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Junkyard Druid: A New Adult Urban Fantasy Novel (The Colin McCool Paranormal Suspense Series) (Volume 1) Paperback – September 22, 2016
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About the Author
I've been an avid reader since my mom bought me my first Little Golden Book, back when "Pre-K classes" meant sitting in front of the TV watching The Letter People on PBS. I was reading classics like Homer's The Odyssey by the time I hit the third grade... then I discovered Tolkien, Asimov, and Bradbury, and it was all downhill from there. The Hobbit was pretty much my gateway drug, which led to a life spent reading every sci-fi and fantasy book I could get my hands on. Back when I was a kid it wasn't yet cool to be a geek, so at some point I decided I needed to learn how to defend myself against people who weren't intimidated by the fact that I played a level 31 paladin in Dungeons & Dragons. That's when I got into the martial arts, which as it turns out is pretty much LARPing for Japanophiles. Not being very good at adulting, years later I decided to teach martial arts for a living so I could skip the whole "work 30 years at a job you hate" thing and just go straight to doing my hobby full-time. I currently live in the Hill Country near Austin, Texas, which is where much of my fiction is set. Most days you can find me in a local coffee shop or in my office working on my next book, or in my garage pummeling inanimate objects. If you want to find out more about my work and get a FREE book, visit my website at MDMassey.com.
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Colin is a young man with a problem. Trained as a hunter, he and his girlfriend, another hunter, are pushed by their mentor, a 2000 year old druid, into hunting something that turns out to be more than they can handle. When the fight goes poorly, he discovers he's been cursed and turns into a hulk-type berserker, killing everyone and thing in his path, including his girlfriend--who may be haunting him.
Threatened into accepting a job from Maeve, queen of the fae, he tries to balance returning to college, finding the object Maeve wants, and handling his drunken, drug addicted mentor.
Colin is a likeable character. Younger than usual in these type of stories, we see him struggling to overcome his crushing guilt as he attends therapy, and talking about not enabling his mentor. This is not to say the book is full of self-discovery angst. Instead, it just has the ring of a young man trying to live a typical life, failing through no fault of his own, and being damned annoyed about it.
Colin's world is richly populated with well known and lesser known people and creatures. There's the quartet of red caps who seem to be stuck in a bad 80's version of the Sopranos, the bar keep who is the head of the local vampires, the obligatory circle of witches/wizards with whom he has a mutual lack of admiration, various strange creatures from Irish mythology, werewolves, and a woman friend who shrouds herself so well in don't-look-at-me spells that people think he's talking to himself when he's having coffee with her. All of these creatures and people are integrated easily into the story, and make sense when they show up.
The only thing this reader felt could be improved was that some explanations were a bit overlong.
This story was an excellent read; lighter than others in this genre without sacrificing plot or characters. This reader looks forward to the next book.
Junkyard Druid is the perfect brew to quench any urban fantasy lover’s thirst!