I just picked up the latest book by one of my current favorite writers, Chistopher Moore
This man is damned funny. I typically can’t restrain myself when one of his books hits the stands.
I ran across him by accident a couple years back; I was buying something on Amazon and one of his books, Bloodsucking Fiends, showed up as a “Readers also bought” sort of link. Now, the title grabbed me, but the cover art on that edition didn’t, it was lame. But I bought it on the strength of the reviews.
Boy, was I glad I did. Read an except here. It’s basically a love story between a woman who’s been turned vamp and doesn’t quite know what to make of this (Her maker (Or what do they call that now, ‘sire’?) having left her to die in the sun), and a young man who loves her.
So then I had to run out and buy every other book Moore’s written; I devoured them all one after another. They’re all great.
So below are my capsule reviews – go here for more detail.
(In publication order)
Practical Demonkeeping — A man and his demon hit town. All hell breaks loose. This is Moore’s first book, and it’s clever, but doesn’t quite live up to some of his later work. It sets the scene, though, (Pine Cove, California) where most of his books take place.
Coyote Blue — Samuel Hunter, a successful Santa Barbara insurance salesman, meets an ancient Indian god by the name of Coyote. This is my favorite of Moore’s books. I think it’s his best writing and the character of Coyote is my kind of modern trickster.
Bloodsucking Fiends — see above. This is my second favorite. Though that new cover looks too much like my friend Amanda.
Island of the Sequined Love Nun — We have a drag queen, a pilot for a Mary Kaye analog, a talking fruit bat, and a polynesian cargo cult. And this is a little too much for Moore, who seems to have gotten carried away with this one. It’s funny, great characters, but it’s all a little too far-fetched. This used to be my least favorite Moore book, until recently.
The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove — The town psychiatrist decides to switch everyone in Pine Cove off of their anti-depressants without telling them. This mass wave of depression attracts an ancient sea beast named Steve. This book is as bizarre as it sounds, and works incredibly well.
Lamb – The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal. This is a pinnacle of cleverness for Moore. I won’t say it’s my favorite; Moore works a little too hard to be clever, and has to work a little too hard to fit his fantasy into documented history (This is the same complaint I have about some of Tim Powers books). But it’s his funniest book, and a must-read.
Fluke — A marine biologist thinks he’s losing his mind when the whales he’s researching suddenly start sending him messages. This is where Moore let me down. This book sounds very clever when you read the description, but it just DOES NOT WORK. He starts with this great setup, great characters, a great setting (Maui). But halfway through the book, it goes sci-fi and makes no sense after that. It’s like Moore started using drugs in the middle of it and lost track of his own plot, or like he had three plot ideas and decided to stitch them together so he could write off a long stay in Hawaii. It’s silly in a bad way and not up to Moore’s standard. This is for big fans only.
Which leads me to:
The Stupidest Angel — A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror. I don’t know, I just got it. Funny as hell the first three pages, but they all are. With that title, I want to love it, but that doesn’t always tell you much. Review will be posted here shortly. I’m afraid that Fluke was a signal that Moore’s losing it, and hopeful that the return to Pine Cove will signal a return to his typical high standard. I’m almost afraid to find out.
I love Moore’s view of the world. I love his approach to the supernatural (Sure, it’s powerful and dangerous and deadly, but you know, it’s silly too). I love his writer’s voice and his characters.
Go try one of his books. I’ve given Bloodsucking Fiends to a couple friends and they both loved it. It’s a sure pleaser. Andie, I know I said I wasn’t going to dump more books on your, but this one, I’m making an exception.