The Nanowrimo Poll

I have been doing NaNoWriMo1 for years and for years I have also been running a poll to decide which book to write. Up until now, I have done it on my other site, but I’ve decided to bring the poll here this year, particularly since so many of my NaNoWriMo projects are being rewritten and edited for publication.

The Sword Prince
Prince Siegfried, after an unfortunate encounter with a basilisk, was cursed to be a sword at the bottom of a lake. When he is removed from the lake by his descendants, he becomes a boy again just in time for the throne to be attacked. He finds himself caught in the middle and his curse slowly taking hold once more.

Mirabella knows she is a princess. She knows because she doesn’t want to be an innkeeper’s daughter. When a group of people come through the inn looking for the real princess of a conquered kingdom, Mirabella sneaks out to join them on their quest to fulfill the prophesy to retake the kingdom. The journey isn’t quite what she had hoped, full of danger and uncertainty, and she is not the only potential princess they’ve picked up in their travels.

Sky of Butterflies
Deciding to try their luck on their own, Mateo and Serafina venture out of their orphanage and into the wide world outside, only to be swept up in a revolution. The robots have caught their world up in a tyrannical rule while the rich remain safe behind gilded gates. The kids, however, soon learn that the resistance is not all that it seems to be… and neither are they.

Roughly a year after the events of White Noise, Willow suddenly recovers from her vegetative state and takes Max with her, provoking H&R to try and deal with the situation. Harrison is not a fan of what that means and starts to learn just what H&R have been up to, the real reason of their research, and how far they will go to keep their research private. He still doesn’t know what Willow wants and still can’t quite remember what happened the last time he went into H&R.

City Without Heroes
In a world full of supervillains and superheroes, Indira’s parents have decided to take jobs in the crimeless city of Whitten. She couldn’t be happier about it. Super powers run in her family and Indira is psychic, though plays her powers down as much as possible to keep from being roped into becoming a hero herself. Her uncle distrust the place, but Indira quickly settles, not realizing the price that comes with keeping a city like Whitten free of both heroes and villains.

NaNoWriMo 2015

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Poll closes on my birthday, October 25th. Happy voting!

Also, Syndicate won the print book poll, which means I’ll be working on getting that sorted for the new year. Thanks to everyone who voted!

  1. National Novel Writing Month []

Possession by Kat Richardson

In Possession, it is some time later and Harper’s rib is no longer cracked. She is approached by a woman whose sister may or may not be possessed by a ghost, which leads her to several people dealing with the fear of insurance agencies and their own comatose family members who are also exhibiting strange behaviours which turn out to ultimately be the doing of a god that I’ve never heard of1 and Quinton’s dad. Kind of.

This book was odd in that I was expecting something more along book 4. In Vanished, everything drove the story toward the climax of the first arc and this one felt like it was more setup for that inevitable climax-building novel. I think this was mostly due to Quinton being completely removed from most of the narrative because he was off playing spy or having spats with Harper while she was still debating whether or not she was being a good friend/lover/etc.2

I also kind of want to smack Quinton. This friendship thing has gone on long enough. It might be because I’m still remembering the soul link in the back of my head while I’m reading all this and he’s picking up on nothing, or it’s the fact that he seems to be off dealing with the main plot and having adventures I’d like to see while Harper is dealing with what feels like a B plot, but the fact that he has taken himself out of the majority of the novel annoyed the hell out of me.

And let’s talk a little about that main plot. In the main plot that we don’t get to see, Purlis stalks Harper and they have one altercation before we stop seeing him for a while. He has apparently brought a goddess of hunger out of Europe and to Seattle, as well as opened up a facility where he experiments on the paranormal. We are told that these experiments are awful, but see precisely none of them.3 We never see what his ultimate goal is either, but Quinton instead tells us that he’s out to make the US the most powerful country in the world and make the rest of the world bow to it. He’s a super villain.

He’s also constantly referred to as “Papa Purlis” which would have annoyed me if Harper didn’t also call him “Daddy Purlis” at some point. Harper, you are in your thirties. You don’t like the guy, just call him by his last name. It’s really just that easy. Just because you’re kind of magically married to Quinton doesn’t mean you have to refer to him as your father in law every time you mention him.

