Unclean Spirits by Chuck Wendig
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Let's be real here. This one is bare-bones wicked, amping up the horror elements, the noir mystery elements, and then, finally, a total American Gods vibe.
Only all the gods have been cast down and the one who cast them down is gone. As in gone, gone. What's left? All the b-listers with a fragment of their original abilities, from Sumerian, Greek... everything... working to maintain their little kingdoms in the modern world.
Fifty years of this, and even the gods are jaded, annoyed, and upset about their lot in life.
This isn't funny like Kevin Hearne's great Iron Druid series. It's not sly like a natural noir. It's gritty, bloody, and dense. It starts with great action and mystery and always just trying to keep one's head afloat, and it gets absolutely wild with absolutely enormous stakes. As in an empty hell and and empty heaven kind of stakes.
It's hardcore cool, but it's also tiring as hell.
Who should I recommend this to? Anyone who's a fan of old gumshoe tales, super-gritty and disturbing personal lives, and anyone who wants a world of mean streets full of all the most fantastic gods. Eros gets murdered, Psyche is a MC, and so is Aphrodite. Want more? Read the book. No spoilers, but it's wild. Shifting alliances, backstabbers, hidden gods and imprisoned ones, awesome parentages and bloodlines fill these pages while always remaining true to a hardcore thriller mode.
I'm super impressed. I'm really surprised that this isn't being read by everyone. Like, rabidly. Especially all you folks who love your mythologies and can trace all the bloodlines of all the gods and demigods.
It's important. :)
And thanks to Netgalley for the ARC! (Republished, I do believe.)
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