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Black City Saint Paperback – March 1, 2016
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“Black City Saint is first-rate urban fantasy. Richard A. Knaak has mixed myth with real-world history to create a fast-paced, unpredictable story filled with intriguing characters, terrifying monsters, and sinister magic. Readers in search of the next Harry Dresden should join Nick Medea on what is sure to be the first of many adventures.”
—Richard Lee Byers, author of The Reaver, Blind God’s Bluff, and Dissolution
“I LOVE this book! Black City Saint is a delightfully creepy and at the same time jaunty urban fantasy, a wild ride through Chicago of the gangster era in which the pace never flags, the stakes get ever higher, and the reader gets to spend time with a truly engaging, intriguing bunch of characters that I for one want to spend more time with. So, sequels please? I’m prepared to beg!”
—Ed Greenwood, creator of the Forgotten Realms®
“There’s a lot to digest in this fast-paced, unpredictable world with a surprisingly well-developed cast of characters, including a lovable shapeshifter, an honest detective in a dishonest city, feirie royalty, and a kelpie made of Lake Michigan waters. Because of many resemblances to Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files, urban fantasy fans will be hoping for more from Nick Medea.”
“Black City Saint is jam-packed with awesome -- cursed Roman emperors, incorporeal dragons, paranormal detectives, a shapeshifter from the Feirie realm trapped inside a dog's body, and one very tormented unsaintly Christian saint -- all set in prohibition-era Chicago. Knaak's latest is fast-paced and funny, frightening and more than a little fiendish, a brilliant mash-up of Ghostbusters, The Da Vinci Code, and the ancient story of St. George and the Dragon.”
—Brian Staveley author of The Emperor's Blades
“From the first page of Black City Saint to the last, you know you’re in the hands of a creative and expert storyteller. From setting the scenes to populating them with interesting and believable characters, Richard Knaak knows his stuff.”
—Mike Resnick, Hugo Award–winning author of The Prison in Antares
About the Author
Richard A. Knaak is the New York Times- and USA Today-bestselling author of The Legend of Huma, WoW: Wolfheart, and nearly fifty other novels and numerous short stories, including works in such series as Warcraft, Diablo, Dragonlance, Age of Conan, and his own Dragonrealm. He has scripted a number of Warcraft manga with Tokyopop, such as the top-selling Sunwell trilogy, and has also written background material for games. His works have been published worldwide in many languages. His most recent releases include Shade --- a brand-new Dragonrealm novel featuring the tragic sorcerer --- Dawn of the Aspects --- the latest in the bestselling World of Warcraft series, and the fourth collection in his Legends of the Dragonrealm series. He is presently at work on several other projects.
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This is the first book in a great new series of Urban Fantasy from the fertile mind of RICHARD A. KNAAK, creator of the world of the DRAGONREALM and a major contributor to all things DRAGONLANCE.
Richard has combined his talent at fantastical magical story telling with the grime and turmoil of an America during the time of Prohibition, Rum-Running, and the rise of the mobs and incorporated the myths and legends of ancient times to create another wonderful story to keep you reading long into the night.
This is a fantastic start to a new series and bodes well for future installments. Being that magic plays such a major role in the story, I suspect that more secrets and creatures will be revealed in future installments. The highlights for me were the actions scenes. Knaak does them exceedingly well whether if they're with guns or swords. That was another thing I really connected with and something I'm always looking for is a fresh take on the fantasy genre. I appreciated the risk of stepping away from epic fantasy in a secondary world and trying something bold and different.
Overall, I think Black City Saint is worth a read if you want to check out something that is not the usual fare and especially if you're a fan of Fae and/or the peak of the gangster era.
+ Great introduction that grabbed me right away
+ Fast-paced; not much down time between action
+ Wonderfully vivid setting
+ Frightening antagonist and other villains
+ Lovable sidekick and interesting, unique allies
- More typos, grammatical/punctuation errors than I'd like to see in any book, but especially a traditionally published book (where more resources may be available)
- While fast paced, much of the story felt repetitive. Among a few examples, there's one in particular that drove me nuts: <<SPOILER>> Every time Nick (protagonist) plans to leave, he tries to convince Claryce (love interest and potential badass) to stay back in "safety" (despite history suggesting that's a bad idea). Basically every time, Claryce argues and wins, one way or another. It felt stale after a couple of repetitions. <<END SPOILER>>
- Not enough character development for Claryce, the love interest. I wanted to feel more for her, especially in light of the way things usually go for her, but there was not enough development in her area. There's room for improvement in future installments, though, as she's already been set up to be a potential badass.
Overall, I enjoyed "Black City Saint," but I would like to see more character development for Claryce, a lot less redundancy, and a little more polish.
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Still not convinced?Read more
Quick & Dirty: Saint George and the Dragon are the gatekeepers and something is trying to break through the gate.Read more