I did enjoy the Harper plot line, though, once it picked up at the 50% mark of the book. The pieces fell into place and, if I didn’t know this was the second to last book in the series, it would have been a lot of fun seeing her dealing with the ghosts who haunted her personally.4 The mechanics of the hauntings and going through old Seattle and Pike Market’s history were great elements and I liked the idea of the big bad of Harper’s plot being Lizzy Hazzard riding the tail of a famine god.

Really, most of my issues with the book stem directly from the fact that I know it’s the second to last book and it’s not directly building up to that climax. I realize this time, the central point of the conflict is probably going to be Quinton rather than Harper so it makes sense that he’s the one having plot-related adventures, but that just made his absence in the book that much more evident.

I think I might need a Quinton side story of just this book. He did end up strapped to a chair by his father and he was about to be fed to a god before his girlfriend showed up. We never really did find out what any of that was about, only that it ended with Purlis getting shot in the leg and Quinton being very nice to him in getting him to a hospital for the not at all life threatening injury. I don’t really get what happened there, because the dialogue all felt forced and the scene felt like things needed to happen so they happened as opposed to the characters acting of their own accord.

I also need a Cam book. Now that I have solid confirmation that Edward is dead and Cam is now the reigning king of the vampires in Seattle, I want to know how that happened and how he came to own this strange house by the sea that he’s living in. Really, I just want to know a lot about what happens with the vampires at this point because I feel like a lot of stuff was skipped.

There was also the weird religious bit at the end. Apparently there was an angel that healed them all at the end of the story. Or maybe it was a ghost, except that ghosts don’t do that as near as I can tell. It was such a strange moment of needing everything to end happily that I’m not really sure what the point of it was. Harper isn’t carrying injuries into the next books anymore, so that wasn’t why it happened. The other characters effected were side characters. Is it to bring a religious aspect into the book near the end? Will it somehow be plot relevant? Will it be thematically relevant?

I’m thinking it was probably for the happy ending and a clean wrap up before the end of book hook into the final installment. Here’s hoping it all wraps up nicely at the end of Revenant!

  1. And therefore Harper could not Google []
  2. The subplot just won’t die. []
  3. Even when they go into the facility. ow hard would it have been to just have them walk past a window and see a screaming vampire with a sun spot pointed somewhere on him and his intestines on the table next to him? The room could be sound proof. It would have added some nice atmosphere. []
  4. Although still no idea what was with the black ghosts vs any of the other ones. []

An Introduction to the Twisted Eden Sector

With Tales from the Twisted Eden Sector now under my name, and Evidence, the fifth book of the series1 coming out on September first, I figured I should at least talk a little about the series. Since I’ve been writing a lot of young adult urban fantasy, the more mature supernatural horror might require an introduction.

Tales from the Twisted Eden Sector

The magic of the world never really went away. It’s just been hidden, forced into back alleys and out of the public eye for so long that some don’t believe that it ever existed at all. Scattered across the world and hidden away into the back streets, there are many who know otherwise and make it their lives to hide it.

They have more than enough work on their hands as they seem to be at the center of something big. The fabric of the universe seems thinner here than anywhere else. Their sector sees more enchanted items, dangerous people and strange creatures than any other. The appearance in recent years of children born with an innate ability to perform a single spell with no training in their sector and theirs alone has baffled them and flooded their files. Something is coming, but without knowing what it might be, they are forced to deal with it one case at a time.

Every book in the series contains 11 short stories, mostly in chronological order within the book, and all of which are linked thematically. There are several characters that appear in several stories throughout the books at different points in their lives.2

It is a largely nonlinear project, though. The books are told one on top of one another. For those who want to check it out, but can’t handle not knowing when one story happens in relation to another, I have a timeline you can check out here.3

If any of this interests you, do check it out. If not, don’t forget to vote in the book poll!

