Saints (Monster Hunter Memoirs #3) ★★★★☆

saints (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Saints
Series: Monster Hunter Memoirs #3
Author: John Ringo, Larry Correia
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 288
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

Chad blows up at MCB after the experience in New Orleans. This puts him on their Super Shit List and one of the agents starts making things personal. A bad scrying shows Chad is involved with a black magic group kidnapping virgins to raise an Old One. Turns out it is Chad’s brother but that makes Chad involved anyway. Chad takes down his brother and stops the ring. That’s enough proof for the agent AND Agent Franks. Franks beats Chad almost to death and hospitalizes him. Chad then sues MCB and while things are in full swing heads over to England to do some research at the Van Helsing Institute.

There he investigates why some of the occurrences are happening in New Orleans. Turns out, his brother has slightly awakened an Old One’s cocoon. The Agent in charge of MCB in New Orleans has taken MCB being sued by Chad extremely personal so he does nothing when even Earl Harbinger tells him there is a baby Old One about to wake up and eat the world. That means its up to MHI to toe the line again and stand between the Earth and total destruction. MHI wins. Was there any ever doubt? Of course, they get a little help from the Fey and a High Hunt.

The books ends with Earl taking over and describing the events at the Christmas Party where Ray Shackleford IV almost destroys MHI. Turns out it is Earl and Chad who close the Portal to the Old One and Chad gives his life to allow Earl to do so.

My Thoughts:

This was a great wrapup to the trilogy. A nascent Old One growing under New Orleans? Man, how much more of a threat can you get than that? Everything leads up to that though, so the story goes from threat to threat to threat.

Everything isn’t directly connected, so things feel a little discombobulated sometimes. The whole thing with his brother ends so quickly that there was no tension and besides it leading into Chad getting the snot beat out of him, was rather anti-climactic.

Chad’s time in England was boring. It didn’t help that the story about the ghost and the super special metal was included in the Monster Hunter Files anthology so I kind of felt cheated. Him teaching was just as boring.

The final battle was EVERYTHING I want out of a Monster Hunter International fight. Guns, bombs, flamethrowers, Holy Water, and so many monsters. So many, many monsters. Ringo and Correia did a fantastic job of making this a pulse pounding fight!

The ending, with Chad’s sacrifice, was how this trilogy needed to end. Chad’s story had a beginning and this was his end. For all his philandering, dickheaded braggodocio and general arrogance, Chad goes out like a hero.

Overall, this was a worthwhile read in the MHI universe, even if a little bit off from Correia’s style.

★★★★☆

 

bookstooge (Custom)

 

 

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The Monster Hunter Files (MHI #7) ★★★★☆

monsterhunterfiles (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: The Monster Hunter Files
Series: Monster Hunter #7
Author: Larry Correia, et al
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 336
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

A collection of short stories about various monster hunts and hunters, some good, some bad, all interesting. Correia starts the parade but then each story is by a different author and none are overlapping or interconnected. A nice montage to fill your Monster Hunter craving.

 

My Thoughts:

I enjoyed this collection immensely. In fact, I stayed up until almost midnight monday night reading it. I kept on telling myself, ok, THIS is the last story for the night. And before you know it, bam, midnight!

There were only 2 stories I actively disliked. One was a Jane Yellowrock/Faith Hunter story. It reminded me why I don’t read 99% of Urban Fantasy. Bad attitude assholes with chips on their shoulders so large that they have their own gravitational pull. If I had my druthers, Yellowrock would get run over by her own motorcycle while having her shotgun shoved up certain orifaces. That’s how she makes me feel after just a short story. Imagine a book, a whole series? No thank you. The second story was about some vietnam vet who rescues a commune of hippies from a vegetable demon. First, it portrays Vietnam vets as nothing but mentally disturbed violence seekers. You know how many Vets from that time settled down afterwards and just got on with life? Yeah, you don’t hear about all of them, they don’t make the news. Second, the hippies turn out to be semi-intelligent and OK people. Yeah, I’ll believe that in a heartbeat. Hippies are just soft Commies. In fact, if you put a Hardline Communist and a Hippie in a sealed room and gave me a Sig P938 and ONE bullet and told me to choose, I know exactly what I’d do. I’d line them up, Hippy first. At least if the Hardliner survives I’ll know he’ll go for my jugular. /End ranting and raving/

Here’s 2 of my favorites. One about a girl and her hippy dad (hahaha) who move into the Enchanted Forest trailor park because the girl tried to kill her science teacher because he was a werewolf. Not even her father believes her. Of course, moving in where the Queen of the Elves lives doesn’t help things. But when the girl helps take out an invading clan of garden gnomes, it’s all good! My second favorite was about Janitor One who hooks up with talking mice because his janitor2 coworker opens up a portal to hell to summon a demon because the janitor2 is jealous of how Janitor One actually does his job. I think part of the appeal was how Janitor One would literally try to fight anyone who looked down at him, even Owen Pitt 🙂 That takes some serious balls.

