Midnight Blue-Light Special by Seanan McGuire
My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
No one–absolutely no one–creates better Urban Fantasy worlds than Seanan McGuire. Her Toby Daye series has proven that to me time and time again, and now her Incryptid Series cements it in stone. The first Incryptid Novel, Discount Armageddon, was a fantastic romp in a world filled with some of the best and most original supernatural creatures ever, and came with a troop of Aeslin mice who would have made the book worthwhile all by themselves. I was really looking forward to reading more in the second book of the series, Midnight Blue-Light Special. It did not disappoint. Gorgons and Waheelas and Cuckoos, Oh, My! Yes, I said Cuckoos, and I’m not talking about birds or clocks. You’ll have to take it from me that you haven’t read very much, if anything, about some of the things that go bump in the night in these books, many of which just want to live and let live. Mostly. If only the Covenant of St. George would leave them alone, that is. And you’ve got to love the kick-butt heroine, Verity Price, who really only wants to dance, dance, dance…as a professional ballroom dancer that is. Of course, her dance partner, who is actually a chupacabra, has a hard time tracking her down for various contests, since she also has to hold up the family tradition of cryptozoology, which involves protecting the various creepy, crawly cryptids hiding from humans in plain sight, and not doing us any harm at all.
There is action galore in Midnight Blue-Light Special, rounded out by a very nice romance, and to make things absolutely perfect, there are plenty of scenes featuring those wonderful Aeslin mice, a breed of talking mice who live in a Barbie Dream House in Verity’s closet. The mice are wildly religious, inventing feast days and holidays and ceremonies at the drop of a tiny hat, mostly centered around our heroine. They are very fond of bestowing wonderfully inventive titles upon the objects of their adoration, too, referring to Verity’s boyfriend as the God of Hard Choices In Dark Places, and her over-nurturing uncle as the High Priest of Godammit Eat Something Already. For my money, you could do much worse than be greeted by Aeslin mice every morning, chanting, “All Hail, the Goddess has arisen!” I want my own. I’m even willing to spring for the Barbie Dream House.
My only disappointment in Midnight Blue-Light Special was in finding out that the next two books in the series will feature Verity’s brother, Alex, instead of her and her boyfriend, Dominic. Of course, I don’t really know Alex yet. Maybe I’ll fall in love with him too. Assuming, of course, that he has his own Aeslin mice in his closet.
I highly recommend this series to any Urban Fantasy fan looking for more than your typical vampires and werewolves. If you like your monsters wildly unusual (Wadjet or Caladrius, anyone?), your plots full of action, and your humor witty and offbeat, the Incryptid novels are for you. And while you are at it, be sure to check out McGuire’s Toby Daye novels, as well. I predict you will enjoy both series. I know I do.
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