Death definitely recommended for a Fantasy Friday
I quite like the Urban Fantasy sub-genre – seeing the gritty streets of L.A. or London through the gritty eyes of the protagonists, often as they splatter said streets with the bubbling ichor of dread demonic hordes, foul undead legions and any other evil adversary with extra added grit. And, since I grew up in Brisbane, I hugely enjoyed reading Death most definite by Trent Jamieson, which sees some very gratifying splattering on the streets of Brisbane and its inner suburbs.
But even without the hometown nostalgia this is just a good book – a very clever idea, explained but not exhausted (leaving plenty of room for sequels), which launches a fast-paced running battle as the hero is forced to try and avert a zombie-filled regional apocalypse. And it even has laugh out loud bits, so what more could I ask for?
Death most definite is about the business of death, where corporate takeovers are simply lethal. The Mortmax company has diversified its interests, but its core business is that it employs psychopomps. Pomps pomp – the word is used both as a noun to describe the people who act as psychopomps and as a verb to descibe the act of channelling a dead person’s soul from this world into the world of Death (the afterlife/Hell/whatever).
Steve is a pomp. But he’s also a bit of a loser and a slacker; a clock-watcher with the bitter taste of a not-all-that-recent divorce still in his mouth. Although his family are all pomps, he’s an outsider that doesn’t really fit in. In other words, an unlikely hero. But then things get very bad, very quickly, and with the bodies of the recently dead being reanimated and his life literally exploding around him, Steve has to get involved, despite being half-crippled by a blinding hangover and armed only with a nice line in self-deprecating humour. Plus, I just love that he has to rely on public transport and a bicycle. It’s a wild ride, but definitely worth jumping aboard.
If you like the Dresden files, or have enjoyed Richard Kadrey’s novels (which I posted about back in February) then I recommend you add Death most definite to your reading list. The next book in the Death Works series is out soon …. ooooh next week ! – find out more on Trent Jamieson’s website: Trentonomicon.