The rest of the stories varied between pretty good to hohum. Some were funny, some were sad. One of the ho-hum ones dealt with the douchebag hunter from the Monster Hunter Memoirs series. But overall it was nice to get another MHI story. It’s about the only Urban Fantasy series I look forward to reading or can even stomach in most cases.

★★★★☆

bookstooge

 

Monster Hunter Siege (MHI #6) (ARC) ★★★★☆

seige (Custom)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Monster Hunter Siege
Series: Monster Hunters International #6
Author: Larry Correia
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 399
Format: Digital Advanced Reading Copy

 

Synopsis: Super Spoilers!

MHI finds out that a group of Hunters is still alive in the Nightmare Zone, after being sucked in there from the story in Legion. Owen has the prophecy talk with his Dad, finds out he has been chosen to fight a World Ending Being that can hold its own against the Old Ones.

Coincidentally enough, the rescue mission that Own wants to run to get the survivors will take them right to the Big Bad Guy. So there is a lot of getting ready, figuring out how they’re going to survive the Zone and how their going to get back to the portal.

The push to get to the portal is pretty intense. Multiple Hunter Companies are taking part and it is on a Russian island. They bring a tank. Only Owen gets through the portal, as his Chosen One status is a bit better than Anakin’s and he rescues his comrades. Only to be captured and frozen in the ground for 6 months.

He escapes back to our world only to find that the Big Baddie has escaped and is on the loose. And his wife and newborn son are missing.

 

My Thoughts: Spoilers x5

This was an e-arc, so any errors in words, grammar, etc in the book were ignored. But by gum, reading this early was worth it.

The previous book in the series, Nemesis, really blew me away, So my expectations were pretty high. I KNEW my expectations were high and looked over my previous MHI reviews to help ground me. It was good that I did. I ended up enjoying this quite a bit and I wasn’t disappointed because it wasn’t Nemesis 2.0.

There was a lot of setup to this story. There had to be. It was 6months to a year I think? Lots of logistics, training Hunters to work together who just 3 months ago were competitors, at best, and enemies, at worst. Throw in the multiple languages, the fact that the portal to the Nightmare Zone is on a Russian island and the Russkies don’t want to admit that the island even exists and you’d better have some solid planning under your belt.

I like reading about Owen. He’s not a slimeball like the guy in Monster Hunter Memoirs and he’s someone I like reading about. One of the reasons I like him is because he’s everything I am not. He’s big, he’s tall, he’s emotionally stable and doesn’t go into a tailspin if his wife doesn’t text him, he’s a leader and he’s wicked good with guns. Reading these books, for a couple of hours I can be somebody who I want to be.

The invasion of the island was tops. Skippy the orc flying a helicopter is always amusing to read about. A tank versus a giant was wicked cool and 100+ hunters in armoured jeeps versus a whole island of monsters, well, that is just what I want to read about.

When Owen goes into the Nightmare Zone by himself, the action didn’t slow down very much. He’s on the run from the Big Baddies’ lackeys the whole time and it turns out that the guys he needs to rescue have been taken by a High Hunt of Fey. He singlehandedly invades their castle, frees his men and then stays back to fight the leader of the Hunt so his men can escape. A 6’5”, 300 pound man versus a 7ft tall nigh indestructible warrior? Yes please! And it is a fantastic one on one fight.

Only to be interrupted by the Big Baddie. Who has been using Owen the whole time for his own ends. So the book ends with the Big Baddie out in the world and Owen’s wife and son unreachable. That kind of catch fits exactly with the previous MHI books. The main story wraps up and then Correia throws out a hook so you’ll read the next book. It’s worked well enough on me that I don’t even mind anymore. But it is something to be aware of.

Another solid entry into the Monster Hunters International series. Good stuff.

However, that cover. I am not a fan of sexual fan service. That cover is nothing but sexual fan service. Ignore the cover, seriously.

The links below, to previous books, are probably just as spoiler’y as this. Just so you know.

★★★★☆

bookstooge

 

  1. Monster Hunter International (Book 1)
  2. Monster Hunter Vendetta (Book 2)
  3. Monster Hunter Alpha (Book 3)
  4. Monster Hunter Legion (Book 4)
  5. Monster Hunter Nemesis (Book 5)

Monster Hunter Nemesis (MHI #5) (ARC)

7933a80bf5458af406260842a897ad4f I received this copy from the publisher through Netgalley.com and that in no way has influenced my opinion in regards to this review.

This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot.wordpress.com by express permission of this reviewer

 

Synopsis:

Agent Franks is center stage in a Special Task Force Unicorn vendetta. Franks is on the run while he must clear his name, destroy a whole set of bodies based upon him AND prevent an invasion of the original fallen angels.

 

My Thoughts:

Just like in Alpha, this book follows a particular person in the MHI universe. Agent Franks, the mysterious, deadly bulldog of the Monster Control Bureau.

