- Series: The Grimnoir Chronicles (Book 1)
- Mass Market Paperback: 624 pages
- Publisher: Baen; Reprint edition (April 24, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1451638248
- ISBN-13: 978-1451638240
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.3 x 6.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 345 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #476,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hard Magic (The Grimnoir Chronicles) Mass Market Paperback – April 24, 2012
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About the Author
Larry Correia is an award-winning competitive shooter, a movie-prop-gun master and, yes, an accountant by day–but an urban noir adventure master by night. He is the creator of the Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestselling Monster Hunter series as well as urban fantasy hardboiled blockbuster saga, the Grimnoir Chronicles. Correia is very tall, very bald, and lives in Utah with his wife and family.
Top customer reviews
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The only reason I didn't give this book 5 stars is that it reads like a graphic novel. The dialogue is stilted and compares to that of the Star Wars films. This is not a book that requires any deep thinking on the part of the reader nor will you be rolling the plot around in your mind once you have finished the book. It is mind candy, a guilty pleasure you can enjoy for what it is and escape the reality of life. If that is what you are looking for and enjoy then I highly recommend this book.
Hard Magic can be summed up as epic-urban fantasy-steampunk-noir-detective thriller-alternative historical-fiction. Correia juggles so many genres and "Big Ideas" that a lesser author would fumble in an instant and mangle into some Frankenstein monster of failed literature. Not only does Correia manage to keep the story uncluttered but he does it with some serious style. The Monster Hunter novels are packed with hardcore action, huge set pieces ,deep characters, and involving plots and yet Hard Magic is able to transcend them and create a whole new level of awesome.
First, the universe Correia has created. Not only does Hard Magic feature a fully functioning, well planned out system of magic but it also gives explanation behind the appearance of this magic. The magical abilities of "Actives" are very cool but at the same time they are explained. There are rules and dangers that come with each form of magic, and the magics themselves are firmly grounded in the universe they inhabit. Correia's alternative version of the 1930's is also a very cool world on its own, and quotes by notable historical figures involving the emergence and use of magic only help to flesh it out. Oh and for any of you steampunk fans out there I should mention there are some serious awesome zeppelins.
Next, the characters. Some critics are bound to draw similarities between Jake Sullivan, the main protagonist of Hard Magic, and Owen Pitt the lead of Monster Hunter. These similarities are fewer than some might imagine. Both are very tough, duty bound characters but I actually found myself liking Jake Sullivan a good bit more. Sullivan is a much darker character than Pitt. He is a damaged man with a tragic past. At the same time he is also very intelligent, having discovered things about magic that other characters within the novel never would have guessed. Sullivan also has some of the coolest powers of any magic "Active." The other notable character here is Faye, a young girl who can teleport and suffers some tragedy of her own. I rarely enjoy female characters written by male authors but to me Faye rings true. Her peppy attitude is a wonderful foil to the more solemn Sullivan and she always seems believable. There are some other colorful characters as well as a very well written villain but it's best for the reader to meet them on their own.
And now for the action. If you have ever wanted to read about a teleporting ninja battle being carried on across a super zeppelin in the midst of a pirate attack while samurai and zombies engage magical super heroes trying to prevent a super weapon from being activated this is the book for you. The fight scenes in Hard Magic are top notch, white knuckle, block buster, thrill rides that will satisfy even the biggest adrenaline junkies. Not only are these fights brutal and explosive but they are also rather intelligent. It can't be easy to write a multi-layered battle featuring combatants with different magical skills but Correia weaves seamless fight scenes that couldn't possibly be choreographed any better. The last 50 pages make for one of the most epic final confrontations I have ever read. Be warned.
Lastly the plot. With enough action and explosions to trump a Michael Bay film and plenty of original ideas whirling around it would almost be forgivable for the plot to suffer. This, fortunately, is not the case in the least. From the beginning to the end Hard Magic features perfect pacing. There are completely unexpected twists, betrayals, surprises, intrigue, build up, and a very satisfying conclusion. The Monster Hunter novels have great plots as well as a very successful over arcing story but Hard Magic achieves far more. My only concern is that it will be nigh impossible for Correia to out-do himself when Spellbound, Book II of the Grimnoir Chronicles comes out this fall.
Overall if you are looking for a book to rock your world, make you do some fist pumps, and demand a sequel then buy this book. The only regret I have is that I cannot give Hard Magic a rating higher than 5 measly stars. It deserves much more.
Anyway, Larry Correia, I apologize for sticking my nose up in the air. Thank you for writing these great books. Give them a try people.
Most recent customer reviews
I could not put it down after I picked it up.