from the very first page, it quickly turned into yet another book I was unable to put down until I finished it. I will learn one day not to start a new book at 10pm at night when I know if I like it I will read it until 6am like I did with Skinwalker.

Jane Yellowrock is a shapeshifter, the last living skinwalker in all the world — or so she thinks. When a rogue vampire starts killing people in the heart of New Orleans Jane finds herself hired by Katherine Fontaneau, the proprietor of the brothel Katie’s Ladies and one of the oldest vampires in New Orleans, to hunt down and kill the rogue vampire before it becomes a PR nightmare for the vampire council. Oh, and she has 10 days in which to do if she wants to receive her full pay and a bonus on top of it. To complete her job she will have to accept help from wherever she can get it, all while fighting off the Beast within who wants nothing more to take control of the hunt.

One of the things I loved most about this story was the fact that other than our shapeshifting heroine there were only vampires and witches in the story. It was a nice change to read some urban fantasy where you are not provided with a bunch of different supernatural creatures to learn about and keep track of. While Jane and the rest of the world may only know about the vampires and the witches hints are dropped all throughout the book that there may be other races hiding out in the world still.

It was also nice not to read some urban fantasy where the focus was not on sex or romances, Jane Yellowrock is in town to get her job done and she has no time for anything that may get in her way. I think anyone who enjoys the Dresden Files or Patricia Briggs Mercy Thompson books will love this book as much I do. I have already bought the next two books in the series and I plan to start the next one soon, never mind the fact that I know it will keep me up till early tomorrow morning.

 


[GUEST POST] Three Urban Fantasy Books to Read

Most of us have watched urban fantasy series at some point in our lives, from the 1997 hit American show Buffy the Vampire Slayer to the more recent Supernatural series starring the amazing Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles (Winchester Brothers). However, how many of us have actually read epics that provide as much action and suspense as the aforementioned series? If you enjoy reading books as much as you take pleasure in watching urban fantasy stories, you might want to consider giving these novels a try.

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
Neverwhere explores the story of a businessman named Richard whose life changed forever when he stopped to help a desperate young girl helpless on a nearby road. When the girl, named Door, recovered the next morning, she begged Richard to find Marquis de Carabas — a man who will be able to help her escape from two inhuman assassins that are trying to kill her. Why are assassins after the seemingly harmless young girl and how can the Marquis save her from the dark recesses of the city? Richard sets out on a quest to find the answers to many unanswered questions, when both Door and the Marquis mysteriously disappear after meeting in his apartment.

 

The Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne

Atticus O’Sullivan is one of the last surviving druids – soothsayers of the ancient Celtic religion — in the world. The 21-century-old druid lives in Arizona and earns a living by running a bookshop.

Atticus was living a peaceful life until his immortal enemy, a Celtic god, found him. Apparently, Atticus has something that the god wants, which is a very powerful sword called “The Fragarach.” In order to take the sword away from him, the Celtic god sends in Atticus’ way powerful werewolves disguised as lawyers, seductive goddesses of death, and many other temptations that can make even the strongest of men drop their guard.


Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch

According to Mayfair Casinos, London is one of the most exclusive areas in the world where for hundreds of years, the rich and elites met in private clubs. However, who would’ve thought that apart from the upper class, angry ghosts and mischievous gods also convene in the most populous city of England?

That’s what Probationary Constable Peter Grant found out when he gained top secret information from an eyewitness who is actually a wraith. Peter’s ability to talk with the dead brings him closer to Detective Thomas Nightingale, who works on cases with supernatural elements. Grant and Nightingale must work together in order to solve the creepy ghosts possessions plaguing the city and the brewing war between two old gods of the River Thames.

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Instinct (Chronicles of Nick #6) By Sherrilyn Kenyon : Review

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Zombies, demons, vampires, shapeshifters— another day in the life of Nick Gautier– and those are just his friends. But now that he’s accepted the demon that lives inside him, he must learn to control it and temper the very emotions that threaten the lives of everyone he cares for. Something that’s hard to do while trying to stay off the menus of those who want his head on a platter. And no one wants him more than the dark gods who created his race. Now that they know where he is, they will stop at nothing to reclaim him. And without knowing it, Nick has just embraced the one person he should never have trusted. The one person who will hand him over to his enemies to get back the life they lost.

