Dad, Dentist, Adventurer. Well... at least 2 of those.
Why can't Larry Correia come up with a good title. Hard Magic sounds so dumb. and the cover art made me not buy it like 4 times. When i finally did buy it I loved it. It's like x-men in the 1920's - 40's.
I have enjoyed a couple of Correia's "Monster hunter" audio books and thought to give this one a try. I love 30s and 40s noir in fiction and film and thought it was about time someone gave it the urban fiction treatment.
Although the story follows a typical 3rd person formula in terms of leaping from different storylines and characters which will doubtless converge 78% of the way through the book, I almost can't get through it. The audio narration by Bronson Pichot is the worst I've ever heard.
His reading of the non-dialogue narration of action is fine. In fact, since I remembered his "acting" from the tv show Perfect Strangers, I was dubious, but after listening to the sample for 30 seconds thought it would be okay. And so the 3rd person narrative is fine.
But OHMYGOD the way he does dialogue. First, half the characters have these insane, preposterous southern accents. I've lived my life in Florida, Alabama, and now South Carolina, have relatives all over Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Texas, and can say without a doubt I've never heard anything like what came out of Pichot's mouth where 2 of the main characters are concerned. It's as if he watched Tom Hanks in "Forrest Gump" 35 times in a row, then watched the horrific "Bagger Vance" film and added a dash of Kevin Spacey's weird accent from "Midnight in the Garden etc."
I'm a guy who finishes books. Brothers Karamazov, War and Peace, Anna Karrenina, sure. Even Portrait of a Lady.
So I thought I'd push on through with this. I gritted my teeth. But I just can't handle it. And I'll finish this--but in print, not in audio.
ps: for an example of someone who can do a variety of low and high class southern accents right, listen to Will Patton or Frank Muller or Tom Stechschulte.
I'd recommend the first two Monster Hunter novels as good violent and slightly mindless fun. But they're better written than you might think.
I'd have any narrator instead of Bronson Pichot. Redd Foxx. Sean Connery. Shirley Temple. Anyone at all. More seriously, the guy who did the first two Monster Hunter books (whose name I don't recall) would have been much better.
The book is engaging enough, but the narrator ruined it for me.
To me this book does have a similar feel to a Dresden books. It's a totally different world with different characters but the way magic is a part of life feels the same. Of course the main difference between the books is that in the Grimnoir world magic is out in the open but in the Dresden world it is hidden to the general public. I enjoyed my time with this book thoroughly and can hardly wait to read book 2 in the series.
The one thing I did have a problem with was the authors use of the derogatory names to refer to some races. He used it so liberally thought out the book it kept taking me out of the story. I kept wondering why the author couldn't have figured out a way to say it differently. Obviously the author had his reasons, but it didn't work for me. OTOH, the actual ethnic characters did not come off as a stereotype to me.
Finally, Pinchot did a great narration job. Not one character voice sounded false. On to book 2.
It was a great work that Mr. Correia created.
I loved how he mixed that real historical events with magic. I would read about a character and search it and find all sorts of stuff about the real life person.
Sorry no spoilers
Again no spoilers.
Read the whole series.
Bronson Pinchot has an amazing voice. The way he changed voices when he changed characters was so seamless, I was able to stay tuned in to the story. After a while I forgot that only one person was reading the story. Truly phenomenal narrating! The story was unique. It was suspenseful. It had great character building moments. It was awesome. I loved the whole series.
The Ministry of Peculiar occurrences - Only because of the alternate history aspect and the monsters and magic.
I liked Jake Sullivan a lot. Also, I enjoyed Faye.
I did have a few moments where I was shocked by the plot developments.
The only thing I didn't like was the very few moments spread across the three books where the author goes into an explanation of a character's powers for what seems like the millionth time. I realize authors have to make each book in a series a stand alone as well but it was kind of distracting while I was listening to all three back to back.
Love this audiobook. Gritty 1930 era alternate history great book
Love all the cool character powers. Gravity spiking is the best
Bronson Pinchot is a talented voice reader.
Much better than monster hunters international. Bronson brings it to life
Love the alternate history timeline. So cool. And gritty characters. Would be an amazing movie to rival avengers
I have only one negative comment. Bronson Pronounced BAR as the word bar rather than the military B A R (Browning Automatic Rifle). Other than that he captured the characers and brought each of them to life. I ahve listed to each book twice and this is one my favorite air plane book since I can get so lost in the story.
the creativity of the author reminds me of Heinlein but the characters are even more flushed out. the historical twists just really intrigued me. If you judge a story by its ability to suspend disbelief then this one succeeds on every level Sally Fae Vierra will always be one of my favorite fictional characters. Her internal battle of good and evil is just wonderful
In book one the fight on the Chairman's dirigible is just classic. Sally Fae was just great and the whole battle was non stop suspense.
Say something about yourself!
I bought this book on a whim. I had never read anything by Larry Correia and within 15 minutes I was hooked. Bronson Pinchot is excellent; every single voice is perfectly tailored to the character's personalities. He brings you into the book and turns a fascinating story into a riveting experience that's impossible to pause! I can't wait to listen to the rest of the trilogy!
Faye is by far my favorite character, I loved the way he turned her into this raw, realistic person with a huge heart and an adorable accent.
At first, Bronson's slow pace and calm voice was different and I wasn't sure I liked it. But now I can't imagine listening to any other narrator. Superb.
It took me quite awhile to really get into the story. At first I was scratching my head and even began another audiobook, however, I came back to this because I HATE not completing a book once I have started reading/listening. Upon continuing I am glad I did. I warmed to the story and began enjoying the tale. I almost think this was one of those books I should have "read" first before listening to it. Bronson Pinchot does a grand job narrating.
So much has already been said about this book I cannot add much. Although Jake Sullivan is suppose to be the main character, I think more of the story is about Faye Vierra. She is an unknown factor, a bit simple, has a big heart and cares deeply. There is so much going on in this book, several tales coming together towards the end. It's big, it's supernatural, it's steampunk, it's alien and it is crime. Almost every genre is encompassed within. I will be returning to this some day and "reading" the book.
There's some foul language, not like every other sentence, paragraph or anything. But if that's a put off, then avoid.
I am now re-listening to all of the Grimnoir series, because I enjoyed them so much the first time. The story is fascinating, inventive and quite unique. The narration is absolutely remarkable and spell-binding. Bronson Pinchot is simply the best reader I have heard and I listen to a lot of books. All of Larry Correia's books are extremely well written but the combination of an alternate history and a believable use of magic is captivating and so extraordinary that this is my favorite series of the three he currently has going. I certainly hope for more books of this series, hopefully with the same cast of characters. I especially liked that the ultimate hero is female, without detracting from the importance of all the other male characters.