  1. Simya Academy is more of a spin-off []
  2. In theory, you could follow just one character in the books, or even assemble the shorts on your own to follow the characters you’re interested in. []
  3. A little out of date now, but I’ll be updating it soon! []

Seawitch by Kat Richardson

So Seawitch is both about a boat named Seawitch and about an actual sea witch. Harper has to find out what happened to an old boat that washes up on shore because apparently the Guardian Beast has taken on the role of paranormal boss man now, and teams up with Solis to do it.

This series is a very different one from the first five books. I’m really noticing that the mysteries are easier to figure out, even if they are a bit more twisted in family politics than before. Perhaps this is how it always was but now I’m reading those explanatory sections that I dislike more1 but I feel like all the portions about the mystery are being handed to me.2

On the other hand, Solis gets a whole family and backstory. I love Solis now. He is my favourite.

I don’t get the soul bond thing. Is it just emotions? It manifested as being able to feel Quinton’s physical pain initially, but now it seems to only reflect his emotions when they are in a mid-range and she’s not looking directly at him. And he’s not feeling any effects as near as I can tell. I’ve taken to assuming he’s hiding it to keep Harper from worrying, but I’m still hoping for a little more on it than being used as a plot device in the last book.3

We have to talk about this friendship thing that keeps coming up. Yes, Harper does tend to use her friends as resources and probably should have lost a lot of them after putting them in that much danger in the first five books, but maybe stop harping on the “How do I be a good friend? I don’t know how to friend!” subplot? Quinton keeps bringing it up and Harper keeps talking about it in ways that are a little too on the nose to sound real. It sounds like an after school special and I’m really hoping it’s not an important plot point.

And now, Tanya complaining about the technology in the Greywalker series:

Also, can we cut Harper some slack on going to her friends, who are a legitimate witch4 and a paranormal researcher, for help on dobar-chu,5 which is a term I have never even heard of before and have no idea if I’m spelling right? She found minimal information from looking them up online and they are resources that probably know more about it than the online databases that she can access with her probably incorrect spelling.

I am super happy that Harper is trying to do some Google. I like that she’d trying to look things up on her own. It’s just also fine if she also gets some more information from her friends who probably know more than she does and know more about what’s accurate.

Back to our regularly scheduled book talk.

The series is definitely progressing toward some big confrontation with Quinton’s father, but the book is feeling a lot like the mysteries are getting easier. Everything just wraps up so neatly at the end and I`m left wondering if this could be better if it were written without the case and just the main arc happening. I mean, it would be shorter, but it might make it feel more like the previous iterations.

Also, I still don’t know if Edward’s alive. I know next to nothing about what happened at the end of the fifth book still. I also don’t know how much time has passed anymore. Before, she busted her knee one book and that injury carried over into the next, but I’m wondering if this cracked rib is going to stick around. These books feel like they won’t have that anymore.

I mean, they’re still fun. I think I got spoiled by the fourth and fifth ones in how quick they all happened and how much they focused on Harper and the plot that a return to the old formula feels like a bit of a step backwards.

Two more left. Here’s hoping everything rapidly picks up!

  1. Or that they’re being better integrated into the text so it’s not all in one massive dump []
  2. Oh, he saw the girl? Well, she’s probably still alive and a sea witch. Gary is some mythical creature that is super rare and looks like that thing the other character saw? Guess who’s not dying right now! []
  3. And it better damn well be used a plot device for all the emphasis that’s being put on it. []
  4. An Irish one at that []
  5. Big Irish otters that can talk? []

Print Book Poll

Last year, I managed to get White Noise out in print. I learned InDesign to lay it out and I keep thinking about doing it again. I am going to make it a goal to start making one of my books into print a year.1 I can only really afford to do one a year at this point, both in terms of financially2 and time-wise, so now I have a decision to make.