Nick has finally accepted his fate, now he must learn to defy his destiny, and the dark, deadly forces that will stop at nothing to destroy everyone he loves so that they can again return to the world of man and own it.

Infinity by Sherrilyn Kenyon was one of my prize discoveries last year, and while every consecutive book in the series has been better than the last, Kenyon has really stepped up her game with Instinct. It turned out to be one of the best YA books I have read in a long time, placing itself up there with the likes of Riordan’s Percy Jackson, or Sanderson’s Reckoners series.

In the last year Nick Gautier has had to go through more than anyone has had to deal with. He’s fought of zombified high school football players, learned out to look deep into his future, and had to fight off hordes of ghosts and undead. That’s not to mention the demons and dark gods he has had to fight off or make deals with in the hopes of at least making it through high school. The only reason Nick Gautier has survived this long is because of the help his friends and allies have provided, and the protection of his Dark Hunter boss Kyrian. In Instinct Nick must stand on his own to save save the life of not only himself, but those of his friends and everyone else he holds dear.

Instinct was definitely the best book in Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Chronicles of Nick so far. It has everything in it that I love about urban fantasy and YA in general. First and foremost it has a great story, the events of the last five books in the series have been building up to something big and I think Instinct is the beginning of the next major story arc. There is a great cast of characters and they make me love them enough I want to go out and start reading the Dark Hunter series just to read about them in their adult life.

The only complaint I have about the book–or any other book in the series really, is that it is way too short and ends on a huge cliff hanger. Just when I am really getting into the book or I am coming to some huge revelation about Nick or his world the book ends. Every damn time. Then I find myself waiting a full year just to find out what happens next, only to find myself left hanging at the end of another book.

The anticipation and the waiting is well worth it though, Kenyon hasn’t disappointed me with a book yet.

Instinct (Chronicles of Nick #6) By Sherrilyn Kenyon is scheduled to be published March 31st, 2015 by St. Martin’s Griffin.

I received a copy of this publication in return for an honest review.


Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs : Review

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For once, mated werewolves Charles and Anna are not traveling because of Charles’s role as his father’s enforcer. This time, their trip to Arizona is purely personal, as Charles plans to buy Anna a horse for her birthday. Or at least it starts out that way…

Charles and Anna soon discover that a dangerous Fae being is on the loose, replacing human children with simulacrums. The Fae’s cold war with humanity is about to heat up—and Charles and Anna are in the cross fire.

Dead Heat is a good example of why I love Patricia Briggs as much as I do, to me its the perfect example of what paranormal romance should be. It is by far my favorite book in the Alpha and Omega series so far, and one of the best book set in the Mercyverse to date. Patricia Briggs has proven herself to be a master of taking the classic trappings and tropes of urban fantasy and paranormal romance and turning them into something uniquely her own. I would put the world she has created with her Mercy Thompson and Alpha and Omega series right up there with that of Jim Butcher.

When Charles decides its time for his wife Anna to have a horse of her own, they take a trip to Arizona for her birthday to buy one from the herds of his oldest friend. It doesn’t take long for their pleasure trip to turn into one of business when the family of a local werewolf is attacked be someone who stinks of Fae magic. Charles and Anna will have to help protect the children of a small Arizona town while attempting to figure out if this is the act of a single rebel Fae, or the beginnings of a war.

I found this to be the most interesting book about Anna and Charles so far, as it gives us a good look into the personal history of Charles, something that has only been hinted at in the previous books in the series. It’s a little saddening when you realize the sacrifices Charles and all of the werewolves have to make for bearing their curse. They get to watch almost everyone they know grow old and frail before their eyes. Dead Heat shows us just what that means for a werewolf and how it affects their lives.

It will be interesting to see how the events of this book play out across the rest of the series and the Mercy Thompson books, the Fae can be a terrifying people when they want to be.

Patricia Briggs writing is excellent as always, with Dead Heat she has created an amazing story and an interesting mystery for us to try and solve alongside Charles and Anna. She also gives us an interesting look into werewolf politics outside those of the Marrock or Adam’s pack, as well as the introduction of several new characters who I hope to see again in the future. The only thing I didn’t really enjoy was the the strong emphasis on horses, they aren’t something I particularly care much about, and a large portion of the book was dedicated to them.

Overall I would suggest this book to anyone who reads paranormal romance or urban fantasy, though I would strongly suggest that everyone reads the books in order.  It should also be kept in mind that you get a better understanding of whats going on in the world if you read both the Mercy Thompson and Alpha and Omega series.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs is set to be published March 3rd 2015 by Ace.


Firefight (Reckoners #2) by Brandon Sanderson : Review

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They told David it was impossible–that even the Reckoners had never killed a High Epic. Yet, Steelheart–invincible, immortal, unconquerable–is dead. And he died by David’s hand.

Eliminating Steelheart was supposed to make life more simple. Instead, it only made David realize he has questions. Big ones. And there’s no one in Newcago who can give him the answers he needs.

Babylon Restored, the old borough of Manhattan, has possibilities, though. Ruled by the mysterious High Epic, Regalia, David is sure Babylon Restored will lead him to what he needs to find. And while entering another city oppressed by a High Epic despot is a gamble, David’s willing to risk it. Because killing Steelheart left a hole in David’s heart. A hole where his thirst for vengeance once lived. Somehow, he filled that hole with another Epic–

. And he’s willing to go on a quest darker, and more dangerous even, than the fight against Steelheart to find her, and to get his answers.

I wasn’t really surprised at how good Brandon Sanderson’s Firefight was — the man is a writing machine. I don’t think it is possible for him to write a bad book, in fact I would be shocked to find a book of his I did not enjoy. What I did find surprising however, was how much better I found Firefight to be when compared to Steelheart. It has always been my opinion that Sanderson’s YA books read more like middle grade but with Firefight I didn’t find that to be the case. I feel like the characters deal with issues darker than ones Sanderson has broached before in one of his YA books. It really made the book that much more enjoyable.

In the first book of the series we meet David Charleston a teenage boy who has dedicated his life to the study of Epics in an attempt to learn their weaknesses in an attempt to bring down the Epic who killed his father–Steelheart. After joining a group of freedom fighters known as the Reckoners David is finally successful in his lifelong goal. He has killed Steelheart and the city of Newcago is finally free. But without his quest for vengeance to sustain him, David soon finds himself without goal or sense of purpose.

After another High Epic begins sending lesser Epics to Newcago to kill the Reckoners for daring to kill the cities ruler, David soon finds himself on his way half way across the country. David soon learns though, that everything is not as it seems in Babyilon Restored, the city formerly known as Manhattan, and he begins to question everything he thought he knew about Epics. Can an Epic be saved from his or her own power?

I really enjoyed how fast paced this book was, I burned through it in a single day and it wasn’t even because it was short. There was just so much action and every chapter ended on a one liner or cliffhanger that forced me to keep reading to know what happens next. I even found I enjoyed David a lot more this book than I did in Steelheart, he’s still as driven and motivated as before but he has a new goal and after the events of Steelheart he isn’t so narrow minded when it comes to Epics. He shows a lot more maturity, thought, and common sense than most of the adults in the book who are supposed to know better.

In addition to the awesome new setting and David’s new and improved attitude, the newly introduced Epics are really quite something. We get a really good look at the broad spectrum of super powers available, and get a good look at the fact that not all Epics are high powered, semi-invincible monsters. Firefight really throws some light onto just what the Epic’s are, where they get their powers, and why they corrupt them the way they seem to.

I was really disappointed in myself for finishing this book so fast, I kept telling myself I would take my time and spread it out over a few days. Now I have to wait an entire year for Calamity to released and to get the conclusion to the story that I desperately crave.

While I think anyone who is a fan of Brandon Sanderson, urban fantasy, or superhero fiction would enjoy this story, I really do suggest everyone reads Steelheart and the short story Mitosis first. I didn’t read Mitosis and I found myself a bit confused at time because of all the references, so I can only assume it will be 10 times worse to someone who hasn’t read the first book.