First off, the violence level is just as high as in Alpha. In fact,  the book starts off with Franks using guns, crowbars and fists to destroy a cult that is trying to raise an Elder god.

Then things really get started. Apparently, Franks has a deal with the United States, but it works both ways. One of those conditions is that no recreating of Franks is allowed. But the STFU [yeah, I love how Correia worked that] is being as evil’y as ever and the leader, Stricken, has broken that agreement and made multiple flesh golems with all the modern tech at his disposal.

So Stricken must get rid of Franks and Franks must get rid of Stricken and the copies.

However, unbeknownst to humanity, but very well known to Franks, is the fact that the bodies are taken by fallen angels, not new human souls. And here Correia gives his readers a crash course in semi-mormon theology and mixes it with Cthulthuic lore.

Pretty interesting and it makes internal sense for the overall series.

Franks must stop the invasion of a literal Hell on Earth. It is great. Huge battles involving everything from 50cal guns to fisti-cuffs. It is a pulse pounding, hard core, thrill-a-minute, roller coaster adventure.

I just tore through this book and loved every second of it. It was good enough to make me seriously consider buying the whole series in hardcover. I did drop a half star because of the profanity. It wasn’t completely gratuitous, but it was way more than necessary.

 

Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars

Author: Larry Correia

Monster Hunter Nemesis

MHI #5

Monster Hunter Legion

Monster Hunter Legion Monster Hunter Legion

Monster Hunter #4

Larry Correia

4 of 5 Stars

 

Firefox crashed about 1/2way through my first draft. Bleh. So here is another take.

This review represents my 1000th review here on GR. I’m pretty proud of that fact. Even though some of those reviews are of the “I hate/love this book” type. At least I took the effort, you know?

So, MHI: Legion.

A monster hunt that is totally hardcore, of global ramifications AND is just a taste of the badness that is coming. Imagination, determination, BIG guns and serious bodily harm all round.

Team Force Unicorn. Only the creepy douchebag leader guy is part of this story. And he really makes the former leader of MCB look like a nice guy.

Then you get all the different revelations: For all you LOSERS who expect reviews to be sanitized just for YOU, you selfish pigs. feel free to drop dead in the most painful way possible. No really, I don’t mind if you do..
Ok, try this instead: Owen and wife having a baby. Julie’s continued slide toward guardian mode. Owen’s brother getting involved in MHI. The info that “something” is waking up and preparing to take over the world.

Then, right at the end, Owen has the “Prophecy Talk” with his dad. Well, they start it, and the book ends. This is my only gripe with the book. I don’t mind a good cliff hanger ending, but this was just totally out of control douchebaggery [and yes, I declare that to be a real word].

An awesome quick read with guns and monsters that left me wanting the next book NOW.

Monster Hunter Alpha

Monster Hunter AlphaMonster Hunter Alpha

MHI #3

Larry Correia

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Lots of spoilers ahead, so read at your own risk [I don’t like hiding the whole review]

Oh yeah!!!!! This book was the best of the 3 so far.

I never liked Owen in the previous 2 books, so the fact that this book wasn’t about him pushed it up a whole star.

The gun porn was almost non-existent, but just hinted at enough so you knew different guns were being used and that the protagonist and others were not just using generic “guns” [which also ticks me off when an author assumes that all guns are the same, and so on and so forth].

The action reminded me of Neal Ashers Polity Universe-graphic and nonstop.
I mean, a snow-shredder and a whole passle of zombie-werewolves? I was enthralled and grossed out all at the same time.

The emotional content of the book I found very satisfying as well. We learn where Earl came from, what drove/drives him, his wish being granted, his realization that he NEEDS to be a werewolf, the horror [not in the scary way, but in that terrible gut wrenching way] of separation when Team Unicorn shows itself. It all came together in a patchwork of horror, hope, despair and love.

The villains were awesome! On one hand, we have a super werewolf, who beats the crap out of everybody and pretty much out-thinks everyone as well. Then we have the money-grubbing, incompetent government agent of the MCB. You love to hate him 🙂

A cool set of heroes, some fantastic baddies and some series fighting. Now I am really looking forward to Monster Hunter Legion. If more Urban Fantasy was like this, I might be more into it…

Monster Hunter Vendetta (MHI #2)

Monster Hunter Vendetta

Monster Hunters International

Larry Correia

4 Stars

 

Where as Monster Hunter International started off with a bang and then kind of just petered out, Vendetta starts with bang and then relentlessly pounds the reader with one battle after another until the very end, where there is a great big mother-phracking battle. Almost one long, ongoing battle. And I loved it.

There was no gun porn, no contrived romance’y stuff, nothing that wasn’t essential to the story. I felt like my backside was kicked the whole time. And Owen steps up and stops whining. Agent Franks. Even when the reveal happened, I didn’t get the play on words with his name until AFTER I was done the book. Very clever, in a simple punny way.

Overall, this was a much more enjoyable read than the first one. Looking forward to the final book now…