Discount Armageddon by Seanan McGuire
Ghoulies. Ghosties. Long-legged beasties. Things that go bump in the night... The Price family has spent generations studying the monsters of the world, working to protect them from humanity-and humanity from them. Enter Verity Price. Despite being trained from birth as a cryptozoologist, she'd rather dance a tango than tangle with a demon, and is spending a year in Manhattan while she pursues her career in professional ballroom dance. Sounds pretty simple, right? It would be, if it weren't for the talking mice, the telepathic mathematicians, the asbestos supermodels, and the trained monster-hunter sent by the Price family's old enemies, the Covenant of St. George. When a Price girl meets a Covenant boy, high stakes, high heels, and a lot of collateral damage are almost guaranteed. To complicate matters further, local cryptids are disappearing, strange lizard-men are appearing in the sewers, and someone's spreading rumors about a dragon sleeping underneath the city...
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
“The greatest joy is the joy of discovery Followed closely by the joy of a discovery that doesn’t kill you.”
With one liners like these, is it any wonder that I kept on reading? Frankly, all her asides had me gesturing with an exasperated ‘come-on on already!’ It’s definitely different in tone from what I’ve read of late, but I like how unique her world is. Cryptozoologist. Wut?
If only she could grab hold of her enthusiasm for her job for a minute because time and again sometimes, things could drift toward a little show and tell with a ‘this creature is this and that creature can do that and that other thing there is special because so and so.’ She had me wanting to take her face in my hands to shout “Focus!” Actually, it’s an inclination that kept with me for a good deal of the book… but when things were happening, what fun there was!
I got a kick out of the witty quotes at the beginning of each chapter; all of them had me chuckling. But maybe I liked it more because the lead in this was not all one track in the ‘I will kick your ass if you look at me wrong way.’ She certainly is different from typical UF heroines. For one she’s seems a lot nicer... well, sometimes. She’s not the broken, scary woman who’s got nothing left to lose instead she’s got this whole family that’s ready and willing to back her up. Then there’s the fact that still tough but got a couple of more things going for her (I mean ballroom dancing! Where does the author come up with this stuff?!)
It’s also surprising how much a softy she could be, how she had a soft spot for those others would normally not have soft spot for. Plus, there’s her take on who her enemy was. The way she see saw them was just as limited as how they saw her and her kin, I think. Get a load of this,
"The Covenant: because sometimes you want your genocidal assholes to be organized.”
But it’s this aspect that allowed for the sexy times to come in, even if sexy times weren’t the focus. The focus? Cryptids and butt kicking. Yeah, I’d have loved a little more of Dominic, but keeping her front and center in this one was a fine move. Sure, it wasn’t all sexy times, but it was fun and funny and different.
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