How ominous and unhelpful.
“What ‘big, bad things? Terrorism? International crime? Professional wrestling? Hollywood divorces?”
She crooked a smile, wiped her eyes with the edge of her index finger, careful of her immaculately painted nail. “All that and worse. I think they want to engineer Armageddon, that’s how twisted they are.”
Armageddon. Yep, another STUC. “Rates just went up.”
She blinked at me, but when I didn’t smile to indicate a joke, she got her purse. As she fed bills into my hand, she protested, “But they shot your partner! What about revenge?”
“Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord.” I quoted…”but I say this, I’m a dragon, and the dragon always wins.”
Echoes of the past. A strike at the heart. Meeting new players in the game of shady dealings and artifact dealing. This tightly written novella is for those who thirst for a deeper look at the psyche of our favorite dragon Detective, Vern.
This is not the best place to start for an introduction into the Dragon Eye universe. I said it was tightly written, and that means that a lot of the lush world building present in the other novels is only sketched in. You don’t notice it, save to wonder what you are missing without the context of previous experience.
If you are familiar with the series, you won’t miss it, and takes you deeper into Vern’s heart. Part of the reason I was so late, is that I needed some background so I felt more a part of the world, and to try to understand the subtext here. Happily, I am gifting “Magic, Mensa and Mayhem” to a friend this Christmas, so I did a quick read and discovered all I needed to get a better appreciation of this novella.
I admit, I tend to like lush descriptions, detailed backstories, and so on. I missed some of that from here. My real complaint– it’s not long enough. I’d like to spend more time with this story. It seemed to go by too fast for it’s deep seated traumas and intense conclusion.
For one, I expected more feedback from her friends and side characters who would be concerned. What about the sisters in her order? Wouldn’t some cross the gap just to see her before she dies? It seems peripheral to the plot, but a wonderful opportunity to enrich her character, even without her being conscious. Yes, there are probably good reasons why she didn’t. But I still think some of that would leak through even though Vern spends most of this story running around under a deadline.
There is a mysterious figure who turns out to be very interesting, and a reference to classic noir. To tell you who it is, gives away some of the awesome from the surprise. It’s nice to see he comes back later in “Magic Mensa and Mayhem”.
Final conclusion: Would I buy it? Yes, I would. It’s wonderfully readable and I very much enjoyed it. But I want more. Tis’ the season, eh? 🙂