If you’re interested, check out this 5 minute clip from the Firefight audiobook courtesy of Audible.


Must Read Urban Fantasy

I was sitting at my laptop the other day browsing through books to read, deciding what I wanted to reread when I realized that more and more these days I find myself leaning more towards urban fantasy over any other genre. I don’t know what it is about the genre that makes me love it so much, it can be difficult to find a decent book or series to read, and most seem to be erotica posing as fantasy. That got me wondering just what urban fantasy series there are out there that are fun to read, without being overly full of gratuitous sex and violence.

These are the top three or four authors and series I could think of who do an amazing job with the genre, and as I’m always looking for something else to read I would appreciate any other suggestions people may have for me.

The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher:

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Harry Dresden — Wizard Lost items found. Paranormal Investigations. Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates. No Love Potions, Endless Purses, or Other Entertainment.”

His name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden–conjure by it at your own risk. Harry is not just the only publicly practicing wizard in Chicago (look him up, he’s in the yellow pages), he’s also a licensed private eye, and an occasional consultant with the CPD. When the monsters decide it’s time to come out and play, it’s Harry Dresden who stands between them and the people of the city.

While I have heard people claim its rough getting through the first few books in the series, I can honestly say I never had any such problem. After I stumbled across these books while looking for something else at my local used book store, I burned through all 8 books that were available at the time in a matter of weeks, and was impatiently waiting for the next book in the series soon after. To me the Dresden Files has everything that’s needed for a great urban fantasy series.

First there are the characters. Harry Dresden is the wise-ass wizard who doesn’t know when to shut up or stand down. Time and time again he gets kicked in the teeth, but gets right back up again to face down the big bad monster threatening his beloved Chicago. Murphy is the mandatory tough as nails cop who has stumbled across the secret world that Harry lives in and is smart enough to know she can’t face it all on her own.

There are entire courts of vampires secretly trying to rule or destroy the world, a hidden world of demons and fae who live by morals and laws most mortals would struggle to understand, and a plot that links each book so subtly that you can only see the edges of it in the beginning of the series.

Unfortunately for me the Dresden Files has made it difficult for me to enjoy and other urban fantasy series as much as I probably would have if I had read it first.

The Mercy Thompson Series by Patricia Briggs:

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“I was going to fight vampires, and my name wasn’t Buffy–I was so screwed.”

I struggled for years after finding the Dresden Files to find another book or series in the sub genre that didn’t pale in comparison, or feel like a cheap knock off to me. For me Moon Called by Patricia Briggs was that book and series. While most of the preternatural world can trace its origins back to Europe, shifters are rooted firmly in Native American myths and legends. As such they don’t always follow the same ancient rules and laws that govern the rest of the preternatural world.

Mercy Thompson is a Shifter who can take the form of a coyote at will. This series follows Mercy as she struggles to survive in a world of territorial and powerful werewolves, vampires and fae. All while attempting to keep her maintain her garage and keep her job as a mechanic.

For me the best part of this series is the world and culture that Briggs has built up around the werewolves. It’s so well thought out that it would be easy for me to believe that such a world is hiding in the shadows of society, waiting for the perfect time to come out to the public. Anyone who is a fan of vampire or werewolf fiction would absolutely love these books. Briggs even manages to balance the romance with the rest of the story, which I’ve noticed that not many urban fantasy authors can do.

The Kate Daniels Series by Ilona Andrews:

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“What kind of woman greets the Beast Lord with ‘here, kitty, kitty’?”

With the Kate Daniels series Ilona takes all the greatest trope of urban fantasy–the secret hidden world of magic, vampires, and shape shifters and completely throws it out of the window. Instead we get an alternate version of Atlanta where magic and technology come in waves, while one is active and working the other is not. During a magic wave you may see a banshee screaming from a telephone pole out in front of your house or a magical war being fought in downtown Atlanta, but you won’t have use of telephones, television or cars. When the technology is up you may not have access to your magic, but you can you’ll have electricity and and the telephones will work again.

