An exciting story with great narration! This is a gem, it doesn't fall into the cookie cutter trap of many of the new series. Very creative twists on history.
Molecular biologist. Musician. Lover of science. Lover of music. Dreamer of magic. Thinker of thoughts. ||| "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" - Arthur C. Clarke ||| As a scientist, science fiction and fantasy inspire me to push the line of discovery forward, beyond conventional imagination, beyond conventional wisdom.
The title of my review for Hard Magic (Book I of the Grimnoir Chronicles) was "Simply, the best audiobook I've ever encountered." After getting through Spellbound I have to say that Hard Magic still holds that title, but the sequel is certainly no disappointment. Perhaps it was because Hard Magic just felt more fresh, and upon reading Spellbound my wonderment at the universe had been a bit diluted (I listened to them back to back all in less than a week). But, the best way to put it is, if I give Spellbound 5 stars all around, I'd have to give Hard Magic 6 stars. Although, Bronson Pinchot's performance still gets 10/5 in both books.
Spellbound has the same incredible historical urban science fiction fantasy mojo that is touted by Hard Magic. Most of your favorite characters return and the new characters that are introduced, for the most part, do not disappoint, with a very interesting interaction between a magic-envious academic and a demon possessor; yes a demon summoner that possesses the demons. Clever stuff.
You won't be disappointed by Spellbound if you found Hard Magic worth your time. But, while this seems obvious, definitely get through the first book before even attempting this one. Though, you could probably take a pretty big break in between and have no trouble picking right back up into the universe. And, what a universe it is!
The only disappointing thing about Spellbound is that Larry Correia hasn't finished the last book yet. Right now I'm feeling quite impatient waiting for both Cold Days, the next Dresden Files installment and for the third book of the Grimnoir Chronicles. I'm working my way through the Monster Hunter series now, trying to get my fix of Correia's action packed fantastical imagination.
Comparing Grimnoir Chronicles to Monster hunter:
After finishing the first book, Monster Hunter International, I would suggest that both Hard Magic and Spellbound really represent a definite refinement of Correia's art. The Grimnoir Chronicles series blows, at least the first, Monster Hunter book out of the water, and that's saying a lot because MHI itself represents a fantastic addition to the urban fantasy genre. Though I admit that I am probably speaking too soon since the MH books likely improve with each new installment. I am quite excited to see how Correia evolved as an author.
Plug for Iron Druid Chronicles:
Oh, and one final recommendation for those waiting for the third GC book: The Iron Druid Chronicles. While the series is a magnitude lighter than Larry Correia's writing, Kevin Hearne's own take on urban fantasy with a 2000 year old druid living in Arizona might be of interest to those who have similar tastes to myself, based on my review above.
I'd definitely recommend it. It's a very original story with lots of fascinating characters.
The two main characters of Jake and Faye...the most well-developed and complex characters. Good amount of humor thrown into each of their personalities.
Bronson Pinchot does an amazing job of giving each character his/her own unique voice. One thing I noticed between this book and the previous one ("Hard Magic") was that several of the character voices changed. Jane and Lance both changed significantly from an eastern european accent for Jane and a sort of midwestern accent for Lance in the first book to a midwestern accent for Jane and a country drawl for Lance in this book.
I'm the managing editor of the Fantasy Literature blog. Life's too short to read bad books!
???You???re Heavy Jake Sullivan, aren???t you????
???I was afraid of that.???
Larry Correia delivers another exciting magical alternate history with Spellbound, the second of his GRIMNOIR CHRONICLES. After Jake Sullivan and the gang took care of the German zombies, the Japanese Iron Guard, and Nikola Tesla???s peace ray in Hard Magic, the magicals are needed again to thwart new threats to the country. This is hard to do, though, after they???ve been framed for the attempted assassination of President Roosevelt. Public approval for magicals is low and opposition groups are organizing to march on Washington. FDR decides that magic must be regulated and proposes a new-deal-type law that will require all magicals to register with the government and wear an identification badge.
Meanwhile, after receiving a phone call from Hell, the Grimnoir recognize that there???s a much greater magical threat that the American citizens are unaware of. Only the Grimnoir are equipped to handle it. Frustrated, they must take care of this alien evil while hiding from the government. Fortunately, they do have some really awesome magical powers, an unexpected powerful ally, and a lot of guns.
