Kirsten Reviews: Pocket Apocalypse by Seanan McGuire
Pocket Apocalypse by Seanan McGuire
Endangered, adjective: Threatened with extinction or immediate harm.Australia, noun: A good place to become endangered.
Alexander Price has survived gorgons, basilisks, and his own family—no small feat, considering that his family includes two telepaths, a reanimated corpse, and a colony of talking, pantheistic mice. Still, he’s starting to feel like he’s got the hang of things…at least until his girlfriend, Shelby Tanner, shows up asking pointed questions about werewolves and the state of his passport. From there, it’s just a hop, skip, and a jump to Australia, a continent filled with new challenges, new dangers, and yes, rival cryptozoologists who don’t like their “visiting expert” very much.
Australia is a cryptozoologist’s dream, filled with unique species and unique challenges. Unfortunately, it’s also filled with Shelby’s family, who aren’t delighted by the length of her stay in America. And then there are the werewolves to consider: infected killing machines who would like nothing more than to claim the continent as their own. The continent which currently includes Alex.
Survival is hard enough when you’re on familiar ground. Alex Price is very far from home, but there’s one thing he knows for sure: he’s not going down without a fight.
Pocket Apocalypse by Seanan McGuire is the latest novel in her InCryptid series which features the Price family, who are cryptozoologists, and and a generally rowdy bunch. Their ranks also include two telepaths, a reanimated corpse, and a colony of talking mice who worship the Price family as their gods. If it sounds a bit complicated, then that’s part of the joy of this series. Alexander Price and his sister Verity, whose alternating adventures make up the four books written thus far in this series are definitely not superhuman, although several of their family members aren’t human. What makes them good at what they do is their love of knowledge, respect for cryptids, and a determination to see every sort of creature as worth saving, unless it happens to be attempting to chew their face off. Even then, they might just pause long enough to try and reason with it before defending themselves.
‘Cryptids have feelings too’ is not an attitude common to many organizations that are aware of such creatures as gorgons, Church Griffins, or Aeslin mice, and this has put the Price family at odds with some rather unfriendly people. This time, though, the unfriendly people Alex is dealing with are his girlfriend, Shelby Tanner’s parents and the rest of the Australian cryptozoologists who have a werewolf problem they don’t want any outsider jumping in to solve.
Alex has his own history with werewolves, and he isn’t eager to hop on a plane and head to the other side of the world, but if werewolves manage to spread to other continents, they will literally take a bite out of almost anything, and after all, this is what he does for a living.
That puts Alex squarely in the middle of family drama that isn’t, for once, his own, facing down the hostile locals, both werewolf and human, and figuring out where he and Shelby’s relationship is headed from here.
McGuire has a knack for blending great characters, creatures, and humor with a plot that moves at a quick pace. All of these elements make this book a very enjoyable read, and will have readers eager for the next adventures of the Price family, wherever they may happen to wind up next.
(Received a copy from the publisher)