Wednesday, July 23, 2014

New Novella Review - The Wurms of Blearmouth

Book - The Wurms of Blearmouth
Writer - Steven Erikson
Series - The Tales of Bauchelain and Korbal Broach #5 
Published By - Tor Books

First things first, I got this book from NetGalley, so thank you netgalley and Tor Books for this opportunity.
So what do you get when you mix an epic fantasy setting with dark humor? You get something like this novel, which can also be perceived as the authors attempt at poking some fun at the newly famous genre of grimdark. This short work is full of interesting characters and witty humorous dialogue accompanied by a crazy and violent sense of humor which will surely entertain anyone who can stomach the ensuing chaos.

Although this is the 5th book in the series it is not at all necessary to read the past books to enjoy this. In fact the story starts with the new characters residing in the village of Spendrugle, then we learn of how unusual these seeming peaceful village is. Our adventurers, Bauchelain and Korbal Broach, along with their manservant, Emancipor Reese,make a not so planned landing on the beach and start to get acquainted with the people leaving in the village and the castle lord who rules over them. The plot gets even more complicated when some old enemies make a landing on the beach in pursuit. Lots of fun ensues as the story unfolds with the viewpoint of numerous characters getting dragged into numerous sub-plots all the while using a sense of dark humor that just makes the novella hard to put down.

'Steven Erikson' once again showcases his masterful command over creating interesting characters and writing intelligent dialogue. The dialogue in particular is excellent, bordering on pure slapstic nature at times and also showing some sudden hints at witticism from the characters which makes the reader wonder if actually they are as dumb as they appear.

The actual plot was quite simple with a battle of wits between our returning duo and the castle lord of Spendrugle while having quite a lot of numerous sub-plots for the new and returning characters adding to the overall enjoyment. The dark/violent nature of the humor is quite nicely handled, as the writer even makes the event of torturing someone beyond recognition humorous for example.

Quite a fun read, specially due to its short length and its skillful bending of genres.
This gets a well deserved 4 out of 5 stars.      

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