I’m looking at the ones I have currently that could be next on the list. The way I see it, it will be one of three:3

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00002]


I don’t really want to be solely responsible for choosing, though, so I’m going to let you pick. Which one would you like to see in print next?4

Continue reading

  1. Because I definitely have enough that I can []
  2. Ordering all of the proof copies []
  3. With updated covers []
  4. I won’t be making them until December, so probably not in time for Christmas []

Downpour by Kat Richardson

Downpour is odd in that it feels like there was a long break between writing this one and Labyrinth. I get no answers to the lingering questions that were left at the end Labyrinth. I have no idea what’s happening with the Seattle vampires, or if Edward is even still alive. Undead. The book answers little to nothing left behind, and I’m kind of okay with it.

More than that, though, there’s a lot more that feels different about this one. While there are callbacks to previous things from other books, such as the feather from Underground, the rest of the prose feels a bit like she was asked to continue the series after having completed it it and there’s a bit of a different direction being taken. She references an event I am actually familiar with in the shoes washing up on shore1 and an actual sex scene that I will get into later that does not cut away with a euphemism. Also, guess what time it is?

And now, Tanya complaining about the technology in the Greywalker series:

On the one hand, there’s technology at last that actually seems relevant to the era it’s taking place in. She has a laptop!2 She goes to a place that believably doesn’t have wifi and complains about old computers! She loses cell reception and gets it back!

She also tries to convince me that this technology was there all along, but no. I’m sorry. I read the previous books. You cannot convince me that Harper had the internet before she left for London. It is great that she’s updated and the technology is well integrated and fails in a believable way for the story, but you really can’t tell me that it was always there.

Back to our regularly scheduled book talk.

Rather than continuing from last time, we’re back to usual form. There’s a new case that brings Harper out of Seattle and into a long time mage feud in a summer tourist town that’s mostly abandoned for the colder months.The formula is back to normal as well: 50% setup, 48% rising action, climax in the last 15-20 pages, then an epilogue that is almost entirely told rather than shown.

There was some show in this epilogue, though, which is really nice. I’d prefer these ending wrap ups being exposited as dialogue instead of these info-dumps but it’s a step in a good direction. I care a lot more this way.

I knew pretty much immediately who did it. The story follows Harper trying to figure out which of these mages around the lake is supposed to be in charge and how to put the lines of the Grey back in place, essentially, and the person who did it was never in question for me. I don’t know if it’s because I’m good at the murder mystery thing or because it wasn’t subtle.3

But since the last overarching plot is now finished, we need a new one, and I have a feeling I know what it will be relating to. See, there was a scene in this book. Quinton has cleaned up and looks like a stereotypical tech guy now. He comes by and tells Harper about how he turned himself over to the feds and had to do a little work for them. And that he called his father and he has living family he’s just never mentioned before. There’s a break where they fight zombies in the middle, but then it’s right back to talk about Quinton’s mysterious past.

And then they have plot-relevant sex. Like, immediately after. And by plot relevant, I mean that apparently having sex in the right spot makes you soul-bound to the person and that now Harper and Quinton can feel one another’s pain.4 And by sex, I mean there’s is a scene involving fluids and arching backs and everything. After all the euphemisms and cutaways, it was jarring and felt like it came out of a different series. But it was plot relevant!

I’m guessing the next arc is going to have to do with Quinton because of this. Otherwise, this whole bit was completely unnecessary. Not that there hasn’t been u necessary in the series, but with the change in everything else, it seems like it’s a lot narratively tighter and that there won’t be as much meandering as there might have been previously.

Oh. And the plot was nifty too. I would have liked a little more of the Chinese demons and a little less of the man with the fox bride, but it was fun.5

  1. Because that happened here. Like, it was a thing that really happened here. []
  2. That I don’t think she ever uses. []
  3. I doubt the former. []
  4. Which doesn’t come up in this book, but I’m hoping for a future plot where Quinton gets mangled and Harper has to save him. []
  5. Also hella predictable. I get the feeling the mystery is no longer the important thing. And I am cool with that. []

Of Pseudonyms and a Sudden Influx of Titles

There once was a man named Lyle S Tanner. In April of 2012, he put out his first short story and started really working on his series, Tales from the Twisted Eden Sector. It is a short story series that he put a lot of time and effort into, putting out books twice a year and hoping to finish the series in April of 2016 with a total of six collections and a tie-in novella.

