Meet Mookie Pearl.
Criminal underworld? He runs it.
Supernatural underworld? He hunts in it.
Nothing stops Mookie when he’s on the job.
But when his daughter takes up arms and opposes him, something’s gotta give…
*I received a free ARC of The Blue Blazes from Angry Robot via Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*
The Blue Blazes takes place in a weird-ass version of New York! The underworld is close, and Mookie is a huge hulk of a thug who is somehow trying to keep the world more or less safe from the monsters. A part of the organization, Mookie realizes that his biggest opponent in the war for power is his daughter, who now answers to the name Persephone. But all Mookie thought was truth slips away from him as he moves forward through the labyrinth he used to know as well as the back of his hand.
The pacing is simply amazing! Sometimes, so fast it almost hurts to read, and other times it slows down to a painfully slow read, where each detail is etched into both Mookie’s and the reader’s conscience. Fear is ever present, but Mookie just never gives up. The Blue Blazes is the epitome of a wild ride, with a perfect anti-hero at the helm.
The story is something between a convoluted mess and infinite clarity, Blue Blazes simply blew my socks off. Like completely! My first book by Chuck Wendig only left me wanting more, even in this extremely gritty world I would never want to be a part of. Actual monsters, an Underworld filled with some kinds of gods only called ‘the hungry ones’ and other beings desperately hating the humans who live in the light. There is no end to the suffering, even the ending left my heart feeling hollow and sad – as if a piece of my soul had been thorn out by this horrific world where crime, thugs and monsters fight for the power.
The Blue Blazes is also filled with poetic prose, the writing is so different from any other I’ve encountered in the past, and even the ugly, without-morals Mookie somehow managed to gain my respect. I can’t help but rooting for him, it’s just impossible to not want the guy who tried his best to keep the gods, the gobbos and the other monsters safely encased in the big below to win – but I still wonder if that is at all possible.
If you enjoy science fiction / urban fantasy / dystopia / mystery – yeah, it’s kind of difficult to choose only one genre – you should definitely pick up The Blue Blazes as soon as possible, and just sit down, preferably with a seat-belt, and try to enjoy the wild ride.
They rape and kill and feed. They drink our pain, supping at it like we’re each an endless goblet of win and blood. But we are not endless. We can be used up. And they don’t care, for they are predators and parasites to the last.
This, then, is Mookie Pearl. He’s a high wall of flesh stuffed into a white wife-beater stained with brown (once red), a man whose big bones ar wreathed in fat and gristle and muscle and sealed tight in a final layer of scar-tissue skin.
Homeless guys push shopping carts filled with cats and blankets, booze and busted-ass dreams.
Grampop was tough as they came. like the beef jerky in Mookie’s bag. No fat, no gristle, just dehydrated muscle and hard leather.
“You have a gift.” “No such thing. I love what I do and I do what I love.”
Then again, Mookie’s the last person Jess wants to be talking to. Particularly at asshole-o’clock in the morning. That’s all it is. It’s late, right?
That doesn’t mean he’s a pretty man. He isn’t. He’s pit bull ugly. Got a face like a fist, a body like a bunch of tractor tires fitted around an oil drum.