In this bizarre alternate Atlanta most of the world is controlled or protected by various guilds and organizations. Kate Daniels works for the Mercenaries Guild, when the magic suddenly comes up and you have a giant fire-breathing lizard loose in your neighborhood, Kate Daniels is going to be the one who responds (For a reasonable fee!).

This is another series where for me the deciding factor was the amount of thought and detail put into the various preternatural groups that exist in the world. This time its not just werewolves who hide among us, but werebears, wererats, and any other type of lycanthrope you can think of. Vampires are mindless creatures being controlled by the People, a group of power hungry necromancers who mentally control the dead.

The only thing I didn’t really realize until I was through the majority of the first book is that this is mostly paranormal romance. By the time I realized that fact though it was too late to go back, I was already hooked, and I am more than glad for it. To me the Kate Daniels series is that anyone of the genre must read!

Honorable Mention: Mercedes Lackey

I was going to put Mercedes Lackey’s urban fantasy books on this list, but I quickly remembered she has four different series in the genre. The great thing about her four different series to me is that they all exist in a shared universe that spans hundreds if not thousands of years, and there are cameos from the same characters across all the various books set in her world.

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Magic City: Recent Spells edited by Paula Guran : Review

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Bright lights, big city… magic spells, witchcraft, wizardry, fairies, devilry, and more. Urban living, at least in fantasy fiction, is full of both magical wonder and dark enchantment.

Street kids may have supernatural beings to protect them or have such powers themselves. Brujeria may be part of your way of life. Crimes can be caused (and solved) with occult arts and even a losing sports team’s “curse” can be lifted with wizardry. And be careful of what cab you call—it might take you on a journey beyond belief!

Some of the best stories of urban enchantment from the last few years gathered in one volume full of hex appeal and arcane arts.

Magic City: Recent Spells is a collection of previously published short stories by some of today’s top urban fantasy authors with a new introduction by Paula Guran.

The most important thing to remember when you go to read this anthology is the fact that all of these short stories have been published in other anthologies or made available elsewhere by the authors. There is no theme behind the anthology and nothing tying them together other than the Paula Guran’s insightful introduction to the genre and the fact they are all urban fantasy. I would suggest not reading the stories in this anthology in the order they are listed as I struggled to get through the first couple stories before they progressively got better.

I wasn’t exactly sure how to go about reviewing this anthology and decided to pick the two stories I liked the least as well as the two stories I liked the most and review those. I am a fairly big fan of the urban fantasy genre and had read the majority of these stories back when they had originally been published, so to find any stories in the anthology I did not like in some way was difficult.

Street Wizard by Simon R. Green:
This was my least favorite story in the anthology and proved to be a “day in the life” story with no real plot or direction. It did provide however, a decent glimpse into the world created by Simon R. Green, and interest me enough that I will definitely check out more of his writing.

Paranormal Romance by Christopher Barzak:
I still don’t quite know what to think of this one, it was more of a romance story with bits of urban fantasy thrown in to spice it up some. I though the main character was somewhat shallow and found myself a little offended that she would use her magic for something so frivolous as affecting hers and other peoples love lives.

Dog Boys by Charles de Lint:
I’m not that all that big of a Charles de Lint fan, but this turned out to be one of my favorite stories in the anthology. Brandon is the new kid in town who finds himself in the middle of what is essentially a gang war between the 66 Bandas and the Native kids from the nearby Reservation. It is about doing what is right even when no one else will.

Curses by Jim Butcher:
This was by far my favorite story out of them all as is probably no surprise as Jim Butcher is a master of the genre, though I am a little shocked to find a short story of his I have not read. In Curses Harry Dresden is employed by the Chicago Cubs in an attempt to break the Billy Goat Curse. Like any other story in the series Curses is full of Butcher’s trademark humor, the Fae, as well as a certain talking skull. I’d certainly consider this the crowning jewel of this anthology.

I would certainly suggest to anyone who is a fan of the genre to check out this anthology, but would also suggest they look carefully to make sure they have not read the majority of the short stories contained within it. For those who have read the majority of the short stories I would suggest buying it anyway, there is no such thing as rereading a story too many times.

I received a free copy of this publication in exchange for an honest review.


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