Tag Archives: funny

Review of The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths & Magic, by F.T. Lukens

I received a copy of The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths & Magic, by F.T. Lukens through Netgalley.

Description from Goodreads:
Desperate to pay for college, Bridger Whitt is willing to overlook the peculiarities of his new job—entering via the roof, the weird stacks of old books and even older scrolls, the seemingly incorporeal voices he hears from time to time—but it’s pretty hard to ignore being pulled under Lake Michigan by… mermaids? Worse yet, this happens in front of his new crush, Leo, the dreamy football star who just moved to town.

Fantastic.

When he discovers his eccentric employer Pavel Chudinov is an intermediary between the human world and its myths, Bridger is plunged into a world of pixies, werewolves, and Sasquatch. The realm of myths and magic is growing increasingly unstable, and it is up to Bridger to ascertain the cause of the chaos, eliminate the problem, and help his boss keep the real world from finding the world of myths.

Review:
Super cute, I mean it’s a little ridiculous too, but utterly adorable. I thought the characters had realistic young adult, coming into themselves sort of problems that they handled well. I thought the couple was too cute for words. I liked the side characters. I thought the fantasy aspect of the book was engaging and interesting. And I thought it was funny. Granted, some of the humor was of the slapstick, silly sort. But still I enjoyed it. A rare, all around win for me.

On a side note, if you hurry, there’s even a giveaway to win a copy. It ends Sept. 30th.

Review of Straight Outta Fangton, by C.T. Phipps

I received an Audible copy of C. T. PhippsStraight outta Fangton through AudioBookBoom.

Description from Goodreads:
Peter Stone is a poor black vampire who is wondering where his nightclub, mansion, and sports car is. Instead, he is working a minimum wage job during the night shift as being a vampire isn’t all that impressive in a world where they’ve come out to mortals. 

Exiled from the rich and powerful undead in New Detroit, he is forced to go back when someone dumps a newly-transformed vampire in the bathroom of his gas station’s store. This gets him fangs-deep in a plot of vampire hunters, supernatural revolutionaries, and a millennium-old French knight determined to wipe out the supernatural. 

Sometimes, it just doesn’t pay to get out of the coffin.

Review:
This was really quite good; funny in a witty, sarcastic way, with a widely diverse cast and entertaining plot. Cary Hite did a wonderful job with the narration, which only enhanced my enjoyment of the book.

Going in, I was a bit iffy about the main character being a black vampire and joking about this at times, with the author being white. There are jokes people can make about themselves and their own group that outsiders really just shouldn’t. But I never felt Phipps was irreverent or insulting about his characters in any way. Peter and crew were marvelous!

I thought a lot of the geekdom references were funny, but I also thought they went a little overboard; too much of a good thing, if you will. Abut all in all, however, I loved this and hope for more.

Review of Drip: A Gothic Bromance, by Andrew Montlack

I received a copy of Drip: A Gothic Bromance from the author, Andrew Montlack, for review.

Description from Goodreads:
J.D. and George: thick as thieves since the fourth grade. J.D., the troublemaker, the stud: the alpha. George, the sidekick, the misfit: the loser. Upon graduating college, J.D. has convinced the only job creator in rusty Middlestop to hire them. BrewCorp, the hot new coffee and retail chain, is offering a vice presidency to the employee with the boldest plan for growth, and J.D. is determined to be the guy. When not sleeping with co-workers, he hatches his pitch for a one-of-a kind data pipeline. He is unbeatable–until George grabs the promotion. Now J.D. wants answers. His quest to find them—and to deal with the monstrous truth—is the subject of indie filmmaker Andrew Montlack’s wry debut novel, which features the same biting satire that made his mockumentary, The Devil’s Filmmaker, a cult classic.

Review:
I started this book with a bit of hesitancy. No, that’s not right. The start of this book made me hesitant; that is more accurate. There is a certain subset of predominantly male, bizarro/horror authors that write books with a certain pompous, presumptuous tone that drives me up the wall. They always feel as if the author is sneering at the reader, like, “You chump, you’re reading MY work so piss off!” They’re basically what happens when trolls write, whether they’re good at it or not is irrelevant. It’s about tone, not talent.

The first chapter or two of Drip, the way certain scenes and characters were described and explained, even if the reader should reasonably be expected to know, hinted that Montlack might be such an author. I groaned and wondered at the number of Pantera and Metallica shirts he might owns. (Yes, totally spurious.) But I’ll happily report that Montlack pulled it together and an interesting and non-trollish book developed. I even liked it.

It does some interesting things with its plotting. The most notable is the unexpected hero. It’s not who you expect, who experience tells you should rise above and save the day. There is a certain narrative reader can generally expect, we’re fed it so often and unrelentingly. The meek will inherit the earth. The downtrodden will get their comeuppance. The arrogant youth, who has always gotten their own way, will one day face their own fallibility, while the person who followed the rules is shown to have walked the right path and will receive their rewards. That is not the story you receive here. One character has always had the best—he would say worked for the best—even if he had to step on others to get it, and the other has always been pathologically hesitant and unlucky, polite to a fault. Conventional plotting would balance those scales. Not Montlack.

This makes for a really interesting turn of events, a fun story. But I have to admit it’s also uncomfortable. It feels inherently unfair. In fact, while I loved the epilogue, I never did reconcile myself to the end. One character really did get a bum deal.

But the genius of it is the way it leaves you to ponder if Mr. Charisma is a bad person or not. Certainly, by the end he’s grown exponentially and can be said to be a good man. But what about previous to that? He’d spent his whole life being arrogant, self centered and rude. He has one tragedy that gives him a bit of depth, but is it enough? He did take care of his best friend. But does that count if it’s only within his own limited view of desirability. How much of it is out of any sense of loyalty and how much is just because he benefits from it? You’re never really sure and it keeps the character interesting.

Similarly, though you see much less of Mr. Beta’s personality, you see how he fell into the circumstances he does. Some of the most enlightening passages of the book come out of his mouth.

I thought the corporate vampires were a fun touch, though they did become caricatures after a while. Perhaps it’s the Gothic influence, but as I often do with vampire novels, I was left wondering why they only ever seem to hunt women. A few men got incidentally noshed on or died fighting, but every vampire victim to have a detailed death was a woman.

The writing itself is worth a read. Montlack knows how to turn a phrase and it’s pretty well edited. So, the actual reading experience is a pleasant one.

All in all, I really enjoyed it. I think I, personally, would have preferred it moved farther into either the serious or comedic category. As it is, it straddles the two in a way I found less that ideal. It’s humor kept me from taking it seriously and it’s serious bits kept me from just letting go and laughing at it. But that’s basically a personal preference sort of comment.