Sunday, November 17, 2019

The Monster of Elendhaven by Jennifer Giesbrecht

Rating: ★★★+.5 | 3 hours 53 minutes| Tor | Adult Fantasy | 9/24/2019  

Recently, YA fantasy author Justina Ireland posted this on Twitter:
And it explains a lot about my experience reading The Monster of Eldenhaven...and pretty much every other adult SFF. It always takes me a while to understand the world I’m being thrown into and lock into the story.

The Monster of Eldenhaven is a debut fantasy novella that only came out only a few months ago but has already inspired quite the fandom. I only came across it because cosplay and fanart for it kept showing up on my Twitter timeline. When I saw it was a pretty slim book I decided to give it a shot. 

The book begins with Johann, an unnamed creature that steps out of Eldenhaven’s toxic black water and befriends Herr Florian Lichenbloom, a wealthy accountant and secret sorcerer. Johann is just what the delicate seemingly Florian needs to set in motion his plans for revenge. Giesbrecht weaves a grisly story that kind of tap dances on the line between fantasy and horror. Seriously ya’ll; it’s not for the faint of heart or squeamish.

I did part of this audio and narrator Daniel Henning did a good job, though his voice for Johann felt a little too monstrous and broad.

 The Monster of Eldenhaven was an intriguing excursion into a genre I don’t normally read and a perfect Halloween-y read but now I need some fluffy holiday romance in my eyeballs now.

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