If you read the title of this blog post, you’ll see where I’m going with this.

Back when I was first deciding how to go about the publishing thing and decided to try self publishing, I was worried about what would happen if I did actually do it and how I would do it. I researched and tried to make sure I knew as much as I could before I started.

There were a lot of articles at the time about people losing their day jobs for writing racy fiction. More talked about how JK Rowling and others changed their names to be less feminine so that they didn’t get put in a female writers corner and could appeal more broadly in genres that alienated them.

I made the decision to use a pseudonym because of all of it and started putting out books under Lyle S Tanner, both to protect myself from any repercussions from my day job, and to avoid getting put into the romance category because of my name.1 And for a while, things were pretty good.

One of these days, I’ll go through everything I learned as Lyle. I had the freedom under that name to make a lot of mistakes and try out different tactics and strategies, seeing what worked and what didn’t. I used Twitter and Facebook and tried to make him as real as I was.

Unfortunately, now that I’m publishing under my own name, those efforts have tapered off into pretty much nothing. Maintaining him as a separate entity has gotten exhausting and I just haven’t been able to do it. While I have plenty of energy to work on the next book2 I just can’t seem to keep up with the other elements of the identity.

And so, that’s why you’re going to start seeing an influx of new books. I’ll be slowly moving the books over to my own name over the next little while3 and I’ll be talking about them as well here and there. It’s a bit of a strange series, but I love writing it and I do hope you’ll check it out.4

As for Lyle, he’ll fade away. It’s been an interesting run,5 but this is the end of his story. Time to continue on with my own.

  1. I don’t really do romance. It’s in there, but very rarely a focal point. []
  2. Evidence, out at the end of August! []
  3. Just need to get the covers updated []
  4. If it’s your thing. I’m not kidding about it being strange. []
  5. Hoo boy, has it been interesting []

Labyrinth by Kat Richardson

Have I mentioned some of this Grey stuff is getting a little convoluted? Because it’s getting a little out of hand.

Harper lands back in Seattle and gets pretty much no time to rest before the plot kicks back in. Instead of going home to rest, she immediately goes to see Edward, which I assume is for plot reasons because she’s apparently already exhausted and has decided this is a good idea instead of sleeping. In doing so, she trips over some plot and we end up moving along really quickly after that.

The fact that stuff just keeps happening and the pace of this book is a lot faster than the other ones is explained as a way to keep Harper off balance. She’s out of her apartment pretty quickly and crashing in the Dazinger’s basement soon after. She’s falling deeper into the Grey, which means she’s hearing voices and  She’s also worried about being followed but appears to still be driving her own car around, but I can let that slide. Maybe the astem are as bad with identifying cars as I am as another one of their weaknesses.

The progressive falling into the Grey over the book is really nicely handled. It’s both slow and alarming, coming in waves at sometimes too plot-relevant moments, but these moments all work well. We need her capable, after all, to continue going through the story and having her own agency and desire to stop the plan of the Pharaohn1 and her slowly losing her grip is fantastic.

The plot is now made clear once Harper eventually gets into the labyrinth of the Grey and manages to speak to the ghost of her father who has been trapped by Wygan2 for all eternity for failing him before. Apparently this whole thing is a setup, with Harper being pushed into the Grey so that Wygan can somehow unleash the Grey into reality and cause chaos. I think.

My favourite scene in the whole book happens related to this. There’s a point where Harper just can’t take the voices anymore and she’s falling into the Grey and thrashing around. Quinton needs to stop her because she’s hurting herself so he ends up using a stunner to electrocute her. It works and she’s out for a few minutes, waking to quiet, but Quinton is just scarred from ever having to do that to her. It’s fantastic.

Oh, and also Will is back. He’s suffering from the effects of being kidnapped and tortured by vampires in London and I still don’t care about him, even though he insists on continuing to be part of this story. His eventual arc ends in what feels like a way to just get rid of him while letting the other characters not have to suffer. Also he’s been beating up his brother probably, but we never actually touch on that.

