Monday, December 21, 2009

Skinners Book 2: Howling Legion – review

Author: Marcus Pelegrimas

First published: 2009

Contains spoilers

The Blurb: No one said fighting monsters was going to be easy…

You can’t see them, but they’re here: hiding in the pools of shadow outside a Chicago burger joint… wreaking havoc in Kansas City… feeding in the sleazy “blood brothels” that cater to humans who itch to get bitten.

Cole was designing video games when he learnt the truth – that foul creatures of the night lust for our blood… and our world. Now he’s a “Skinner,” a member of an ancient society of warriors entrusted with keeping the terror at bay. Monsters once chained to the wilderness are suddenly free and descending, razor claws ripping, on the unsuspecting city. No one knows what’s coming – but Cole and his seductive partner, Paige, will be the first to dive into the meat grinder.

The review: Following on from Blood Blade and you’ll recall that I wasn’t too impressed with the characterisation in the first book of this series – though I enjoyed the adventure and action aspects. In this volume Pelegrimas plays much more to his strengths and improves upon his weaknesses.

I still don’t necessarily buy the characters and their background might be described as shaky (or, in the case of Paige, unknown), however they are becoming more rounded within the context of the actual series.

To be fair, with hordes of half-bloods (transformed werewolves) and a couple of Full Bloods (actual werewolves who are nigh on indestructible) taking Kansas City apart, that is all we need character wise, as we get some full on and well written action - Pelegrimas writing to his strength, ie the action aspects. The book fairly much concentrates on the werewolves but our vampires, or nymars, are still involved all the way through – both with a scene at a blood brothel and in the fact that Cole and Paige are helped by a nymar named Daniels.

However, the werewolf lore is the most original aspect of the series' lore and thus, again, Pelegrimas plays to the series strength. All in all an enjoyable romp. 6 out of 10.

No comments: