Gods are around and most of them aren’t very happy with humanity. It would be a bad idea to suddenly find yourself caught in the middle of their squabbles. That’s exactly what happens to the embezzler Louie Fitzsimmons.
Fitz introduces Mythbreaker as drugs for sex post-coital favour goes badly wrong and the voices in his mind become a screaming torrent. The book is an easy read from there as Stephen Blackmoore dishes out a carefully placed, action-packed, supernatural thriller.
You would think Fitz’ troubles would peak when the mob work out he’s been channelling money from the account but that’s the least of the bother. As it happens, as Fitz trouble deepens so does the intrigue and mythos for the reader. This is a book roleplayers and GMs would appreciate.
First off; take a world in which most of the gods are around but remove all the top players. In other words; there is no Odin, no Zeus, nor even Christian god. There are other gods, deities who fulfil different roles in their pantheon, and there are angels.
Secondly; imagine what might rise as a god in this day and age. Humanity doesn’t wonder about lightning or the ocean in the same way. We don’t worry about the harvest or hunting in the way our ancestors did either.
Thirdly; imagine also that only rarely does a human with the ability to channel the words of gods to the masses arrive. These Chroniclers normally go insane.
With those three points of consideration, we can begin to speculate on just how much trouble Fitz is in. I underestimated the depth of danger as I read the book. I assumed it would work out for everyone and all would be well.
Why would roleplayers like Mythbreaker? We get to see how these sets of gods might develop and interact. We get to see what, if any, new gods are introduced to the modern world and what are the consequences of the pantheon heads vanishing are.
Gods and Monsters: Mythbreaker is the second book in the Gods and Monsters series from Abaddon. I would not have known unless I had been told. I’ve not read Chuck Wendig’s original Gods and Monsters: Unclean Spirits but I think it is safe to say that Mythbreaker is a standalone addition to the series rather than a sequel in a line of books. That said; I’m now tempted to go back to the original and give that a read too.
My only grumble is the conclusion. We lurch there in the last few desperate pages. Readers are left to work out what happened – what exactly the Chronicler managed to do, how (but not why) and what the implications are. I would have been happy with a page or two of extra handholding and explanation.
Stephen Blackmoore manages to make a set of characters who should be inherently unlikable come across as likeable heroes. I think this the greatest miracle in a story otherwise packed with divine power. Since these odd characters are likeable and since the drama is pieced out in carefully addictive bite-sized chunks, it is very easy to wolf down the plot and commit your emotional support to the so-called heroes.
The result? Mythbreaker is worth your time. Watch what man does as god goes against god.
My copy of Gods and Monsters: Mythbreaker was provided for review. The book is available in print in the US on December and in ebook worldwide.
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