Reading Level: Adult
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Size: 368 pages
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Release Date: October 30, 2012
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: eBook for review from Publisher
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this book from the publisher for review. I have loved Brom’s previous books and was excited to see what he would come up with next. This was a very adult story about what happens when Krampus the Yule Lord faces off with Santa Claus. It was an interesting story and well written
Jesse is a loser whose wife has left him; he wants to make it big as a music star but can seem to play in front of crowds. His life changes when he sees Santa’s sleigh attacked by horned beasts. When something crashes into his house he finds something that both Santa and Krampus want dearly; Loki’s magical bag. Jesse reluctantly agrees to help Krampus in exchange for Krampus helping Jesse save his family from the criminal low-lifes in the small town Jesse lives in.
This was a very interesting re-imagining about Krampus the Yule Lord. Brom combines traditional folklore with Norse mythology to come up with a tale in which Santa Claus and Krampus throw down in a small town plagued by joblessness and meth.
You can’t help by feel some sympathy for Jesse, I mean sure he is a loser…but he is also really in the wrong place at the wrong time. I love the twisted path Jesse’s life takes as he joins Krampus and seeks to save his family.
Krampus and Santa are both fascinating characters. Krampus is a wonderful mix of hope, joviality, and naughtiness. Santa can kick some serious butt and is a complex character in his own right.
All the characters in this story are very human and complex, this is one of those books where no one is really good or right. It makes for an interesting read.
This was a well written tale that was entertaining and engaging. I received this as an eGalley and although some of Brom’s artwork was present in the eGalley there wasn’t a ton of it; I am curious to see what the final book looks like.
This is definitely an adult only book and (as with Brom’s other books) doesn’t shy away from the darkness of humanity. There is swearing, torture, beatings, and abuse aplenty. If you are a Brom fan you already know he likes to explore the dark parts of humanity.
Brom includes a very well done afterword on the work he did researching the legend of Saint Nicholas. He explains how he came up with the idea to tie Saint Nicholas to Krampus. It made for an interesting explanation and read.
Overall this was a good read; although I didn’t enjoy it as much as The Child Thief. Definitely for adults only. This was an interesting blend of folklore and Norse mythology. It was an engaging, fast-paced, and intriguing read. Recommended to those who are interested in Santa/Yule Lord folklore and to those who are big Brom fans. If you like dark and somewhat disturbing urban fantasy I think you will enjoy this book as well.