Paper & Blood

Mysterious Book Report No. 460

by John Dwaine McKenna

Complete escapism.  That’s what fantasy author Kevin Hearne has gifted all readers who can suspend their rational beliefs long enough to enter the paranormal world of Al MacBharrais, where science, technology and magic all co-exist with each other under the watchful eyes of six sigil agents who monitor the globe for the comings and goings of the otherworldly—or Fae folk—from the realm of Gods and magic.  And now, we’re happy to report, the second volume in Mr. Hearne’s Ink and Sigil series, Paper & Blood, (Del Ray, $27.00, 304 pages, ISBN 978-1-984821-28-7) has just been issued.  It takes us to Australia, where two sigil agents—one from Taipei, the other Australian—have both disappeared while looking into a disturbance in the Dandenong Mountains.  MacBharrais and his hobgoblin assistant Buck, join apprentice sigil agent Chen Ya-Ping and the Iron Druid on a hike to where the missing agents disappeared.  Along the way, magical booby traps and a series of monsters keep trying to kill them, and only their combined magical and fighting skills allow them to survive.  However, they still find time to share campfire stories about their previous adventures along the way.  MacBharrais meanwhile, attempts to find the manner and means, as well as the entities who’ve put twin curses on his head which guarantee that Buck, the scene-stealing and foul-mouthed but endearing little creature, will die within the next year.

Thereafter, it’s a rock and roll show with high adventure, close shaves and near misses galore that’s sure to please all of Hearne’s previous fans and gather legions of new ones.  Read this book and forget all about the news and current events and whatever else is bothering you . . . because this is epic adult fantasy at it’s best!

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