Monday, August 26, 2013

Mini-Review: Hero Second Class by Mitchell Bonds

Summary:  Have at You! Cyrus Solburg is a young man who dreams of becoming a Hero in a fantasy world in which Heroes owe monthly dues and Villains are allowed only one eclipse per fiscal quarter. Cyrus becomes the apprentice to Sir Reginald Ogleby, also known as the Crimson Slash, a towering swordsman with a titanic sword and a penchant for self-narrating his own battles. It's up to Reginald to train Cyrus in the essentials of Heroism so that one day, at the conclusion of his first Quest, Cyrus may become a Hero, Second Class. More is afoot than the routine of training in the arts of Heroic Derring-Do, however. A bona fide Arch-Villain is on the loose. And this Villain is particularly interested in Cyrus, not least because of how Cyrus seems to have magic coming to him in spite of himself, resulting in tremendous disruption of the magical planes. Entering into the fray come a wise-cracking Dragon, a petulant gargoyle, the Heroes' Guild, the Army of DarknessTM, and a horde of cursed invisible Centaurs. Cyrus will have to call on his friends, a beautiful young cat girl, and all the power of the Capital Letters and Arbitrary Numbers if he is to live to become a full-fledged Hero.

About the Author:  When Mitchell was 10 he and his friends created an adventure game called Quest. Mitchell played all the supporting characters, quest givers, and (his favorite) the villains, while his friends played the brave heroes who thwarted them. That game became the basis for Hero, Second Class. Mitchell is a young man with theatrical inclinations, a wry sense of humor, and storytelling ability well beyond his years.

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Mini-Review:  Funny!  From puns to fantasy cliches taken to extremes, Hero Second Class had me laughing out loud nearly every page.  There are some occasions when the author repeats jokes, almost as if Mitchell had forgotten he'd already said them.  However, I've seen this in other long novels by best-selling authors (Harry Turtledove comes to mind), and Mitchel usually does this before expounding further, making it an easily forgivable fault.  If you like Terry Pratchett, you are going to enjoy Hero, Second Class.  I've bought the next book, Hero in Hiding, and hope to read it soon.

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