There’s also Bryson Goodall, whose arc doesn’t make much sense to me. He’s a human who was later turned into a thing by Wygan to essentially be his servant. Bryson had some abilities or powers of his own before he started, which Harper realizes and is curious about for all of two chapters before that’s no longer important, but he’s supposed to serve Wygan’s purposes. In the end you find out that he doesn’t actually do that. He’s supposed to bring Harper to Wygan, but in the end you find out he was trying to murder her instead. That, and he murdered her father before he could serve Wygan’s purposes.3 The fact that he was murdering everyone seems like such a strange thing to throw in at the end and it’s not resolved by the end, so what the hell?

And now, Tanya complaining about the internet in the Greywalker series:

You know, it’s 2009 and you have a guy with mysterious powers in this Bryson Goodall. You could probably hop on the internet, check to see if he has a Facebook account with family connected since this was back before privacy settings were a convoluted mess, and maybe call up his estranged sibling and ask if he ever maybe ever did anything weird as a kid? Might help you out a little? No? Internet still doesn’t exist? Okay then. I’ll be graduating from my technology degree right across the border from you, then.

And then Quinton goes and Googles something and I am ecstatic. I’ve mentally replaced every instance of “Palmtop” with “Netbook” and Quinton has become my technological salvation.4 Harper even mentions email. I am so happy.

Back to our regularly scheduled book talk.

There was a lot of plot in this book and a lot of old threads being wrapped up. Much of this book took elements established in previous ones and brought them back and finished it off. Some of it seemed a little convoluted, but in the end it all felt like it fit together well. Not entirely cleanly, but well. If this book were the one to finish off the series, I’d be happy about it.

But it’s not. And that is great.

Of course, a word on the ending. That ending was fantastic in regards to characters suffering and I can’t wait for the next one. This is the last book I’ve read and, now that this has been written, I’m off to the next one. Downpour, here I come!

  1. That stupid n. Ugh, why?! []
  2. I can’t keep doing the Pharaohn thing. I just can’t. His name is Wygan. []
  3. Which is brushed aside, but there’s good reason for that, so that’s fine. []
  4. Thank you for probably rigging up Harper’s apartment with internet while she was in London. I OWE YOU, QUESTIONABLY HOMED INTERNET JESUS. []

The Science in After Destiny: Greenberg’s Syndrome

In the book, there’s a character named Brady who is a seventeen year old kid in the body of a six year old. In part, this was just to illustrate that there’s some side effects to having a pregnancy partially out in the wastelands, but there’s an actual rare condition that has occurred that is related.

Brooke Greenberg was diagnosed with something called “Syndrome X” which meant that aged incredibly slowly. It’s a bit of a medical mystery, with only a handful of people developing it worldwide at any given time. Interestingly, their mental states also don’t age, which means it’s not a glandular problem like in some cases, but that they actually aren’t developing at the speed of other people.

I gave Brady a modified version of it. In the universe of After Destiny, there is a treatment for it, though they had a very limited supply of it and it only allowed Brady to age until the point he is now physically. I had plans to do more with it, but it didn’t fit within the context of the revised narrative and, like many other little darlings, the full explanation of Brady’s medical condition was abbreviated and largely cut back.

If you get a chance, though, do read up on Brooke Greenberg and Syndrome X. It’s fascinating and I couldn’t help but draw a little inspiration from it.

Vanished by Kat Richardson

This book starts out with Harper looking into her past in Los Angeles, which is an interesting look at her history. As it turns out, her Greywalker abilities were from her father and he killed himself after not being able to handle this whole seeing ghosts business. Also, Harper had died once before the start of the series! There are a lot of little relevations, but we don’t get to linger on them for too long.

Before going on, I want to make a note on Harper’s mother. Being in dance myself as a kid, I have seen those mothers and there is nothing I question about Harper’s mother. This is exactly how some of them were, and I wasn’t even one of the kids who went to auditions. It’s uncanny how much she reminded me of some of the women in those change rooms during competitions.

