Sunday, 18 October 2009

Child of Fire

The front cover of Harry Connolly's Child of Fire has a recommendation by Jim Butcher and superficially it does read a bit like Butcher's Dresden files crossed with a Dean Koontz small town (not weird enough for one of Stephen King's Maine townships) and with a bit of F Paul Wilson's Repairman Jack thrown in for good measure.

I'd say describing that way perhaps does it a disservice, but I'd consider that a pretty decent mix - and rather than being a pale imitation of those writers, Connolly manages to put together a nicely crafted tale that, despite the comparisons, definitely feels like its own entity. Combining the urban fantasy genre with the small-town-America-horror genre gives Child of Fire a fairly unique flavour.

In terms of where it sits on the scale of urban fantasy, it's not up to the standards of Butcher - but I'd say there's little that is. It is better than most of the rest of the market though and considering it's a first novel, that's no mean feat. I've already recommended without reservation to one friend and have no hesitation in doing so again. I'm also looking forward to the follow-up novel and hope that we're going to get more of a glimpse into the world that's being set up in CoF as so far there's only been a fairly limited introduction to it - but what has been shown is certainly enough to peak my interest.

Definitely a series worth watching.