This is the tenth, yes the tenth, book in the Nightside series by Simon Green. While the last couple books in the series have been a bit less spectacular than the rest of the series, this book picks up the slack and starts a wonderful new storyline.
The book starts out with John Taylor being hired to help an elf deliver an elven peace treaty across the Nightside (what is it about Green and his evil elves?). Anyway Walker doesn’t want the treaty delivered and tries to stop John. At the conclusion of this event John is then approached by Larry Oblivion who wants help finding Tommy Oblivion. On top of all this John is getting odd warnings about Excalibur (yes, the sword from Arthurian legend) and Walker has decided that John should be his replacement as, the Man.
This was a wonderful Nightside novel. You get to learn a lot more about the Oblivion brothers. They aren’t my favorite Nightside characters but they have interesting powers and an interesting family history. So, if you have always wondered where the dead Larry Oblivion got that elven wand, well this is the book for you…Larry will finally tell his story in his own words.
As usual the book is a lot of craziness. The usual over-the-top but oh-so-amusing descriptions of the horribleness of the Nightside are still here in force, some of the phrases you’ve heard before but some are new. John Taylor and crew always talk like they are walking through the frames of a comic book. Green is extremely creative with all the side descriptions of things John sees while passing through the Nightside; I love the fact that you never can guess what’s going to be around the corner. The action scenes are phenomenal and the plot moves at a quick clip; always engaging never boring.
I also loved the fact that a new huge storyline is starting in this book…it deals with Excalibur and possibly other aspects of Arthurian legend. Again I love how Green doesn’t shy away from mashing whatever he wants to in this story. The first big story-arc dealt mostly with the bible and John’s mother Lilith; occasionally Green would through some mythological and Arthurian elements in there as well. It is great fun!
Let me see what else should you know about this book… We get to spend time with Mrs. Fate. We learn a lot more about Walker and how he runs the Nightside. Shotgun Suzie and Dead Boy (two of my favorites) are mainly absent from the story, but the story doesn’t suffer from their absence. The Lord of Thorns comes back in a big way and we learn a lot more about Larry and Tommy’s older brother; who is definitely a force to be reckoned with. Razor Eddie makes a few brief appearances, but mainly only to deliver dire warnings.
Overall I was really pleased with this book. I thought books 8 and 9 were kind of slow and disappointing, but I love this series so I decided to read book 10. I am so happy I did. This book is action packed, very creative, starts a great new story, and was a wonderful read! I can’t wait for the next one.