I’m a fast reader, but not fast enough to post a review a day, so I thought I’d occasionally toss up a review or discussion about some of my favorite reads that everyone might not know about…or if you do, let’s talk about them!
Last week book 11 of British urban fantasy author Simon R. Green’s Nightside series came out, and I’m anxiously awaiting its arrival in my mailbox. I discovered this series about three years ago, read the first two and promptly went out and tracked down the rest.
The protagonist of these first-person urban fantasies is John Taylor, and they’re set mostly in the Nightside, an alternative (aka unknown to most humans) version of London full of some of the nastiest critters imaginable. Taylor uses his second sight, which strips away the trappings to reveal the monster hidden underneath, to track down missing things. Might be a person, might be Excalibur. The books have a very Maltese Falcon noir feel to them, with a dry wit and the most unusual set of characters any series could hope to have. They’re snarky and funny and dark and sometimes so off-the-wall that it makes my head want to explode. Think Harry Dresden on steroids.
Here’s the intro to the first book, Something from the Nightside:
Private eyes come in all shapes and sizes, and none of them look like television stars. Some do insurance work, some hang around cheap hotels with camcorders hoping to get evidence for divorce cases, and damn few ever get to investigate complicated murder mysteries. Some chase things that don’t exist, or shouldn’t. Me, I find things. Sometimes I’d rather not find them, but that comes with the territory. The flaking sign on the door in those days said Taylor Investigations. I’m Taylor. Tall, dark and not particularly handsome. I bear the scars of old cases proudly, and I never let down a client. Provided they’ve paid at least some cash up front.
One of the things I love about the Nightside series is how deeply Green draws on classical mythology and religious icons to people his stories. Man, you do NOT want to meet an angel in the Nightside, and if you really want to know where Merlin is buried…well..just don’t assume he’s dead.
Have you read this series? What do you think of it? For today’s giveaway, you can have your choice of Nightside books–the first one, if you haven’t read any of them, or the brand new one, A Hard Day’s Night, if you’re all caught up–or any in between. As always, +1 for comment, +1 for blog followers, +1 for Twitter followers @Suzanne_Johnson, +1 for Tweet or Retweet.