Authors: Delilah S. Dawson, Kevin Hearne, Chuck Wendig
Plot Type: Urban Fantasy (UF)
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services
When Hearne invited Delilah S. Dawson to join in the fun, she followed her life philosophy: "Always say yes to cheese." She contributes her first BLUD story written from a man's perspective. Dawson's story is meant to stand alone, and she suggests that it can be an introduction to the "dark, dangerous, whimsical world of Sang, where tyromancy fits in perfectly." This is a prequel story for the series. Click HERE to read my reviews of the books in Dawson's BLUD SERIES.
Chuck Wendig figured that "All the cool kids are doing it," and besides, he wanted to get "a slice (get it"? Slice?) of that sweet, sweet cheese-reader money." His story is part of his MIRIAM BLACK SERIES, coming just before Thunderbird (which is due in April 2016). Click HERE to read my reviews of the books in that series.
The e-book features beautiful illustrations by Galen Dara, some of which I have included in this review.
Click HERE to read or listen to an excerpt from Three Slices at the book's Amazon.com page, where you can click on either the cover art or the "Listen" icon.
Kevin Hearne's "A Prelude to War" (IRON DRUID CHRONICLES 7.5)
Meanwhile, Granuaile wants to get rid of the rune Loki burned into her arm in Shattered, so she decides to request assistance from Odin. The best scene in the story is the suspense-filled confrontation between Granuaile and Loki in which Loki gets much more than he bargained for when Granuaile pulls out all the weapons in her armory and aims them directly at his most vulnerable spots. Again, the ending of this story line is unresolved, with more to come in Staked.
The novella has lots of humorous dialogue between Atticus and Oberon (who loves cheese, by the way). Granuaile's best line comes when she enters Asgard for the first time and tries to suppress her excitement: "I firmly smoosh my desire to take a selfie in Asgard, because I know how deeply uncool that would be." Unfortunately, it falls to Hearne to explain just what tyromancy is, so he has to slow down the pace for a page or two while he explains the process to Oberon while Mekera is up to her elbows in hartebeest rennet and curdled milk.
Delilah S. Dawson's "Not My Circus, Not My Monkeys" (BLUD SERIES)
|Merissa and her |
This terrific little story is a delight to read because Criminy is always a such a smart, sly, spellbinding character. In one memorable scene, he makes friends with a daimon by teaching him to hammer a nail into his own eye. "My name is Criminy Stain," he says to the daimon. "And I might be strange, but that's just part of my charm." Although he is sometimes sidetracked by lustful thoughts, he keeps his ultimate goal front and center in his mind—to own his own very successful circus: Criminy's Captivating Caravan. As Criminy tells his tale in his snarky manner, with an underlying viciousness that causes the reader to shudder now and again, we can't help but root for him to win his heart's desire even if he does have to resort to a bit of murder and mayhem along the way.
This story serves as a great introduction to the BLUD series, but will also be enjoyed by those who have already read the BLUD novels and can't get enough of Criminy.
Chuck Wendig's "Interlude: Swallow" (MIRIAM BLACK SERIES)
Miriam has come to this small Colorado town in response to a message from Madam Safira Starshine, the local fortune teller, who is also a tyromancer. In Miriam's world, you can expect that the divinations will involve a massacre as well as moldy cheese. Miriam describes the odor as "Musky, off, pungent as the congealed sweat on a dead man's scrotum."