Once again, I???m surprised to find myself enjoying Larry Correia???s testosterone-pumping, gun-toting, blood-spurting, heads-rolling story, but there???s a lot more here than guns, guts and gore. There???s a large diverse set of likeable and fully-developed fictional and real historical characters, an interesting historical backdrop, plenty of action and suspense, some blood-chilling moments, and a few quirky elements, too, such as an army of robots and a black hole.
There???s also quite a bit of dark humor, which blends perfectly to lighten the mood just a bit when things get scary. I was always entertained by the scenes in which Lance takes over the body of an animal. I also love the adapted quotes at the beginning of the chapters, which put the story in its historical context. For example, one is from the New York Commissioner of Boxing who explains how, after Jack Johnson beat the Great White Hope, they bribed a referee and snuck in a Brute to end Johnson???s career (???Gotta keep the sport pure, y???know????).
Bronson Pinchot???s performance of Spellbound is nothing short of brilliant. There???s a large international cast here and Pinchot handles all of those accents with ease. He perfectly captures the excitement, horror, and humor of Spellbound. If you don???t read audiobooks, you might consider starting with this series. It???s a perfect example of how good audio can get.
There???s danger on the horizon, American opinion about magicals is unstable (are they public heroes or public enemies?), and many questions remain about the Power, its motives, and Faye???s ties to it. I???m looking forward to the next GRIMNOIR CHRONICLES book.
Spellbound, though not as thrilling as the first book of the series, is still a perfect book. Keeps you always on the edge and you don't want to finish listening. Definetly a must read if you are into books/stories with magic/role play.
I have listened to Bronson Pinchot through this series only. He is the best narrator so far. Keeps you concentrated, motivated and makes you feel whole book.
It is as if he is bringing a whole new dimension to the book with his narration.
Likes to listen while doing chores; likes to write reviews while he should be doing chores.
This book continues the good storytelling and performance from the first novel. Set in an alternate 1930s where magic has been present since the antebellum period, the story follows a group of secret society operatives with different types of magic that attempt to combat a shadowy government organization, a menacing Japanese Imperium, and an all-consuming enemy from another dimension while trying to sort out issues of trust and common purpose.
The reading is outstandingly performed by Bronson Pinchot who has some of the strongest voice characterizations I have ever listened to. He did make one noticeable modification to one character's accent in this version as his voice was better clarified in the text since the first book. Overall, this doesn't do much to detract from the performance which was fantastic.
The story is filled with action using both science and sorcery to make the fights, chases, escapes, and traps filled with unexpected turns. If you liked the first one, I wholly recommend continuing on to this one. If action, magic, gunfights, or just a well-told story appeal to you at all, I recommend reading the first Grimnoir Chronicle, "Hard Magic," and then continuing on to this one.
Probably. Excellent narration giving more life to the text through accent and emphasis
Having the protagonist in peril with no easily discernible way out and having to just ride along
All worked for me. Sullivan is probably the best with his drawl and pondering speech pattern. Dan 'the mouth' was the one that most nearly annoyed me.
It would have been tempting had I the opportunity. The story rolls and builds consistently.
Unlike most middle books of a trilogy, this one does not lull or spend overmuch time simply setting up the final book. Instead, this one moves briskly, introducing new characters seamlessly and growing the core group all with in an action filled story that still drives the overall plot towards the final encounter. A very enjoyable ride with some subtle and not so subtle nods towards history. I appreciated that the names of the designated interment camps for actives were actual camps used by the US government during WWII for those of Japanese decent.
I love Bronson Pinchot. He is fabulous with the voices. The story was entertaining. Larry Correia definitely has a good series with these books.
Totally good and fun read.
It has been so long since I have found a author, with an amazing story line that takes nothing for granted, involved with the creation and implementation of so many different characters while getting the details of their individual personalities tight in both peace and war without killing the reader with mind numbing pages of detail. Add that to a reader that encompasses the heart of the story with amazing ease and you have a major winner. Well done and thank you!
The whole story ... I am dyslexic and although I can read, it is slow and cumbersome and I have to re-read several sections each time I move forward through a chapter just to keep the story alive ... I get characters however and form images of the individuals in my mind ... this author ... this reader keep my characters real in every aspect.
These are 2 of the best opening lines I have read to date: “The man in black fled across the desert and the gunslinger followed.” "Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.
Very fast paced story with many interesting characters and great narration from Bronson Pinchot. Bronson's narration made this series a joy to listen to. Fun story. Great narration. Get the series.