Harper is called away to London, partially because Edward1 needs someone to check on what’s going on over there and partially because Will Novak insists on being in the plot again. She’s been dreaming of him being tortured and wants to check it out. Not to mention, the ghosts keep bringing up something ominous. After a quick visit with Quinton, she’s across the ocean and getting stalked by another Greywalker named Marsden and finding out that everything has gone awful because Egyptian vampires really want Harper.

Yeah, this book gets a little weird.

Let’s start with Marsden, the other Greywalker. He’s wonderful. He’s the grizzled old man who would have been Harper’s first mentor that eventually softened her her as she realized her potential if he came around earlier in the series. He gouged out his own eyes to get rid of his ability to see the Grey, but that didn’t work and now he’s trying to make sure the Pharaohn2 doesn’t get Harper if he has to half-kill or indefinitely imprison her himself. When she eventually wins him over, he lets us all know that the reason Harper’s so good at her job is because she’s magic.

Apparently Harper is magically persuasive. Now that she knows this, she is immediately able to use this unconscious ability consciously.3

The Egyptian vampires have their own name, the astem, which appear to be magical vampires that are slower. Their whole goal in this is a little muddled for a while, but they need Harper to achieve their end goals. They work for a reference to the first book and a scene that felt like it came out of nowhere when it happened. Apparently this whole time it’s been building to this eventual plot, which I really like. I just wish it was more cohesive in the first place. Also, that the astem did or indicated in any way that they were significantly different from other vampires.

Then there’s Michael. Michael is Will Novak’s little brother and serves the purpose of guide and provider for the series, given that he’s the one who gets them all of their getaway vehicles and knows his way around the city. He’s along for this whole ride because, despite being perfectly normal, his brother has been replaced with a golem and he didn’t notice. And then Harper carves the fake Will up in front of him and Michael reacts a lot better to that than Will did to the zombie thing. I actually don’t mind the kid because I never found him too invasive and he was there just for the purposes that the plot needed him for.4

They also call Edward Ned a few times in the book, which…


Well, let’s just say I don’t take Edward, the vampire king of Seattle all that seriously anymore.

And now, Tanya complaining about Google in the Greywalker series:

WHAT DO YOU MEAN 2009?! It is not allowed to be 2009.

Okay. Step back. Let me explain why telling me what year it is in this story is such an awful idea.

It’s pretty obvious this story was written several years before this date from the usage of technology. Putting a concrete date on it, especially a date when I was alive and can still remember fairly well, means that I know what technology was at the time. I remember what it could do and what was available. Harper being a PI and not looking up anything is an issue in 2009 because, in 2001, I was able to use Google to take someone’s forum username and turn it into their real name, home address, work address and work schedule. If you track people down and do background checks as part of your job, this is a skill you should have. And in 2009, never turning on your computer to look anything up is jarring.

Particularly when you have a kid in your party who is a student that never thinks to at least Wikipedia what a golem is. He may not have a computer on him, but that doesn’t mean he’s not going to bitch about the lack of internet anyway at least once.

Back to our regularly scheduled book talk.

I do love plot. Plot and characters suffering are my two favourite things. With this installment, I feel like I’ve gotten a lot of both with even more on the way. While it was nice to have Harper out of her element, I like that I’m left wondering about the larger implications of what’s going on and what this is all building up to. I also really like that it’s tying back into everything else that’s going happened in previous books.

And a quick word on Harper/Quinton. I live that she’s not falling apart without him. I love that she’s calling him now and then when she’s feeling like she needs some support, but not angsting when he doesn’t call her back right away. The relationship continued to seem really healthy, and that always seems very rare in these urban fantasy novels with female protagonists. The romance isn’t even the focus of the series, which has left me very happy.

It’s also left me really wanting to know what’s next. I could not wait for Labyrinth.

  1. From book one. He’s essentially the king of the vampires in Seattle and owns a very large business, so he’s loaded. []
  2. Yes with the n. I hate that n. []
  3. Nope. Doesn’t bother me at all. Not one tiny bit. Nope. []
  4. Also so that the dead woman in the statue could check out his butt. []