The downside to growing as a reader is realizing how much epic fantasy is problematic in terms of representation. Therefore, I thoroughly enjoyed discovering this series, which features queer characters, including a gender-fluid character. Carivel is a delight to read, and her relationship(s) with Andoc and Senovo are just the right mix of emotional and sexy.
This book can be read as a stand-alone, but the relationship arc doesn’t quick work by itself. Carivel falls into Andoc and Senovo’s arms without much conflict, as if it was inevitable once everyone’s secrets were revealed. Continue reading
Family has been a running theme in this series, and things come to a head in this installment of the Whyborne & Griffin books. Whyborne’s father has had a major shift in attitude, which causes Whyborne to be suspicious of the man’s motives.
In the grander scheme of things, Whyborne’s own position in the town of Widdershins appears to be changing, which affects the external plot of this book. As usual, magic and creepy cults play a role, but the twists at the end are particularly enjoyable since the story occurs so close to home. Continue reading
The Lovecraftian influence in this series goes deeper once again, featuring mythical monsters hinted at in previous installments. The larger world of sorcery also opens up, and along with Whyborne, we find out there is more to learn than just spells in an old book. Continue reading
This installment of the series takes poor Whyborne far out of his comfort zone as his friend Dr. Putnam summons him to Egypt for his professional expertise. The fact that I read this book while on a cruise ship in the middle of the ocean probably enhanced my sympathy for him, which was a fun element. Continue reading
This short story is available as a free download from K.J. Charles’ website. It is best read after Stormhaven (Whyborne & Griffin #3) by Jordan L. Hawk and the full collection of The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal by K.J. Charles because it contains significant spoilers for both. Continue reading
The horrors of this book are once again an homage to those created by Lovecraft himself, and I continue to find absurd joy in heroes that would have completely pissed him off. At this point, I am thoroughly enamored by both Whyborne and Griffin, and Hawk continues to impress with their excellent character development. Continue reading
This book was an excellent follow-up to the first in the series, proving that Hawk is now comfortable with their world and their characters. We leave behind the Lovecraftian city of Widdershins for a company town in the Appalachian mountains, haunted by creatures who are both horrifying and unique. Continue reading