Looking for something to scratch that Buffy itch? Do you miss the days when a blonde girl fought demons and a patriarchal organization who thinks they know better? Well, have I got a book for you!
Discount Armageddon, by Seanan McGuire, has the difficult job of following the Toby Daye series, but, luckily, it's different enough not to invite actual comparisons. What it does share, though, is a tough, snarky heroine and incredible worldbuilding.
Verity Price is a cryptozoologist from a family of rogue cryptozoologists. What is a cryptozoologist, you may ask. Why, those who study cryptids. What is a cryptid, you may ask. Why, ghoulies and ghosties and long-legged beasties, of course. Basically: monsters. Having split from the Covenant of St. George, whose mission it is to wipe the monsters out, they actually try to protect the ones who aren't any real danger. Well, that is, Verity does do this...when she's not ballroom dancing. It's a wacky premise that works surprisingly well. Really, if you can accept the Aeslin mice, who celebrate the strangest holidays and festivals known to man, you can accept most anything. Well, you also have to accept that Verity is subletting from a Sasquatch.
Manhattan is teeming with monsters, so it's no surprise that a guy from the Covenant shows up, and this is urban fantasy, so it's no surprise that he's hot and sparks fly and loins burn, but there's some mysterious shit going down, and they're going to have to team up to figure it out. With the help of various other cryptids.
It's a fun, engaging read. One of my favorite bits is the location descriptions at the beginning of each chapter, which reminded me of the Middleman chyrons: "Central Park, a block and a half away from the Plaza Athenee, preparing to do something stupid." Nearly all the characters are women, which is nice. There are some delicious plot twists, some predictable and some not. While it doesn't have the obvious seeds for a strong series arc that Rosemary and Rue had, it's a wonderful introduction to a new sandbox I look forward to spending more time in.
Discount Armageddon is out today, so pick it up on Amazon or at your local bookstore! If you want a little taste of the world, you can read "One Hell of a Ride" for free. It's the story of how Jonathan Healy met Frances Brown. Who? Well, they're a couple of Verity's ancestors. See, if this goes to a full series, it will be the story of two whole families of rogue
Oh, right, you should also buy it because I am in it!