by Seanan McGuire
When she isn’t ballroom dancing or working at the strip club waitressing, Verity Price runs around Manhattan patrolling the non-human populations of beasties, gouls and other things that humans don’t believe exist, cryptids. She is from a family of cryptozoologists who help maintain peace between all types of creatures and keep them out of the human spotlight. Enter the other guys, or the Covenant, who simply kill the beasties because they are “unnatural”.
But there seems to be something else amiss in Manhattan, causing Verity and Lewis, a Covenant representative, to start working together. Uh oh! 🙂
McGuire has an awesome sense of humor, if you like your urban fantasy filled with quipy lines, a sassy heroine and more bizarre beasties than you could possibly think up, this might be for you.
“Mother Nature is a freaky lady who probably created pot so she could spend all her time smoking it.” (pg 253)
That line is Verity trying to explain the diversity of Cryptids and why there are some majorly non-human looking ones. But the best part of this book is that Verity doesn’t really get along with the cryptids (her family was part of the Covenant a generation or two past) or the Covenant guy. She has to prove herself at every turn which becomes a nimble dance in more ways than one. She is diving off of buildings, running across roofs, have sword fights and all in NY City. She is a bit of a batman-type character except without the utility belt, she is more an acrobat with a smart mouth.
There is a little love interest which is fun because neither person falls easily. There isn’t a triangle or anything but there are plenty of problems with this match, which keeps it exciting. 🙂
All in all a wonderful start to a new series. I love Seanan McGuire, she tends to put excerpts from diaries, or other original sources of information, blogs, diaries, quotes at the beginning of the chapters so you get a little historical background in snippets. She did this as Mira Grant in her Newsflesh series too and it is great, they are humorous or poignant and sometimes both. I can’t wait to read the second book which was just published this year, A Midnight Blue Light Special. If you like urban fantasy and fantasy and monsters and humans trying to get along, check this one out. 4+ stars, 2 can pass for human, one has to wear a wig, the other spends most of its time in the subway tunnels skulking in shadows.