It’s no secret that I’ve sung Jim C. Hines’ praises before on this site. Last year when we were lucky enough to have Jim as our author GOH at Icon, I went so far in a book group discussion to call Jim’s Goblin series an every man novel. No, I’m not going to ‘splain that (unless there’s popular demand), but it’s true. Believe the English professor, okay?
Jim took a great risk as a writer. He changed brands. About the time I learned of Jim’s existence (Fantasy Matters, 2007), Jim was done with the goblin phase of his life, and was moving into his princess series.
I’ll admit, the first book of the princess series did not excite me. It was okay, and it was limited by being a first book, which meant a great deal of time was spent in establishing the characters and the situation, and the plot seemed a bit secondary.
By the time I read the provocative reinterpretation of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Little Mermaid, the very grim Mermaid’s Madness, Jim had a solid grasp on where this series was going. Unlike Ariel and Flounder, Jim’s version echoes the grim undertones of Anderson. Well done. Golfer’s clap, Mr. Hines.
So, are you wondering what I thought about Red Hood’s Revenge? Wonder no longer. I’m going to post some of Jim’s answers to a few questions I had about the book next entry, but I wanted to write a review of the latest book in the princess series.
I might disagree with the critiques who think Red Hood’s Revenge is the best of the series. For sheer mood and similarity to the tone of the original, I would probably give that honor to Mermaid’s Madness.
BUT technically, Red Hood’s Revenge stretches the author, and it is arguably Jim’s best crafted book in the series so far.
Here’s a little cut to save your friend’s pages. The short version in case you’re working on a schedule: Read the book, especially if you like faerie tale and myth-based fantasy.
The longer version?
Continue reading “Red Hood’s Revenge”