My book review of The Man with the Golden Torc by Simon R Green over at Fantasy Book Review 8/10
The names Bond, Shaman Bond. Have Torc will save world, no martini required, I’m a becks man.
If you are a fan of the Nightside books you are going to love Eddie Drood in the Secret History novels. Eddie Drood aka Shaman Bond (yes, it’s on purpose) is one of the Drood families Secret Field Agent, protecting humanity from itself and everyone and anything else that comes along. The Droods, all powerful, all knowing, all screwed up, are the hidden protector of man, armed with magic, science and their Golden Torc’s, nothing can stand in their way, not even themselves.
For every darkside there is a light, and the Secret History’s is this light, except when it’s dark, which is most of the time really. Taking place in the same universe as the Nightside (with a few cameos in later books), every weird and wonderful horror conjured by Simon R. Green is equalled in weirdness and flavour, giving the reader that head scratching Lovecraftian buzz.
A dark fantasy with its tongue planted firmly in its own cheek, all the things you loved about James Bond are mixed with the wild and insane magic and whirlwind of melodrama you could ask for in a Flemmingesk and Fantasy tale.
Eddie is just one of those characters you love, always in over his head, an idealist with a practical do what needs to be done edge. Whatever can go wrong inevitably will go wrong and at the worst possible moment. Throw in some on the nose, witty, satirical lines and you have nailed Eddie Drood.
At times I did find a slight repletion of concepts as Green drives home the family history and lays out the world to the reader, and with a history over 2000 years old there is a lot to cover. While not the sexiest element, it does lay a good foundation for the later books.
I started this series two weeks ago and I am now onto book four. Simon R. Green’s Nightside and Secret History novels are on my list of book you sit down with on a lazy Sunday and read start to finish in one sitting.
Sorry no Money Penny, SPOILER, Ethel does turn up later.
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