The Shadow Revolution: by Clay and Susan Griffith
A thrilling new Victorian-era urban fantasy for fans of Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid Chronicles, the Showtime series Penny Dreadful, and the Sherlock Holmes movies featuring Robert Downey, Jr.
They are the realm’s last, best defense against supernatural evil. But they’re going to need a lot more silver.
As fog descends, obscuring the gas lamps of Victorian London, werewolves prowl the shadows of back alleys. But they have infiltrated the inner circles of upper-crust society as well. Only a handful of specially gifted practitioners are equipped to battle the beasts. Among them are the roguish Simon Archer, who conceals his powers as a spell-casting scribe behind the smooth veneer of a dashing playboy; his layabout mentor, Nick Barker, who prefers a good pub to thrilling heroics; and the self-possessed alchemist Kate Anstruther, who is equally at home in a ballroom as she is on a battlefield.
After a lycanthrope targets Kate’s vulnerable younger sister, the three join forces with fierce Scottish monster-hunter Malcolm MacFarlane—but quickly discover they’re dealing with a threat far greater than anything they ever imagined. Summary from Goodreads.
The Shadow Revolution | Clay & Susan Griffith | Adult | Urban Fantasy
June 2, 2015 | Del Rey
What happens when you kick-off a new urban fantasy series with a fantastic setting and unique characters, and you throw in some dangerous, supernatural creatures, evil madmen, murder & mayhem? You get a kick-ass book to read. As a first in a series, the Crown and Key is off to a great start. The Shadow Revolution caught my eye with its references to the Sherlock Holmes movies and Showtimes Penny Dreadful series, I'm happy to say that the book delivered great entertainment. I want more, please!
The story opens up with a great setting. You can feel the dark, grittiness of Victorian London's underbelly, the one where gas lamps filter everything in a hazy fog. The danger comes in the form of some supernatural creatures, werewolves. But, these lycanthropes have infiltrated polite society and have a dangerous plan. There's a kidnapping, a trip to Bethlehem Hospital - better know as "Bedlam" asylum, as well as drinking and strategic planning in dark corners of unsavory pubs. We're treated to a few brawls, ballrooms, and shootouts. They're dark scientific experiments gone wrong, magic and alchemy. Needless to say - I was not bored!
Each character offers something unique to the story, and together they make an exciting if an unconventional gang of heroes. Rallying together they stand ready to take out the next supernatural threat to the realm. The Crown and Key has its moments of darkness and danger that kept me on edge, but the authors also did a great job of including humor and terrific banter between the characters that really made the book enjoyable to read. More than a few punches are thrown, and not just at the enemy, which had me smile on more than one occasion.
Simon Archer is a winning combination of rogue and gentleman. As the last know living Scribe he holds the powerful and dangerous ability to use runes to amplify his magic which he uses to hunt down supernatural creatures. He's charming and dangerous - just how I like my heroes.
-he rolled his sleeve up over his biceps and whispered a word. Against the night, a bright green pinpoint appeared on his forearm. In the blink of an eye, the light moved along his arm as if writing on of the tattoos anew. The entire arcane pattern glowed and Simon waved his arm, creating a weird blur of emerald in the night.
Kate Anstruther is both beautiful and smart. She can as easily move across the ballroom as she can create alchemy in her lab. She also knows how to handle a gun and brandish a sword when needed. Her father is missing, her sister is being hunted by two very dangerous groups, and there's a mysterious Golden Key that ties her family to Simon Archer's. The danger is intense for Kate and I loved the fact that she remains strong. She has a fun repartee with Simon that I'm hoping grows into a romance in the upcoming books.
Kate wore her bandolier of vials, carried a sword in her hand, and sported a pistol in her belt. Her face showed no fear, only the resolve to protect those in the house-
Scottish monster-hunter Malcolm MacFarlane has no problem wielding a claymore with one hand and firing pistol with the other. He considers silver bullets a must. I loved the fact that he doesn't need to use magic to take down these creatures, rather good, old-fashioned cunning and brawn allow him to kick some supernatural-ass. Quick tongued, blunt and honest - he has your back.
"Shut it!" snapped the sharp retort in a thick Scottish brogue- "You came to a werewolf fight without silver. I've been tracking that beast for days. I won't have you two mucking things up with your petty sorcery. That beastie belongs to me, and me alone!"
The Shadow Revolution is off to a great. I've been looking for a new urban fantasy to dive into and this met all my expectations. And, with the books being published back-to-back, there's no long waiting time to find out what happens next.
My Rating: 4.5 Stars. I really liked it!
PLEASE NOTE: A courtesy review copy of this book was provided by Del Rey in exchange for my fair review. Thank you, Del Rey for the review opportunity!